Queen Charlotte can choose her diamond, but Penelope is going to be the character who truly sparkles in Season 3 of “Bridgerton.”
Netflix’s hit series will focus on the love story between Penelope Featherington (Nicola Coughlan) and Colin Bridgerton (Luke Newton) in the third season — and the news is coming from Lady Whistledown herself.
“Like Lady Whistledown I’ve been keeping quite a big secret for quite a long time … but I can finally tell you that @bridgertonnetflix Season Three is Colin and Penelope’s Story,” Coughlan announced on Instagram Monday.
The decision to cover the romance between Colin and “Pen” (who also happens to be mostly unknown and notorious author of the ton’s gossip rag Lady Whisledown’s Society Papers) may surprise fans of Julia Quinn’s romance novels, on which the show is based.
In the “Bridgerton” book series, each novel focuses on the love story of one of the Bridgerton siblings. The third novel focuses on Benedict Bridgerton and the surprising love he finds. Penelope and Colin’s story occurs in book four, called “Romancing Mister Bridgerton.”
Jess Brownell, the new showrunner for the Netflix adaptation, explained to Variety why the show will diverge from the order of Quinn’s novels.
“I feel like, especially in the last season, there are these moments of tension between them where it’s like, Colin walks up to the line of almost realizing that Penelope has feelings for him but doesn’t quite get there,” Brownell said. “Instead of treading water on that dynamic, we wanted to push it into their season. It really felt like the perfect moment to tee it up.”
Both characters have been around since Season 1. Although the show has never focused on their relationship, it has always been abundantly clear that Penelope’s feelings for Colin could be described by the heart-eye emoji. Colin, however, has only expressed strong feelings for Penelope’s cousin, Marina Thompson (Ruby Barker) — and for talking about his travels to Greece.
But a heartbreaking scene at the tail end of Season 2 — in which Penelope overhears Colin telling his friends he’d never court her — seems like fertile ground for a burgeoning love story that promises to be juicy enough to be covered in the pages of Lady Whistledown’s Society Papers.
Here’s hoping that Colin finally gives Penelope the respect she deserves — despite her dreaded yellow dresses.