Bridgerton season 3 episode 8 review: The Lady Whistledown reveal to the ton is anticlimactic

Colin and Penelope finally find themselves in a happy place, but I thought some parts of this episode were rushed and anticlimactic.
Liam Daniel/Netflix © 2024
Liam Daniel/Netflix © 2024 /

With "Into the Light" being the final episode of the season, it's no surprise that a lot was going on. But for me, it may have been a bit too much happening. The overall theme of this season, and what I've said time and time again, is that the pacing is just off and the story has been all over the place instead of really focusing on Penelope and Colin the way it should be. That doesn't mean Bridgerton season 3 episode 8 isn't good. I just didn't enjoy everything about it. Here's what happened and what I thought about the season finale.

Jessica Madsen as Cressida Cowper, Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington in episode 308 of Bridgerton
Liam Daniel/Netflix © 2024 /

Cressida's blackmail raises the stakes one more time in an intriguing way

Cressida has been nothing but trouble in the last few episodes. And though I still don't like her, I do feel bad for her a little bit. She's a desperate woman trying to get out of a dreadful situation. Does that make her actions right? No. But they're a bit understandable. And that's exactly the theme and how we see Penelope too. But more on that in a bit. With Cressida claiming she's Whistledown at the end of episode 5 and that storyline continuing in the sixth episode, I thought it was such a great idea that the character takes it one step further and now resorts to blackmail. It added another layer of intrigue to the story and really raises the stakes for Penelope, Colin, Eloise, and Portia as they're all in on it now.

Of course when nobody, including Colin, decided not to listen to Penelope, he went ahead and made it worse. In his defense he admits that. But still. What a man thing to do. Anyway, when Colin did go speak with Cressida to try and convince to let this blackmail go, he shares how he can start to understand how invisible Penelope has felt all these years and while she's made mistakes, he can understand them a bit. He has Cressida until he mentions the support of family. Because Cressida does not have that. I liked his speech here though because it really shows that Colin is starting to think things through. After all, he really does love Penelope.

Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington in episode 308 of Bridgerton
Liam Daniel/Netflix © 2024 /

The Lady Whistledown reveal to the ton is anticlimactic

So finally at her sisters' ball, Penelope reveals the truth about being Lady Whistledown to the whole ton. She has a great speech and it convinces some people, leading them to forgive her. And others I'm sure aren't going to be so qucik to forgive. I just felt like the whole thing was a bit anticlimactic though to be honest. I mean, Queen Charlotte has literally been searching for the author for three seasons, and then she's just like, 'Ok, I can see you feel bad and I like gossip so all is forgiven.' Uh, ok.

I know the episode was running out o ftime and had to wrap things up, but still. And even Violet. Yes, at this point Penelope is part of the family. But all is just well and forgiven so easily? It was glossed over too quickly. And again, it's because the show tried to do too much and has introduced so many storylines that I can't stop complaining about. Sorry.

Colin and Penelope finally reconcile, and he admits that he was envious of her success. Um, ok. That's nice. It's a whole self-confidence thing with Colin, and I think he used her hiding the Lady Whistledown secret as a bit of an excuse and something to hide behind. But he gets there. He realizes his error and also realizes that Penelope and Whistledown are one voice and he's not separating the two anymore. Both of these characters have made a lot of mistakes, but I have liked their growth throughout the season and realizing things about themselves individually, and now as a couple. It's nice to finally see them in a truly happy place!

Luke Thompson as Benedict Bridgerton in episode 308 of Bridgerton
Liam Daniel/Netflix © 2024 /

The other stories take up too much screen time

So like I mentioned, my biggest complaint this season was the number of storylines happening. In the finale, we actually get another wedding. And that's Francesca and Lord Kilmartin. Violet has finally been able to accept her daughter is happy. And she is. But with the introduction of Michaela Stirling, there seems to be more at play here. Interesting, interesting. Look, I have nothing against Francesca. But her plotline with Lord Kilmartin took up way too much time here and this storyline shouldn't have been introduced in Bridgerton season 3.

I like that Eloise is finally going to be able to travel to another country, joining her sister and Lord Kilmartin. She deserves it! When it comes to Benedict, I'm sorry I just don't buy how he's feeling right now. He's had all this freedom being the second brother and not knowing what to do with his life without a purpose. He sleeps with Lady Tilley and Paul, and now suddenly he likes being free? I mean, seriously. Just let this man settle down already. And please, I need more depth to this great character. There's more to him than just sleeping around. Show it!

Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington, Luke Newton as Colin Bridgerton in episode 308 of Bridgerton
Liam Daniel/Netflix © 2024 /

Grading Bridgerton season 3 episode 8

What makes up for a very jam-packed episode, and not in the good way, is the final moments of the season's finale. We move ahead in time where we see that it's clear Penelope has a better relationship with her mom and sisters, especially her mother which is one of my favorite parts of this season. And each of the Featherington ladies now has a baby! Prudence and Philippa have each welcomed a girl, while Colin and Penelope have the new Lord Feathrington. Plus, it was sweet to see how the whole family is now supporting Penelope's issues.

The latest Lady Whistledown comes in and everyone is excited to read it, and we get a great voiceover in what seems like a goodbye to the column. But it turns out Penelope was only saying "goodbye" to her pseudonym because she signs the end of it with "Penelope Bridgerton." Aw, that sounds so great! The name certainly suits her. Overall Bridgerton season 3 episode 8 episode had high stakes when it comes to Cressida, a mediocre reveal with Penelope's secret, and a nice ending that wraps up Penelope and Colin's story but hints at what's to come next for some of the other Bridgerton siblings. Who's going to be the next lead? I can't wait to find out! Episode grade level: B.

Bridgerton season 3 is now streaming on Netflix. To find all of this season's reviews, click here!

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