Taking it to the next level. From Bridgerton‘s Kate and Anthony to Nancy Drew‘s Nancy and Ace, fans have enjoyed some pretty memorable sex scenes between their favorite TV couples over the years
The Netflix regency series originally raised eyebrows with its numerous steamy moments between season 1 leads Daphne (Phoebe Dynevor) and Simon (Regé-Jean Page). Ahead of season 2, creator Chris Van Dusen revealed plans to pump the brakes on Bridgerton‘s graphic love scenes.
“It was never about quantity for us,” he said during an interview in March 2022. “Our approach to intimacy on the show really is the same as season 1. And we use these intimate scenes to tell a story and to push the story forward. We’ve never done a sex scene for the sake of doing a sex scene, and I don’t think we ever will.”
Dusen added: “It all serves a larger purpose and it’s a different story this season. It’s different characters. We’re with Anthony (Jonathan Bailey) and Kate (Simone Ashley) most of the [second] season and that’s very different from Daphne and Simon. And that’s really part of the draw to me of a project like this, the ability to tell these close-ended love stories of different characters season after season.”
Fans, however, received an unexpected surprise when it came to Anthony and Kate’s minimal — but also meaningful — sex scenes. For Ashley, focusing on emotional intimacy allowed the season 2 couple to build to something more physical.
“It makes sense for these characters because they’re so protective over their families and they’re so truthful to their duties and responsibilities — so for them to break that wouldn’t have made sense for the characters,” the actress added at the time. “And as Chris has said, they aren’t performative sex scenes or intimate scenes. They have a meaning behind them and I think it’s very earned when the fireworks happen.”
Bailey, for his part, showed support for the slow burn approach as well. “I think Kate and Anthony feel explicit in the way that they feel naked in front of each other. I think that’s also a very interesting, cerebral way of exploring that innate sexuality, and I think it bodes really well for the following seasons, to not just be about sex,” the U.K. native explained during the press conference. “That is a huge part of it, but there are so many other amazing things that are explored and will be explored going forward.”
Fans of The CW’s Nancy Drew were also in for the long haul as they spent three seasons waiting for Nancy (Kennedy McMann) and Ace (Alex Saxon) to act on their feelings. During the season 3 finale, viewers got a short-lived taste of a happily ever after for the couple.
“Season 4 is going to be a season of intense yearning for both of them,” executive producer Noga Landau told Entertainment Weekly in January 2022, referring to the curse placed on Nancy and Ace. “It’s only ramping it up even more, for sure. For me, this show is always about the simmering love and yearning — for multiple characters, but especially for Nancy and now for Nancy and Ace together.”
Later that year, McMann hinted that Ace would be “relieved” once he discovered the truth behind Nancy’s rejection.
“What’s so heartbreaking about Ace’s story — and at the end of season 3 — is how he feels like Nancy is rejecting him because he’s not enough. And it is so painful and tragic,” she explained on “The Wayne Ayers Podcast” episode. “I think in some ways it will be reliving for him to know that of course she loves him and there’s just other things going on.”
Scroll on for a guide to the steamiest TV sex scenes