'Bridgerton': Who Is Lady Whistledown?

Shonda Rhimes lays out a lot of possible suspects throughout Season 1


(Warning: Major spoilers ahead for Netflix’s “Bridgerton” through the Season 1 finale.)

The Shonda Rhimes-produced “Bridgerton” adaptation hit Netflix on Christmas Day, introducing fans of the Julia Quinn novels — and a whole new audience — to the romantic tales of the titular family. And narrating all the dramatic events throughout Season 1 is Lady Whistledown (voiced by Julie Andrews), a mysterious member of London’s high society who writes a regular column detailing the most scandalous gossip from the coming-out season.

Though she plays a pivotal role in “Bridgerton,” it’s not until the final moments of the Season 1 finale that viewers find out the identity of Lady Whistledown — but boy, is it worth the wait. Of course, if you’re not able to wait until the finale to learn who she really is, TheWrap is here to give you the answer.

Per Netflix’s official description, “Bridgerton” follows Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor), the eldest daughter of the powerful Bridgerton family, as she makes her debut onto Regency London’s competitive marriage market. Hoping to follow in her parents’ footsteps and find a match sparked by true love, Daphne’s prospects initially seem to be unrivaled. But as her older brother begins to rule out her potential suitors, the high society scandal sheet written by the mysterious Lady Whistledown casts aspersions on Daphne. Enter the highly desirable and rebellious Duke of Hastings (Regé-Jean Page), a committed bachelor and the catch of the season for the debutantes’ mamas. Despite proclaiming that they want nothing the other has to offer, Daphne and the Duke’s attraction is undeniable, and sparks fly as they find themselves engaged in an increasing battle of wits while navigating society’s expectations for their future.

“Bridgerton” also stars Jonathan Bailey as Anthony Bridgerton, Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington, Claudia Jessie as Eloise Bridgerton, Ruby Barker as Marina Thompson, Adjoa Andoh as Lady Danbury, Golda Rosheuvel as Queen Charlotte (pictured above), Luke Thompson as Benedict Bridgerton, Luke Newton as Colin Bridgerton, Ruby Stokes as Francesca Bridgerton, Will Tilston as Gregory Bridgerton, Florence Hunt as Hyacinth Bridgerton, Ruth Gemmell as Lady Violet Bridgerton, Bessie Carter as Prudence Featherington, Harriet Cains as Philipa Featherington, Polly Walker as Lady Portia Featherington, Ben Miller as Lord Featherington, Sabrina Bartlett as Siena Rosso, Martins Imhangbe as Will Mondrich and Lorraine Ashbourne as Mrs. Varley.

With all those characters, it was possible any one of them could have been Lady Whistledown — and “Bridgerton” did try to lead us in the wrong direction a few times — but her true identity was ultimately revealed to be Penelope Featherington.

Now we just have to wait and see if “Bridgerton” gets renewed for Season 2 to find out if and when the other characters in the show will learn who she is — or if viewers get to keep that secret to themselves.

Based on the “Bridgerton” novels by Julia Quinn, the series was created by Chris Van Dusen who also serves as showrunner on the eight-episode drama. Van Dusen executive produces along with Rhimes and Betsy Beers under their Shondaland banner for Netflix. Directors include Julie Ann Robinson, Sheree Folkson, Tom Verica and Alrick Riley.

“Bridgerton” Season 1 is streaming now on Netflix.

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