Bridgerton

xxGBHxx

Well-known Member
I did search and I was surprised there's no thread on this anywhere so I thought I'd add one and maybe save some of you the pain.

DO NOT WATCH THIS PILE OF DOG****

Considering the hype and no small amount of momentum my wife, who absolutely loves period dramas was keen to watch. Myself, I'm less interested (though not disinterested) but the promises of rampant nookie all over the place was enough to entice.

I am 7 episodes in with one to go and all I can say right now is that it's 7 hours of my life I'm not going to get back.

It's an absolutely appalling series on so many different levels it's laughable (and the wife and I did laugh out loud for all the wrong reasons on a number of occasions)

So lets first cover the elephant in this particular room - "colourblind" casting. Why, just why? It's awful, truly awful and just doesn't work on any level for an English period drama set in Victorian era. I'll even go on to say it's woke/SJW idealism taken WAY WAY too far. For me, it just DOESN'T work. The clothing is stylised of the era (more of that later), the surroundings are of that era, everything is filmed in grand houses and mansions, horse and carriage etc. the whole shebang. So why, with all the "effort" afforded to set it in that time period then completely ruin it all with a black queen of England?! It DOESN'T work. If you're going to deviate so much from history or credibility then they might as well have had cars or TV's as well. Yes, I understand it's supposed to be a "fantasy" retelling but history is history. We all study it. We're all accustomed to it. No I don't defend or condone the clear racism that existed during that period but casting the queen as a black actor? That's ridiculous and every single time she's on screen, as good an actor as she may be, is visually jarring and completely unbelievable. I get it, black actors want to act in period dramas too and be more than slaves or maids but this just didn't work for me.

The music. Where to begin. For those of you who have read my rambling on this board over the past few years you might remember my wife and I are somewhat accomplished musicians. As a result we focus disproportionately on the music in everything we watch (or at least we often pay attention to it). The music in Bridgerton is awful. We are not snobs, at all. I listen to anything from rap to heavy metal to dance and I'm even partial to a bit of dub step when the mood takes me and everything in between. Neither of us are big fans of popular/classical crossovers but as with many things the best examples are very good even if it's not our cup of tea.

What ever possessed the director to re-create "modern" music with an orchestra I will never ever know. It's bad, and I do mean really bad because it just doesn't work. Transcribing modern pop songs (there are songs from Ariana Grande, Maroon 5, Shawn Mendes, Billie Eilish, Celeste, Taylor Swift) might just about be ok if they then didn't intersperse it with Beethoven, Offenbach, Vivaldi and Bach. Musically it makes no sense. Stylistically they clash and just because you perform pop songs on violins it doesn't make it classical. Every time it happened the wife and I were "wtf is this". This gets worse though. Much of the calssical music they did include was changed or "jazzed up". If you don't know the music, you'd likely not know or notice. But the wife and I knew every single one of them and the arrangements were jarring (for me the Vivaldi was the worst offender - what was Max Richter thinking) Which brings me neatly to...

The sex. I wouldn't normally mention or focus on something like this but the series was popularised and sensationalised for it's high sex content. The only response I can give is it was laughable. So laughable the wife and I spent almost 5 minutes in episode 6 (apparently the "one with all the sex") laughing so hard our stomachs were hurting. Now I don't want to boast, but when I have sex I last longer than 60 seconds. Every sex scene pretty much followed this formula
  • Kissing and fumbling for 15 seconds
  • Sticking it in
  • Finishing after 60 seconds and heavy breathing
No build up. No foreplay. 10 thrusts and you're done. All the while some violin equivalent of cheesy 70's wah wah guitar was playing in the background making the whole thing hilarious for all the wrong reasons. It wasn't sexy, it wasn't exciting, it wasn't sensual it was just "over". Very very quickly.

I did mention earlier I'd touch on the clothing. I'm no expert at all but both my wife and I commented that they all seemed very very colourful. It may be unfair. Maybe the aristocracy did wear very colourful clothing in the early 1800's but everything was SO colourful it did distract a bit.

Lastly lets talk about the script and the acting.

The script is terrible. There were glimmers of good writing in places but the overall story was contrived and completely unbelievable. It's one thing to throw caution to the wind and cast black actors into the parts it's another thing completely to have them saying and doing things no one in their right mind would do in that setting. I'm not going to go into any one particular scene or example because frankly every episode was sprinkled with them. Suffice to say my wife have sat there on numerous occasions and said "Wait what? Why did he/she do/say that? That doesn't make any sense and it completely ruins the flow.

The acting is "meh" at best but considering the mediocrity of the script there wasn't much they could do with it. I'll cover some of the main ones.

Phoebe Dynevor - Very little screen presence and very little gravitas. Miscast
Regé-Jean Page - Decent enough with poor dialogue. Ignoring the colour "issue" did a decent enough "brooding" job
Harriet Cains, Bessie Carter, Nicola Coughlan as the Featherington sisters. I think given a decent script and more screen time they could have been really good. As it was they were hampered with a poor script and too little screen time to really bring their characters alive.
Adjoa Andoh - nicely acted - stole the screen whenever she was on it (but like everyone else suffered from a poor script and too little time on screen)
Golda Rosheuvel - didn't work for me. Acting was ok but black queen of England jarred every time it was on screen.
Ruby Barker - Bad acting masked the fact her script was also possibly bad. She had a fairly central role in the story and it could have really done with someone who could act. Distracted whenever she was on screen as she couldn't deliver.
Martins Imhangbe - despite having the most ridiculous storyline was great whenever he was on screen

Everyone else was "ok" considering what they had to deliver.

Overall, as I mentioned at the start, it's 7 (soon to be 8) hours of my life I'm not getting back.

2/10
 
Last edited:

Clem_Dye

Distinguished Member
I watched this with my wife. My biggest gripes were seeing excellent British actors and actresses having to utter awful American English dialogue and for their skills to be woefully underused, along with the mess of historical inaccuracy, seeming to mix Elizabethan, Georgian, Victorian and contemporary styles.

As for the sex scenes, well it was made primarily for the American market, and anyone who's watched any American stuff of late where sex is involved should have learned by now that Americans only have sex with their clothes on, and it happens quickly. That's because nudity is something that they can't tolerate. Far too risqué. Blowing people's brains out with guns is OK, but not a shot of a bit of tit or bum, or anything that might look like real sex. No, siree.

As for the 'colourblind' casting, well Bridgerton was billed as a 're-imagining' [sic] of times past. It was never meant to be 100% accurate, but there certainly were people of colour in the UK in Georgian times. Were there that many? No idea, I wasn't living in those times.

British actors and actresses add a degree of gravitas to the proceedings. That's true of most American-produced stuff. That's what saved it.

I give it a 4/10, at best. If you're looking for real historical drama, look elsewhere.
 

Garrett

Moderator
. No I don't defend or condone the clear racism that existed during that period but casting the queen as a black actor? That's ridiculous and every single time she's on screen, as good an actor as she may be, is visually jarring and completely unbelievable. I get it, black actors want to act in period dramas too and be more than slaves or maids but this just didn't work for me.
Just did a bit of researching that and there is a theory that she did have African ancestors but even the artist that pained her know for paining things as they were does not show it to be true.
Article here on it.

Not seen the series but seems as though they run with a disputed theory.
 

xxGBHxx

Well-known Member
Just did a bit of researching that and there is a theory that she did have African ancestors but even the artist that pained her know for paining things as they were does not show it to be true.
Article here on it.

Not seen the series but seems as though they run with a disputed theory.

There are theories that 5G masts caused the coronavirus too ;)

Although claims have been made she may have been mixed race there is absolutely no evidence for this other than conjecture and guesswork and a single portrait maybe suggesting her nostrils were a bit big. They also ignore the dozens of others that show a perfectly typical white female of the period. There is no evidence of any African link in her ancestry going back generations. That said, go far enough back and we all have African heritage.

No what they're doing with Bridgerton is trying to ride the BLM/Woke bandwagon through a completely misguided belief that this re-writing (re-imagining, fantasy retelling - whatever) of history makes for good TV or that it helps the cause of BLM. It's crass, banal and despite some of the best efforts of the cast completely wasted.

As an aside I finished the last episode last night and suffice to say it didn't improve. I could rant on and on about the terrible dialogue, the eye-rolling use of clothing colour in the ball, the fact the Dutchess doesn't seem to be able to afford either a dress befitting her position or in fact a new dress at all (she seemed to be in the same, drab dress for weeks), the terrible "sex" it just never ends (unlike the sex).

It's rare I say this about anything but I'm irrationally angry I watched it. It could have been good but the decisions the director and writer took were just downright bad.

G
 

Garrett

Moderator
There are theories that 5G masts caused the coronavirus too ;)

Although claims have been made she may have been mixed race there is absolutely no evidence for this other than conjecture and guesswork and a single portrait maybe suggesting her nostrils were a bit big. They also ignore the dozens of others that show a perfectly typical white female of the period. There is no evidence of any African link in her ancestry going back generations. That said, go far enough back and we all have African heritage.

No what they're doing with Bridgerton is trying to ride the BLM/Woke bandwagon through a completely misguided belief that this re-writing (re-imagining, fantasy retelling - whatever) of history makes for good TV or that it helps the cause of BLM. It's crass, banal and despite some of the best efforts of the cast completely wasted.

As an aside I finished the last episode last night and suffice to say it didn't improve. I could rant on and on about the terrible dialogue, the eye-rolling use of clothing colour in the ball, the fact the Dutchess doesn't seem to be able to afford either a dress befitting her position or in fact a new dress at all (she seemed to be in the same, drab dress for weeks), the terrible "sex" it just never ends (unlike the sex).

It's rare I say this about anything but I'm irrationally angry I watched it. It could have been good but the decisions the director and writer took were just downright bad.

G
Don't shoot the messenger.:D

I not seen the series but looked at some stills and sure if she looked like the actress playing the queen we have know, rather than some speculation.

I also saw some of the costumes and the patterns on some of them looked a garish. I'm not saying the bid not exist but seems someone pushing the envelope.
 

Clem_Dye

Distinguished Member
Bear in mind that the American view of the world is very parochial. They seem happy to treat The Crown as fact, not fiction with the odd bit of truth thrown in for good measure. After all, it’s that which makes good TV. There’s not much point complaining though. We in the UK seem happy to consume vast chunks of US output. Hardly surprising when UK inc. just can’t seem to make much decent TV anymore. I can’t recall the last time that I watched a decent UK-produced bit of TV.
 

rpr

Active Member
I have to laugh at people loosing their sh*t over a drama series. If you don't like it don't watch it
 

iMacourey

Active Member
I did search and I was surprised there's no thread on this anywhere so I thought I'd add one and maybe save some of you the pain.

DO NOT WATCH THIS PILE OF DOG****

Considering the hype and no small amount of momentum my wife, who absolutely loves period dramas was keen to watch. Myself, I'm less interested (though not disinterested) but the promises of rampant nookie all over the place was enough to entice.

I am 7 episodes in with one to go and all I can say right now is that it's 7 hours of my life I'm not going to get back.

It's an absolutely appalling series on so many different levels it's laughable (and the wife and I did laugh out loud for all the wrong reasons on a number of occasions)

So lets first cover the elephant in this particular room - "colourblind" casting. Why, just why? It's awful, truly awful and just doesn't work on any level for an English period drama set in Victorian era. I'll even go on to say it's woke/SJW idealism taken WAY WAY too far. For me, it just DOESN'T work. The clothing is stylised of the era (more of that later), the surroundings are of that era, everything is filmed in grand houses and mansions, horse and carriage etc. the whole shebang. So why, with all the "effort" afforded to set it in that time period then completely ruin it all with a black queen of England?! It DOESN'T work. If you're going to deviate so much from history or credibility then they might as well have had cars or TV's as well. Yes, I understand it's supposed to be a "fantasy" retelling but history is history. We all study it. We're all accustomed to it. No I don't defend or condone the clear racism that existed during that period but casting the queen as a black actor? That's ridiculous and every single time she's on screen, as good an actor as she may be, is visually jarring and completely unbelievable. I get it, black actors want to act in period dramas too and be more than slaves or maids but this just didn't work for me.

The music. Where to begin. For those of you who have read my rambling on this board over the past few years you might remember my wife and I are somewhat accomplished musicians. As a result we focus disproportionately on the music in everything we watch (or at least we often pay attention to it). The music in Bridgerton is awful. We are not snobs, at all. I listen to anything from rap to heavy metal to dance and I'm even partial to a bit of dub step when the mood takes me and everything in between. Neither of us are big fans of popular/classical crossovers but as with many things the best examples are very good even if it's not our cup of tea.

What ever possessed the director to re-create "modern" music with an orchestra I will never ever know. It's bad, and I do mean really bad because it just doesn't work. Transcribing modern pop songs (there are songs from Ariana Grande, Maroon 5, Shawn Mendes, Billie Eilish, Celeste, Taylor Swift) might just about be ok if they then didn't intersperse it with Beethoven, Offenbach, Vivaldi and Bach. Musically it makes no sense. Stylistically they clash and just because you perform pop songs on violins it doesn't make it classical. Every time it happened the wife and I were "wtf is this". This gets worse though. Much of the calssical music they did include was changed or "jazzed up". If you don't know the music, you'd likely not know or notice. But the wife and I knew every single one of them and the arrangements were jarring (for me the Vivaldi was the worst offender - what was Max Richter thinking) Which brings me neatly to...

The sex. I wouldn't normally mention or focus on something like this but the series was popularised and sensationalised for it's high sex content. The only response I can give is it was laughable. So laughable the wife and I spent almost 5 minutes in episode 6 (apparently the "one with all the sex") laughing so hard our stomachs were hurting. Now I don't want to boast, but when I have sex I last longer than 60 seconds. Every sex scene pretty much followed this formula
  • Kissing and fumbling for 15 seconds
  • Sticking it in
  • Finishing after 60 seconds and heavy breathing
No build up. No foreplay. 10 thrusts and you're done. All the while some violin equivalent of cheesy 70's wah wah guitar was playing in the background making the whole thing hilarious for all the wrong reasons. It wasn't sexy, it wasn't exciting, it wasn't sensual it was just "over". Very very quickly.

I did mention earlier I'd touch on the clothing. I'm no expert at all but both my wife and I commented that they all seemed very very colourful. It may be unfair. Maybe the aristocracy did wear very colourful clothing in the early 1800's but everything was SO colourful it did distract a bit.

Lastly lets talk about the script and the acting.

The script is terrible. There were glimmers of good writing in places but the overall story was contrived and completely unbelievable. It's one thing to throw caution to the wind and cast black actors into the parts it's another thing completely to have them saying and doing things no one in their right mind would do in that setting. I'm not going to go into any one particular scene or example because frankly every episode was sprinkled with them. Suffice to say my wife have sat there on numerous occasions and said "Wait what? Why did he/she do/say that? That doesn't make any sense and it completely ruins the flow.

The acting is "meh" at best but considering the mediocrity of the script there wasn't much they could do with it. I'll cover some of the main ones.

Phoebe Dynevor - Very little screen presence and very little gravitas. Miscast
Regé-Jean Page - Decent enough with poor dialogue. Ignoring the colour "issue" did a decent enough "brooding" job
Harriet Cains, Bessie Carter, Nicola Coughlan as the Featherington sisters. I think given a decent script and more screen time they could have been really good. As it was they were hampered with a poor script and too little screen time to really bring their characters alive.
Adjoa Andoh - nicely acted - stole the screen whenever she was on it (but like everyone else suffered from a poor script and too little time on screen)
Golda Rosheuvel - didn't work for me. Acting was ok but black queen of England jarred every time it was on screen.
Ruby Barker - Bad acting masked the fact her script was also possibly bad. She had a fairly central role in the story and it could have really done with someone who could act. Distracted whenever she was on screen as she couldn't deliver.
Martins Imhangbe - despite having the most ridiculous storyline was great whenever he was on screen

Everyone else was "ok" considering what they had to deliver.

Overall, as I mentioned at the start, it's 7 (soon to be 8) hours of my life I'm not getting back.

2/10

I agree with pretty much all of your criticisms. But I still enjoyed it. 😅

Yeah, it is a regency drama dumbed down to the lowest level, but for a bit of mindless escapism it did the job! I'm certainly looking forward to the second season anyway, especially now that the focus will be less on the boring Duke and Duchess characters.
 

Bedlam Maid

Active Member
I didn't analyse it. I just enjoyed it for what it was, a bit of light entertainment and a great diversion from a gruelling day working with people who have mental health problems.
 

richardb70

Distinguished Member
I thought it was fine and perfectly watchable as light entertainment. I've seen far more absurd shows that everyone fawns over (hello, Line of Duty S4).
 

Watcher No1

Active Member
It was, well, fine. Probably not worth all the hype for all its Twilight I love/I hate him/I love him (or her) merry go round, and definitely very uneven in tone and pacing, but it passed the time.
 

LaVieEnRose

Active Member
I didn't watch Bridgerton as it sounded dreadful.

However I did enjoy 'Harlots', another historical series with plenty of (mainly clothed) sex scenes and a good number of non-white actors, and I thought that worked very well. It was well written and well acted by an excellent cast. Some of it was a bit implausible but it was enjoyable with a good storyline and plenty of humour. And some extraordinary wigs :laugh:

So if you liked the idea of Bridgerton but were disappointed, give Harlots a go.
 

The Birdy

Standard Member
I’ve just watched the first episode. S’ok.

It’s not a documentary. It’s fictional. I really don’t understand why anyone would object to non-white actors/characters. It’s just a bit of light entertainment. But I dunno because I’m white, is it offensive if you’re not white? As a kind of glossing over history?

The music. Don’t care if it’s anachronistic. Just don’t watch 7 hours of a tv show if you hate it.

Costumes are quite cute. Might not be historically accurate, but I don’t think this drama is meant to be particularly educational.

The nookie slightly disappointing so far; because I’d read it was filthy.
 

rattie2007

Active Member
I watched this with my wife. My biggest gripes were seeing excellent British actors and actresses having to utter awful American English dialogue and for their skills to be woefully underused, along with the mess of historical inaccuracy, seeming to mix Elizabethan, Georgian, Victorian and contemporary styles.

As for the sex scenes, well it was made primarily for the American market, and anyone who's watched any American stuff of late where sex is involved should have learned by now that Americans only have sex with their clothes on, and it happens quickly. That's because nudity is something that they can't tolerate. Far too risqué. Blowing people's brains out with guns is OK, but not a shot of a bit of tit or bum, or anything that might look like real sex. No, siree.

As for the 'colourblind' casting, well Bridgerton was billed as a 're-imagining' [sic] of times past. It was never meant to be 100% accurate, but there certainly were people of colour in the UK in Georgian times. Were there that many? No idea, I wasn't living in those times.

British actors and actresses add a degree of gravitas to the proceedings. That's true of most American-produced stuff. That's what saved it.

I give it a 4/10, at best. If you're looking for real historical drama, look elsewhere.
Pretty much my take on it too.

Why people who loathed it sat through the whole eight episodes beats me though. If I don’t like a show I stop watching.

I only bothered with it as lockdown means I’m stuck in with nothing better to do but I did quite enjoy it and will watch Season 2.
 

xxGBHxx

Well-known Member
The purpose of my post was to perhaps save someone else from the misery and to set out why I thought it was trash. I think they call it in literary circles a review.

For those wondering why I watched all 8

1. Many of the reviews were raving so we were hopeful it would get better
2. Sometimes it takes time to "get" something which is different
3. Sunk cost fallacy where we were already 2 or 3 episodes in before fully deciding it was complete garbage and then it was "well it might improve and we've already watched 3 episodes"

We do turn things off. Another load of utter trash we've watched in the last couple of days was The Irregulars and that only lasted a single episode.

As for those saying "it's fictional" as if that's a shield to allow you to do anything you like can I ask would you think a microwave or TV in Victorian England would be pushing it too far? What about a Boeing 747? Or maybe a Starbucks for that wholesome product placement revenue? (oh sorry thats GoT).

For me, good fantasy or drama (or in fact any genre) still follows standards. Poetic license is a thing, of course, but for me you have to tread that line very carefully or you risk the viewer going "thats utter unbelivable rubbish" even when you're dealing with magic and fantasy.

Talking of Starbucks, GOT is actually a great example of that where in the later series the characters and story stepped over that line. The magic, the undead, the dragons, all completely in character and in keeping with the setting. Single arrows that mysteriously hit and take out a dragon when 100's of arrows later on didn't? War tactics by some of the greatest war planners that were anything but? Elite trained faceless assassin not using the skill she spent years learning and just jumping into the air? Not so much... They were saying and doing things that were just not believable for their characters or the setting and it completely ruined it.

As far as the casting goes that's where Bridgerton stepped over my imaginary line. Some people can accept it and that's fine. For me it was jarring and ridiculous.

G
 

Clem_Dye

Distinguished Member
It grated with me, hence my earlier post, but SWMBO wanted to watch it, so I had to suffer it too.
 

rattie2007

Active Member
The purpose of my post was to perhaps save someone else from the misery and to set out why I thought it was trash. I think they call it in literary circles a review.

For those wondering why I watched all 8

1. Many of the reviews were raving so we were hopeful it would get better
2. Sometimes it takes time to "get" something which is different
3. Sunk cost fallacy where we were already 2 or 3 episodes in before fully deciding it was complete garbage and then it was "well it might improve and we've already watched 3 episodes"

We do turn things off. Another load of utter trash we've watched in the last couple of days was The Irregulars and that only lasted a single episode.

As for those saying "it's fictional" as if that's a shield to allow you to do anything you like can I ask would you think a microwave or TV in Victorian England would be pushing it too far? What about a Boeing 747? Or maybe a Starbucks for that wholesome product placement revenue? (oh sorry thats GoT).

For me, good fantasy or drama (or in fact any genre) still follows standards. Poetic license is a thing, of course, but for me you have to tread that line very carefully or you risk the viewer going "thats utter unbelivable rubbish" even when you're dealing with magic and fantasy.

Talking of Starbucks, GOT is actually a great example of that where in the later series the characters and story stepped over that line. The magic, the undead, the dragons, all completely in character and in keeping with the setting. Single arrows that mysteriously hit and take out a dragon when 100's of arrows later on didn't? War tactics by some of the greatest war planners that were anything but? Elite trained faceless assassin not using the skill she spent years learning and just jumping into the air? Not so much... They were saying and doing things that were just not believable for their characters or the setting and it completely ruined it.

As far as the casting goes that's where Bridgerton stepped over my imaginary line. Some people can accept it and that's fine. For me it was jarring and ridiculous.

G
Fair enough G, I follow your reasoning.
GOT did indeed step over the line. Another topic obviously but I don’t think I’ve even now got over the crushing disappointment of the final series. How to utterly ruin an incredible show! :facepalm::devil::confused:
 

The Cods Scallops

Active Member
I live in Bath so quite enjoyed recognising the landmarks and settings. I also thought the guy was pretty hot :blush: .

I haven't seen it myself but I believe they were filming here last week for the second series.
 

The latest video from AVForums

65-inch LG C1 Review coming soon to AVForums
Subscribe to our YouTube channel

Full fat HDMI teeshirts

Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom