By now you’ve likely heard of Bridgerton, Shonda Rhimes’ first Netflix series released on Christmas Day.
Based on romance novels by Julia Quinn, this saucy series re-imagines the strict rules and uptight demeanor of an aristocratic society in 19th century England. With a youthful, modern twist on everything from the musical score (orchestras play covers of current pop hits like Ariana Grande’s ‘Thank U Next’) to the interracial cast of characters sitting at various rungs on the hierarchy, Bridgerton transports viewers to a fictional world blurring eras and realities to produce plenty of drama.
At the helm of the series is anonymous gossip columnist Lady Whistledown who reports on high society’s competitive marriage market. Voiced by Julie Andrews, Lady Whistledown’s influence echos that of the narrator in Gossip Girl— sharing scandalous secrets while twisting the narrative to manipulate society’s opinions and actions. But unlike Gossip Girl, writers for Bridgerton knew who Lady Whistledown was going to be when the series started, meaning her reveal at the end of the first season *actually* made sense.
So before you binge the entire first season in one go (and before we spoil any more for you!) it’s time to get acquainted with the stars of this iconic series before they all blow up.
Meet the cast of Netflix’s sexy— and irresistibly silly— new period drama, Bridgerton.
Phoebe Dynevor as Daphne Bridgerton
Pheobe Dynevor plays the witty and naive Daphne Bridgerton who’s desperate to land herself a husband. After being chosen by the Queen as this season’s “it girl” (AKA society’s most eligible bachelorette), her meddling older brother and Lady Whistledown’s scathing reports make it near impossible for Daphne to find a suitor.
The 25-year-old is the daughter of Coronation Street actress Sally Dynevor and most recently had a recurring role as Clare on Younger. She also has the best eyebrows ever.
Regé-Jean Page as Simon Basset
Bridgerton‘s breakout hunk Regé-Jean Page plays Simon Basset, the Duke of Hastings and notorious playboy who refuses to marry. Simon strikes up a deal with Daphne to charade a courtship in order to help Daphne appear more eligible and to keep society off his back.
The swoon-worthy 30-year-old grew up in Zimbabwe and previously starred in the Shonda Rhimes-produced legal drama For The People.
Claudia Jessie as Eloise Bridgerton
Claudia Jessie plays the series’ rebellious feminist, Eloise Bridgerton, who vows to never wed. The dichotomy between Eloise and sister Daphne is another example of how Bridgerton mixes traditional values with modern ideals in a light and witty fashion.
The 31-year-old British actress also appeared in Doctor Who and Call The Midwife before landing the role of Eloise, calling her “the best thing I’ve ever played in my whole life.”
(Sadly for us, Claudia doesn’t have Instagram.)
Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington
Nicola Coughlan steals the series as Penelope Featherington, one of three Featherington sisters being readied to wed by their overbearing and eccentric mother. Penelope acts as the show’s comedic relief while displaying qualities like kindness, innocence, and vulnerability that many other characters lack.
The first person to be cast in Bridgerton, the 33-year-old Galway-native has already starred in two Netflix shows— Derry Girls and The Great British Bake-off: Holidays.
Ruby Barker as Marina Thompson
Marina Thompson is a distant cousin of the Featheringtons who’s sent to live with the family during ~courting szn~ and catches the eye of multiple suitors.
The 23-year-old has appeared in only a handful of shows including CBBC Disney’s Wolfblood and How To Stop A Recurring Dream for which she won Best Actress at the 2020 British Urban Film Festival.
Jonathan Bailey as Anthony Bridgerton
Jonathan Bailey plays the eldest Bridgerton boy, Anthony. After his father dies, Anthony feels plagued with acting as the man of the house. His own scandalous secrets threaten to derail his attempts to keep the family on the straight and narrow.
The 32-year-old has starred in a number of British shows including Broadchurch in Doctor Who. He won a Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role in a Musical for the role of Jamie in 2018’s Company and based on his Instagram, we think it’s safe to say his interests include water sports and dogs.