Who’s the New Girl in the Bridgerton Season 3 Trailer?

All change!

Violet, Francesca and Hyacinth Bridgerton in season 3

Bridgerton season three is almost upon us (part one lands on Netflix on May 16) and the first full trailer has arrived to prove it.

Sensibly skipping book three in Julia Quinn’s frothy Regency-set series and getting straight to the Penelope and Colin of the matter, the third season is all about Pen’s search for a husband. Desperate to break out of the Featherington home and frustrated by her failure to attract attention from the ton, Penelope enlists the services of childhood pal Colin Bridgerton. With Colin’s tuition, a suitable beau can’t be far away. In fact, one might just be very close indeed…

Before we come to all the blue-eyes-bandaged-hand stuff though, some viewers have a question. Who, in the name of the gloriously bewigged Queen Charlotte, is the new face being presented at court by Lady Violet Bridgerton at 0:16?

That right there is Francesca Bridgerton, the sixth sibling in the show’s titular family. Francesca is a year younger than her sister Eloise (Penelope’s best friend until their season two bust-up), and older than her siblings Gregory and Hyacinth.

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Francesca was previously played by 23-year-old Ruby Stokes (Lockwood & Co.), whose role had to be recast for season three due to other filming commitments. She’s now played by 28-year-old Hannah Dodd, an actor and model who’s appeared in Netflix’s Anatomy of a Scandal and Enola Holmes 2.

(Like Nicola Coughlin and Claudia Jessie, who play Penelope and Eloise, Dodd is years older than her teen character in Bridgerton – a show that takes the same ‘over 30s welcome’ approach to casting teenagers as high school shows did in the 1990s. No matter. The make-up on Bridgerton is so good that team could make Hoggle from Labyrinth pass for a dewy-faced ingenue.)

Frannie and Violet at court in Bridgerton Season 3

Francesca Bridgerton’s big storyline comes in book six of Quinn’s series When He Was Wicked. It finds her thrown together with the rakish Michael Stirling on the eve of her wedding to another. Complications, as we may imagine, ensue.

Back to season three! The new trailer teases some big moments in the story of Penelope and Colin, both of whom have had a glow-up since the previous episodes. The wealth Pen has amassed as the secret author behind the Lady Whistledown gossip pages has allowed her to shop for gowns in more becoming colours than the neon yellow in which her mother dressed her.

Meanwhile, judging from Colin’s new “sturdy” appearance (as his teasing brothers call it) Colin appears to have spent much of his Grand Tour on the decline press in his local PureGym.

Bridgerton season 3 Part I comes to Netflix on May 16

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