If you’ve yet to watch Netflix’s “Bridgerton,” a Regency-style romance by way of “Gossip Girl,” there is still a good chance that you’ve at least heard about it, as the series based on Julia Quinn’s series of romance novels has seemingly taken over the world since its debut on Christmas Day.
Netflix reports that 63 million households have already streamed the series, which hails from Shondaland alum Chris Van Dusen, and while it’s always important to take Netflix’s self-reported ratings with a grain of salt — anyone can claim anything they want when it’s essentially impossible to fact-check — a quick glance at social media will tell you that the show is indeed very popular. On any given day on Twitter you’ll find people talking about the show, its depiction of sex, or the Bridgerton brothers, whom many viewers can’t seem to tell apart even though they aren’t actually all that samey-same.
But what are the show’s chances at the upcoming Golden Globes? In the race for Best TV Drama Series, “Bridgerton” is currently sitting at 10th in Gold Derby’s odds, right behind “Better Call Saul.” Meanwhile, Phoebe Dynevor, whose Daphne Bridgerton enters the marriage market in search of a husband in the show’s eight-episode first season, is currently in ninth place in the Best TV Drama Actress race, while her co-star, the hunky Regé-Jean Page, is in 10th in Best TV Drama Actor.
With voting underway, here are five reasons you shouldn’t underestimate the Netflix series at the Golden Globes.
1. It’s bright, shiny and new
If there is one thing you can count on when it comes to the Golden Globes, it’s that new programs like “Bridgerton” are basically catnip to the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. While the Primetime Emmys can be slower to nominate new shows, the HFPA has no qualms about jumping on board immediately; first-years shows, especially those that dominate the cultural discourse when they debut, have a good chance of making a splash at the Globes at the earliest opportunity.
For instance, the Apple TV+ drama “The Morning Show” received three nominations (but did not win any) for its first season last year, despite some very mixed reviews at the time. Meanwhile, a number of recent dramas took home the Best TV Drama prize for their first seasons, including “Mr. Robot,” “The Crown,” and “The Handmaid’s Tale.” Of course, “Bridgerton” isn’t the only first-year drama fighting for a place at the table this year: HBO’s “Lovecraft Country” and “Perry Mason,” as well as Netflix’s “Ratched,” are also looking to score noms this year.
2. The show was produced by Shonda Rhimes
Underestimate Shonda Rhimes at your own peril, is what I like to say. The prolific producer, who took home a Golden Globe in 2007 for the second season of “Grey’s Anatomy” — also known as the iconic season that saw Kyle Chandler blown to smithereens and introduced Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s Denny — signed a mega-deal with Netflix in 2017. “Bridgerton” is the first series to come out of that deal, and while she is not the series’ creator, she is an executive producer, and her influence can be felt across the series. With a name like hers attached to the project, voters will definitely take notice.
3. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association loves fresh faces
The HFPA loves to recognize breakthrough performances, especially when it comes to women. Looking back at the last decade or so across drama and comedy, you’ll find names like Katherine Langford, who was nominated for her performance in the first season of Netflix’s controversial teen drama “13 Reasons Why,” as well as winners Lena Dunham (“Girls”), Gina Rodriguez (“Jane the Virgin”) and Rachel Bloom (“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”). It’s not too much of a stretch then to think that leading lady Dynevor could follow in their footsteps, even if the drama actress category is already pretty stacked with women like Olivia Colman (“The Crown”), Sarah Paulson (“Ratched”), Jurnee Smollett (“Lovecraft Country”) and Emma Corrin (“The Crown”), the last of whom falls into the same category of breakthrough performer and is currently sitting in fifth place in the odds after Netflix switched her from supporting to lead.
4. “Bridgerton” could be seen as a perfect alternative to “The Crown”
This again ties into the HFPA’s preference for fresh new programs over familiar veterans. Although the most recent season of Netflix’s royal drama has been positively received across the board and continues to perform well in the odds, voters might take a look at “Bridgerton” and see an opportunity to recognize a similarly lavish period drama, one that hasn’t been honored previously.
5. It debuted at the best possible time
In a normal year, one without a global pandemic to disrupt and delay awards season, Golden Globe nominations would have been announced before Christmas, meaning before “Bridgerton” had even debuted — it would’ve still been eligible and HFPA members would’ve received screeners. This year, the HFPA extended the film eligibility period through Feb. 28, but TV adhered to the group’s normal calendar-year eligibility. With the nominations set to be announced Feb. 3, the series launched at the best possible time. Voting for television nominations began Dec. 30 and runs through Jan. 12. “Bridgerton” is everywhere when it matters most, and the HFPA knows the show is a hit, which could give it an edge over programs that premiered at the beginning of the eligibility period.
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