After much speculation, we finally know who will lead Bridgerton season 3: Penelope Featherington (Nicola Coughlan) and Colin Bridgerton (Luke Newton).
Coughlan revealed the news on Sunday, May 15 at a panel for the Netflix show. “Like Lady Whistledown, I have been keeping a secret for quite some time and I can confirm to you all that season 3 is Colin and Penelope’s love story,” she said, per a press release from the streaming service. “I have kept that secret since two weeks into season 2. This is the first time I am saying it here.”
Netflix revealed the news on Instagram via a society paper written by Lady Whistledown. (So…Penelope herself, I guess?) “Dearest Readers, it is only fair that in this author’s third year chronicling the marriage mart, Mayfair’s social season should find its focus on a third son…as well as a third daughter. This author can confirm that the upcoming season shall follow none other than the budding relationship between Mr. Colin Bridgerton and one Miss Penelope Featherington. With Penelope’s days as a wallflower wearing thin, will she finally take bloom? Time will tell, and as always, so will this author.”
This all may come as a bit of a surprise to those who read the Bridgerton book series. While seasons 1 and 2 followed the order of the Julia Quinn novels, Penelope and Colin’s love story actually takes place in the fourth book, Romancing Mister Bridgerton. This means the show will be skipping over Benedict Bridgerton’s romance from book three, at least for now. Whether we return to him next season or move ahead to Eloise’s story from book five remains to be seen.
Without giving away spoilers, Romancing Mister Bridgerton focuses on Penelope’s unrequited love for Colin. After he returns from a trip abroad, he starts noticing his friend in a new light…especially after they share a kiss. But will the reveal that she’s Lady Whistledown end the relationship before it even truly begins?