One of the most intriguing characters in Netflix’s ‘Bridgerton‘ is the acidic narrator who doubles up as the writer of a notorious gossip column during London’s wedding season. The name of Lady Whistledown is well known to anyone who follows the juicy, often scandalous events of the Ton, including the Queen, who makes it her personal mission to uncover the cheeky writer. Alas, it is not to be, and the identity of Lady Whistledown remains as hidden as ever.
Fortunately, the season 1 finale reveals to audiences (but not the Queen) the shocking identity of the divisive gossip columnist. However, the character behind Lady Whistledown is only half the mystery, for the voice of the narrator is clearly someone else’s. Are you wondering who voices the notorious Lady Whistledown in ‘Bridgerton’? We’ve got the story, dear reader.
Who Voices Lady Whistledown?
Lady Whistledown’s unmistakable voice is responsible for setting the tone for the show while introducing audiences to the particular nuances of every new relationship and scandal (of which there are many). The clipped English diction fits the show’s setting perfectly, making it seem like the gossip columnist is also a member of the London high society circles she talks of.
Lady Whistledown is, in fact, voiced by the iconic English actress, singer, and author Julie Andrews. Though she remains unseen on the show (and the real Lady Whistledown is revealed to be another character on the show), Andrews is an integral part of the series’ aesthetic and charm. The voice is briefly changed in the season 2 finale, perhaps just to give audiences a taste of how much we’d miss her narrative tone. Fear not, though, Andrews continues to be the voice of Lady Whistledown for the most part.
The accomplished actress made her film debut as an adult in ‘Mary Poppins’ (1964), for which she won an Academy Award for best actress. She then played the leading role in ‘The Sound of Music,’ immortalizing her acting and voice in the world of cinema. Unsurprisingly, she was also a successful Broadway singer. Describing the character she voices in ‘Bridgerton,’ Andrews has called Lady Whistledown “a bit of a naughty woman.”
In a separate interview, show creator Chris Van Dusen also revealed that Andrews was their first choice for Lady Whistledown and, against all hope, she fell in love with the scripts and agreed to the part. Since we now know of the actress behind the voice, let’s take a look at who the much sought-after secret character hiding behind Lady Whistledown’s prolific quill is.
Who is Lady Whistledown?
The identity of Lady Whistledown is a much-debated topic in ‘Bridgerton’ season 1, and despite the character being revealed in the finale, the knowledge is still not commonplace in the world of ‘Bridgerton.’ The Queen, who is perhaps the keenest on finding (and stopping) the real Lady Whistledown remains frustratingly in the dark, as does Eloise Bridgerton, who goes on a mission of sorts to try and uncover the gossip columnist’s identity.
And so, Lady Whistledown is revealed to be the young Penelope Featherington, an agreeable, accommodating, and relatively milquetoast character completely at odds with the divisive and unapologetic Lady Whistledown. Penelope, the youngest of the Featherington sisters, being revealed as the author of Lady Whistledown’s Society Papers is one of the show’s biggest reveals.
Though audiences know of the identity, even until ‘Bridgerton’ season 2, most other characters remain completely unaware (and unsuspecting) that Penelope is actually moonlighting as the cheeky columnist. We won’t drop any spoilers, but there is another character in season 2 who eventually learns the truth, and the repercussions are significant!