Words: Alastair James; pictures: Netflix
Bridgerton heartthrob Jonathan Bailey has defended the lack of sex scenes in the show's second season saying "the payoff is really earned."
Bailey, 33, takes the lead in the second season of the hit Netflix show as his character, Viscount Anthony Bridgerton searches for a wife and in doing so gets caught in a love triangle between the Sharma sisters, Edwina and Kate.
Speaking to USA Today, Jonathan says the contrast between the racy first season and the more sedate second season is right.
"As much as I'm needed, I'll be there"
"What you lose in sex scenes you gain in a deeper human understanding, which hopefully enriches the world so that the future intimacy scenes won't be the heavy feature, and (you) won't have to lean on them as much," he says arguing that it's right to "keep them [the audience] on their toes a bit".
He continues: "It would have been wrong for Kate and Anthony to have got physical any sooner than they did. And I think the payoff is really earned."
On taking over as the show's lead Jonathan says it felt more like he was "stepping into a brilliantly complicated role as opposed to a romantic lead."
Playing the Viscount, a straight character, as a gay man was "thrilling" he tells USA Today because he was able to play a role he previously didn't think he would be able to. "It's great to be able to be part of it and it's joyful," he adds.
He hopes his playing the role will provide some inspiration.
"Hopefully, Anthony Bridgerton will be a brilliant reference for any queer, young actor – with so many other brilliant actors who are also making waves, silently and some really vocally – that they'll be able to say, 'well, listen, I do want to go for that job because I know that guy is out and that's absolutely fine'"
The actor also teases his return for the show's already green-lit third season.
"I'm not going to miss a wedding. Let's put it that way. As much as I'm needed, I'll be there."
Bridgerton is currently streaming on Netflix.
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