In Season 5 of the momentarily-axed Brooklyn Nine-Nine, fans were delighted by a touching bisexual coming-out story for Detective Rosa Diaz, played by Stephanie Beatriz, that was inspired by her own public coming-out. As soon as the storyline hit, legions of fans took to Twitter to advocate for Jane the Virgin star Gina Rodriguez as Beatriz’s next fictional love interest. They got their wish on Sunday, when Gina played Alicia, an alluring Uber driver who distracts Rosa in the middle of a mission during the season finale.
Their brief flirtations, featuring a rare and refreshing instance of the female gaze, were a delight to watch—and, for LGBT fans of the show, it was a long time coming. If you’re unfamiliar with the history of this Rodriguez/Beatriz Brooklyn Nine-Nine showmance, fear not: Below, a detailed timeline of how this lovely partnership unfolded.
2008: Super Chica, or, It Begins
According to a recent interview with Vulture, Beatriz and Rodriguez’s friendship goes all the way back to a small-time 2008 short film called Super Chica (so small-time, in fact, that it’s never been released). “… We’re friends and the first thing I ever, ever, ever did on film was with her,” Beatriz said. That friendship led her to influence Rodriguez’s casting on the show: “… I gave them multiple names, people that were dreamy dreams, and Gina was one of them.”
April 11, 2016: Heart Eyes Forever
Rodriguez took to Instagram to highlight Beatriz and her B99 co-star, Melissa Fumero, for her weekly #MovementMondays initiative highlighting Latino actors and actresses. (Rodriguez would go on to dedicate another Monday to Beatriz’s lead performance in the indie feature The Light of the Moon in November 2017.) The shoutout prompted this delightfully flirtatious response:
Spring 2017: The Fans Know What’s Up
The next year, fans across Twitter and Tumblr started going public with their headcanons. A fictional girlfriend photoset by Twitter user janedeckers prompted tchallq to Photoshop the actresses into a road trip romance—and then Gina Rodriguez and Stephanie Beatriz burst onto the scene, eager to break the internet.
The two cooked up a flirtatious tweet storm, fighting over imaginary road trip snacks while fans watched eagerly. As Tumblr user mos-stef stated in her post chronicling the event, “Gina Rodriguez and Stephanie Beatriz are trying to kill me.”
July 12, 2017: Stephanie Beatriz Praises a Hypothetical Gina Casting
Beatriz once again tried to make fans’ heads explode in July 2017, when she publicly praised a fan’s dream thread of “actresses that could play Rosa Diaz’s girlfriend.” Included in that thread? Yeah. Gina Rodriguez.
August 2017: Bustgate
The fangirling really hit the fan after, in her cover story interview for Bust Magazine’s August/September issue, Gina Rodriguez went public with her love for the Rosa/Gina shipping. “I want to play her love interest so bad,” she said. “I really hope they make that happen.”
The lady-loving internet went wild. Autostraddle picked up the story and fan creations spiked. In the words of Tumblr user theseowleyes, written to accompany a dream Gina/Rosa scenario, “Rosa Diaz deserves a GF and Gina Rodriguez volunteered so here we go.”
August 22, 2017: Latina Superheroes in Love
Many of you are probably wondering when Lin Manuel-Miranda gets involved in this epic romance. Well, here you go: The Hamilton creator unwittingly stoked the Rodriguez/Beatriz fire when Twitter user loudlysilent sassily replied to one of his motivational tweets:
Fans went wild. Teresa Jusino at The Mary Sue even went so far as to start the screenplay. Stephanie and Gina naturally took this as an opportunity to give gay women everywhere a collective heart attack. “Gina I feel a lunch coming on,” Beatriz tweeted. Naturally, Gina was on board, complete with kissy-face emoji.
January 25, 2018: Gina Is Still Thirsty
Entertainment Weekly’s January 25 Spoiler Room included a scoop on Rosa’s upcoming same-sex romance, and featured some quotes from Diaz saying she “love[d] Gina Rodriguez” and “would love to kiss Kate McKinnon.” After a fan tweeted out the segment, Rodriguez seized the opportunity to ask, “Um … can I get an audition @Brooklyn99Fox?!?” We get it, Gina, you want to kiss Stephanie Beatriz! Let us live, please!
February 28, 2018: Dreams Become Reality
The inimitable Terry Crews accidentally let the gay cat out of the gay bag on February 28 when he posted a selfie with Beatriz and Rodriguez. “Amazing time today hanging with my sistas from different mistas @iamstephbeatriz and @hereisgina on @brooklyn99fox!!!!” the now-deleted Instagram post read. Luckily, Entertainment Weekly snagged a screencap and the casting news went public, causing Gina/Rosa fans everywhere to pinch themselves.
The adorable photo was resurrected by a Brooklyn Nine-Nine fan account later that day:
Present-Day: “Jake & Amy” and Aftermath
Now that the season finale has aired, featuring two cute scenes between Beatriz’s Rosa Diaz and Rodriguez’s Alicia, it’s crazy to see how far we’ve come. Not only is this one of those rare instances where a show gives its fans what they want and the result doesn’t totally suck, it’s a sweet chapter in two great actresses’ off-screen friendship.
Though Rosa and Alicia didn’t even get to kiss in “Jake & Amy,” there still could be a future for the couple. “I was mad [that they didn’t kiss], too,” Beatriz admitted to Vulture on Monday. “[Next] season, I am going to hard-core push for that. Even if it’s not Gina, we need to see Rosa kiss a girl.”
The writers are eager to see more Rodriguez/Beatriz chemistry on the show as well. In an interview with TVLine, Brooklyn Nine-Nine co-creator Dan Goor said the show was all in favor of more Alicia/Rosa goodness:
Schedules allowing, we would love to have Gina Rodriguez back [in Season 6] and explore Rosa and Alicia’s relationship, and how it [affects] Rosa’s relationship with her parents. We’ve always had fun writing dating stories … and we would all like to write the Rosa/Alicia arc.