Nicola Coughlan Had A Perfect Clapback To A Backhanded, Body-Shaming Comment

“You know, it is hard because I think women with my body type—women with perfect breasts—we don’t get to see ourselves onscreen enough."
nicola coughlan in bridgerton season 3
Image: Netflix

Part two of Bridgerton season three is mere days away and we could not be more excited.

While we may not know the forever fate of Penelope Featherington and Colin Bridgerton—played by marie claire Australia cover star Nicola Coughlan and Luke Newton, respectively—quite yet, what we can be sure of is that some steamy scenes are inbound.

Ahead of season three’s release, the cast had teased that this would be the series’ spiciest yet. So, with the first four episodes being relatively devoid of sex scenes, it seems we will be in for a wild ride when part two lands this week.

But while they add to the plot and inevitably grab viewers’ attention, for one cast member, this season’s spicier moments have incited some additional conversations.

Image: Liam Daniel / Netflix

During a Q&A in Dublin, a male journalist suggested that it was “brave” for Coughlan to film the sex scenes. It goes without saying that in 2024, calling anyone “brave” for baring their body is not only boring but rude and frankly, unnecessary. Coughlan seemingly agreed but luckily, she was armed with the perfect response to the backhanded compliment.

“You know, it is hard because I think women with my body type—women with perfect breasts—we don’t get to see ourselves onscreen enough,” the actress said. “And I’m very proud as a member of the perfect breasts community. I hope you enjoy seeing them.”

Not only did she deliver a masterclass in clapping back, but Coughlan proved her comedy chops are still well intact.

This is not the first time Coughlan had something to say about the show’s sex scenes, and the way they align with conversations surrounding her body, either.

In a new interview with Stylist, Coughlan got candid about one upcoming scene in which she is “very naked,” telling the magazine that it was her request that she be so nude.

Of working with intimacy coordinator Lizzy Talbot, the actress said she “specifically asked for certain lines and moments to be included.”

“There’s one scene where I’m very naked on camera, and that was my idea, my choice,” Coughlan said. “It just felt like the biggest ‘f*** you’ to all the conversation surrounding my body; it was amazingly empowering.”

She added, “I felt beautiful in the moment, and I thought: ‘When I’m 80, I want to look back on this and remember how f***ing hot I looked!’” 

Image: Liam Daniel / Netflix

She preciously said she found filming the scenes to be “liberating.”

Speaking with marie claire Australia, Coughlan said that the sex scenes became one of her “favourite parts about filming this season,” and the prospect of them went from “daunting” to “quite powerful and liberating.”

“I remember reading the books and thinking, ‘Geez, these are really steamy. That’s gonna be a lot,’ but we didn’t know if the show would get picked up after the first season. Once we found it was going ahead, it was definitely daunting,” she said.

“The sex scenes are revealing in many senses, but strangely they became one of my favourite parts about filming this season. It ended up being quite powerful and quite liberating. Luke and I are really good partners and we had a lot of trust in one another. I would have struggled to do it with someone else, because we could talk about it and text about it and we had a lot of say in how those scenes were done.”

Bridgerton season three, part two will be released on June 13.

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