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Colorblind Casting or Colorblind History? Why "Bridgerton's" Diversity Feels Complicated
2024/07/10

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"Bridgerton," Shonda Rhimes' highly-anticipated Netflix debut, promised a scandalous, soapy romp through Regency-era London. And while the show has undoubtedly captivated audiences with its lavish costumes, steamy romances, and addictive drama, it has also sparked a heated debate about its portrayal of race, historical accuracy, and the limits of escapist fantasy.

Escapism at What Cost? The Problem with "Colorblind" Casting in a Not-So-Colorblind World

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There's no denying that "Bridgerton" offers a welcome dose of escapism, whisking viewers away to a world of opulent balls, forbidden romances, and the intricate rules of high society. But the show's attempt to create a "colorblind" version of Regency England, where Black characters occupy positions of power and race is seemingly irrelevant, has left many viewers feeling uneasy.

“You can’t just sprinkle in Black royalty and call it a day,” one critic pointed out on Twitter.

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“The show glosses over the brutal realities of colonialism and slavery, creating a sanitized version of history that feels disingenuous at best.”

The show's creators have defended their choices, arguing that "Bridgerton" is a work of fiction, not a historical documentary.

“We’re not trying to rewrite history,” Shonda Rhimes shared in an interview.

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