Autostraddle March Madness — Best First Kiss: Final Four

Every year, come Selection Sunday and Monday, I sit rapt in front of my television waiting to find out if/when/where my favorite college teams will compete in March Madness. The brackets are put together, in secret, by a selection committee — a collection of athletics officials nominated by their respective conferences — who spend countless hours during the regular season evaluating teams. It’s a thankless job, really, one that I didn’t fully appreciate until I sat down and tried to find, divide and rank the 64 couples for Autostraddle’s March Madness competition.

The premise of this contest — the best first on-screen kiss — made my job in seeding the field easier, comparatively. I haven’t watched all 62 shows featured in this bracket (The Fosters and Jane the Virgin appear twice); in fact, before I started this, I don’t think I’d watched half of them. But, as I searched for those first on-screen kisses and tried to glean enough information about each show to write 100+ words about it, I found a bunch of new shows to love. Aside from just voting for your favorite ‘ships in this contest, I hope that through this bracket competition, you’ve found some new shows and couples to love as well.

But, that bit of nostaglia aside…let’s see what havoc you guys wreaked in the Elite 8….

Going into this contest, I thought Florencia and Jazmin of Las Estrellas were a lock for the Final Four. The #Flozmin fandom is overwhelming in their devotion — you have to be to have painstakingly subtitled every episode of the recently concluded Argentine telenovela — and I imagined that their enthusiasm would carry them through the Elite 8. But then along came Kate and Rana of Coronation Street, the story of a straight married Muslim woman who discovers that she’s fallen for her best mate, and down went my favorite to win the region.

While we launched this contest as a search for the best first on-screen kiss, no one was surprised when voting turned out into a friendly competition between ‘ships; that’s how these internet contests tend to go, after all. In the regional final for the Drama region, we ended up with, perhaps, the best kiss in the region from Petra and Jane “JR” Ramos of Jane the Virgin against, perhaps, the biggest fandom in the region, Stef and Lena of The Fosters. Frankly, I thought the fandom would win out, but — surprise! — it didn’t and Petra and JR advanced to the Final 4.

No one’s had a harder road to the Final Four than the Sci-Fi/Fantasy representative, Nicole and Waverly of Wynonna Earp. First, they beat out Sara and Ava of Legends of Tomorrow, before besting Alice and Robin and Cosima and Delphine. I thought their luck might run out against Maggie and Alex of Supergirl but even the Sanvers ‘ship couldn’t dethrone Wayhaught on their way to the Final Four.

But have the girls of Wynonna Earp met their match in Kate and Emaline of Everything Sucks? The young duo from Boring High School pulled a tremendous upset in the Elite 8, eliminating Autostraddle favorites, Kat and Adena from The Bold Type. A contest that I thought would have a super-close finish, ended up as a blow-out, thanks to a well-timed Instagram story from one of the show’s stars. Don’t let Peyton Kennedy’s innocent appearance fool you, she’s in it to win it!

As usual, the voting period lasts for two days (48 hours from the time this post goes live)! We’ll announce the contestants in the national championship of kissing on Friday, April 6.

Kate and Emaline, Everything Sucks vs. Nicole and Waverly, Wynonna Earp

Kate and Rana, Coronation Street vs. Petra and Jane “JR” Ramos, Jane the Virgin

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A black biracial, bisexual girl raised in the South, working hard to restore North Carolina's good name. Lover of sports, politics, good TV and Sonia Sotomayor. You can follow her latest rants on Twitter.

Natalie has written 410 articles for us.


  1. I am somewhat surprised that Florencia and Jazmin did not make it to the Final Four. They were one of the few bright spots in that dumpster dive of a year called 2017.

    I think I will be avoiding Twitter for a few days because that fandom is going to be pissed…

  2. Fellow Straddlers, let us remember as we go into these last rounds of voting that this is a contest about the **BEST FIRST KISS**. Not the best couple, or best love story, or best use of nostalgia. The best first kiss.

    And so tell me, with total honesty, has there ever been a better first kiss than this? I think not.


    • i love that there are fairly clear instructions–best first kiss–and yet everyone is all tied up in knots about who they like as a couple or who they’re glad exists. it’s the gayest thing ever that none of us can get this quite right.

  3. Kemaline against Wayhaught is tough, but no one can beat “When I think about what I want to do most in this world, it’s you.”

  4. where’s the Russian interference when you need it. I was lowkey hoping Stef and Lena and Petra and JR mysteriously made it onto the final list. Well now my vote is smooth sailing from here.

  5. All of my favorites are gone so I’m just voting Willy nilly from now on

  6. Flozmin lost? OMG! How is that even possible? I am very bitter about this. I know the deed has been done but y’all should go back and watch that Flozmin kiss. That’s one of the hottest first kisses ever. When two women give open mouthed kisses like that, heaven and earth collide. And this is a first kiss. Now make sure you take note of the mistake you made.

    I’m happy to see WayHaught and Kemaline in the final four.

    And while I voted for Petra and JR, I am shocked to see that Stef and Lena lost. Like wow. This is serious. Autostraddle, we have some serious Jetra fans here. Means you should ensure you recap the final three episodes of Jane The Virgin this season since they will be Jetra heavy. You’ve got fans here.

  7. Question. So are there any couples you are hoping to get to see their first kiss on screen?

    For me it’s Anissa and Grace on Black Lightning (though that may be in season 2) and Rosa and Gina Rodriguez may be bisexual’s character on Brooklyn Nine-Nine.

    • @taylordazzles I really, really wanted Anissa and Grace to kiss before the bracket was finalized. Before every episode, I’d message @c-p and be like, “please let this be the episode where they kiss.”

      Also, Tegan and Annalise on How to Get Away With Murder.

      • @pecola Grace has been absent for 7 episodes. It’s been a disaster waiting for her to show up. I mean the show is still killing it without romance but after introducing us to her, it is so cruel to take her away for so long. The heart wants what the heart wants. Hopefully season 2, we finally get what we fans deserve. #ThunderGrace


        Stephanie March is coming back to SVU for a guest appearance and I’m like, “if Alex isn’t coming back to make out with Olivia, what is even the point?!”

  8. JETRA 2.0! JETRA 2.0!

    *lowkey praying for Rous Rose to bless me with a Rosario Dawson gif*

  9. Yeah, it’s no contest for me at this point. We’e talking best first kiss specifically here, and that’s clearly Wayhaught and Petramos. Now, if those two manage to advance to the final matchup, I’ll have a bit of a tougher time…

  10. people in the front yell WAYHAUGHT
    people in the back yell WAYHAUGHT
    people to the left yell WAYHAUGHT
    people on the right yell WAYHAUGHT


  11. KADENA lost? Unacceptable. Created an account just to point out this -GRAVE- injustice (btw hello everyone so lovely to meet you). …but KADENA Lost? HOW. Someone please explain this to me. I am distraught and maybe it’s just because I’m riding a Kadena high and re-watching all their scenes in preparation for season two when Kat inevitably flies out to Adena, but ya’ll! Where you at? Need I remind you of the chemistry, the softness, the intense stares, the QUALITY banter, they scream soulmate material-they could grow old together :'(
    via GIPHY
    Wayhaught and Petramos tho (that’s going to be scary)

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