Why Josh Winning 'Big Brother 19' Is a Huge Milestone
Why Josh Winning 'Big Brother 19' Is a Huge Milestone
John Kubicek
John Kubicek
Senior Writer, BuddyTV
On the finale of Big Brother 19, Josh Martinez surprised everyone by winning the game. The 23-year-old meatball defeated returning player Paul Abrahamian by a 5-4 vote, the same result that Paul suffered last season against Nicole Franzel. And while the night may not have made a big deal about this, there's one particular aspect of Josh as a winner that is a huge milestone for Big Brother. He's Hispanic.

There's definitely a debate over whether Josh played a good or even decent game and whether he deserved to win, or if his victory is simply by default because of an extremely bitter and petty jury against Paul. But this article is about Josh as the winner.

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In many ways Josh fits the recent mold of winners. He's a superfan and he had a story arc of growth as a person after a rough start, similar to Ian Terry and Steve Moses. But the fact that he's a Cuban-American makes Josh truly unique.

Josh is the first male minority ever to win the game of Big Brother. That fact holds true not just across the previous 18 seasons of the show, but also for Over the Top and even the five seasons of Big Brother Canada. He's also the only male minority to even reach the Final 2.

And he's only the second minority to win the game period, joining season 4's Jun Song. The only other non-white HGs to reach the Final 2 were season 3's Danielle Reyes, season 6's Ivette Corredero and season 11's Natalie Martinez.

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Big Brother has always had a bit of a diversity problem. Typically each season only has a tiny handful of minority HGs (this season, for example, only had four: Josh, Alex, Ramses and Dominique). Even so, the endgame of most seasons is exclusively white.

In addition to the five previously mentioned minority HGs who reached the Final 2, only four other minorities made it to the Final 3: season 1's Curtis Kin, season 2's Monica Bailey, season 11's Kevin Campbell and season 18's James Huling. In 20 seasons (counting OTT), that means a mere 9 out of 60 HGs in the Final 3 have been minorities, while the other 85 percent were white.

So for Josh to make it to the end of the game is a big deal by itself, but for him to win is huge. He's the first Hispanic-American winner in the show's history, proving that barriers can still be broken. It's a shame that it took the show this long, but inspiring that it finally happened and that they didn't even make a big deal out of it.

But Josh's victory is a milestone for Big Brother and it might be the one glimmer of hope in this otherwise dreary, dull and weak season.


(Image courtesy of CBS)