- The Irregulars -Billy Or Leo: Who's Better For Bea On 'The Irregulars'?
Every teen show worth its angst and melodrama comes with a built-in love triangle designed to divide fans and launch a thousand ship wars (Team Jess, forever!), and The Irregulars is no different. In between dealing with her abandonment issues and attempting to stop the Rip from destroying the entire world, Bea somehow finds time to fall for two blond-haired boys who basically look like the same person (but have vastly different personalities). But unlike some ship debates, it's not immediately clear who would actually be better for Bea: Billy or Leo?
Warning: Spoilers for Season 1 of The Irregulars follow.
On the surface, Billy appears to be your standard issue bad boy type in the vein of Jess Mariano or Damon Salvatore, while Leo is more of a Dawson Leery or Stefan Salvatore. One guy is smart and soulful, while the other is impulsive and prone to solving problems with his fists. It sounds like a tale as old as time, but then The Irregulars goes and complicates things by making the guys become friends after Bea starts dating Leo.
Reader, they're so evolved! It's a truly flabbergasting situation, because each guy not only has a personality that compliments Bea's tough, but compassionate soul, they're also ridiculously mature about their feelings for her. I mean is that even allowed on a teen show?
The end result is a love triangle with no wrong answer, but that won't stop me from investigating which one of these guys is really right for the team's fearless leader, Bea.
Leo & Bea Are A Star-Crossed Couple That Actually Makes Sense
He's a sheltered prince who believes he's too broken for love, and she's the street-savvy leader of a gang of homeless kids who is nursing a lifetime of abandonment issues. Given just how difficult it is for either of them to fully open up, Bea and Leo should be a train wreck, and yet, they're kind of perfect together.
Their love story evolves slowly and naturally over the course of Season 1, and when they inevitably part, it's not because of a big fight; it's because he made a deal with his mother to marry his (distant) cousin to ensure Billy didn't hang for accidently killing the man who beat him in the workhouse. It's a noble gesture that makes their final scene bittersweet and romantic in all the right ways — but it also highlights why they can never truly be together.
Ultimately, Leo is a prince, and as such he's bound by duty to uphold the outmoded traditions that are still plaguing the British royal family to this day. Even though he's Queen Victoria's fourth son, he can't escape her expectations, and that means he can't fully commit to Bea, no matter how much he cares for her. Leo doesn't want his new friends to call him dabbler, but his position in life means that's exactly what he is, even though it's no fault of his own.
Still, there's no denying he's good for Bea (and she's good for him). Through her relationship with Leo, she learns letting her guard down is worth it, even if it means she might get hurt. She also gets the chance to be with someone who admires her strength, but also accepts her vulnerabilities. If he was from literally any other family they would be endgame, but alas, he's a royal, and she's a walking Lorde song.
Billy & Bea Could Make Friends-To-Lovers Magic Happen
Since Season 1 is very much the season of Bea and Leo, Billy and Bea don't get as much time to shine. But he does call her Bumble, which is a heart-melting nickname if I've ever heard one. Just in case the pet name didn't give it away, Billy has a huge crush on Bea, and the two flirt with the idea of coupledom early on before it becomes clear that Bea wants to explore her feelings for Leo.
What follows is a season full of exquisite pining on Billy's part. Due to his rough upbringing, he's not the most emotionally evolved teen, and he can't offer Bea poetry or an impressive array of bird knowledge, ala Prince Leo. Instead, he's the muscle of the group, so he just offers to beat people up for her instead.
And while that may sound alarming, it's important to remember Billy has been physically protecting Bea and Jessie since they were all kids at the workhouse. Keeping them safe is the only thing he thinks he's good at, but Billy is slowly learning that he has more to offer his friends than his fists.
Right now, he's on his own journey of self-discovery, as evidenced by the way he not only accepts Bea's decision to be with Leo, but also the way he befriends Leo himself rather than hold a grudge against the guy for something he can't control. Typically, teen dramas don't let romantic rivals also form their own complex relationship, but The Irregulars does, and it's a better show for it.
Billy's reaction to Bea and Leo suggests he's actually the perfect person for her in the long run, because what he wants more than anything else is for her to be happy. When you add in their lifelong friendship and intimate knowledge of each other's fears and hopes, it becomes clear these two deserve a shot at happiness.
He may not be a sensitive prince, but Billy is a young man who is putting in the work to become an emotionally mature adult. And in her own way, Bea is on a similar journey as she learns how to process the traumas of her past and accept love and help from those around her. If they can just meet each other in the middle of their respective emotional revelations, Bea and Billy might just have what it takes to be endgame material.