Bertha Russell is a character from The Gilded Age, a historical drama television series created by Julian Fellowes for HBO that is set in the United States during the Gilded Age, the boom years of 1880s New York City. The character is portrayed by Carrie Coon.
Bertha Russell is determined to use her money and position to break into a polite society that resists change at every turn.
The American Gilded Age was a period of immense economic change, of great conflict between the old ways and brand new systems, and of huge fortunes made and lost. Against the backdrop of this transformation, HBO’s The Gilded Age begins in 1882 with young Marian Brook (Jacobson) moving from rural Pennsylvania to New York City after the death of her father to live with her thoroughly old money aunts Agnes van Rhijn (Baranski) and Ada Brook (Nixon). Accompanied by Peggy Scott (Benton), an aspiring writer seeking a fresh start, Marian inadvertently becomes enmeshed in a social war between one of her aunts, a scion of the old money set, and her stupendously rich neighbors, a ruthless railroad tycoon and his ambitious wife, George (Spector) and Bertha Russell (Coon). Exposed to a world on the brink of the modern age, will Marian follow the established rules of society, or forge her own path?