Bridgerton showrunner reveals moment writers decided to make Benedict queer

Luke Thompson as Benedict Bridgerton.

Bridgerton season three showrunner Jess Brownell has explained exactly when she and the show’s writers decided to make fan favourite character Benedict Bridgerton queer.

Towards the end of season three, fans of Netflix’s mammoth Regency era hit watched on as Benedict, played by A Little Life’s Luke Thompson, finally embraced his fluid sexuality.

After he was seen courting newcomer Lady Tilley Arnold (Hannah New), she introduced him to her drop dead gorgeous friend, Paul Suarez (Lucas Aurelio). Before long, the duo became a trio, and the three of them were enjoying a steamy threesome.

Benedict’s sexuality reveal wasn’t exactly a surprise for some fans though, who have felt that the character has had oodles of queer energy ever since season one, where he flirted with his artist friend, Sir Henry Granville (Julian Ovenden).

Now, Bridgerton showrunner Jess Brownell has revealed why Benedict’s fruity tendencies are so unsurprising: the writers of the show have always known that he’s queer.

Paul Suarez and Benedict Bridgerton kiss.
Paul Suarez and Benedict Bridgerton kiss in Bridgerton season three. (Netflix)

Speaking to Glamour, Brownell explained that she and the show’s other writers have been planning Benedict’s sexuality reveal since season one, which aired in 2020.

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“It’s something we had been talking about in the writer’s room honestly from season one, which is why I think people picked up on it,” she explained.

“We just had never found the exact right way to execute it. I felt like it was this dangling thread that I wanted to make sense of, because I do think it makes sense for Benedict’s character.”

According to Brownell, the introduction of Lady Tilley Arnold was the perfect excuse for Benedict to begin leaning into his queer identity.

“This season for Benedict is really about him learning how to subvert the rules of society, which is something Lady Tilley Arnold is quite good at, and is giving him some lessons on,” she said.

Lady Tilley Arnold (Hannah New) and Benedict Bridgerton (Luke Thompson).
Benedict meets Lady Tilley Arnold in Bridgerton season three. (Netflix)

“Those lessons about the ways in which he can remain unconventional while still being a part of his family, that’s something we’re going to continue to play with in future seasons.”

While Benedict clearly enjoys sexual experiences with men and women, the show’s creators are keen not to put a label on his sexuality.

Instead, Brownell describes him as “someone who is really about spirit, energy, and a connection of minds and interests”, adding that he “is not as focused on gender” as much as he is human connection.

After years of Bridgerton’s avid viewers calling for an LGBTQ+ romance, the show’s creators decided to give them two: at the end of season three, fans saw Francesca Bridgerton (Hannah Dodd) get all hot and bothered when meeting newcomer Michaela Sterling (Masali Baduza).

Brownell confirmed that season four will see Michaela and Francesca embark on a queer romance, and one that will be devoid of any queer trauma. Sapphics one, bigots nil.

Bridgerton is streaming on Netflix now.

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