The 11 biggest differences between Netflix’s Bridgerton and the books
Madame Delacroix is a made up character
Netflix’s Bridgerton is based off the first book in a series of eight by author Julia Quinn. Like with every TV adaption of a book, there’s room for some creative license in changing up story lines, characters and narrative arcs. But when looking at the the Bridgerton books vs Netflix, there are some major differences in the series that just don’t happen in the books. Many of the main and most likeable characters don’t exist, Lady Whistledown’s identity is revealed at a different time, and even that sex scene is different.
This is how the Bridgerton books vs Netflix series differ:
Marina Thompson’s pregnancy story line is made up
In the series, Marina is locked away in her room pregnant and crying over George Crane (the baby daddy) not sending her letters. She has a big storyline with Colin Bridgerton, and at the end of the series she’s shipped off with George’s brother, Sir Phillip Crane, who says it’s his duty to marry Marina to honour his brother’s death.
In the books, Marina barely gets a look-in – she’s basically a non-existent character.
In the fifth book, she’s name dropped as the dead wife of Sir Phillip. She dies after an attempted suicide, and leaves behind two children fathered to Sir Phillip, not George. It is obvious in the books Marina has lived with depression and considers her marriage loveless. After her death, Eloise starts writing love letters to Sir Phillip Crane and honestly I am just as disappointed as you are that our queen is not riding solo.
She’s also a cousin of the Bridgerton, not the Featheringtons
She probably would’ve had a nicer time with the Bridgerton family.
Lady Whistledown is not revealed until the fourth book
Lady Whistledown is revealed to be Penelope Featherington at the end of the Netflix series, but in the Bridgerton books Lady Whistledown’s identity is revealed in the fourth book. It’s still Pen, if you were wondering.
Lady Featherington is widow
Lord Featherington is a made up character in Netflix’s Bridgerton, and is made out to be a prolific gambler. In the books, Lady Featherington is widowed, and there’s barely any mention of him.
Anthony Bridgerton knows about Daphne and Simon’s plan
Simon and Daphne tell Anthony their relationship is a ruse. He agrees to it on the grounds they keep it secret, aren’t alone together without a chaperone, and NO KISSING. Like in the series, Anthony catches Simon and Daphne getting off and then challenges Simon to a duel.
The Duke doesn’t box in the books
There’s no reference to the Duke boxing in the books – although it was kind of Netflix to add this hobby in because, well, see below:
Will the boxer and his wife Alice are also made up for the series.
Simon is drunk and half-asleep during the rape scene
The Bridgerton rape scene has led to discussions of consent and sexual assault. In the series, Daphne gets on top of the Duke and forces him to ejaculate inside her, despite him saying “wait” and looking terrified.
In the books, this scene is different. First, Daphne confronts Simon about his refusal to have children. He threatens to rape her, telling her he “owns” her.
Then, one night the Duke comes into Daphne’s room drunk. When he’s half asleep, Daphne gets on top of him, and like in the series forces him to ejaculate inside her. This is an extract of the book: “He was in her control, she realized. He was asleep, and probably still more more than a little bit drunk, and she could do whatever she wanted with him. She could have whatever she wanted.
“Daphne had aroused him in sleep, taken advantage of him while he was slightly intoxicated, and held him to her while he poured his seed into her. His eyes widened and fixed on hers. ‘How could you?’ he whispered.”
Madame Delacroix and Siena don’t exist!!!
And Queen Charlotte too!!!
Siena is based on a character in the Bridgerton books, called Maria, who is also an opera singer. But there’s no big relationship between her and Anthony or steamy scenes under the stage floorboards.
Madame Delacroix is also made up, which is a bit gutting because IMO she’s one of the best characters in the series.
Benedict Bridgerton isn’t knees-deep in orgies
Daphne is entering her second season, not her first
Netflix’s Bridgerton is all about Daphne coming out to high society for her debut season. In the books however, it’s her second season, another Bridgerton books vs Netflix difference.
She struggles to find a husband because most of the men see her as a friend, rather than a potential wife. She does bat off four proposals however, and she still punches Lord Berbrooke. This is when her and Simon first meet, rather than her bumping into him in the ball.
There is sadly no Prince Friederich either.
Simon sometimes has a stutter
In the books, Simon still has a stutter at times, unlike in the series where he has grown out of it by adulthood.
Nurse Hopkins is also the reason for his education and lessons on society, rather than Lady Danbury.
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