The best and worst changes 'Bridgerton' season 3 made from the books

Luke Newton as Colin Bridgerton and Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington in "Bridgerton" season three.
Luke Newton as Colin Bridgerton and Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington in "Bridgerton" season three.Liam Daniel/Netflix
  • "Bridgerton" season three adapts Julia Quinn's fourth novel from the "Bridgerton" book series.

  • However, the show's plot strays quite a lot from "Romancing Mister Bridgerton."

  • Here are the five best and five worst changes the TV show made.

"Bridgerton" season three might be based on "Romancing Mister Bridgerton," but the Netflix series took some major liberties with the source material.

Season three follows the general book plot by adapting Penelope Featherington (Nicola Coughlan) and Colin Bridgerton (Luke Newton), adapting key scenes in their friends-to-lovers journey. But the rest of the story is filled with changes, including the love triangle in season three, part one.

This is not uncommon for "Bridgerton," which has been a roaring success since its first season and is one of Netflix's most-watched series ever.

Here are the best and worst changes "Bridgerton" season three made from the books.

Warning: Spoilers ahead for "Bridgerton" season three, part one, and "Romancing Mister Bridgerton."

Best: Cressida and Eloise's friendship

eloise standing next to cressida cowper in bridgerton, among a crowd in a ballroom. eloise is wearing a blue gown and smiling, while cressida looks forward, wearing an ornate gold gown
Eloise forges a new friendship with Cressida in season three of "Bridgerton."Liam Daniel/Netflix

In "Romancing Mister Bridgerton," Cressida Cowper is a one-note bully of London's high society, and she never becomes friends with Eloise Bridgerton, Colin's younger sister.

However, in the series, the writers evolve Cressida (Jessica Madsen) as a character through her friendship with Eloise (Claudia Jessie). We learn that Cressida bullies others due to her insecurity of not having any friends or suitors.

We also learn that Cressida is in a tough position because her parents insist on her finding a suitor. She needs a husband to escape her family.

Cressida develops from the one-note bully to a fully realized woman trying to survive in the Ton.

The friendship also develops Eloise. Since season one, she has been a self-obsessed, slightly insensitive, reckless young lady. She doesn't listen to anyone's advice until her friendship with Cressida, and the audience can see her maturing this season.

Best: Lord Debling

The first look photo of Penelope (Coughlan) and Lord Debling (Sam Phillips) in "Bridgerton" season three.
Penelope (Coughlan) and Lord Debling (Sam Phillips) in "Bridgerton" season three.Netflix

In "Romancing Mister Bridgerton," most of the tension in Penelope and Colin's relationship comes from his realization that she's Lady Whistledown.

But the timelines are a bit different in season three of the show. To up the urgency, "Bridgerton" instead creates a romantic rival: Lord Debling. Like Penelope, Lord Debling is looking for a match — but he seeks a practical, rather than romantic, one given that he plans on traveling for years at a time. For Penelope — a.k.a. the Ton's most prolific gossip columnist — that's pretty ideal, even if she'd prefer love.

It's nice to see someone genuinely interested in Penelope (other than Colin, after he gets his act in gear), and Sam Phillips' Lord Debling is a great mix of polished, detached, and a little bit odd. Seeing Colin jealous is pretty delightful too.

Best: Francesca Bridgerton makes her debut this season

francesca bridgerton in season 3
Francesca Bridgerton in season three.Netflix

Francesca Bridgerton is the not-so-secret second lead of Bridgerton season three. Hannah Dodd takes over the role from Ruby Stokes, who departed after the show's second season, and handles Francesca's debut with aplomb.

Francesca's storyline this season is different from what we've seen from the other "Bridgerton" couples, due in part to the fact that her true love story in the books is still yet to come. Contrary to her mother's aspirations, Francesca isn't set on a love match — she mostly wants a kind husband and a good life. Still, she finds a kindred spirit in Lord Kilmartin, a man who prefers to bond in silence and rearranges music for her at the drop of a hat.

This part of Francesca's story takes place on a different timeline in the books vis-à-vis Penelope and Colin's. But it's great to see her develop a relationship and get more space as a character, prior to her eventual time as a romantic lead.

Best: The Balloon incident

colin bridgerton and other men standing on a wooden platform, pulling at several ropes tethered to a balloon. colorfully dressed onlookers watch from the background
The balloon incident is a great moment for Colin, let's be real.Liam Daniel/Netflix

Every "Bridgerton" man needs a good opportunity to showboat, and this is Colin's.

Before a hot air balloon launch, an unmoored rope and unusually windy day cause the balloon to drift off. Colin, his forearms exposed, grabs one of the ropes and rallies a group of men to heave the balloon and its basket back onto the platform.

This scene has everything: a brute display of strength, Penelope almost getting caught in the balloon's path because she was busy staring at Colin, and Lord Debling chivalrously protecting her from harm. Colin receives plenty of adoration from the audience, but he only has eyes for Penelope. If only he understood that he was in love with her!

This incident doesn't happen in "Romancing Mister Bridgerton," but it's the perfect dose of jealousy-tinged frivolity that we need in "Bridgerton."

Best: Violet Bridgerton's romance

Daniel Francis as Lord Anderson, Adjoa Andoh as Lady Danbury, and Ruth Gemmell as Lady Violet Bridgerton on season three, episode four of "Bridgerton."
Daniel Francis as Lord Anderson, Adjoa Andoh as Lady Danbury, and Ruth Gemmell as Lady Violet Bridgerton on season three, episode four of "Bridgerton."Liam Daniel/Netflix

The first two seasons and "Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Series" have been mainly focused on young people falling in love. The same situation occurs in the "Bridgerton" books.

But in season three, we finally get a hint at an older love story with the burgeoning flirtation between Violet Bridgerton (Ruth Gemmell) and Lord Marcus Anderson (Daniel Francis).

It is really great to see one of the show's best older characters get a romance. Both Violet and Lord Marcus have been widowed, so it would be a great opportunity for the series to develop a "second love" relationship.

Sure, season three, part one only gives the romance a few scenes, but hopefully, we get the full love story in part two.

Worst: Lady Danbury doesn't have a friendship with Penelope

Daniel Francis as Lord Anderson, Adjoa Andoh as Lady Agatha Danbury on season three, episode four of "Bridgerton."
Daniel Francis as Lord Anderson, Adjoa Andoh as Lady Agatha Danbury on season three, episode four of "Bridgerton."Liam Daniel/Netflix

One of the best past of "Romancing Mister Bridgerton" was Penelope's friendship with Lady Danbury (Adjoa Andoh), a wise, independent widow in the Ton.

She was part of Penelope's transition coming out of her shell, and their conversations always showed that Penelope was so much braver than she thought. Their interactions are among the few insights into Lady Danbury's personality in the book series since she is a more minor character there.

Though Lady Danbury has been more developed in the TV series, she doesn't interact with Penelope much. Pen is left to fend for herself without any friends this season other than Colin.

This allows Penelope to find the courage alone but doesn't help Lady Danbury's arc in season three. Lady Danbury randomly props up Francesca instead, but this pairing has no interesting interactions.

Worst: The Featherington sisters' baby race

philipa featherington and prudence featherington, young women with red hair and blue and purple gowns, speaking with their mother lady featherington in a dining room
Philippa and Prudence Featherington are under pressure to produce an heir.Liam Daniel/Netflix

"Bridgerton" leaned pretty hard into the entire "these poor young women don't know how sex works" thing in season one. While potentially realistic, by season three it's become a bit tired.

Penelope's sisters, Prudence and Philippa, are both married, and their mother is putting pressure on both of them to produce a baby. If either of them have a son, that child would become the new Lord Featherington. That's particularly important, given that Lady Featherington herself is under threat from the Crown to have to transfer their estate to another family.

Unfortunately, Prudence and Philippa are shockingly clueless when it comes to procreation. But by this point in time, the bumbling sex schtick is a bit tiresome. In "Romancing Mister Bridgerton," the Featherington heir race isn't a part of the plot — and while it's an understandable concern, it could do with a bit of nuance this season.

Worst: Penelope doesn't have a younger sister

Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington on season three, episode one of "Bridgerton."
Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington on season three, episode one of "Bridgerton."Liam Daniel/Netflix

In "Romancing Mister Bridgerton," Penelope isn't the youngest Featherington sister. In addition to Philippa and Prudence, she has a younger sister — Felicity.

Felicity is close friends with Hyacinth Bridgerton and serves as another conduit of information between the Bridgerton and Featherington families. In the book, Lady Featherington schemes to set Felicity up with Colin, a prospect that Penelope balks at. But Penelope and Felicity are close, and her friendship with Hyacinth is a regular sense of entertainment.

It's easy to see why Felicity isn't around in "Bridgerton" — frankly, there are plenty of characters to keep track of, and she doesn't play an irreplaceable role in Penelope's story. But Felicity's inclusion in the story adds a bit of levity through her friendship with Hyacinth. It also underscores the tensions within the Featherington family: Lady Featherington thinks much more highly of Felicity than she does Penelope.

Worst: Penelope and Colin are much younger than their book counterparts

Colin and Penelope in Bridgerton season 3
Penelope and Colin finally take center stage in season three — but on a quicker timeline than in the books.Liam Daniel / Netflix

The "Bridgerton" book series has bigger gaps of time between the events of each book. This means that by the time Penelope and Colin get to their love story in the fourth book, Penelope is 28, and Colin is 33.

Penelope's desperation to find a husband makes a lot more sense in the book because in society at time she would definitely be considered a spinster at that age.

Penelope is only in her third year in society in the TV series, so her desperation feels forced.

In addition, the timeline in the book version supports their rapid transition from friends to lovers. Colin would be mature enough to realize Penelope's beauty and have known her much longer. Therefore, he would have less hesitation in marrying her quickly.

Worst: Benedict is still single and lost

Luke Thompson as Benedict Bridgerton on season three, episode two of "Bridgerton."
Luke Thompson as Benedict Bridgerton on season three, episode two of "Bridgerton."Liam Daniel/Netflix

By "Romancing Mister Bridgerton," Benedict, Colin's older brother, had found his lover and was already married.

However, the "Bridgerton" TV series skipped his romance for now, so he is still single and lost. While Benedict's casual relationships were fun in the first season, it was disappointing to postpone Benedict's romance to give him another fling.

Benedict is one of the best Bridgertons. We want to see his love story!

"Bridgerton" season three, part two airs June 13 on Netflix.

Read the original article on Business Insider