Get the tea and scones ready, dear readers, because Bridgerton is back on Netflix with its second season! With Simon, the Duke of Hastings (Regé-Jean Page) no longer in the picture, where does the story go? Lady Whistledown wasn’t on hand to fill us in on all of the goings on, but creator Chris Van Dusen and some of the cast gave us a little tease of what’s in store during a recent press conference.
The storyline is different from the second book in the series, The Viscount Who Loved Me, so Van Dusen wanted to let fans know what to expect this season.
“Fans should expect a wild wild ride. We managed to take everything people fell in love with about this first season and put it into Season 2. It’s just more — more steam, more scandal, more sex, more sexy moments. It’s an amazing season and a wild, wild ride. We’re back with an even bigger escape to 19th century Regency London this time around.”
With Daphne happily married to her Duke, the focus shifts to her brother, Lord Anthony.
The Viscount declares he’s looking for a wife as the new social season begins, but love’s got nothing to do with it. “Anthony is at a point where he needs to find a wife,” actor Jonathan Bailey shared. “He decides he’s going to commit to finding his Viscountess, but he’s taking love out of the equation. So what could possibly go wrong?” He added, “We get to explore a lot of things in this season about his vulnerabilities and anxieties, and hopefully understand some of his behaviours from the past.”
Bridgerton brothers Benedict and Colin also play into Season 2.
But they’re not exactly on the same page as their eldest bro, Anthony, especially when it comes to the social season and the marriage mart. Luke Thompson, who plays Benedict, said, “Benedict doesn’t really understand the marriage mart, so watching Anthony muddle his way through it is really useful. That’s what older brothers are for.”
Thompson went on to say, “Benedict is moreso trying to find himself creatively this season. There’s a dichotomy that I can identify with about being in a creative job. You spend a lot of time either thinking that you’re wonderful or that you’re the worst actor in the world. Benedict goes through that. He’s literally high on himself for a lot of the season, and also has all these doubts. His journey is about trying to find out what it actually means to be creative and take yourself as your own measure and not compare yourself to other people.”
Luke Newton described where we find his character, Colin, this season. “After the scandal of last year, Colin’s returned to town with some interesting facial hair and a tan, which was nice. And he’s sworn off women for the time being. He’s looking towards business pursuits and wants to find his place within the family. He feels that as much as his brothers are not settled, he sees that they have ambition and drive and things that they focus on in their lives. Colin is looking for his thing. He’s done the traveling, and now he’s looking for what’s next.”
Simone Ashley and Charithra Chandran join the cast this year as sisters Kate and Edwina Sharma.
Kate is solely focused on finding her sister a husband, but she’s attracted the attention of Anthony Bridgerton. Edwina, on the other hand, develops this fascinating relationship with Queen Charlotte. Chandran talked a bit about playing opposite Golda Roshuevel. “It was such an honor. From my perspective, I brought what Golda and I have in our personal relationship to the Queen and Edwina. I’m so new to this industry and Golda is a shining light. I can go to her for any advice, and she’s so generous.”
Roshuevel expanded on that by addressing a specific scene that she and Chandran worked on together. “We discussed it with director Tom Verica, and I really wanted that scene to not be mother/daughter or teacher/student. I wanted both of us to be senseis in that teaching and sisterhood element of the relationship. We find two women: one at the beginning of her career in society; and another that has done it, been there and is going through it. The balance and the equal energy that the two have in that scene is really beautiful. But it was important for us to be equals.”
The season is like a carefully choreographed dance between Kate and Antony, and actual dancing often comes into play.
Ashley addressed those dance scenes with Bailey. “We worked with amazing choreographer, Jack Murphy, and gave a lot of the movements and choreography intention and symbolism. And we kept on talking about planets.”
Bailey expanded on the dance and musical elements of building this relationship (including the Regency era instrumentals of modern-day hits). “I do love these two people being in each other’s orbit, having not even met. Their sort of love is something that’s so expansive. What’s amazing about these dance sequences and the music, it’s where Bridgerton is at its best, where every element of the creativity comes together. We also have our own private playlist and we talked about music because it’s an easy access point to identity and to love. I remember in my teenage years the angst and connection I’d feel with lyrics, so it makes sense that music is an important part of this. It’s also a brilliant and groundbreaking way to connect the past with the present by doing these amazing covers.”
Van Dusen later explained what sets this season apart from Season 1.
“The biggest difference is the characters that we’re focusing on. This season, we’re with Anthony Bridgerton and his quest for love. He finds it — or maybe he doesn’t find it –with Kate Sharma. It’s a new story, and that was part of the draw for me to sign up for a series like this as far as the ability to tell these close-ended love stories season after season without having to come up with all these fake obstacles to keep our main couple apart. We can actually get them to their happily ever after, and it can be a satisfying conclusion every season.”
Photos Courtesy of Netflix