Downton Abbey: And They All Lived Happily Ever After

EMBARGOED_UNTIL_05_DECEMBER_DOWNTON_36Previously on Downton Abbey: Edith got engaged for about ten minutes before Mary completely ruined it out of spite, prompting a couple of characters to finally call Mary out for being a hateful, miserable bitch. She responded to that not by actually doing anything nice for the sister she’s abused for their entire lives, but by getting married herself to Henry Talbot. And apparently we’re all supposed to be fine with that. Cora’s now in charge of the hospital board, which doesn’t make Violet all that happy, and Lord Merton’s daughter-in-law, Amelia, is trying to unload Merton on Isobel. Isobel’s not playing that game, however, and tells Amelia the request to rekindle this relationship has to come from Larry the Jerk, which isn’t happening anytime soon. Belowstairs, Carson’s a jerk and a half, Thomas is on the hunt for a new job, Anna’s pregnant, Patmore might be having a flirtation with Farmer Mason, Molesley got a teaching gig, and Andy the footman has hopes of becoming a farmer someday.

This is it, folks, our last outing with the Crawley family! Will you miss them? I…don’t really feel like I will, which is a shame, because this show started off fairly strongly, but you never know, give me a week and I might be sobbing into my pillow or something.

It’s summertime, and the family’s out walking the grounds and playing with the kids. Edith plans to put Marigold into a school in London so she can, you know, actually get an education befitting a young lady living in the 20thcentury. Edith, it seems, hopes to move to London and set up residence there during term time so she can be near her child and also actually run the magazine she owns. Robert worries about her being all alone down there, but Edith, a little shortly, says she’s a spinster, and spinsters are supposed to live alone. I thought spinsters were supposed to go in sisterly sets. Or pairs, at lest.

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Downton Abbey: Truth and Consequences

3152Previously on Downton Abbey: Edith started dating a rather nice young man named Bertie whom nobody thought much of because he’s Edith’s boyfriend; Mary dumped Henry immediately after his best friend died in a fiery car crash, because she can’t even deal with all this; everyone was treating Thomas like shit for no apparent reason; and Patmore got her first guests at her B&B.

Edith and Cora take a walk in the garden and discuss Bertie’s proposal. Edith loves the man, but she’s concerned about how he’ll react when she tells him she’s Marigold’s mother. She doesn’t want to keep the truth from him, but she’s afraid that telling him will ruin everything. It doesn’t really seem like you have much of a choice here, Edith. Either you keep your secret and dump the guy, which’ll obviously ruin things, or you roll the dice and tell him the truth.

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Downton Abbey: A Day at the Races

Previously on Downton Abbey: Mary and Edith both got boyfriends, Carson is turning out to be a horrible douchebag of a husband, Molesley might have a chance to become a teacher, and Thomas can’t seem to find his place anymore. So we’re, what, two episodes from the end of this series and they’ve finally gotten around to giving us an interesting episode? Eh, better late … Continue reading Downton Abbey: A Day at the Races

Downton Abbey: Open House

3366Previously on Downton Abbey: Mary and Edith got new boyfriends and Robert’s stomach exploded all over a future prime minister.

Ok, having seen this episode, I have to conclude that either Julian Fellowes completely and utterly doesn’t give a shit about anything at all anymore, or he’s just taking the piss, because this single episode basically broke all the rules of storytelling and delivered up one of the most boring hours of nothingness I’ve ever subjected myself to. Was there tension? No! Were there storylines we cared about? Of course not! Was the plot advanced in any way? Nope! And this unbearable narrative carelessness was signalled early on: I kid you not, the first three scenes are different sets of characters having the exact same conversation. They nearly mirror each other’s words. I’ve seen padding, but this really takes the cake.

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Downton Abbey: The Hurl of Grantham

Previously on Downton Abbey: Carson and Mrs Hughes got married, Thomas’s attempts to become friendly with Andy were rather brusquely rebuffed, Matthew Goode wandered back onto the scene, Robert was having stomach pains, Violet was losing her mind over the damn hospital, Baxter will have to give evidence against the guy who got her stealing, Daisy secured the Drewe farm for Mr Mason, and Edith finally … Continue reading Downton Abbey: The Hurl of Grantham

Downton Abbey: You Know Nothing, Thomas Barrow!

Previously on Downton Abbey: Carson and Hughes got married, Anna got knocked up, Edith fired her editor, and lo, many seasons ago, teenage Sybil got all girl power and helped one of the housemaids get a better job. Branson walks around the estate, just checking things out, then goes in to breakfast and reassures Robert that he didn’t abandon America because he quarrelled with his … Continue reading Downton Abbey: You Know Nothing, Thomas Barrow!

Downton Abbey: Kidnapped!

Mary at the fair, photo by Nick BriggsPreviously on Downton Abbey: Anna was having fertility issues, Mary assigned herself the job of estate agent, Edith snatched her kid back from the farmer she handed her off to, then went on to kinda suck at this whole ‘career woman’ thing because apparently she left her spine behind at the Drewes’. Carson and Hughes are getting married, there’s some dreary nonsense with the hospital that absolutely nobody cares about, and Daisy stupidly mouthed off to her father-in-law’s new landlord and got him kicked off his farm. Nice going!

The music is super excited that it’s breakfast time and everyone belowstairs is really fakely rushing around and gathering breakfast trays and ironing newspapers and the like. Upstairs, there are letters from Tom and Rose that include absolutely nothing interesting, other than the fact that Rose may return for the series finale a visit in August, but it’s not settled yet. Mary assumes this means Rose is expecting, though she uses the far more anachronistic (for her class and time) term of ‘pregnant’. There’s some chatter about the hospital business, which Cora is being shut out of. Carson appears and tells Mary that there’s a Mr Finch there to see ‘the agent’. Apparently he has no idea that Mary is the agent now, even though she’s allegedly been doing the job for months. Mary tells Carson to have the man wait in the library while she takes her time finishing breakfast.

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Upstairs, Downstairs: Romeo and Juliet is NOT a How-to!

Image courtesy of Acorn MediaPreviously on Upstairs, Downstairs: Emily the kitchenmaid was waaaay too into overblown romance stories.

It’s April 1907.

Emily stares, openmouthed, up at the street through the kitchen window. Mrs Bridges tells her to pay attention to her work and scolds her for doing a crappy job with the dishes. Emily sulks and recommences washing them. Poorly. She doesn’t even rinse, so no wonder Bridges was pissed off. Edward comes into the scullery just as a carriage pulls up carrying some nouveau riche named Mrs Van Groeben. Edward makes fun of her, as Rose joins them. Rose scolds him mildly but joins the other two in staring at the woman as she gets down from her carriage. Rose remarks on the handsome footman and wishes they could get a cute one like that. Emily admires Mrs VG’s dress, guessing the woman has a different dress for every day of the year.

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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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