5 Ways Bridgerton Can Navigate Marina's Future After Ruby Barker's Departure

5 Ways Bridgerton Can Navigate Marina's Future After Ruby Barker's Departure
Image credit: Netflix

Which plot line resonates with you the most?

Almost every piece of info you can find on Bridgerton’s behind-the camera life screams kittens and rainbows. Every cast and crew member works in perfect harmony with their colleagues and supports each other.

There is, however, one dark spot on the show's reputation. Actress Ruby Barker, who played Marina Crane (née Thompson) in the first two seasons of the show, called out the studios behind Bridgerton last year for neglecting her mental health issues during the filming and promotion of the show.

As a result, Barker severed all ties with the bodice-ripping series and her character. And that is the reason why many fans are wondering how Marina's arc will play out in the upcoming Season 3 and beyond.

The creators can't just brush Marina and her arc aside. After all, she is now married to Sir Phillip Crane, and if you read Julia Quinn's books, you know that he is poised to capture the affections of one of the titular characters, Eloise Bridgerton.

Of course, there's always the option of recasting Marina, but the wiser choice seems to be to let her story simmer offscreen and be told by other characters. Either way, this storyline deserves special attention from the showrunners, especially after the rift with Ruby Barker.

Here are five ways Shondaland can go with Marina's arc.

Book Route

The simplest, albeit controversial, approach to ending Marina's storyline is to mirror her tragic fate from Julia Quinn's books. In the novels, Marina struggles with postpartum depression after giving birth, leading to a tragic suicide attempt and death.

This allows Marina's widower, Phillip, to become a pen pal to Eloise, which in turn sets the stage for their future love story. However, the portrayal of mental health struggles may not sit well with viewers, especially since Marina seemed well-adjusted to her family life in Season 2.

Tragic Accident

For Sir Phillip and Eloise's romance to blossom, Marina must leave the scene. The showmakers could still write her demise into the storyline, but with a different twist. Instead of a grim mental health plot line, they could opt for a tragic accident scenario, which is less stigmatizing and more palatable to the audience.

Great Escape

Given Marina and Phillip's loveless marriage, it's plausible they're both discontent with their situation. We know Marina is no stranger to making bold moves when necessary. So running away feels like an option for this resourceful character. Especially if she meets a new love interest.

Running away from the Crane estate wouldn't completely let Phillip off the hook and free her to remarry, but such a scenario certainly beats death, doesn't it?

Legal Separation

Phillip and Marina could opt for a legal split, paving both their paths to happiness. While divorce was uncommon in the Regency era, it wasn't impossible. With wealth and patience, couples could untangle officially.

As a bonus, this twist offers a glimpse into historical divorce norms and the ton's attitude toward them. How would each of our beloved characters react to such scandalous news?

Revamping Eloise's Arc

Imagine if the writers spared Marina and Phillip's union and introduced a new love interest for Eloise. It's an audacious move, considering the deviation from Eloise's book storyline and canon ending.

But the fifth Bridgerton is already a much more complex character than her Quinn counterpart. And we're already invested in her budding romance with Theo Sharpe, so why not continue it and leave Marina healthy and happily married?

Which option do you prefer?