Daphne's Bridgerton Exit Can Properly Fix The Show's Francesca Problem


Daphne’s Bridgerton Exit Can Properly Fix The Show’s Francesca Problem

Daphne’s absence in Bridgerton season 3 could finally let the Netflix show give more screen time to the least known Bridgerton sibling.

Warning! SPOILERS about the Bridgerton books ahead.




  • Francesca’s absence in previous seasons of Bridgerton limited her character development and left her as a stranger to audiences, making it difficult to establish her connections within the Bridgerton family.
  • The recasting of Francesca’s character in season 3 could indicate a desire to delve deeper into her storyline and give her more screen time, potentially allowing audiences to finally learn more about her and her relationships with her siblings.
  • Daphne’s absence in season 3 could open up opportunities for Francesca to take on a more prominent role, as another character could easily fulfill Daphne’s role in Colin’s storyline, giving Francesca the chance to shine and establish her own presence within the series.

The absence of Phoebe Dynevor’s Daphne from Bridgerton season 3 will surely mark a difference from past seasons, but it could also offer a solution to Francesca’s ongoing problem in the Netflix series. The news that Hannah Dodd took over Francesca’s character from Ruby Stokes in early 2022 surprised many as it was a prominent recast of a relatively central character that briefly appeared in Bridgerton seasons 1 and 2. While the recast was motivated by Stokes’ other work commitments making it impossible for her to remain as Francesca, it also hints at Bridgerton season 3 possibly wanting to show more of Francesca Bridgerton.

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Bridgerton season 1 managed to motivate Francesca’s absence with her education taking her to an aunt in Bath for piano lessons. While Bridgerton season 2 showed more of her, letting her attend events like Eloise’s debut and Anthony’s wedding, among others, it still didn’t involve Francesca in any meaningful storyline. This would be on par with the way Julia Quinn’s books presented the character, as Francesca was never really involved in Bridgerton family matters until her own book. However, the Bridgerton novels did the same with other characters such as Eloise or Colin, but the Netflix show still let them be embroiled in central storylines, making Francesca’s absence even more evident.

No Daphne Means Francesca Can Have Much More Screen Time In Bridgerton S3

Daphne was pivotal in Colin’s book, Romancing Mr. Bridgerton, and Daphne’s season 3 absence could hurt Colin’s story, potentially. However, Bridgerton season 2 crystallized Daphne’s role as that of the meddling sibling in the Bridgerton family, but not one of real centrality after season 1. As Daphne also offers her support and experience to Colin in Romancing Mr. Bridgerton, another character could easily do the same. Daphne’s absence could then mean more screen time for Francesca, who had often been absent and whose relationship with her brothers and sisters was never explored by Bridgerton, thus making Daphne’s exit the opportunity to deepen the Bridgerton siblings’ connections.

Why Bridgerton Needs To Fix Francesca For Its Own Future

By the end of Bridgerton season 2, Francesca is known to audiences as the Bridgerton who disappears offscreen more than the others, rather than for characteristics that set her apart from her siblings. This wasn’t a problem in the Bridgerton novels, which explored each Bridgerton sibling’s interests and characteristics only when it was time to tell the story of how they met their love interest and future partner. However, Netflix’s Bridgerton employing a different strategy, and presenting an ensemble cast on which the series partly focuses each season, makes it difficult to motivate Francesca’s disconnection with the rest of her family, and essentially makes her a stranger to audiences.

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Anthony’s story in Bridgerton season 2 worked well because season 1 already set up his difficult relationship with his duty to be the head of the family, enriching season 2’s plot because audiences already knew part of his backstory. Aside from her name and education, not much is known about Francesca, and she’s the only Bridgerton sibling virtually unknown, as even Hyacinth and Gregory’s squabbles received enough attention to set apart the two younger Bridgerton siblings.

Francesca’s story in the books is already one of the most intricate, with her first tragic wedding and the second happy romance, and her character always staying on her own, feeling part of the Bridgertons but also cherishing her freedom as a widow. Bridgerton season 3 would only benefit from setting up her character and making her known to audiences, as she could prove to be the one Bridgerton most different from her sisters and brothers, happy in her independence and solitude. More screen time for Francesca could finally make Bridgerton season 3 paint a more complete picture of the Bridgerton family.

  • Bridgerton Release Date: 2020-12-25 Cast: Will Tilston, Rege-Jean Page, Ruth Gemmell, Luke Thompson, Isabella Cortese, Martins Imhangbe, Julie Andrews, Phoebe Dynevor, Ruby Stokes, Ruby Barker, Claudia Jessie, Adjoa Andoh, Nicola Coughlan, Golda Rosheuvel, Charithra Chandran, Ben Miller, Jonathan Bailey, Florence Hunt, Polly Walker, Shelley Conn, Joanna Bobin, Luke Newton, Simone Ashley Genres: Romance, Drama Rating: TV-MA Seasons: 2 Summary: From Shondaland and creator Chris Van Dusen, Netflix’s Bridgerton is based on the romance novels of the same name by author Julia Quinn. The series follows the eight Bridgerton siblings, Anthony, Benedict, Colin, Daphne, Eloise, Francesca, Gregory, and Hyacinth, as they search for love during the social season and navigate life in Regency-era England. Website: https://www.netflix.com/title/80232398 Characters By: Julia Quinn Cinematographer: Jeffrey Jur Creator: Chris Van Dusen Distributor: Netflix Main Characters: Eloise Bridgerton, Benedict Bridgerton, Lady Mary Sharma, Anthony Bridgerton, Lady Danbury, Violet Bridgerton, Edwina Sharma, Penelope Featherington, Simon Basset, Colin Bridgerton, Kate Sharma, Marina Thompson, Daphne Bridgerton, Queen Charlotte Production Company: Shondaland Sfx Supervisor: Ben Ashmore Number of Episodes: 16
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