The first season, which explored the relationship between Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor) and the devastatingly handsome Duke of Hastings (Regé Jean Page), was based on The Duke and I. The second season will follow Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey) as he searches for his new bride, just like in the second novel, The Viscount Who Loved Me.
Book lovers that we are, we devoured each and every page of the novel ahead of the return of Bridgerton, so we would know EXACTLY what to expect.
It's safe to say the rest of this article features spoilers for the novel - and likely for the second season - so stop reading if you're planning to wait for the show to premiere. Or, shop the book here (at only $16.75 from Booktopia, it's practically a steal).
But if you're ready to find out what happens, scroll through to see what you can expect from Season 2 of Bridgerton based on the book. However, Quinn has hinted there are some pretty major changes to the plot this time around - to keep the storyline fresh.
Who is the leading character in Bridgerton Season 2?
Another devastatingly handsome rake (a fun old-school way to say scoundrel, man who sleeps around), Anthony Bridgerton captured our hearts on the Netflix series in 2020. But he's still a little rough around the edges. We love him but, let's be honest, if we met him in real life we'd run in the opposite direction. And yet...
The Viscount is looking to settle down in Season 2 of Bridgerton. His mother, Lady Violet (Ruth Gemmell), wants him to finally choose a Viscountess now that he’s in his late 20s. LATE 20S. The Regency Era was not a time to be young and frivolous.
Along with his search for a wife, Anthony is doing some deep reflecting on his own mortality - their father died about a decade before the events of the book - and the very idea of lifelong romance.
While Jonathan acknowledges his character was "toxic" in Season 1, he says it's been amazing to watch Anthony's story unfold and to "peel back the layers" of this handsome man onion.
Who is Anthony Bridgerton's love interest?
Meet Kate Sharma (played by Simone Ashley), formerly Kate Sheffield in the novel.
Kate is new to the ton, visiting for the season alongside her half-sister Edwina (Charithra Chandran) and stepmother Mary (Shelley Con). The trio of women love each other dearly, with Kate taking on a very protective role over her younger sister and sharing a special mother-daughter bond with Mary.
As the family could not afford to travel to London and debut both daughters in their own "season," they had to wait until they could hit the society scene at the same time.
While Kate's in her early 20s and on the verge of becoming a "spinster" - seriously, Regency Era, not down with the whole ageing thing - Edwina is in her late teens.
Young and beautiful, Edwina is considered an early favourite for the "diamond" of the season. Can you see where this is going? Even if you can, we promise it's good.
What is Anthony and Kate's love story on Bridgerton?
You might have guessed it - though you may not be ready for it - but this is an enemies to lovers story. Our favourite kind.
Upon learning of the new Sharma sisters from Lady Whistledown, Anthony declares to his brothers that Edwina will be his wife. Crossing paths at a ball, Anthony makes it his mission to lock down a dance with the beautiful debutante. HOW-EVER.
Anthony's reputation as "the most reprehensible rake in London" precedes him, and Kate has already sworn she will not see her sister married off to this man. Especially when every other suitor in the ton appears smitten with Edwina, giving her plenty of options.
In the book, Colin Bridgerton tricks his older brother Anthony into approaching Kate for a conversation, convincing him that the eldest Sharma sister approves of the match. Yikes.
Both too clever and proud for their own good, it becomes clear that Kate and Anthony are destined to despise one another after their first encounter. It's giving very Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet vibes from Pride & Prejudice.
In the first teaser for the show, it seems the pair will meet under different circumstances. But with a similar energy to the book, Kate is seen telling Anthony: "I find your opinion of yourself entirely too high."
Adjoah Andoh, who plays Lady Danbury, can tell WHO that her character is heavily involved in the match-making schemes. But whether she's Team Edwina or Team Kate for Anthony, remains to be seen by viewers.
"I think Lady Danbury is Team Lady Mary to begin with. She wants to do right by Lady Mary," Andoh says.
"But actually, what she's really all about is people being true to themselves – so it's like, acknowledge what is going on. As long as we have denial and secrets I can't help you, I can’t make the situation any different. Lady Bridgerton is trying to get Anthony to be honest, Lady Danbury is trying to get Kate to be honest. We’re all sort of aiming for truth."
Will there be as many steamy scenes?
Let’s be real, the steamy scenes are what make Bridgerton. I don’t need to show you the photo of Simon licking a spoon in Season 1, but I will. Just for you.
Season 2 could be even steamier, with Kate and Anthony having quite a few risqué moments of their own in the book.
Actors Simone and Jonathan describe their character's chemistry as "passionate" and filled with "lots of arguing" - with all of this tension eventually leading to a romance.
Daphne and Simon shared a single kiss before being forced to marry to cover up the scandal. Whereas Anthony and Kate will hook up a while before anyone catches on - all the while claiming to not even like each other.
"Stop lying to yourselves, you're clearly in love!" we shall all be screaming at our TVs while not-so-secretly enjoying the enemies to loves story arc.
If you can believe it, a humble little bee is their undoing in the novel. Yes, there was a reason we kept seeing a bee in the first season. It wasn't just a weird creative choice by Shonda Rhimes. The Viscount is terrified of bees, but we won't elaborate on why just yet - you'll have to tune in for that reveal.
But we will say this: in the book, Anthony and Kate find themselves sprung in a compromising position thanks to the tiny little bee and are betrothed to cover up the embarrassment of being caught out.
There's a chance Netflix could change the exact circumstances of what happens, with the author saying they have "amped things up" in the love triangle for the show. But considering how iconic and scandalous the bee scene is, we predict die-hard book fans will be FREAKING out if the scene is altered.
While the "fake love-match story to cover up a scandal wedding" thing might be reminiscent of Daphne and Simon, we can guarantee this one should be far funnier to watch unfold, as per the books.
What's happening with the rest of the Bridgerton siblings?
Unlike the show, the other siblings don't feature too heavily in the books unless they're the central character, even though they all still live in the ton, with the exception of Daphne.
In fact, Benedict (Luke Thompson) is barely ever mentioned and Colin (Luke Newton) basically just plays up his annoying slightly younger brother role in an attempt to tease Anthony about Kate.
But in the series they'll play a major part once again.
Eloise (Claudia Jessie) is hardly involved in the book, though she does get along well with Kate in their few scenes in the novel. Seeing as both the ladies are quick-witted and share the same skepticism of the society in which they live, it just makes good sense.
While they may not be seen prominently in The Viscount Who Loved Me, we're sure the characters will have plenty of screen-time when the series returns. Though, not all of our fan-favourites are coming back...
Are Daphne and Simon in Season 2 of Bridgerton?
Sadly, Regé Jean Page isn't returning to the show, which means we won't be seeing the Duke of Hastings any time soon. Having signed on for one season in a leading role, the actor revealed he did not want to return as his story arc was "finished."
"I have nothing but excitement for Bridgerton continuing to steam train off and conquer the globe," he said of his departure. "But there is also value in completing these arcs and sticking the landing."
The actor was offered a hefty sum to remain in the series, but he declined. However, Phoebe has signed back on as Daphne.
"We’ll miss Simon’s presence onscreen, but he will always be a part of the Bridgerton family," an official statement from Netflix revealed. "Daphne will remain a devoted wife and sister, helping her brother navigate the upcoming social season and what it has to offer – more intrigue and romance than my readers may be able to bear.”
Both characters do feature in the novel, attending an event at the family country estate during a key point in the storyline. With Phoebe still cast in Season 2, Daphne will be around to advise her brother as he searches for his bride. Based on the first official trailer, it also looks like she'll catch Kate and Anthony hooking up in secret!
When does Bridgerton Season 2 premiere?
Not long to go now, dearest readers, with the second season finally premiering on Netflix on March 25.
After waiting more than a year for Season 2, we can't wait to binge-watch in one day. Only to be disappointed when we realise we'll have to wait at least another year for Season 3.
WATCH: How the cast of Bridgerton would describe Season 2
Season 1 of Bridgerton is streaming on Netflix now. Season 2 is due to premiere on March 25, 2022.
Keen to read the books before the show returns? Shop the full collection of Bridgerton books on Booktopia here.