From the very first episode of Bridgerton‘s second season, Adjoa Andoh’s Lady Danbury is making her play to secure the best match for her ward, Edwina Sharma (Charithra Chandran). “I assure you, Miss Sharma, I have our prospects well in hand,” she says to Edwina’s protective older sister, Kate Sharma (Simone Ashley). After the Sharma-Sheffield family’s icy reception by the queen, Lady Danbury utters “Oh, I do relish a challenge.” Thankfully, a practiced hand like Lady Danbury’s knows the rules of the Regency-era Ton — and Adjoa Andoh confirmed to SheKnows in an exclusive interview that the character can also bend them to her liking.

By the end of the second season’s first episode, Lady Danbury uses her influence to position her ward in the best way possible — as the queen’s Diamond of the First Water and a potential match for Sir Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey).

“I might think Lady Mary [the Sharma girls’ mother] deserves some recognition,” Lady Danbury says to the queen. “The youngest one in particular, I think, will certainly make a match that will be the envy of the Ton.”

“Why do I sense my strings being pulled?” Queen Charlotte asks. “You said you wanted to shake up the season,” Lady Danbury quips in return. “Now is your chance.”

As we already know, Lady Danbury became a mentor to Simon Basset, The Duke of Hastings (Regé-Jean Page) in the series’ first season. This time around, however, her new wards present a completely different challenge, one that Lady Danbury is more than ready to handle. “I think Lady Danbury is like jazz,” the accomplished actress shared with SheKnows. “She knows what the rules are. She can play absolutely in the classical form when required, but she can improvise as well.”

As Andoh relays her response, it’s hard not to hear the words coming from Lady Danbury herself.  Andoh sees Lady Danbury as a woman well-practiced in the art of maneuvering the Ton, a formidable figure who often holds the cards and wields her high-society power with aplomb. And that power means that she doesn’t always play by a prescribed set of rules.

“She can swing around the role, she can play on the offbeat,” Andoh says. “She knows the rules, but sometimes she’s like, ‘Yeah, we’re going to avoid that one. We’re going to go over here now, because that’s what I can choose to do and I do choose.’”

Throughout Bridgerton‘s second season, Lady Danbury’s ability to improvise is definitely put to the test. She calls out one of her own wards in an effort to impose a valuable lesson on self-love and independence, she carries secrets and intercepts drama, and in one case, she’s the host of a rather uncomfortable dinner party, too. But as one of the longstanding, highly-respected and regarded members of the Ton, the indispensable Lady Danbury finds a way to subtly usurp the rules of the Regency era, and layout her own edicts as the law of the land (if only she’s the one walking that land). Season two of the beloved Netflix series proves one thing is certain — never underestimate the spontaneity and sedulousness of Lady Danbury.

Love never plays by the rules — especially not in this upcoming season of Bridgerton, and especially not when Lady Danbury is involved.

Season two of Bridgerton is streaming March 25. 

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