18 Lesbian and Queer TV Weddings to Melt Your Heart
Author: JD Glass
Queers love to party, and what better reason than to celebrate love? Even before it was legally recognized, the lesbian wedding has been a celebration of union and U-Haul, the commitment between people and their chosen friends and family that our relationships are real, valid, and for some of us, deeply committed.
Below is a list of all of the reflections of this massive life milestone for all the sapphic sisters on television.
1996: Friends, “The One With the Lesbian Wedding,” Carol and Susan
With Newt Gingrich’s half-sib Candace playing the part of the officiant, the marriage between Ross’s ex-wife, Carol, and her partner, Susan, was seen by 31.6 million people, who watched Ross proudly walk Carol down the aisle when her parents refused to attend. Lea DeLaria was there too — and oh, were there some very interesting and British-looking hats.
2002: Queer as Folk, “The Wedding,” Lindsay and Mel
A reflection of real life in many ways. Lindsay’s parents refuse to help pay for the wedding because it wasn’t “real.” High jinks ensue, and the wedding is almost cancelled, but the ensemble save the day, and Mel and Lindsay walk themselves down the aisle to be declared “married in our eyes.”
2005: The Simpsons, “There’s Something About Marrying,” Patty and Veronica & other lesbian couples
When Springfield decides to legalize same-sex marriage to boost its tourism, Homer starts a side hustle as a wedding officiant. And although for Marge’s sister Patty, it’s not an actual wedding — it got canceled mid-ceremony when Veronica turned out to be a cis guy posing as a woman (mid-aughts, not woke yet), Homer does marry other lesbian couples throughout the episode.
2009: All My Children – Reese and Bianca
Ah, a marriage during the time when it was a patchwork of “where can we be legally recognized.” Our lovely ladies had originally planned a commitment ceremony in Bianca’s hometown, but after Connecticut enacted marriage equality in 2008, the wedding location was moved. Valentine’s Day 2009 saw daytime TV’s first same-sex wedding.
2011: Grey’s Anatomy, “White Wedding,“ Callie and Arizona
In what’s considered the first lesbian wedding in a network drama between two long-running characters, Callie’s time in the episode is spent dealing with her mother telling her that the marriage isn’t legal and that they’re “playing dress-up,” something many a gay girl has heard from friends and family prior to 2015. After the minister has to cancel, Callie decides to also cancel the wedding. But an inspirational talk and a rallying of the crew sees the wedding back on again, and the biological father of the couple’s child walks Callie down the aisle.
2013: The Fosters, “I Do,” Stef and Lena
For the first lesbian wedding on TV after the Supreme Court stuck down the Defense of Marriage Act, shooting started the literal next day, and the episode had the second-highest viewership of the series. It allowed characters Lena and Stef to not only legally cement but also celebrate their 10-year relationship.
2015: Last Tango in Halifax, “Old Ain’t Dead,” Caroline and Kate
Although we have the joy of Caroline wedding her beloved (and very pregnant) Kate, Kate is killed immediately after in a car accident, giving us yet again another “bury your gays” trope in an attempt to redeem a homophobic character. They deserved better — and so do we.
2015: Glee, “A Wedding,” Brittany + Santana and Kurt + Blaine
A double the gay fun episode, because the happy lesbian couple ask their gay male friends to be part of a double ceremony — in a barn in Indiana, because they couldn’t get married in Ohio. It’s OK, though, because one of the brides was born in said barn. There is definitely commentary about how unfair that need to travel to marry actually is, and not only do we avoid the “a parent doesn’t come because homophobia” plot device, Jennifer Coolidge, Gloria Estefan, and Gina Gershon perform “I’m So Excited.”
2016: Hollyoaks, Episode 4444, Kim and Esther
The Brits bring on the drama in this soap, leaving everyone in a will they won’t they tizzy until they do — and then Kim is kidnapped after, which makes her new bride thing she’s been newly left, but Kim is returned a few weeks later. Hope they were able to reschedule their honeymoon.
2017: The Last Man on Earth, “Gender Friender,” Gail and Erica
So. After a pandemic in 2020 wipes out most of humanity (wink wink, nudge nudge), these seven folks are the sole survivors. And for Gail and Erica, well, it’s all about that “stupid piece of paper.” Because what’s a lesbian TV wedding without the trope of (a) someone not showing up because of homophobia or (b) the brides-to-be arguing about whether or not marriage is important. Welp, apparently it is important enough that even in a world of only seven people, marriage is still a big deal for everyone.
2018: Steven Universe, “Reuinted,“ Ruby and Sapphire
It may have been “just” a cartoon, but the Crystal Gems, aliens from another part of the cosmos, happen to all be female, and the one named Garnet is actually a fusion of two gems, Ruby and Sapphire. Jokes about lesbian personality fusion aside, this first all-ages and super-duper lesbian wedding said it best through the fusion, Garnet: “I am the will of two gems to care for each other, to protect each other from any threat, no matter how vast or how cruel.” And that’s true love right there.
2018: Sense8, “Amor Vincit Omnia,” Nomi and Amanita
Jamie Clayton played Nomi, who married Amanita, making this the first lesbian wedding with a trans bride. But wait, that’s not all. This bride shares a consciousness with other pansexuals, and this series ender gives us a wedding night orgy for a happy ending indeed.
2018: Orange Is the New Black, “Be Free,” Piper and Alex
Turning the idea of a prison marriage on its head, Piper and Alex are married in a truly heartfelt way, complete with a homemade kippah/yarmulke. It wasn’t legal, but in their hearts and ours, it was very real.
2019: Gentleman Jack, “Are You Still Talking?” Anne and Anne
Actually, even though the television version happened in 2019, fact is that Anne Lister’s wedding is a historical reality that took place on March 30, 1834, in Holy Trinity Church in York, England. As the series historical adviser and author of Gentleman Jack: The Real Anne Lister has said, “As a Christian, whose own same-sex desires she believed to be the dictate of God, Anne craved the permanency, and, ironically, respectability, of a romantic union solemnized in the same way as a marriage. She saw no reason that she and the woman she loved should not declare their commitment before God.”
2020: The Chi, “Foe ‘Nem,” Nina and Dre
What a way to kick off a season — a wedding, and a lesbian wedding at that. Sure, it’s The Chi, so there’s trouble coming in the next act or two, but for the moment, it’s wedded bliss, some lesbian jokes, and then … the muy caliente wedding night! More than champagne corks are a-poppin’.
2021: Wynonna Earp, “Old Souls,” Waverly and Nicole
The show may have been titled Wynonna Earp, but its heart has always been Wynonna’s sister Waverly, who discovered her own bisexuality when she fell in love with Nicole Haught. With a pairing known to the fandom as WayHaught, it’s not even a joke to say the couple embodied relationship goals, possessions, demons, and being half-angel notwithstanding. The wedding closed out the series, making sure there were tears from the audience, in a ceremony that saw them surrounded by friends and family as well as empty chairs to symbolize the lost. But everyone is welcome in the Earp-Haught homestead.
2021: Legends of Tomorrow, “The Fungus Amongus,” Ava & Sara Lance
It’s not a shotgun wedding, it’s a pre-apocalypse, we are all gonna die, but I ain’t doin’ that before I marry the woman I love sort of wedding, which means they’ve got four hours (not really, this is TV) to make it happen before the end of the world approaches. Nate, the officiant, tells them, “When all seems lost, love.” And the wedding makes them, as Ava declares, “co-captains forever, baby.”
2022: The L Word: Generation Q, “Looking Ahead,“ Bette and Tina
Love them, hate them, ship ‘em forever and a day, Bette and Tina, a.k.a. Tibette, a.k.a. the couple that kicked off the series, show up for the finale in a big way by having the show’s first wedding! Sure, we’ve had engagements and even almost gotten to the altar before, but never quite left it in a wedded state. Now it’s not heat but a hot flash that sends our brides to get (temporarily) locked in a walk-in fridge. But a firefighter saves them (and the day!), and as Tina says about her friends, and in a real way, the fans, “They have been on this very long journey with us. And I want them to see us happy.” We do, Tina. We do.
Original Article on The Advocate
Author: JD Glass