Romance Roundtable #44: Bridgerton (Season 2, Episodes 3-4)

Welcome back to Romance Roundtable: Bridgerton Edition, or as we like to call it, the “Uncut Gems of Romance.” This week we’re all a-buzz about Papa Bridgerton’s untimely demise, death croquette, and the joy of getting absolutely zooted in the middle of nowhere. And of course, be warned: spoilers for the first four episodes of Bridgerton Season 2 lie ahead!


Ashley: let’s go!
🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝

Jenny: the theme of this week: bbc’s escape to the country

Ashley: is that a real bbc show?

Jenny: lol yes

Rachel: REALLY???
holy shit

Jenny: but this time
bee bee bee’s escape to the country

Ashley: YESSSSSSS

Rachel: lolllll

CC: I really appreciate that the whole “going to the country” arc was resolved within two episodes
v convenient for our recapping purposes

Jenny: that’s actually one of my only real complaints about this season vs. last season
last season felt really tight–like 3 acts, very straightforward
this season
more arcs, resolution a little slapdash; maybe trying to do too much

CC: maybee

Ashley: hehehe

Rachel: dear reader, i hope you are prepared
for the bee puns

Ashley: always bee punning

CC: so if I was gonna summarize these two episodes
my summary would be
[record scratch]

Anthony with just the most shit-eating grin.

CC: I bet you’re wondering how I ended up like this

Ashley: i mean… pretty much

Jenny: lolololol
proposing to the sister of the woman i’m in love with. well, it’s a funny story

Rachel: LOLLL
god this was painful

Ashley: his haunted eyes and forced smile make him look like the crunchiest reaction image

CC: i mean we get to know the whole deal
from his surprisingly well worn “29 year old” father’s untimely demise to this uh, ominous proposal
also lol yes agreed

Rachel: watching this proposal happen is what propelled me to watch all the kissing parts of the rest of the season
i just needed to know

Ashley: YEP
re: the pacing comment jenny made earlier – the chaos of this season definitely propelled me forward in a way last season didn’t
last season i would be like, okay here’s a nice stopping point
this season was like, the Uncut Gems of romance
“what are you do – WHAT ARE YOU DOING????”

Jenny: lol i mean, when you put it that way…

CC: I kept yelling the same thing!!!
like
you IDIOTS
you’re 27-to-29 years old!!!!
WHAT ARE YOU DOING
this is some 23 year old romantic ineptitude party fouls all around
but also: times were different and ALSO I am forcing myself not to watch ahead LOL
so I don’t know where things go from here!

Ashley: you are stronger than the poisonous man-killing sting of a bee, CC

Rachel: well it’s a safe bet to assume smooching happens at some point

Jenny: you’re doing this rountable a service by keeping your perspective pure
but also yes the man-killing bee
the plotline i thought was lost from 2020
does anyone else remember that? from like, may 2020? a new species of man-killing bee?
was it a fever dream?
regardless
the escape to the country arc opens up with: 10 years earlier (the origins of anthony’s daddy issues)

A shot of Trixie and Katya watching the part in Bridgerton where Anthony's dad is stung by the be. "Get the Epi-Pen."

Ashley: HAHAHA
i am SO curious about allergy science at this time but too lazy to google it
like… when did it become possible to survive a fatal allergy attack? (i know for sure that someone probably wouldn’t die quite THAT fast but no one needs 20 minutes of a man gasping for air)

Jenny: oh yeah he went IMMEDIATELY into the like, zombie makeup

CC: how did this family line survive this long with such a glaring achilles heel, is what i want to know
i know they’re not like, necessarily ALL allergic to bees but still

Jenny: that’s why they have so many kids
it’s a numbers game

CC: yeah that checks out

Ashley: they definitely did not talk (in these eps at least) about how the Bee Murder started anthony’s superstition, so it seems like… he assumes that he will be killed… by a bee?

Jenny: i have to hope that anthony’s “i’m going to die at 38 bc that’s when my father died” superstition was cut by these showrunners to make room for better things
def i don’t think it exists within the text of the adaptation

Rachel: lol i think that’s what happened
i think what it is, is that he saw how much his mother suffered, and he didn’t want to do that to another woman
like, being in love to that extent
that if something bad happens, he would leave someone like that

Jenny: yeah–that honestly made WAY more sense as an explanation

Rachel: YES

Jenny: and that scene was nice

Anthony, talking to his mother: "I could never be the cause of such pain."

Jenny: so stubborn but about this thing that is good and makes good sense to you

Ashley: hahaha oh yes, very very earth sign
so martyry
it totally makes sense as a motivation but i’m also like,,,, man can’t you see how being your wife’s roommate would cause the same amount of pain in slow motion???

Jenny: no he cannot; it has not occurred to him and so it does not exist

Ashley: i guess he does (fairly) assume that their marriage would be typical of the era, and more businesslike

Jenny: so the country visit — they bridgertons are throwing a big party, but they’ve invited the sharma’s out early for quality time

CC: ; )
if you know what we mean
(chaperoned visits and outdoor party games baybeeeee)

Jenny: yes very
and the main activity is death croquet

Rachel: i know we’ve talked about the chemistry this family has

Jenny: delightful

Rachel: but nothing is more endearing to me than seeing siblings bully each other in a made up sport
and also seeing Kate get in out it
chef’s kiss

Jenny: not just kate!
i also really loved this moment

Lady Danbury cheers on Eloise: "Watch it, now, Eloise. Yes, then."

Jenny: lady danbury cheering on eloise

Rachel: LOLLLL

Jenny: so nice!
can’t wait to see how the two of them interact when we get to eloise’s season

CC: honestly if lady danbury cheers you on how could you possibly lose

Jenny: it’s true

Ashley: blessed by queen crone herself

Jenny: it’s her blessing and not any superstition over croquet mallets that will bring victory

Kate speaking to Anthony: "I know some men cannot perform without their familiar tools."

Jenny: but also daphne does win

CC: look: 100% agreed over crone’s blessings and all
but while we’re on the subject of eloise though, y’all, i have a confession to make
i do not like eloise!!!!!!

Rachel: 😮

Jenny: oh lol i can see it

CC: maybe it’s bc I too discovered feminism as a teen and i am in this picture and do not like it
but still!!!!!!!!

Rachel: LOL

Ashley: HAHAH
honestly yeah, i feel you CC

CC: i just feel like! keep it down over there! people are trying to regency bone! (ie, graze cheeks gracefully with tears in their eyes)

Jenny: in fairness to eloise
when i was her age (in the show), i was doing a lot more of this “i’m not like other girls–what, are you scared of getting your boots muddy, pussy?” bullshit

Rachel: oh same, 100000%

Kate, egging Anthony on: "Unless you do not wish to dirty those fine boots of yours?"

CC: yeah see, i was very much “have u heard of this very cool website feministing dot com???”
(which i think eloise would have been all about if she had been a teen in the mid to late aughts instead)

Jenny: at least eloise is able to stick up for other women

The weird guy trying to dance with Eloise: "I do think we should finish this dance. People are looking."
Eloise, trying to keep it together while talking to her mom: "I am a disappointment to you."

Jenny: when she tells this guy to fuck off when he says she’s not like other girls

CC: like, ok, I agree that she is right to be pissed off about her mom trying to set her up with the spike the punch guy / gatekeeping nerd guy
but at the same time
this was too much and I 100% relate to not knowing what to do if you hand me a baby

Eloise, unimpressed with Daphne's baby: "Why? Has he changed since I saw him last?"

CC: like OK KID, WE GET IT but also like I didn’t do some of this same stuff lmao

Rachel: i saw a baby this weekend and had the opposite reaction
“i want to hold that baby”
a thing i actually said
(this was my friend’s baby, not a random baby!!! just for clarity!!!!)

Ashley: hahahaha

CC: yeah see maybe i’m more of a give-the-baby-a-thumbs-up kind of baby reactor
like, good on you, baby
keep it up

Ashley: here’s my thing about eloise: i think she is very purposefully White Feminist, but within a show that is race-bent and absolutely class semi-unconscious? it’s a very sketchy brew

CC: the comeuppance i feel like she’s getting set up for
i am not ready for it
i am annoyed by but also worried for her
bc if a story w a grumpy and frequently protecting feminist character has one goal its the inevitable comeuppance narrative

Rachel: i think that’s why she is a good Teen Representative

CC: also LOL rachel agreed

Jenny: yes — i do not want to hang out w her, but i am concerned for her — peak teen

Rachel: my hope that her comeuppance is more of a cumeuppance with handsome newsie
you’re welcome

Jenny: woof

CC: L O L L L L L

Ashley: ASHDJFKLAGSDUFAESDUFGBAJ

CC: i feel like with this many kids you can afford for one to run off with a newsie

Jenny: surely! it’s a numbers game!
speaking of children throwing their lives away
my boy

Benedict, chuckling: "I have applied to become a student of art."

Rachel: LOL
[mass effect 2 sovereign voice] this hurts me

Ashley: hahahahahaha

CC: lol sorry in advance jenny but: me to pen | me to colin
affectionately

That meme of that rude cooking guy, calling somebody a fucking donkey.

Jenny: he was having a GRAND time — stressing out about art school, getting absolutely zooted with the boys

Colin telling Benny about drugs: "Worldly travelers use it as a way to open their minds."

CC: so zooted
zooted out of the stratosphere

Benny, high out of his mind: "It's as if... we sit among the stars."
Benedict, zooted out of his mind at the dinner table.

Jenny: embarrassing himself at family dinner!

Rachel: this was cuuttteeee lol
precious high man
i love a basic-ass high person

Jenny: i mean, that’s REALLY what the country is all about

Ashley: as the resident stoner, i had the too-close-to-home reaction CC had with benedict in this scene
i was like you IDIOT now they’ll KNOW

Jenny: i am in this picture and i do not like it

Rachel: LOL

Jenny: but that’s the beauty of the old times!!
no one knows about colin’s foreign substances
they don’t have that shit here

CC: yeah what are they gonna do, make a law about it

Ashley: oop

CC: even when they finally do i bet fancy rich people can still do original recipe four loco / absinthe shots in their country mansion whenever they want ¯_(ツ)_/¯

Ashley: lollllllllll

CC: so do you think colin getting zooted had anything to do with his awk ex gf visit?
bc like,
lol
oof

Jenny: lol yeah speaking of horrible things that these characters do that make us hate ourselves

Rachel: i attribute that to pure dumbness

CC: colin: haha u up

Colin tries to justify his desire to visit Marina: "Funny how distance is no match for memory, is it not?"

Jenny: top to bottom – unbearable

CC: marina: i am literally married, do you not see this whole ass baby
also LOL

Ashley: TWO babies

Marina, chastizing Colin: "What I need is to face up to my life and make my own practical decisions.

Ashley: YES !!!!

CC: also this guy could be a romantic lead in any bbc masterpiece classic get it marina

Marina's husband to Colin: "I must show you my copy of Flora Graeca. You will join us for dinner?"

Ashley: colin was big yikes but i loved that we got more time with marina, i frankly love her and she killed this scene

Jenny: WAKE UP SHEEPLE (colin)

Marina continues to chastise Colin: "That is a fool's form of torture."

Jenny: don’t play this what if game!!

Ashley: HAHAHA yeah i get why poor marina was like “UGH” but i thought her hubs was cute

CC: “are you not happy” “colin i literally am the mother of two newborns i have not slept in four months”

Ashley: AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH YEPPPPP

Jenny: we did get 2 good things out of this scene though:
1)

Colin has to explain his olive pun: "That was an olive joke."

Jenny: this clown
the only good thing he said all day
but 2)

Marina tries to get Colin to realize there are other women who would be good for him and care about him (e.g. Penelope).

CC: frankly he doesn’t deserve either of them

Jenny: marina still considers penelope her friend and here she is! setting her girl up!

Ashley: yes!!!
also like, she’s right
only Penelope could love this absolute dingus as a full human being tbh

CC: you can lead a horse to water and put gas station weed pills in his tea but u can’t make him drink

Ashley: lma

Jenny: before we really dig into the Romance
i wanted to just briefly mention a couple other side plots
pen suspects that the modiste suspects

The modiste to Penelope: "Because I happen to believe a lady's business is her own."

Jenny: but luckily the modiste is –what is the meme?– content, hydrated, in her lane?
but then pen kind of bullies/capitalisms the modiste into helping her with whistledown distro

Penelope to the modiste: "My enterprise grows more difficult for me to maintain on my own."

CC: ok i was wondering how this partnership is shaking down
also as wise as pen thought she was in negging the modiste slightly

The modiste reads Lady Whistledown's: "Whereas Madame Delacroix might be old..."

CC: if the queen didn’t know that whistledown was a dumb baby before

Jenny: yeah honestly!!
that was one of my questions from last time–why did the queen think she would be a youth? why not a mom?
but this gave it away
and my other main sideplot i wanted to talk about

Lady Featherington's answer to the question "Is it not odd to marry one's cousin?"
"It is regal. Just look at the royal family."

Jenny: “is it not odd to marry one’s cousin?”
it is REGAL
says milf featherington
this whole bullshit thing
new lord f(uckboy) is courting cressida cowper (the pinched blonde); milf f doesn’t want to answer to her, and so contrives for prudence to catch the eye of her own cousin
very boring
horrible to watch
plays out exactly as one would suspect

One of the crowd, after walking in on Featherington and one of the Featherington sisters together, unchaperoned: "Well, are you to marry the girl, then, Feartherington?"

Rachel: terrible

Lady Featherington to her daughter: "And is entrapping a man in marriage really so uncommon?"

Rachel: YIKES,

Ashley: sooooooooo awful!!

CC: me throughout this whole plot:

Penelope just full facepalming with both hands.

Jenny: LOL
Yes!

Ashley: LOL

Rachel: LOL

Jenny: but inevitably

Lord Featherington to Lady Featherington: "The only way for me to provide for all of us was to marry wealth."

Jenny: what if they had just talked to each other!??!?!?
what if he had just taken the olive branch she offered???

Ashley: tbf to milf featherington, she did try, yeah
he fully underestimated her

CC: lmao at joanne the scammer over here

Jenny: it’s true!!
and now they’re all in the shit together

CC: lol. lmao. love it.

Lord Featherington to Lady Featherington: "The only empty thing I have are those mines, Portia."

CC: that and also my head because I clearly wasn’t thinking when i cut the scheme queen milf out of the action!!!

Ashley: truly

Jenny: CLEARLY
ok ok but i have so many screenshots of the Romance
just
i know we’re supposed to be rooting for kate-anthony
but i fully fell in love with edwina

Edwina tells Anthony she would be quite content in different circumstances.

Rachel: she’s so nice!! she doesn’t deserve to be caught between these two dummies!

Jenny: beautiful charming can do no wrong

CC: yeah agreed w both of you
she is absolutely smarter than both of them
in most ways
low perception high intelligence?? idk how d&d stats work

Ashley: low wisdom haha

CC: ooh ty, ty

Jenny: ok but when anthony chickens out of the proposal at dinner….
first of all:

Anthony tries to justify why he didn't propose when he was obviously supposed to: "With everyone sitting there, staring back at me, well..."
Kate, purposefully not even looking at Anthony during the scene where he is supposed to propose to Edwina.

Jenny: couldn’t stand that she wouldn’t look at him while he did it

Ashley: everyone who MATTERS

Jenny: but also
that night, after dinner

Edwina cries as Kate rubs oil in her hair: "I should've been better."

Jenny: edwina is having a TIME
she’s blaming herself
and she’s never done anything wrong
not in her entire life

Ashley: she doesn’t deserve any of this!!!

Jenny: i was ready to murder him

CC: me too honestly

Jenny: i don’t care if you’re in love with her sister, you marry this girl and make her happy god damn it

CC: see i genuinely hope they do that thing
where the romantic rival who was never actually gonna end up with the lead
gets written off into a b plot romance that is 1000% sweeter and more fulfilling than the turbulent main romance
she deserves a doting husband who is absolutely head over heels for her
a cheese lad of her own

Jenny: ho ho ho ho well i will not say anything
but
i am happy for her
eventually

CC: NO SPOILERS i am barely hanging on in my restraint lol

Jenny: back on track!
the morning after his failed proposal, he’s taking a walk in the garden with kate in a totally normal non-romantic way
and then!
enter:
🐝

Rachel: his nemesis, or his cupid????
only time will tell!!

CC: his angle or his debil

Jenny: lol

Anthony has a full on panic attack when Kate is stung by a bee.

Jenny: anyway, he has a panic attack
you know how those are actually really sexy???
not great
but they do put their faces really close together and she puts his hand on her chest
“to show that [she] was unharmed!”
not in a sexy way! she swears

CC: every time anthony looks at kate, i feel like he only has one thought in his head

After being stung by a bee just above her heart, Kate places Anthony's hand on her chest when he panics to assure him she is unharmed.

CC: “booba”

Ashley: i mean who can blame the man

Rachel: it would be my thought too

Jenny: lol or like all those non-boob euphemisms that every 90s movie had for some reason (hocus pocus, encino man, etc)
gazongas
bazooms

Ashley: although i will say, my personal preference is for her to behead me with her jawline

Rachel: yes jesus the jawline!!
also drop the skincare routine plz

Jenny: yes!!
it’s true

CC: can this young 29 year old boy and this ageless 27 year old crone find love? only time will tell
L O L
s/o to eloise for asking kate how it feels to be a spinster
but i digress

Eloise to Kate: "But everyone tells me it is fate worse than death to end up a spinster."

Jenny: it was nice seeing her bond w kate though — and to actually talk to people
she really needs guidance out of these choppy teen waters
but also maybe kate is not actually very qualified to offer advice to anyone

CC: agreed

Rachel: she is definitely compromised

Jenny: incredible susceptible to romance by dare

Kate to Anthony, when he assumes she can't hunt: "Why would you assume I had any trouble managing at all, my lord?"

Jenny: i didn’t even want to go on this stupid hunt but then you said i couldn’t so fuck you i’m coming

Ashley: HAHA

CC: oh god, and that poor maid!!!!!
unionize the bridgerton country estate

Jenny: and that, of course, is where we get this absolute CLASSIC recreation:

Young Anthony is taught to shoot by his father.
Anthony adjusts Kate's shooting stance.

Jenny: you know how you recreate things you did with your dad but with the girl you’re into
you know how that’s actually very normal

Ashley: i———
okay tbf i feel like that’s more of a cover
“oh you were turned on? totally not my intention, you see this is how my dad taught me-“

Jenny: lol ok ok i can see that

CC: i don’t think he’s that smart
but that’s just me

Ashley: LOL no true, i think you’re right
the gemini jumped out

CC: “this feels familiar hmmm let’s just push that down and walk it off”
was my read ha ha ha

Jenny: yes
and also later that night
they have a little dead dad bonding session

Anthony to Kate: "To see a great man felled by such a small creature, it was, um..."

CC: in the library during a thunderstorm might i add

Jenny: she talks about how storms make her think about her dad and he admits that his dad was killed by a bee and that’s why (implied) he freaked out earlier
and then they nearly kiss
for the millionth time

CC: i wanna just say one more thing
if anybody was gonna catch them almost smooching in their regency nighties i am glad it was her

Daphne drinks after walking in on Anthony and Kate near kiss.

Jenny: daphne really delivered on her threat

Daphne to Anthony: "Seeing as though you were such a help to me last season."

Rachel: karma is a bitch
good for daphne

CC: imagine having that much power over your annoying sibling
i love this for her

Jenny: the dream

Ashley: ahhhhh hahaha yes, i loved this dynamic SO much

Jenny: to go from this:

Anthony to Kate, mouths close: "Say you do not care for me."
Anthony to Kate, mouths close: "Tell me you feel nothing."

Jenny: to this:

Anthony, trying to justify pursuing Edwina when he obviously has feelings for Kate: "Because I am courting her. Because I've decided."

Jenny: yes obviously i am in love! but i am GOING to marry her sister
BECAUSE I ALREADY DECIDED
i can’t take in new information!!
god forbid
anyway
i am actually ready for final thoughts now

Rachel: lol ok well here is mine

Anthony, making an amazing face that conveys frustration, confusion, and horniness.

Rachel: the enemies to lovers dynamic, in a screenshot

Ashley: lollllllll

CC: LOL

Ashley: THAT FACE. that’s ACTING!!!

CC: he’s really good at making Faces
this is kind of a segue, but here is my final thought
me last week, joking about the upcoming bee plotline:

CC's cursed photoshop of Anthony with the head of the Bee from Bee Movie.

CC: me this week after watching violet sob for her dead husband:

The same photoshopped image, but now the bee is frowning.

CC: sorry for making fun of your whole deal anthony!!!!

Ashley: incredible, this is art
you should apply to the royal academy

Jenny: LOL
yes

CC: only if i can get absolutely zooted first

Jenny: but speaking of violet’s dead husband
that’s my final thought

The painting of Anthony's father, hanging in the hallway.

Jenny: best role on the whole show
1 day of work and an oil painting of your face
cut the check

CC: do you get to keep the oil painting after the show ends? who else would want it right???

Jenny: i have to assume so!
bc exactly — what else are they going to do with it??

Rachel: i would demand it

Jenny: write it into my contract

Ashley: y’all that’s gotta be one of those prints with like, brushwork looking coating on it

Jenny: boooo
it’s in my contract that it has to be a real oil painting, so….
let me believe

Ashley: hahaha

CC: i’m sure that netflix has wasted more money on worse props

Ashley: oh surely
i am going to do something out of character and offer a non-shitposty final thought, which is…

Anthony's father smells a hyacinth flower, right before the bee sting.

Ashley: hyacinth 😭

Jenny: oh NO

Rachel: oh MAN
i didn’t even CATCH THAT
AHHHHH

CC: WH
WAAAAAAAA
WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

Jenny: i’m so sad

Ashley: too much

CC: I AM HOOTING AND HOLLERING soberly

Ashley: **** sad cowboy emoji ****


Join us next time for even more love story shouting in our next Romance Roundtable! In the meantime, Monthly Ko-Fi members: head on over to Ko-Fi for just a few bonus goofs that didn’t make it into today’s roundtable, as a treat.

CC Calanthe

CC Calanthe

If you prick your finger and write “Cat Fancy” on your mirror during a harvest moon, CC will appear behind you and make you put human clothes on your pets. CC is Head Crone in Charge at POMEgranate Magazine, as well as the co-host of Moon Podcast Power MAKE UP!!
Jenny Mott

Jenny Mott

Jenny is just a Silly Nerd with a lot of Feelings about Comic Books and Friendship and also This Capitalist Yoke We All Share; she enjoys Dogs and Sleeping and Cartoons. Her three favorite words are: Breakfast All Day.
Ashley Gallagher

Ashley Gallagher

Ashley writes comics and emails from zir burrow in the Pacific Northwest. Ze is a sentient subtropical swamp fern whose favorite food is old words.
Rachel Weiss

Rachel Weiss

Rachel is a designer and artist from Texas. She is pro-feminism, pro-crones, and pro-dogs. She's also Boss Crone at POMEgranate Magazine, and one day hopes to be able to drink her tea without so much milk and sugar.
POMEgranate Magazine