Bridgerton’s second season is nearly upon us and, besides a banging soundtrack, there’s plenty of Regency-era romance drama to look forward to. Before Julie Andrews gets to narrating all of the corseted chaos and raunchy romps the show has promised, we thought a refresher of sorts might be in order. After all, can one truly appreciate season two’s tale of a reformed rake looking for an arranged marriage in order to avoid those pesky things we call feelings without revisiting his f*ckboi antics? We think not.
Here are all of the storylines from Bridgerton’s first season that will most assuredly come into play in season two.
It’s Penelope Featherington, Lady Whistledown If You’re Nasty
While the London ton might still be in the dark as to the true identity of its most voracious gossip, Bridgerton fans aren’t. By the end of the first season, Penelope Featherington (Nicola Coughlan, doing her absolute best to convince you to just watch Derry Girls already, dammit!) revealed just how deftly she’d been wielding her pen, employing those countless hours spent wall-flowering and pining for her best friend’s brother in service of the greater good. (And by “greater good” we mean she was putting every corseted lady and side-burned rake on blast.) She might have endured some heartache by the time her debut marriage season was done but fret dear readers, this author’s still got teeth in season two.
A Viscount Hits The Marriage Market
Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey) was Bridgerton’s resident f*ckboi in season one. He lorded over his siblings, nearly ruined his sister’s marriage prospects, and spouted off about duty and family while knocking boots with an opera singer who was not of his station. He constantly flip-flopped between doing what was right — taking on his manly responsibilities — and longing to run away with his backstage lover. In the end, he broke her heart and his own, resolving to finally marry a lady worthy of the viscountess title but swearing off any kind of romantic connection. So, yeah, we’ll see how that works out for him this season.
Colin Bridgerton’s Angst-Filled Vacay
The most charming Bridgerton brother experience heartbreak of his own in season one when his affections for Miss Marina Thompson led him to a hasty marriage proposal that ended in scandal. The show threw fans a curveball when it revealed Marina was pregnant and the baby’s father had tragically died in the war. Her goal was to marry quickly in order to hide her out-of-wedlock dalliance, something Penelope soon discovered. Wanting to save Colin Bridgerton (Luke Newton) from potential ruin, and, let’s be honest, improve her own chances of ending up with him, Penelope debriefed the whole ton on Marina’s bun-in-the-oven via her gossip column. In the end, Marina was able to marry Philip Crane, the brother of the man she once loved while an angst-ridden Colin jetted off to Greece for his own Regency-era Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants sabbatical. He’ll be back in season two, but will he be the same love-sick idiot who left, and will Penelope finally shoot her shot with him? We’ll see.
Eloise The Snoop
Fiercely independent and impossibly nosy, Eloise Bridgerton (Claudia Jessie) absolutely did not have time for the demands of the marriage market in season one. She wasn’t officially out seeing as it was her elder sister Daphne’s season to shine, so she put all of the ball invitations and park promenades to good use by indulging in her favorite pastime: figuring out who the hell Lady Whistledown is. She got close too, eventually teaming with the Queen herself to discover the author’s identity but, in the end, she respected the rebellious spirit of the ton’s mysterious scribe too much to out her. Weirdly enough, Eloise is still obsessed with sussing out who Lady Whistledown is in season two, but this time, her reasons are, umm, more personal.
Son Of A … Duke
Bridgerton’s first season rested all of its horny hopes on the palpable connection between its spoon-licking rake, Simon, the Duke of Hastings (Rege-Jean Page), and Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor) who was dubbed the season’s Diamond of the First Water. Theirs was a courtship filled with sexual tension and daddy issues and a surprising amount of violence but, in the end, their faux arrangement turned out to be the real deal. Simon was able to overcome his childhood trauma, Daphne finally figured out how babies were made, and the two welcomed a son whose name, they decreed, must begin with the letter “A.” Sadly, Page doesn’t make an appearance in season two but Daphne does pop up to help her oldest brother Anthony figure his sh*t out so just remember, even though these two aren’t burning for each other on-screen, they did get their happily ever after.
4 Broke Girls
Most of the Featherington brood — with the exception of Penelope — are insufferable, prattling idiots but even in their worst moments, they’re just so damn fun to watch. Their descent into destitution and poverty was as hard to swallow as the nauseatingly vibrant gowns Lady Featherington squeezed her daughter into and, by the end of the season, we couldn’t help feeling bad about all they lost. It was revealed that Lord Featherington was both a terrible accountant and an unlucky gambler, two things that led to his untimely demise. And, since this is Regency times when women were still considered a form of property, none of the Featherington women are qualified to inherit what’s left of his piddling estate. If you’re a period drama fan, you can likely guess what this all means. That’s right, an estranged male cousin is coming to town to claim his birthright. Sorry, girls.
‘Bridgerton’ returns on March 25.