‘That changes things!’ Bridgerton’s Ruby Barker spills on Lady Whistledown twist discovery

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Ruby Barker, 25, has admitted Nicola Coughlan’s character Penelope Featherington was the “last person” she suspected to be behind the infamous Lady Whistledown pseudonym. The Marina Thompson actress, who filmed many scenes alongside Nicola in Bridgerton, revealed that the Derry Girls star let her in on the secret behind-the-scenes.

During the season one finale of Bridgerton, Penelope was explosively revealed to be the mysterious Lady Whistledown.

Lady Whistledown’s role in the series is to report on the goings-on in the ton in order to manipulate people.

Ruby has now admitted that when Nicola informed her that Penelope was the character writing under the pseudonym of Whistledown, she was sure the shock twist would “change things”.

When asked about whether Lady Whistledown’s identity was kept as a surprise for the cast, Ruby said in an exclusive interview with Express.co.uk: “I don’t know about everyone else, but I knew. 

“I didn’t ask, but the last person I suspected was Penelope. 

“And then Nicola told me, and I was like, ‘damn! That changes things, b****y hell!’ 

“Often, it’s one you suspect least.”

It comes after Ruby and Nicola shared plenty of scenes with each other during season one of the Netflix period drama.


Nicola’s character, Penelope, quickly befriended Ruby’s character, Marina, while the latter struggled to conceal her secret pregnancy.

Ruby explained that their on-screen friendship was mirrored in their real-life relationship as co-stars.

The star said: “She’s sweet as pie, she really is so lovely. 

“The thing is, like, I want to say she’s cute, because she’s so cute! 

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“But she’s a 34-year-old woman, so I don’t want to patronise her or anything! 

“But she is just the absolute epitome of cuteness in a human soul.”

Ruby’s character Marina started series one of Bridgerton as a new member of the ton, as she was sent to live with her distant relatives, The Featheringtons, so they could help her make her debut in London society.

However, it was soon uncovered that Marina was pregnant, which prompted her to be hidden away from society in her bedroom until Lady Featherington (Polly Walker) decided to find her a suitable husband, who could be tricked into believing the unborn child was his.

After Penelope learned Marina was pregnant and not sick as her mother had led her to believe, the latter informed her she had fallen in love with a boy at church named George Crane, who had since gone off to war in Spain. 

He was also the father of her baby.

Unfortunately, later in the series, after Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor) tried to help Marina by trying to get George to return to England, his brother Sir Phillip Crane (Chris Fulton) arrived to share the sad news that he had died on the battlefield.

Phillip then proposed to her, stating he would be doing his duty as George had taken liberties with her honour, which she eventually accepted before leaving London with him.

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