OVERNIGHTS 6:00 A.M. Bridgerton Recap: A Lost Cause


Many thanks to Bridgerton (and specifically Sarah L. Thompson, who wrote this episode) for the full-on rom-com goodness we’re getting here. Nicola Coughlan is nailing the comedy (no surprise for our Derry Girl, but it still must be said) and Luke Newtown is nailing the art of the swoon — and I simply cannot wait until Colin and Pen are nailing each other. Of course, we are well aware from seasons past that the anticipation is part of the fun. Sure, we’re only two episodes deep, but thus far this season is really bringing it in terms of carefully pushing our leads closer and closer to the moment we all know they’re headed for, of letting us see the wheels turning in Colin’s head as he slowly starts to see Penelope in a different way.

Newton especially has a tall order to fill at this point in the story. Although TV Colin and Penelope’s storyline is played out much differently from the book version (the TV version has much more urgency, and having Colin mentor Penelope was such a smart move), we’re still getting some iconic book moments that stay true to the heart of fan-favorite scenes even if the details have changed. We get two such scenes in this episode. Two scenes in Romancing Mister Bridgerton are at least partially told from Colin’s perspective, delivering some important character interiority that just isn’t possible in the same way on screen. These two scenes — the cut hand and the kiss — are wildly important beats in Colin’s arc and his realization that maybe he’s never taken the time to see Penelope for who she really is. We obviously can’t read his rapid-fire thoughts about some surprising feelings bubbling up, nor is he ready to talk about those feelings with anyone — this is all face, baby. And Luke Newtown delivers. We know exactly what he’s thinking without it being over the top. I knew Coughlan was born for this part, but Newton is no slouch either. Should we get into the nitty-gritty of it all? Let’s promenade, people!

Colin Bridgerton’s Charm School kicks off immediately — no, seriously: When Colin and Penelope purposefully cross paths while promenading, Pen asks if they’ll start with some charm-based reading materials (so Penelope), but Colin says, oh, no, they’re diving in head first (so Colin). She’s got a fan, she has eyelashes to flutter, and she’s going to flirt with a group of eligible bachelors right now. Wow, wow, wow, babes, it is such a disaster. Coughlan is so funny here, floundering in spectacular fashion. When they meet a second time, Penelope is sure Colin’s going to call the whole thing off. She’s a lost cause, she says. But Colin doesn’t think that’s true at all. He just wanted to see what he was working with before he got deeper into these lessons. He knows she can be charming because he’s seen it. The very first time they met — when her yellow bonnet flew into his face and knocked him off his horse into a puddle of mud (we don’t get to see it, but what a meet-cute) — she was endlessly charming as she teased him. It’s very sweet that he recalls this whole thing, and while it’s clear Penelope has come to grips with needing to move on from her unrequited crush, you know it feels good for her to hear this. Colin retains a vivid memory from when they first met years ago, and my dude is skipping out on his regular threesome to meet up with her? He may not be able to admit it yet, but come on, this guy already has it bad.

He thinks Penelope’s problem is that she is worried too much about what others think. That’s really rich coming from a man who can literally do whatever and act however he wants with little to no consequences, but sure, Col, Pen will work on that. He has an idea: He wants Penelope to practice some flirting in an atmosphere where she’s already comfortable in order to get her out of her head. That place happens to be the Bridgerton House drawing room. Netflix released this scene of Penelope’s practice flirt with Colin getting way too real early on during its marketing for the new season, and it was at that moment I knew we had nothing to worry about in regards to this season. These two ooze chemistry even when — especially when? — not saying a single word. And now, in context, this scene really hits.

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