Bridgerton may be a period drama, but it includes covers of songs by Ariana Grande, Billie Eilish and Taylor Swift for a very clever reason.
Netflix’s Bridgerton combines tropics and aesthetics of like Pride and Prejudice, but with a more modern edge provided by Shondaland, including several covers of newer pop songs and a modern track. But why does the series include Regency versions of songs by, among others, Billie Eilish, Harry Styles, Taylor Swift and Maroon 5? It’s about Bridgertons progressive ideas.
Along with a unique, emotionally charged score by Kris Bowers, first season of Bridgerton including covers of Ariana Grande’s “thank u, next”, Maroon 5’s “Girls Like You”, Shawn Mendes’ “In My Blood”, Billie Eilish’s “bad guy”, Celeste’s “Strange” and Taylor Swifts pop song “Wildest Dreams”, most of which are covered by the Vitamin String Quartet with the last two by Bowers and the Duomo. They are immaculately observed period-appropriate covers, and they add a good hook to set it apart from other period competitors. There’s also a number – “Love Yourself” – by Sufjan Stevens that completely drops the historical relevance in a single moment. And the Bridgerton season 2s soundtrack also includes some covers of pop floor fillers.
Typically, you can expect a show like this to use the gimmick of modern covers throughout or stick to a more traditional score, so why Bridgerton choose to go with both? The front page actually serves as an easy indicator that the show is not traditionalist. Like its deliberately diverse cast, the point with Netflix Bridgerton is that it stands as a challenge to the usual tropics of this type of show – it is feminist, progressive, defiant even, and using modern music in the regent style is a smart nod to it.
Why Bridgerton Uses Modern Music
Although it reinforces some Regency drama tropes, especially in its romantic stories, Bridgerton is based on a matriarchal system with Queen Charlotte on the throne thanks to her husband’s illness, King George III. Each of the most powerful figures in and around Ton are female: the Queen, Lady Danbury (whom even the Queen accepts orders from at some point) and Lady Whistledown are the true power players, while key male characters tend to be presented as more emotional and even more hysterical at times. This inversion supports the whole show, and so does the diversity of characters. At one point, racial diversity is openly addressed as it is revealed that black characters gained their privileged positions in this regent society thanks to the king falling in love with Queen Charlotte.
Every modern covered by Bridgerton season 2
There is an exciting list of modern artists to premiere Bridgerton season 2 soundtrack, ready to score the upcoming romance of Anthony Bridgerton and Kate Sharma. Bollywood fans will recognize “Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham” by Lata Mangeshkar, the title track from the movie of the same name. And on top of that, there are a number of recognizable pop songs that are covered by Bridgerton season 2:
- “Material Girl” by Madonna
- “Diamonds” by Rihanna
- “Stay Away” by Nirvana
- “Signs of the Times” by Harry Styles
- “You Oughta Know” by Alanis Morrisette
- “Dancing on My Own” by Robyn
- “What about us” by P! Nk
- “How Deep Is Your Love” by Calvin Harris and the Disciples
- “Wrecking Ball” by Miley Cyrus
The musical choices are a reminder every time the audience watches a Regency story with modern emotions behind it. Shonda Rhimes’ production seeks to be more challenging than you would typically expect with a strong feminist element at times. In the end, it ends up postponing the generic type, but the glimpse of modernity – especially in the Sufjan Stevens song, which stands out massively – is there as Bridgerton‘s hook to the present and almost as a rebellion against the expectations of the era it covers.
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