For fans of the Netflix series, “Love is Blind,” forming an emotional bond before physically seeing someone is an all-too-familiar idea. Just like the rest of us, two roommates in Brooklyn — Thi Lam and Rance Nix — became big fans, and even created an Instagram spin-off called Love is Quarantine. The friends hope to help singles find love even while we’re forced into social distancing.
“It started off as a little friendly joke that we never thought would go anywhere because we were so bored in our apartments with nothing to do,” Lam said. “Honestly, our expectations were that maybe 10 of our friends that don't know each other would go on blind dates.”
Little did they know, hundreds of people would sign up and tune in on Love is Quarantine’s Instagram. Here’s how it works: people sign up, then the hosts randomly choose a group of six singles to meet up for an online date. Think of it like virtual speed dating. And every date night has a theme to it — Queer Night, Tall and Short Night and Boomer Night.
Once a theme is set and the creators select their cast members, Nix puts them into “pods” for a date. In other words, he’ll send a group text to all the singles selected, “Here’s your first date! Jump on the phone!” And people will keep cycling through different “pod dates” until the date night ends.
Lam and Nix also ask their participants to film a reaction video after each of their dates so they can post it on the show’s Instagram and the audience can see what’s going on throughout the night. They have a livestream after the show for the cast to bond and build community.
“Some people will share their relationship advice, dating advice,” Nix said. “Instagram Betty – one of the boomers from Boomer Night — she came on and dropped on with wisdom about relationships. It’s been cool making the magic happen [behind the scenes] but also interacting with the community.”