Monday, February 20, 2012

Downton Abbey fan

I freely admit it.  I'm a Downton Abbey fan, or maybe even a fanatic.  I simply love this PBS series.  Last night the final episode of the second season aired, and this is a spoiler alert if you have not yet watched the series. I am SO glad that Mary broke it off with Sir Richard and said "yes" to Matthew's proposal.

Why do I like the series so much?  Well, for starters, I'm an Anglophile.  My favorite novels are written by British authors about England or Ireland. This series is set in the English countryside before, during and after
World War 1.

There are so many layers to this series, and so many things I enjoy about it, but I'll just pick a few.  It's funny.  I wait for Maggie Smith, aka the Dowager Dutchess, to open her mouth, because invariably she says a funny, witty one-liner, that has both me and my husband laughing out loud.  For instance, when Sir Richard was preparing to leave and said the family wouldn't be seeing him again, Maggie Smith said with her coy, smiling, smirking wit, "Promise?"  The dialogue is also real, and engaging, and fun.

Some characters I am rooting for, like Mary, and Sybil, and Matthew; some characters I can't stand, like Sir Richard, and Thomas; some I'm ambivalent about, like Edith, and O'Brien, simply because they are a bit more complex and have both good and bad qualities (like all of us); and some I just find annoying, like Daisy.  Isn't that just like real life? 

Well, it is like real life, only it's set in a magnificent estate with dozens of rooms, and the women and men abovestairs always dress elegantly.  I enjoy seeing what Mary or Cora are wearing.

And finally, well not really, but this is enough gushing for one blog, in Downton Abbey tea is a panacea.  And I feel that way about tea myself.  While Matthew is lying in a hospital bed, just having been told he will not walk again nor father a child, Mary offers him some tea!  A cure all indeed.  When my husband is tired, or my son is sick, or I am happy, or sad, or well, or sick, a cup of tea is surely the answer!

So if you haven't had the pleasure of seeing Downton Abbey yet, I highly recommend it.  It will transport you from the 21st century, back to the early 20th century, in style.


  1. Hi Sis,
    Great writing! You explain and distill things so well...I'm practically jealous. I LOVED the last episode and am very happy it had a fitting ending. My favorite part was the "Servants' Ball/Dance" and seeing the family and servants dancing together. And, Maggie Smith is by far my favorite character -- I smile every time she appears on screen. Look forward to more of your musings.

    P.S. I like Daisy a lot...think she's adorable. My two cents.

    1. Thanks Sis. I am practically in mourning that this season is over. It's such a delightful show. I'll have to give Daisy another look - she just complains too much for me and gets on my nerves, though I like the new development where she is finally forging a relationship with her father-in-law and he's giving her good advice. I like their burgeoning relationship and I think it's good for both of them.

  2. Katie,

    Finally watched the first three episodes of the first season. It's great to see Maggie Smith as the incomparable Dowager Countess. While there was no line uttered, the scene where she watches the doctor save a dropsy patient's life by injecting adrenaline is etched in my brain.

    It's interesting how the proud are made humble and the humble raised up.

    The show feels very much like a corporate drama, complete with stratagems and controversies. It has a nice complexity about it.

    I will have to see how sipping a cup of tea influences the experience of watching.

  3. Katie, I absolutely LOVE Downton Abbey! Funnily, unlike you, my favorite character IS Daisy! Don't quite know why but there it is. Ron makes fun of the fact that it seems everytime I hear a British accent on TV (mostly on PBS) I'm on it. I'm a big fan of MP Theatre (note spelling) and of the British comedies. Great website by the way.

  4. PS: Why does the time of my previous comment say 7.23 a.m. when it was actually 10.23?

    1. Hmmm - I'm not sure about the incorrect clock. I'm glad you're also enjoying this great series, and I just heard via my mom that it's back again for another season. Yippee!