Nicola Coughlan stands up for ‘Bridgerton’ co-star Luke Newton amid fan backlash
(Credit: Netflix)

Series

Nicola Coughlan stands up for 'Bridgerton' co-star Luke Newton amid fan backlash

Nicola Coughlan stood up for her Bridgerton co-star Luke Newton amidst a social media storm following photos of Newton holding hands with his girlfriend at an after-party. 

As the final part of Bridgerton’s third season hit Netflix, the two lead actors shared their appreciation and admiration for one another in a series of Instagram posts. Newton posted a series of red carpet-photos as the new episodes aired. “Felt like celebrating the last 5 years,” he wrote in the caption, offering gratitude to the show’s fans. “Thanks for being such a big part of this wild journey,” he added.

But as Newton thanks the viewers, his scene partner Nicola Coughlan thinks the actor deserves a note of thanks and appreciation for himself. She described him as a “true gentleman,” “the kindest friend,” and a “dream costar.” In an Instagram story sharing Newton’s post, the Irish actor said, “Couldn’t have been luckier than to spend the last 6 months travelling the world with you,” adding, “What a ride!”

But the move was more than just sweet words on social media. It was a subtle act of solidarity and support as Newton has faced an influx of critique from Bridgerton fans lately, all because he has a private life. 

Following a screening of the new episodes, Newton was seen heading to an after-party with his rumoured girlfriend, Antonia Roumelioti. Celebrity gossip page Deux Moi posted the photos, sending fans into a spiral claiming the actor had ruined the show’s PR strategy by breaking the illusion that he isn’t, in fact, the eligible suitor from the show, nor is he with Coughlan off-screen. 

“I am speechless. What a refreshing SLAP to my face this morning,” one fan wrote, with another saying “Thanks for ruining the moment, I hope you are happy with this.” Others criticised the age gap of the couple’s relationship as Newton is 31, while his supposed girlfriend is in her early 20s.

Coughlan didn’t address the backlash straight out but did share a very apt clip from the TV show. In the snippet, Newton’s character Colin says to Coughlan’s Penelope, “I will always stand up for you because I love you, Pen.” Fans think this was the actor’s statement of support for her co-star.

This comes after Netflix revealed that Bridgerton is not only a TV hit, but might have actually boosted the UK economy. The streaming service claims that the show had brought over £250 million to local businesses and created thousands of jobs thanks to it’s major success.