The Bachelor spinoff, Bachelor in Paradise, made history on Tuesday night when Riley Christian and Maurissa Gunn got engaged, becoming the first Black couple to find love together in the entire The Bachelor franchise. They were one of three couples to have proposals at the end of the season.
The couple had no idea that they were the first Black couple to be engaged until after the fact. Though several Black leads have headlined the franchise, including Rachel Lindsay (The Bachelorette), Tayshia Adams (The Bachelorette) and Matt James (The Bachelorette), none chose a Black person at the end.
Christian told Entertainment Tonight, that the engagement was “good for the culture.” Christian wanted the attention to focus on the person and not necessarily their race.
“At the end of the day, it’s about us. It’s about our engagement,” he said. “We went on the show to find love. We found it, and we got engaged.”
“The fact that we look alike, it’s just a bonus, and it’s great,” Christian added. “I couldn’t be more happy for us.”
Gunn shared to her Instagram stories a tweet from a social media user that expressed excitement for the franchise’s overdue fairytale for a Black couple.
The couple is preparing to meet each other’s family before Gunn makes the move. Christian is looking forward to Sundays with his love.
“Sunday morning, for me, it’s just a time of peace,” he told the publication. “I always had this vision of just being able to have my family and just be able to relax on a Sunday morning, cook some breakfast, some bacon and eggs. You’ve got your children there. It’s just a great feeling. It’s no stress. Now we have an opportunity to build our own family and we can enjoy it every single time.”
Gunn agreed, stating that she wants “a whole basketball team” of kids, with whom they’ll be able to “create our own life, our own family start, our own traditions.”
Michelle Young will be the third Black woman to be The Bachelorette later this year and has the opportunity to make history again.