Movie Reviews

I Really Don't Understand The Point Of Lady Whistledown In Bridgerton Now

This article contains spoilers about Bridgerton season 3.


Summary

  • Penelope’s Lady Whistledown reveal may have ruined the column’s appeal by promising to write in a positive manner.
  • Bridgerton should have kept up the mystery surrounding Lady Whistledown for continued intrigue and interest.
  • The ton’s underwhelming reaction to Penelope’s reveal took away the anticipated chaos and emotional impact.


Lady Whistledown has always been one of my favorite parts of Bridgerton, but after Penelope’s season 3 confession, I’m wondering why the gossip column should continue at all. During the finale of Bridgerton season 3, Penelope finally revealed to the Queen and the ton that she was Lady Whistledown. Her emotional speech acted as an apology and a pledge. She promised to use her power for good. However, I think Penelope’s revelation only makes Lady Whistledown worse. In fact, I’m not sure the iconic, sassy character should even continue into the future of Bridgerton.

After watching what happens to Lady Whistledown, I do understand what Bridgerton was trying to do. Penelope could not be with Colin until she came clean to him, and she could not give up Whistledown without giving up a part of herself. The column is her only form of agency. However, the storyline began getting dicey when Queen Charlotte got involved. With the Queen on her tail and the Bridgertons’ reputation at stake, Penelope spilled her secret to everyone. While I recognize that she wanted to apologize for the hurt she caused, Penelope’s admission took all the fun away from Lady Whistledown.


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Penelope Continuing As Lady Whistledown Doesn’t Really Make Sense

Lady Whistledown Is Supposed To Be Cutting

After Penelope’s grand speech at the end of Bridgerton season 3, Lady Whistledown doesn’t really make sense anymore. By promising to write in a more positive manner, Penelope is losing what is so entertaining about Lady Whistledown. I like Lady Whistledown so much because she is cutting and mean. She brings the ton down a peg in a way that no one else will. Sure, I can admit that Penelope has hurt people’s feelings with Lady Whistledown, but everything she has written has been truthful. As she wrote in season 3, Lady Whistledown “cannot tolerate a lie.”


I think
Bridgerton
needs Lady Whistledown because of her ruthless honesty.

If Penelope starts writing Lady Whistledown in a kinder way, the point of the column will be lost. Penelope said she wrote Lady Whistledown because she wanted to relate to the ton, but at this point, she has risen above it. In a way, Lady Whistledown is an opportunity for the ton to reflect on their hypocrisy and misbehavior. If Penelope stops pointing out the ton’s crimes, then their ridiculous rules and expectations will go unchecked. I think Bridgerton needs Lady Whistledown because of her ruthless honesty, and I fear Penelope’s confession has ruined this.


The Ton’s Reaction To Penelope’s Lady Whistledown Reveal Is Underwhelming

Penelope’s Reveal Feels Pointless

Queen Charlotte (Golda Rosheuvel) confronting Penelope (Nicola Coughlan) about her identity as Lady Whistledown in Bridgerton season 3 episode 8
Image via Netflix

Another aspect of Penelope’s Whistledown speech that didn’t sit well with me was the ton’s reaction. For the first time ever, Penelope put herself in the spotlight and revealed the secret everyone was desperate to know. Yet, the ton did absolutely nothing. Everyone watched in silence as Penelope gave them the answer they had all been looking for. If Bridgerton wanted me to believe that the ton was angry at Whistledown for what she had written, I should have seen a much bigger reaction than what Bridgerton season 3, epiosde 8 gaveme. All we got was quiet shock.

Bridgerton’s
Lady Whistledown is voiced by Julie Andrews.


Regardless of how the ton reacted, I wish Bridgerton had given us some reaction at all. After her speech, Penelope said she would likely be confronted by distraught individuals later. Well, I would have liked to see that occur in real-time. The Lady Whistledown revelation is incredibly anticlimactic because no one seemed to have anything to say about it. Though we saw Colin’s betrayal and Portia’s disappointment, the ton gave us nothing. It might have been better to have the Lady Whistledown secret end in a mess of chaotic emotions rather than tied up in a neat but indifferent bow.

How Bridgerton Season 3’s Whistledown Reveal Should Have Happened

Penelope Should Have Kept Up The Mystery

Penelope (Nicola Coughlan) about to cry in Bridgerton season 3 episode 8
Image via Netflix


Overall, I think Bridgerton could have handled the Lady Whistledown reveal better. First and foremost, Penelope should not have told the entire ton her secret. Although the ton may have wanted to confront Whistledown for what she had written, they continued reading the column regardless. Part of their enjoyment was the mystery behind the writer’s biting words. If Penelope had maintained her anonymity, the ton could have continued happily reading Whistledown while being held accountable for their actions. Penelope did not necessarily have to tell them her plans to use her writing for good.

In the end, I think Penelope should have just told her family and the Queen. Though the ton did not need to be part of those who knew Penelope was Whistledown, Charlotte would not have stopped her search. Therefore, Penelope should have gathered the Bridgertons, the Queen, and Lady Danbury and told them the truth. This would have halted the Queen’s witch hunt and allowed the Bridgertons to know Penelope’s truth. Then, Lady Whistledown could have returned to being the scathing gossip columnist she always had been. Unfortunately, though, Bridgerton has taken away my ideal reality.


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