Downton Abbey: Witness

downton-abbey-premiere-reviewPreviously on Downton Abbey: Mary considered marrying Gill seriously enough to enjoy a weekend bonkfest with him, during which they checked into the same hotel under their own names. I think we should all be grateful that this particular brain trust fell apart and didn’t breed. Speaking of breeding, Edith gave birth to a kid and handed her off to the Drews, which went so incredibly poorly that she took the kid back and offered up the feeble explanation that the Drews couldn’t care for her and now little Marigold (yes, Marigold) is her foundling. In one of the show’s more ludicrous plotlines, Anna was accused of and even jailed for the murder of Greene, all on the extremely shifty evidence of a witness who’s come out of nowhere after sitting on their information for over a year. Yeah, really reliable there. Anna’s now out on bail, waiting to find out what will happen to her. Branson and Rose both decided to pursue movie careers move to America, and Carson and Hughes got engaged.

Home stretch, everybody! Now, for our American friends just joining us, I feel I should warn you. Apparently, on this side of the pond there was a lot of talk prior to the season airing about how this was going to be THE BEST DOWNTON SEASON EVA! But let’s keep in mind that Fellowes said something very similar about his Titanic miniseries, and we all know how that went. So I guess what I’m saying is, if you’ve heard that…


If you’ve got ‘a hunt scene’ on your Period Drama Bingo Card, you get to tick something off early, because here we are knee deep in hounds and hunting pinks, and oh look, Mary’s finally decided to start riding astride. Her father sniffs about that, telling her that sidesaddle’s much more elegant, and she points out that it’s also far more dangerous, and she’s good with her neck unbroken, thanks. A crowd of locals has gathered to take in the sight of the hunt, and amongst them is a particularly smug young woman. This is Rita, our cartoon villain of the season. She has all the obnoxious classist outrage of Sarah Bunting combined with the maddening, buffoonish absurdity of Vera Bates. Fun!

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Downton Abbey: Grouse and Goodbyes

Downton-Abbey-Christmas-specialPreviously on Downton Abbey: Rose married a Jew, which gave her mother ample opportunity to be absolutely repulsive; Violet tracked down the wife of a former lover/flirtation (we’re not quite sure how far this thing went); Daisy started getting into some book learnin’; Tom convinced himself to move to ‘Besten’; Edith adopted her own daughter; Mary found herself suitorless; and Anna was ridiculously arrested for murder.

Ahh, Isis may be gone, but her bum lives on in the credits.

Mary goes to the prison to visit Anna, wearing a rather spiffing coat, if I may say so.

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Downton Abbey: The Parent Trap

60876Previously on Downton Abbey: Edith brought Marigold back to Downton and pretended to adopt her; Rose’s parents’ marriage imploded just before she decided to get engaged to Atticus.

The house is all in a tizzy as the family and staff get ready to head to London for the nuptials. Daisy and Patmore are working on the cake, which is super elaborate and apparently requires lots of handmade flowers.

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Downton Abbey: I Have a Plan

Downton-AbbeyPreviously on Downton Abbey: Michael is officially dead, and the sad news, the separation from her daughter, and her family’s collective shrug made Edith just throw up her hands, grab the kid, and up stakes to London to run Michael’s publishing business. Mary was still toying with her boys, but it looks like Mabel’s making some inroads with Gill. Molesley tried to help Daisy with her studies.

Rosamond steps off the train at Downton, having been summoned by the family, which finally realised they should at least pretend to give a shit about their missing daughter. She’s surprised to be met by Violet, but Violet needs a word with her before they get to the house. Things have gotten to the point where she has reluctantly concluded they need to bring Cora in on this whole situation. Yes! Thank you, finally! Rosamond thinks that’d be a betrayal, since they promised Edith not to blab, but Violet argues that, as Edith’s mother, Cora deserves to know the whole story. But Robert can be left in the dark, because dads don’t need to know what’s happening in their daughters’ lives.

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Downton Abbey: Is There a Human in the House?

downton-abbey5Previously on Downton Abbey: There were hints that we may soon know the fate of Michael, as if we didn’t already; Thomas sought treatment for his homosexuality, which doesn’t seem to be going well; Mary decided she didn’t want Gill after all, which he wasn’t ok with, but fortunately we have Blake on hand to make a really insulting proposal to Mabel that’s designed to make it all better.

A telegram arrives for Edith, and everyone collectively holds their breath as it’s delivered to her at breakfast. Robert heads upstairs and tells Cora that said telegram was from the editor of Michael’s newspaper, announcing his impending arrival at Downton with actual concrete news. Robert knows it has to be bad, because otherwise the guy would have telephoned. Things are still tense between Cora and Robert (well, Robert’s pretty uptight), just in case you were wondering. Cora sighs that even though Edith knows what’s coming, it’s still going to be super painful to hear it. Remember she said that as we move through this episode.

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Downton Abbey: Worst-Laid Plans

uktv-downton-abbey-s05-e05-8Previously on Downton Abbey: Robert’s disregard for his wife reached such a critical stage even she couldn’t ignore it anymore. Nor could she ignore the attention being paid to her by art historian Simon Bricker. Mary’s tired of Gil, but Blake may have a plan to soften the blow, Edith’s been shut out of the Drewes’ lives, Merton proposes to Isobel, and Sarah’s ridiculous.

Rosamond’s come for a visit. Cora greets her and takes her into the library for tea. Rose reads in the newspaper that a nudist colony is being started up in Essex.

Violet: Isn’t it terribly damp?


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Downton Abbey: Jeepers Creepers

90803dd6-f892-465d-868e-6f4e33ba40d1-460x276Previously on Downton Abbey: Mary decided Gil wasn’t for her after all, Violet reconnected with an old flame, Sarah kept insulting everyone, Daisy took lessons, Patmore’s nephew is being excluded from war memorials, and Edith’s behavior just got a little too intrusive and creepy for Mrs Drewe.

Thomas returns home and is fairly warmly welcomed with inquiries about his father’s health from Baxter. He lies that his dad is much better.

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Downton Abbey: My Eyes Have Been Opened

downton-abbey8Previously on Downton Abbey: Edith and Drewe came up with a stupid non-plan to keep her in her daughter’s life, Mary met up with Gil for a sex weekend, and a witness stepped forward to possibly implicate Bates in Greene’s murder.

Mary reclines in bed with Gil (both of them are wearing some sort of nightwear, I think it bears saying) until her breakfast is delivered and Gil has to go hide next door for a bit. He jokes that she’s worked up an appetite and she tells him she hates vulgar jokes. He makes a note of that, along with all sorts of other things so he can get used to the rituals that’ll make up their daily life.

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Downton Abbey: Sex on the Brain

uktv-downton-abbey-s05e02-12Previously on Downton Abbey: Carson, not Robert, was asked to head a committee to establish a war memorial, which made Robert pouty. Having Sarah Bunting attack the whole project on principle at dinner didn’t help. Violet, realizing that a marriage between Lord Merton and Isobel would put Isobel on an equal social footing with her, set out to wreck the relationship, while Mary, having nearly decided to marry Gil, accepts his offer of a ‘try before you buy’ sex weekend. Edith’s attempts to be part of her daughter’s life without being super obvious about it are failing pretty miserably, and in her frustration, she accidentally sets the house on fire. Belowstairs, Jimmy gets fired for sleeping with a guest/former employer and Daisy’s trying to learn maths.

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Downton Abbey: Is There Something You Want to Tell Me?

downton-abbey-episode-8Previously on Downton Abbey: Edith decided to keep her baby, and got a ton of unexpected support from Rosamond. Isobel nursed Violet through bronchitis, Mary got down and dirty with Blake (but not in that way), and Green showed up again, and it looks like both Hughes and Bates know the truth about him.

Edith, Tom, and Mary go to visit the pigs and the interim pig man, Farmer Drew. Guess they fired the guy they originally hired. Seems Drew knows a thing or two about pigs, so they offer him the job permanently. He thanks them for giving him another good turn and hopes he can repay the family someday. Just pay your rent, Drew, and make sure the pigs have water. I think that’s really all they want.

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