- Bridgerton -Daphne & Simon's Dances In 'Bridgerton,' Ranked By Suppressed Sexual Tension
Daphne and Simon spend plenty of time in Season 1 of Bridgerton trying to fool the ton, and themselves, into thinking they don't really have feelings for one another. Which only works for so long. But even from the very beginning, the definitive place where you couldn't deny Simon and Daphne's sexual tension is the dance floor. From the yearning looks to the stolen caresses, we all see you Daphne and Simon.
Historically, the dance floor has been the battlefield for young lovers trying to court and simultaneously repress their desires in period dramas. Take, oh, I don't know, Darcy and Elizabeth in Pride & Prejudice, or Anne Hathaway and James McAvoy in Becoming Jane. Since "dating" required a chaperone and maintaining at least a foot in between each other (and this was long before COVID) in the Regency era in which Bridgerton is set, reserving a space on a lady's dance card was the only way to evade those repressive dating customs and whisper a sweet nothing in her ear.
So in the spirit of how their affection for each other simply could not be denied, let's rank Daphne and Simon's dances by how much they're trying to conceal their ardent feelings for each other... and doing a terrible job of it.
5. Fanning The Friendship Flames
How well are they concealing their feelings? Well, there's not much to conceal here other than two attractive young people having a swell time playing with fire, as this is the first dance between Daphne and Simon post-deciding to fool everyone early on. They're very much in the "we're in this together" phase rather than the "I burn for you" phase, which makes this dance the least loaded of the lot.
4. In Daphne's "Wildest Dreams"
How well are they concealing their feelings? Not well at all. Daphne and Simon's attraction is laid out clear as day when they have nothing to prove to peering eyes. Then again, this dance at the start of Episode 3 is really a cheat entry, as it occurs in Daphne's dreams rather than reality.
3. Their First Adrenaline-Fueled Dance
How well are they concealing their feelings? Look, neither Daphne nor Simon would have taken up this ruse if there wasn't at least the slightest attraction to each other, right? And even if their very first dance to everyone's "shock and delight" at Vauxhall is just to shake the mamas and Lady Whistledown off their backs, the adrenaline rush fueling this one introduces the chemistry that carries them through the rest of the London season and proves to themselves they could pull off the charade. And if you couldn't tell that their spark was lit, the fireworks behind them sure did the trick.
2. Call Him By His Name
How well are they concealing their feelings? Daphne is adamant about finding a husband and becoming the matriarch of a family, so, at first, this dance in Episode 2 appears more formal than the others and their affection more subdued. But Simon disarms Daphne with his sincerity in wanting to help her secure a match and re-commitment to their ruse, which subsides her fears.
All decorum goes out the window though when he rather seductively steps in with their accustomed flirty repartee, convincing her to trust him by calling him by his name, and her by hers, as he traces the back of her gown. While in the beginning this dance was all business, the feelings and attraction can't help but come out anyway, as building trust and familiarity only increased their connection and ease with each other.
1. Let The Rain Fall Down And Wake Daphne's Dreams
How well are they concealing their feelings? For the entirety of Bridgerton, even after Daphne and Simon wed, they are pretending they don't adore one another as much as they really do. But at their grand Hastings Ball during their last waltz, Daphne and Simon try to hide their devotion more than ever, which proves the most difficult, because of just how deeply they've fallen in love. And like their predecessors in A Cinderella Story and The Notebook, rain cleanses all sense of artifice, and Daphne can't maintain the real ruse their whole courtship hinged on any longer. So, for all intents and purposes of this ranking, Daphne's love confession washes away their ruse once and for all "after the rain."
In compiling this ranking, I discovered to my shock and dismay that Daphne and Simon don't dance together again between Episode 3 until the grand finale. But I've come to realize that's mainly because their dances come at the times they're on the most rocky footing and have something to prove, unsure of how much they want to convey their suppressed attraction. And that, dear reader, is what we call the trappings of a romantic period drama.