Love is in the air this week, and Syfy has aimed Cupid’s arrow at its fans this Valentine’s Day with the return of the Geek Love Chapel.
Last year at San Diego Comic-Con, Syfy and ordained geek Orlando Jones (American Gods) teamed up to create the Chapel, where fans could dress up, be merry and yes, get married.
The results—dozens of vow renewals, several weddings and lifelong moments created for fans—inspired Syfy and Orlando Jones to keep the love going this Valentine’s Day.
“My hope was always to do it again, do this in an ongoing capacity and fortunately, hats off to Syfy, they called and were like, ‘Hey are you interested?’ I’m like, Yeah, absolutely. Oh I’m sorry, I should let you finish your sentence. I’m totally in!” said Jones.
Last July, the event—which included cake, flowers and a drumline—took place in the heart of San Diego. This time around, the Geek Love Chapel will be livestreamed on Syfy’s Facebook Live page beginning at 2 p.m. ET/1 p.m. CT Wednesday.
With the Geek Love Chapel arriving on the social media stage, Syfy can now bring the love from Comic-Con to anyone anywhere in the world.
“It’s a celebration of things that bring people together. Being connected to all those people and having the relationship be ongoing is the fun of what happens at cons,” said Jones. “Especially in this climate, you’re actually coming to people and you’re laughing. It’s a joyful thing and not people yelling at each other. It’s a welcome change.”
During the sci-fi themed nuptials, fans can follow along and share their own stories of nerd love on Instagram and Twitter with the hashtag #ItsaFanThing. Syfy will retweet the most romantic and/or ridiculous.
Jones has many dream cosplay pairings in mind for the event.
“I want someone in the Black Panther family to marry someone in the Black Lightning family. Or if Black Panther married Black Lightning,” he said. “I would love to have more LGBTQ+ pairings.”
But it’s clear his ultimate dream is to make the Geek Love Chapel an ongoing event.
“I hope we do it several more times this year. My hope, and if I have any say about it, I will be in San Diego doing it, in New York doing it. I’d like to hit all the major cons,” said Jones. “As of now, those discussions are not finalized, but it is absolutely my intention to be able to do this year after year and let love rule, as I like to say.”
Following its rebrand and 25th anniversary celebration, it’s clear Syfy wants to let the fans rule.
“It’s about celebrating the people who fell in love with these characters and met a lot of their friends and significant others talking about these characters and stories,” said Jones.
In the wrong hands, the Geek Love Chapel could come off as disingenuous, or a platform to make fun (or profit) off its flock.
“I don’t think there are a lot of properties that would let me do this and would understand,” said Jones. “I’m not on a Syfy show. We’re not marketing a Syfy show, and there’s no endorsement. It really is just a celebration of fandom and love.”
The Geek Love Chapel is another bold proclamation of Syfy’s own love for fans—not just of its network but of the sci-fi genre in general.
With Orlando Jones, they have a perfect minister.
“I’m not visiting fandom, I’m in fandom. I’m not in fandom as a celebrity, I’m in fandom as a fan,” he said. “I consider myself a 14-year-old fangirl. I’m not a fanboy because I think the term fanboy is a bit exclusionary. Fangirl has all the squeaks, all the squeals and that’s why I’m a 14-year-old fangirl.”
On Valentine’s Day, Syfy hopes everyone gets their fangirl on by visiting the Geek Love Chapel on Syfy’s Facebook Live page on Wednesday, February 14, at 2 p.m. ET/1 p.m CT.