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.

Continue reading “Downton Abbey: Is There a Human in the House?”

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?


Continue reading “Downton Abbey: Worst-Laid Plans”

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.

Continue reading “Downton Abbey: Jeepers Creepers”

Upstairs Downstairs: Lady Marjorie’s Lover

s1n07Previously on Upstairs Downstairs: Lady Marjorie and Richard Bellamy had really bad luck when it came to hiring staff. Or they’re just lousy at it. Lady Marjorie came from a wealthy background, while Richard most certainly did not.

It’s summer 1906. Richard returns home and Lady Marj immediately asks him about how he plans to vote for an upcoming education bill. She quickly gets annoyed with him for failing to reject the bill outright (he plans to abstain, because he doesn’t actually think the party’s line on this particular bill is right). Not that it’ll matter, because the bill will be thrown out anyway, thanks in part to Lady Marjorie’s father.

Continue reading “Upstairs Downstairs: Lady Marjorie’s Lover”

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.

Continue reading “Downton Abbey: My Eyes Have Been Opened”

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.

Continue reading “Downton Abbey: Sex on the Brain”

Downton Abbey: The More Things Change, The More They Stay The Same

downton51Previously on Downton Abbey: Mary was seriously depressed about Matthew dying, but bounced back enough to start taking a more active role in the running of the estate and to start playing two suitors off of each other. The new lady’s maid has a secret that Thomas knows about, but she’s got an ally in Molesley, who’s now a footman. Tom made the acquaintance of a rather pushy and grating local schoolteacher, and a lord began flirting with Isobel. Edith consummated her relationship with Michael just before he departed for Germany to try and secure a divorce and promptly disappeared after a run-in with some brownshirts. Now pregnant (because the universe can’t stop crapping on her for even a second), Edith secretly gives birth, and then stashes the kid with a local farmer who kind of owes the Crawleys a favour.

Edith bikes off to the Drew home, which appears to be a converted church, and spies on her now toddler daughter happily helping Mrs Drew with the laundry.

Continue reading “Downton Abbey: The More Things Change, The More They Stay The Same”

Upstairs Downstairs: The More Things Change

bs_penhalPreviously on Upstairs Downstairs: The Bellamys had trouble holding onto an under-housemaid, so Rose did the work of at least three people. The creepy footman also had an affair with a visiting German, who turned out to be a spy, and disappeared with him.

Roberts, Hudson, and Bridges are all in the kitchen, where Roberts mentions that Marjorie is away at the family pile, Southwold, and Rose is ladies’ maid-ing her, which makes no sense. Why wouldn’t Marjorie take Roberts with her? I know Rose probably went to visit her family, but why not just take both? As it is, Roberts is just sitting around in London, doing nothing but complaining, which is definitely not something she needs more practice at. Hudson summons the new housemaid, Mary, who seems like a seriously cowed young woman, and gives her some orders before sending her on her way. Bridges comments that she hasn’t smiled once in the three months she’s been there, and Roberts adds that the girl looks pale and unhealthy. Bridges hopes that Edward, the new footman, hasn’t been bothering her.

Continue reading “Upstairs Downstairs: The More Things Change”

Upstairs, Downstairs: Spy Games

pldalfbaPreviously on Upstairs, Downstairs: Elizabeth Bellamy returned home after being educated abroad and quickly proved to be an obnoxious, selfish little pill. Luckily, Rose was around to put her in her place because God knows nobody else will.

It’s December 1905.

Richard sends his womenfolk upstairs and tells Hudson to bring a bottle of champagne up to the drawing room in a bit. Hudson excitedly scurries off to do so. Why, whatever could be going on in the Bellamy household? Richard goes into the dining room, where a kilt-wearing lad named Angus (could he possibly be Scottish? They’re really obfuscating that one, aren’t they?) Jumps to his feet. Up in the drawing room, Elizabeth’s pacing around restlessly. Seems young Angus is there to ask for her fair hand in marriage.

Continue reading “Upstairs, Downstairs: Spy Games”

Upstairs Downstairs: Childish Things

s1n04Previously on Upstairs Downstairs: The servants threw a party while the master and mistress were away, and got busted by James Bellamy, who then went on to make the moves on Sarah, who responded by quitting. For real, now.

It’s May 1905.

Hudson complains that everything happens all at once. He’s stressed out because Elizabeth Bellamy, the daughter of the house, is coming back from her time abroad being finished off. Meanwhile, he has to go tend to his mother, who’s doing poorly, though he doesn’t seem all that concerned about it. He goes, after firing off some last-minute instructions to Rose and Alfred, re: that afternoon’s tea. Alfred seems to think he can chill out with Hudson away, but Bridges makes it clear that’s not happening. They chat a little bit about Elizabeth, who apparently was a picky eater.

Continue reading “Upstairs Downstairs: Childish Things”