CFP Episode 158: Bridgerton

Knowing

Sara Klooster, Christina Bieber Lake, and Sarah Thomas discuss season one of Shonda Rhimes’s hit Netflix Regency romance Bridgerton in anticipation of season two’s debut in 2022.

CONTENT WARNING: This TV show contains a significant amount of mature content–the show deals frankly with the good, the bad, and the ugly of courting and marriage: socially, psychologically, and sexually. We will be discussing some of these issues in this episode, so please keep this in mind as you’re choosing when/where to listen. This episode is probably not one that is safe for work environments or young listeners.

First encounters with Regency narratives

  • Books? TV miniseries? Full-length feature film adaptations?
  • What were our initial impressions of the genre?

Brief background of the Bridgerton TV show and its adaptation from its source material

Reading

The show does a Regency narrative that opens up the genre in ways that appeal to a 21st century audience while also drawing on historical precedent

How does the series navigate some of the standard tropes of the Regency romance/narrative genre, particularly regarding courtship and marriage? 

  • The Daphne/Hastings marriage and its rocky start
  • Suitable/unsuitable marriage prospects
  • Old money/new money

How does the series open up/diversify the genre? 

  • The Duke of Hastings narrative
  • The presence of aristocratic POC families
  • The casting of Queen Charlotte
  • The unplanned pregnancy storyline

How do the production considerations–costumes, sets, etc.–support these efforts?

Passing On

Christina – the writings of Aphra Behn

Sara K. – Regency Love Mobile Game, and The Nobody by Diane Farr

Sarah – “On Sex and Marriage, Bridgerton Stumbles into Catholic Truth”

“Netflix’s Bridgerton is a Feminist Disaster. But It (Almost) Redeems Itself.”

Additional articles mentioned:

Bridgerton‘s Queen Charlotte Was a Real Royal

7,500 Costumes and 5 Months of Prep: What It Took to Create Bridgerton‘s Costumes

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