I remember the hype around Season 1 of Bridgerton produced by Shondaland, where the story followed Daphne Bridgerton and Simon Hastings, The Duke. There was a lot of talk about the show, in particular the various shocking sex scenes.
While I did watch the series out of curiosity and appreciated the diverse cast, as well as the colourful costuming and clever concept based on the book series by Julia Quinn, Season 1 didn’t strike me as emotionally moving. I felt it was more creative entertainment for entertainment’s sake. And while there’s nothing wrong with that, Season 2 of Bridgerton is different. It has depth, more relatable characters, a deeper-rooted romance, and has honestly won me over.
In the second season, we follow Jonathan Bailey’s character The Viscount, Lord Anthony Bridgerton, the eldest son of the Bridgerton family who is finally seeking a bride. However, he is searching specifically for responsibility’s sake, like a job to be filled, and not for the purpose of finding love.
To Anthony, this decision seems clinical and logical, as it will help fill in a void that society expects for him to fill. But all of this goes out the window when Simone Ashley’s character Kate Sharma bursts into Anthony’s life and throws everything off course. But especially when he is set on courting this season’s ‘Diamond’, who just so happens to be Kate’s younger sister Edwina Sharma, played by Charithra Chandran.
And what does Kate want throughout all of this? She just wants her sister to be happy and want for nothing. Kate never asked for Lord Bridgerton to do anything.
What entails throughout Season 2’s Bridgerton is a push and pull dynamic, despite not showcasing as many sex scenes as its predecessor, is an incredibly intoxicatingly rollercoaster romantic, to the point that even your partner will be gushing on the couch alongside you. If anything, when you do come across some intimate scenes, they actually feel more special because they are few and far between.
The costuming on this show has always been exceptional, but this year the standout outfits are worn by the newly introduced Sharma family, and are exquisite and perfect right down to Kate Sharma’s capped sleeves. Culturally, they really got it right and honestly, I want one of those dresses! They’re stunning!
What’s also perfect about this season is the chemistry between Bailey and Ashley’s characters Anthony and Kate, appearing natural and believable, you really feel like you’re a fly on the wall witnessing a stubborn young and budding romance blossom.
This second season of Bridgerton not only has me cemented to watch the rest of the series – Netflix confirming Season 3 and Season 4 are in the works although no date is set yet, but it has inspired me to read the books. Admittedly, I’ve never actually read romance novels before, let alone stories set in the Regency era, but there’s always a first. As I type this, my books are on the way to be delivered, and while I am aware that it is the Shondaland series on Netflix and not the novels that instigated the culturally diverse characters, it’s always nice to discover the origins of where a phenomenon started.
Season 2 of Bridgerton is the best season yet and is a must-watch for all hopeless romantics everywhere. In a genre known for its lack of diversity, I admittedly would have never watched this series if not for its culturally diverse cast. I’m just hoping that in the following seasons we see more South East Asians and East Asians characters in main roles, as that would be the cherry on top for me.