Is Paulie & Zakiyah's Showmance Heating Up?

by Emily Lackey

There are plenty of reasons why I watch Big Brother every summer, but seeing showmances unfold is definitely one of main reasons. Am I the only one who has noticed that Season 18 has been sorely lacking in the hook up department? But I am here to reassure you, because, even though CBS has been pumping the brakes on the showmance spectacle, the live feeds have been lighting up with couples like Paulie and Zakiyah canoodling around the house. So have Paulie and Zakiyah hooked up? Fans of this showmance are chomping at the bit to see these two make their romance Big Brother official.

Sure, I like the game play of Big Brother, and I like yelling angrily at the TV when houseguests start cracking under the pressure. However, the real reason I watch the show is to see the players negotiate the personal relationships in the house, AKA get into showmances. That, my friends, is where the show gets fascinating. And Paulie and Zakiyah have one of the most fascinating showmances in the house, if only because it gets the least screentime of any other showmance in the house. Casual fans of the CBS series can probably name more James and Natalie moments, or Corey and Nicole moments, than they can Paulie and Zakiyah moments. And that is a real shame — although I suppose it gives them a perfect amount of privacy if they do want to hook up.

I hate to break it to you, Zaulie fans, but I don’t think a hook up is going to happen anytime soon. Spend a few hours watching live feeds and you’ll see these two being super flirtatious, but also very careful with keeping their distance. It’s pretty clear that they're playing it safe when it comes to showmancing their way through this season of Big Brother.

Still, their chemistry and downright adorableness cannot be denied. Twitter is riddled with moments where the camera caught them hugging, moments where the camera caught them snuggling up next to each other, and moments where the camera caught them not being able to keep their hands off of each other. But they are also incredibly strategic game players, and hooking up is not part of either of their strategies. In fact, Paulie admitted that his main strategy going into the Big Brother house was to not start a showmance. It was something his brother warned him about, and something that he was keeping at the top of his priority list.

In a moment that the live show didn’t broadcast, Paulie displayed this ability to keep his distance from Zakiyah. The two were in the HoH room late at night, talking game while the rest of the house slept. But, when Zakiyah said she’s going to leave, Paulie said playfully, “You’re not allowed to sleep in this bed anyway.” In response, Zakiyah said, “I don’t want your mom coming for me.” It’s an adorable exchange like so many others that these two have had, but it definitely proves that these two are playing it safe when it comes to showing their affection with anything other than simple flirting.

Sorry, Zaulie fans. Your favorite showmance is G-rated for now. Then again, with cameras on them 24/7, that is not a bad thing.

Image: CBS