We’ve talked about season one of the phenomena that became Netflix’s romantic hit of 2020, and we also reviewed the first four books of the series, the second of which this new season is based upon. We’ve got our issues with the source material, but we are all about more romances portrayed on-screen.
So how does season two of Bridgerton, featuring the love story of first-borns-and-extremely-repressed Kate and Anthony hold up? I…have thoughts. But I also want to hear your thoughts! Let’s promenade to the comments to gossip behind our lemonades!
My general non-spoilery thoughts:
- The sumptuous, colorful sets and costuming are a feast for the eyes, and it’s the thing I think this show does best. Kate looked powerful and AMAZING in a never-ending parade of jewel-toned dresses, and Edwina ethereal and delicate in varying tones of blush and cream. The flower-covered entrances of the Bridgerton’s city home and ancestral seat–I can see why it brought an unexpected smile to Kate’s face.
- They used the right amount of Daphne and she was much less annoying in this season. While I missed Regé-Jean Page’s beautiful face, I didn’t miss Simon at all.
- Speaking of beautiful faces, say what you will about Anthony as a character but many thanks to whomever decided to cut off Jonathan Bailey’s fake sideburns before this season because he was definitely not this cute in the last one. Charithra Chandran was also, like, incandescently gorgeous, and Simone Ashley just has something that makes it impossible to take your eyes off her when she’s on screen. Thank you for all the eye-candy, Netflix.
- Ashley and Bailey had crazy-good chemistry as Kate and Anthony the entire way through, and it was a travesty that they didn’t give us more of their actual interactions since this was, you know, THEIR LOVE STORY. My favorite part of romance is the yearning, and if you’re looking for hand clenching and “closing your eyes and savoring the scent of her hair as she walks by” acting then these two nailed it. *fans self*
- The second-best parts were all the light-hearted Bridgerton family moments. The entire Pall-mall scene was super amusing, as as the family dance near the end. Every time they were lounging around the parlor taking pot-shots at each other was my fave.
- Colin and Penelope still continue to be the worst potential couple, and ugh I don’t know how they will salvage how shitty Penelope is as a person (she was much easier to like in the books). The entire Lady Whistledown plot thread was unnecessary except to give us the pointless Eloise/Pen drama at the end. Colin was one of the worst book brothers and he’s really living down to that here too.
- I have zero clue what they’re doing with Benedict, AKA the second-worst book brother, and while he’s more amusing on the show (especially all drugged up), his rich-boy-wants-to-be-an-artist subplot is about as fun as watching his paintings dry. I thought maybe they were working towards revealing he was gay back in season one, but now not so much after season two?
- I did not care at all about the Featheringtons’ woes–or, really, any of the side plots–except I was kinda digging the unexpected attraction between you-know-who and Lady Portia, right!?
- Kate’s orange dress at the last ball was SO PRETTY, and “Wrecking Ball” actually sounds pretty epically romantic as an instrumental cover, no?? (Also LOL that this is Anthony and Kate’s theme song.)
My most spoiler-y thoughts (scroll past if you want to avoid!):
- So I didn’t read The Viscount that Loved Me, but it seems general consensus is that was the best book of the series. I’ve already seen book readers up-in-arms that the show altered the fact that Edwina never really cared about Anthony in the book. I think I’d be annoyed too, because it made the show’s love triangle SO MESSY. Despite the excellent smolder, I was feeling icky with Edwina over here infatuated with the idea of Anthony as he made googly eyes at her sister across the room. And it’s hard to feel bad for Anthony when the entire situation is literally HIS FAULT. He pursued a woman he did not care for and just kept doubling-down, even when he knew he was obsessed with her sister and despite his family trying to gently point out the emergency exit along the way. Kate also loses brownie points when she won’t woman-up and tell her sister flat-out either a) Anthony is using her and doesn’t actually love Edwina, so if her goal is a love match she’s SOL with the Bridgertons or b) that Kate has feelings for Anthony too and it’s gonna be messy. I didn’t even care for Edwina’s outburst once she realizes the truth because I felt like she was mad at Kate for the wrong reasons, and also: you knew why you all went to England. You WERE husband-hunting, and even if you didn’t explicitly know it was for money, you were actively looking only at rich, titled men. The fact that everyone let it go all the way up to literally standing at the alter meant, for me, there was no way to salvage everyone’s poor choices. Yes, everyone was manipulated into their “happy endings” by the last episode, but they’d all lost my respect in the end.
So what did you think? What couple will they focus on in season three? What were your favorite and least favorite parts? Your favorite instrumental pop cover?