The Real King of the Nerds: The Nerdist vs. Geek Goddess


by Angela Dahl (@AngelaDahling)

TBS’s recent effort to court the nerds through a reality show features  two teams of supernerds competing to sit atop the Throne of Games and  be crowned King of the Nerds.  This got me wondering about nerd  icons of the present: if there was a battle for the title of king of  all nerds, who would play in this game of thrones?  Each week we’ll  compare two rivals in a particular realm of nerdom.  TO THE DEATH!!


As a girl gamer, actor, and writer, Felicia Day holds her own in what is stereotypically (and  sometimes misogynistically) considered a boy’s world.  She played  potential slayer Vi on Buffy, and Whedon later used her in his online superhero  musical Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog.  She is most recognized for her starring  role on The Guild, a web series about gaming created and written  by her.


Chris Hardwick is probably the industry’s  most recognizable fanboy.  He began his career as a stand-up comedian  and is often remembered as the guy who hosted Singled Out, an MTV dating game show  that ran from 1995-98.  The show had a “Picker” who would weed  out who they wanted to date from a pool of fifty by use of categories.   To this end, I, as the Picker, have created categories for this Celebrity  Nerd Deathmatch (Is that too many old MTV show references?  Nevermind,  I don’t care).

1) Ambition 

Felicia Day launched a YouTube  channel in 2012 called “Geek and Sundry” that features programs  such as The Guild and Tabletop, a series about board games  with Wil Wheaton and other TV/web personalities.  In fact, Geek  and Sundry has pronounced March 30th “International Tabletop  Day,” an entire day devoted to celebrating gaming!  It might  not be printed on your calendars just yet, so I’d suggest writing that  down.  Other programs on the channel are Written by a Kid – which takes stories written  by kids and adds actors, animation, and sometimes celebrities – and Space Janitors, a sci-fi show about janitors  who work… in space.  Well, a well-known space station, to be  exact.  Felicia has her own vlog on the channel too.

As the creator of the Nerdist  podcast, which has branched out into Nerdist Industries, Chris Hardwick  holds major sway over all things nerd.  There are many podcasts  and programs available on, so whatever your nerd preference is you are  likely to find representation.  He currently hosts The Talking Dead, the commentary show that airs immediately following The Walking Dead, and the Nerdist has its own show on BBC America that will begin  airing again on March 30th.  On International Tabletop  Day!  That’s two things to mark on your calendar.

2) Total Package 

Let’s take a step back for a second and just  look at these two.  LOOK AT THEM.  Both Felicia and Chris  are ridiculously good-looking nerds.  They’re like beautiful mythological  creatures. Felicia has mermaid-colored hair, and Chris has the build  and face of a Tolkien elf.  If I ever met either one of them, I’d  react as if I just saw a leprechaun riding a unicorn: WHAT ARE YOU AND  CAN I TAKE A PICTURE, PLEASE?

3) Helping Hands

Felicia frequently donates to charities to help  music programs, animals, small businesses, and Wikimedia (who owns Wikipedia).   She is essentially helping the Internet stay awesome.  She’s even  auctioned 30 minutes of her time for charity.  In addition to bowling  for charity, Chris is one of the minds behind “Course of the Force,”  a Star Wars themed charity run.  He’s also written a  self-help book called The Nerdist Way: How to Reach the Next Level (In  Real Life).   It’s basically to help nerds reach their true  potential through the mind, body, and time (and a graph notebook).

4) Musical Chops 

Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along  Blog is often cited evidence  of Felicia being able to sing, but The Guild has also done some amazing  music. The music video for “Do You Wanna Date My Avatar” is like Britney back in the day status.

And if you do a YouTube video search of “Felicia  Day singing,” there are videos of her just singing in public, like  at VidCon or a PAX concert.

Now, remember that awfully amazing Tom Cruise  musical movie Rock of Ages that came out about a year ago?  That was  based off of a hit Broadway musical?  That hit Broadway musical  was an L.A. production first that had Chris Hardwick shirtless in a  white cowboy hat as Stacee Jaxx, the character that Tom Cruise played.

And Chris Hardwick and his friend Mike Phirman  have long been a comedy/musical pair called “Hard ‘n Phirm,” and  they recently did an ode to  the Ehrmagerd meme called “Gersberms (Yer Gervin Mah).”  The video features Hayley Williams  from Paramore and the Swedish Chef from The Muppets.  And you see  Chris’s sonic screwdriver.  This is music videos at its finest.

5) Following 

As of March 10th, Chris  Hardwick has 1, 850,039 twitter followers.  Felicia  Day has 2,030,804.  Geek and  Sundry has 483, 916 channel subscribers. The Nerdist has 376, 053.  It’s a close match, ladies  and gentlemen.

Who do you think should be singled out as the  winner of this celebrity nerd deathmatch?


  1. LisaMarch 12th, 2013 at 10:04 pm

    I read the article, and you bring up some good points, but I have to say Felicia Day. Not just because I love her to death and she has my dream job (The Flog), but because I hate Chris Hardwick. I can’t believe Wil “Don’t be a dick” Wheaton is BFFs and former roomies with a guy who only comes off as the biggest dick ever. *sigh* Mean is not always funny, Chris. Good article Angie! I’m so happy for you getting to write nerdy stuff! Also a dream job

  2. mrjroc83March 13th, 2013 at 7:42 pm

    Umm why have you not included the obvious? Zachary Levi:
    1. Ambition: He played a nerd in the role of Charles Bartowski in the show Chuck, and co-founded this nerdvarnia of a website.
    2. Total Package: He too has good looks, modeled for products.
    3. Helping Hands: Devotee of Operation Smile and has gone on mission trips for the non-profit organization to help support the work they do.
    4. Musical Chops: Recorded with Kathy McPhee, sung in a Tangled, and performed at the Oscars.
    Did you exclude the certain him because of the apparent?
    I did enjoy the article and I do agree and would pick Miss Day over Mr. Hardwick.
    5. Following: Not as many people follow him like they do Hardwick, however he does have over 400,000 on Twitter.

  3. Courtney MasseyMarch 14th, 2013 at 12:39 am

    I absolutely adore both Felicia Day and Chris Hardwick! They bring a lot of entertainment to the table and I value the work they do! However, the winner here for me will always be Chris Hardwick! He has become a huge inspiration for me! I’ve never been so close to my dreams as I am right now, and I thank Chris for apart of that. I’ve certainly become more comfortable with myself and my nerdist ways! I highly recommend reading his book, The Nerdist Way! I look forward to see what both of them produce in the future! They are talented, funny, and awesome nerds!

  4. NerditaMarch 14th, 2013 at 10:05 pm

    Felicia Day.

  5. CasiasSeptember 3rd, 2013 at 10:48 pm

    I love them both but I have to say Chris wins and its not that close. If you actually look up the two empires these two have built its very lopsided. Hardwick has so much more to offer in the geek world with more variety and more outlets to present it than Felicia does. Again I love them both but Hardwick has done so much more its not even funny. Right now its like comparing Arya to Littlefinger in GoT.

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