Downton Abbey (US version)

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Post  laddical on Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:34 pm

Robert Crawley is the absolute worst. He made me side with Mary on something! BAD MAN.

Dowager Countess, however, continues to be the greatest thing. Especially: "When you behave like this I'm tempted to ring up nanny and have you put to bed without supper."
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Post  maxell131313 on Mon Jan 06, 2014 8:27 pm

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Post  Heather on Fri Jan 10, 2014 5:03 pm

I just want Branson and Mary to have a torrid affair.

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Post  dionneshea on Fri Jan 10, 2014 5:11 pm

Heather wrote:I just want Branson and Mary to have a torrid affair.
I'm not sure if you're joking or not, but regardless, I want it to happen. Like, really bad.
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Post  LadyGayle on Fri Jan 10, 2014 5:11 pm

Heather wrote:I just want Branson and Mary to have a torrid affair.

Part of me thinks that would be awesome and another part thinks it would be too ridiculous for words. I definitely want them to be BFFs and make Lord Grantham's head explode on a regular basis.

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Post  inversed on Mon Jan 13, 2014 12:07 am

WTF I AM LEGIT FURIOUS RIGHT NOW. WHY CAN'T ANNA AND BATES JUST BE HAPPY?!?! I HAVE OTHER THOUGHTS ON THIS EPISODE BUT I CAN'T STOP BEING MAD FOR ANNA.

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Post  Poubelle on Mon Jan 13, 2014 1:14 am

I got bored with the Globes and switched over. That was a mistake. ALLCAPS YELLING IS TOTALLY JUSTIFIED.
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Post  puddingcup on Mon Jan 13, 2014 1:28 am

I totally thought it was going to be a fun, light storyline, where Anna gets her flirt on and makes Bates jealous and grumpy. Um, wrong. Ugh, why? When is Anna ever going to get a break? And chaperoning Cousin Oliver doesn't count.

Edith's shady cards boyfriend - please do not screw over Edith. It's not that I love Edith so much, but can't handle the same characters getting stomped on over and over. Speaking of which...
Moseley - they made you wear gloves! How humiliating! (I hadn't realized that footmen wore gloves and butlers didn't - I enjoy learning all of these factoids. Nice that Branson is as clueless as the viewers are, so the Dowager Countess can school us.)
Edna - don't like you, how do you make kind words to Branson sound so slimy?
Jimmy - am tired of you and your boring kitchen flirtations.
Albert - I would love to have more on your cooking career destiny!

I did love the house party scenes, though, and when Cora teased Robert about being happy that the house was back to the old parties again, I felt the same way. Love all that upstairs costume gorgeousness, and the downstairs bustle and fuss.

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Post  Tabby on Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:08 am

Edith's shady cards boyfriend - please do not screw over Edith. It's not that I love Edith so much, but can't handle the same characters getting stomped on over and over.
I kind of loved it when boyfriend turned out to be a card shark. But, yes, let's not have this relationship turn out horribly for poor Edith. Although I don't have much hope for the whole "becoming a German" thing during this time period turning out well for anyone.

The the love of God, Julian Fellowes, can the Bateses have any happiness AT ALL?

"If I were to search for logic, I should not look for it among the English upper class." Never change, Dowager.

Random British actresses spotted this season so far: Harriet Walter (who played Fanny Dashwood in the Emma Thompson Sense and Sensibility and Harriet Vane in some of the Lord Peter Wimsey adaptations) played Lady Shackleton in Ep. 1; and Joanna David (who played Mrs Gardiner in the 1995 Pride and Prejudice) played the Duchess of Yeovil at the house party. The latter is kind of funny because Penelope Wilton (Isobel Crawley) played Mrs Gardiner in the 2005 P&P.
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Post  inversed on Mon Jan 13, 2014 1:03 pm

Okay, now that I have calmed down (well, not completely but enough to use lowercase letters), I can think about the parts of the episode I did like. Most of which were Carson's unabashed snobbery. His expression when Cora demanded that the singer be invited to come down and eat with them was priceless.

I'm getting kind of tired of Molesley. I can understand that he's hit on hard times but all I can hear when he opens his mouth is the Debbie Downer "wah-wah" sound.

Ugh, Edna. I want Tom to have an ally but it shouldn't be you, you scheming brat.

Keeping my fingers crossed for Edith and Gregson. I really like him (he reminds me of a young Michael Palin) and I want Edith to have happiness. Though considering what a cold-hearted jerk Julian Fellowes is, I probably shouldn't get my hopes up.


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Post  mrinsouciance on Mon Jan 13, 2014 1:14 pm

inversed wrote: His expression when Cora demanded that the singer be invited to come down and eat with them was priceless.

"I blame you!" Hee!

Am horrified over the Anna thing, and eye-rolly about the whole "don't tell anyone, promise!" Sighs.

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Post  Carrie Ann on Tue Jan 14, 2014 12:51 am

This whole storyline is disgusting. And nothing could be more soap opera (in the bad way, not the awesome way), than the whole "You can't tell him or else he will definitely murder the rapist and then he'll go to jail and then die!" There are other options! Here's one: call the police first. Tell everyone except Bates. Hide Bates away somewhere until this fucker is in a jail cell. DONE.

I am finding the level of suffering really over the top, especially for the nicest/most innocent people on the show. Sybil and Matthew dead and never knowing their babies. Anna raped. Like, what's next? Find lost children for Carson and Hughes and then kill them too?

OK, onto other things. Obviously I hate Edna, and I think it's really a stretch that she would be hired as Cora's lady's maid, especially on a whim. A couple seasons ago, when O'Brien was convinced she was going to be let go, they made it really clear that finding a new lady's maid was a big process and you wouldn't just hire someone. Anyway, even if Cora did hire her on a whim, there's no way the downstairs staff of Season 1 would have allowed her back at Downton, regardless of Tom's place in the family. I think they would/should have told Cora, phrasing it gently.

And somehow I have avoided spoilers about that situation, but she's pretty obviously going to plant herself in Tom's bed so he can be convinced he seduced her and then somehow she'll get pregnant and claim he's the father and try to have the Crawleys take care of her for the rest of her life, right? Ugh I hate her so much.


Last edited by Carrie Ann on Tue Jan 14, 2014 11:21 am; edited 1 time in total
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Post  salamandersam on Tue Jan 14, 2014 9:53 am

Carrie Ann wrote:This whole storyline is disgusting. And nothing could be more soap opera (in the bad way, not the awesome way), than the whole "You can't tell him or else he will definitely murder the rapist and then he'll go to jail and then die!3" There are other options! Here's one: call the police first. Tell everyone except Bates. Hide Bates away somewhere until this fucker is in a jail cell. DONE.

I am finding the level of suffering really over the top, especially for the nicest/most innocent people on the show. Sybil and Matthew dead and never knowing their babies. Anna raped. Like, what's next? Find lost children for Carson and Hughes and then kill them too?

OK, onto other things. Obviously I hate Edna, and I think it's really a stretch that she would be hired as Cora's lady's maid, especially on a whim. A couple seasons ago, when O'Brien was convinced she was going to be let go, they made it really clear that finding a new lady's maid was a big process and you wouldn't just hire someone. Anyway, even if Cora did hire her on a whim, there's no way the downstairs staff of Season 1 would have allowed her back at Downton, regardless of Tom's place in the family. I think they would/should have told Cora, phrasing it gently.

And somehow I have avoided spoilers about that situation, but she's pretty obviously going to plant herself in Tom's bed so he can be convinced he seduced her and then somehow she'll get pregnant and claim he's the father and try to have the Crawleys take care of her for the rest of her life, right? Ugh I hate her so much.

I really hate the stupidity of the Anna can't tell Bates storyline. I always hate things like that, just fucking talk. Like Carrie Ann said, get the dude jailed and then tell Bates.

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Post  naughty zoot on Tue Jan 14, 2014 10:20 am

Considering how under-reported rape is even today, I think it makes sense that Anna doesn't want anyone other than Mrs Hughes to know, even and possibly especially her husband. I hate this storyline, and the fact that he's the valet to Mary's potential next beau only means there'll be more suffering for Anna. Which is NOT OK.  My fear is that Anna's going to end up pregnant. My hope is that Mrs Hughes has a little word with someone and that Green meets with a very painful fatal accident.
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Post  inversed on Tue Jan 14, 2014 1:14 pm

She's totally going to get pregnant and then it's going to be a "WHOSE BABY IS IT?" drama and I JUST WANT ANNA AND BATES TO BE HAPPY DAMMIT.

The writers really have been making Cora out to be a total idiot so far this season, haven't they?

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Post  puddingcup on Tue Jan 14, 2014 1:38 pm

Oh man, what a disaster. Worst case scenario, both Anna and Edna get pregnant. MTV should do a spin-off show: Housemaid to a Large Estate and Pregnant.

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Post  Tabby on Tue Jan 14, 2014 3:09 pm

Considering how under-reported rape is even today, I think it makes sense that Anna doesn't want anyone other than Mrs Hughes to know, even and possibly especially her husband.
That's what I've been thinking, given that this is England in the '20s. Anna would probably be blamed, especially since she'd been playing that silly game prior to the concert. Rapist's boss would protect him, Anna would be shamed, and it would still be completely awful. (In a non-tv situation, a maid who got raped might very well be fired.) I still hate it.

For the record, I also hate the Return of the Tom-Stalker.

The writers really have been making Cora out to be a total idiot so far this season, haven't they?
I think she's still looking smarter than her husband. What a moron Lord Grantham has turned out to be.
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Post  mrinsouciance on Tue Jan 14, 2014 4:09 pm

I appreciate how the time period would affect the rape situation. That said, tv-and-movie-wise, it's a worn out old plot device to drag out drama and misunderstanding, and like you I can see how this is likely to play out over the course of the season, and I just find it cliche' and boring.

As far as Edna goes, I suppose when they knew O'Brien wanted to leave the show they felt they needed to replace her with another conniving villain. Edna's nowhere near as interesting and entertaining as O'Brien, though.

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Post  salamandersam on Tue Jan 14, 2014 8:53 pm

Even while I can understand why Anna didn't report the rape (hell, I never told my family when I was sexually assaulted in college), I still hate the entire story line.  It just seems like a tired and worn trope that didn't need to be played out here or could have been played out in a different way. And I am with those who think she's going to end up pregnant and it'll be like Days of Our Lives.  I like the soapiness of Downton, but I really hope this story goes away and Anna and Bates can be happy.

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Post  Carrie Ann on Tue Jan 14, 2014 10:06 pm

Right, this is what I was trying to say. I don't mind the soapy elements of DA (I do watch actual soaps, so I have a pretty high tolerance), but I wish they didn't include the tedious elements. If she had given almost any other reason for not wanting to tell, besides "my husband will DEFINITELY kill him" I might not have been so irritated by it.
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Post  Heather on Wed Jan 15, 2014 5:21 pm

I don't know why we have to go down this road again with Branson, AND with the same character as before. I thought we'd moved past him being the self-pitying outsider who is tempted by the maid who "gets him," but no, let's do it again. Sigh. At the very least couldn't it have been another maid he fell for? Repetitive still, but also more indicative of an actual emotional issue rather than tying him so much to Edna in particular. I don't know. I just wish we weren't retreading that whole thing.

But I do have to say, I sympathize with Julian Fellowes and don't think he is being wantonly cruel because of how he wrote out Sybil and Matthew. He has to protect his show. Both actors wanted to leave; he has said Sybil gave him plenty of notice and they planned her death meticulously, and everyone knew, and then apparently Dan Stevens told him halfway through writing the scripts that season (and after they'd penned Sybil's death) that he was not only NOT coming back, but that he was unwilling to return in a guest capacity. You can't just have Matthew Crawley pull an "All My Children" and go into the attic looking for his skis and never come back down again, because it ruins Mary's dramatic options, and leaves a bizarre hole in every scene. I think the actor's choice and the short notice made it necessary to kill Matthew, and since it happened after Sybil's death had already been planned and scripted, I think... them's the breaks, you know? He said he was careful not to devote another hour to a character's death precisely because he thought that would be too brutal, but I don't fault him for what he decided to do. If he DIDN'T kill Matthew, he'd have had to assassinate the character another way, which would've probably felt even weirder and in the end damaged the show more, and felt contrived.

HOWEVER, ugh on the Anna thing. I guess happy couples are boring on TV, but lord, The Suffering Bateses... I kind of wish they'd just write them out, let them go off into the sunset together happily, and work in some new blood.

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Post  maxell131313 on Mon Jan 20, 2014 3:27 am

So are we really getting rid of Stalkery Edna that easily? Not that I'm complaining, but I can't help but wonder if that won't come back to haunt Tom or even Mrs. Hughes.

I don't fault Mary for turning down Lord Gillingham. It's great that she's moving on with her life, but Matthew's only been gone six months. Maybe if he'd asked in a year or so I'd be encouraging her to accept him. As it is, I think she was right to let him down gently. It's to his credit he was a gentleman about it.

Edith, Edith, Edith. This is so not going to end well and it sucks because she deserves happiness.

Poor Anna. But I'm with Mrs. Hughes that she talk to Bates about it. And I think the evil valet needs to die in some phenomenally painful accident. And his junk should get cut off first.
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Post  mrinsouciance on Mon Jan 20, 2014 3:25 pm

No way is Edna gone for good. I loved Thomas' withering observations on the staircase.

Poor Edith, her first walk of shame and she has to get caught by her aunt.

Ugh, the Anna/Bates thing. Not even ready to comment on it.

Couldn't care less about the Daisy/Alfred/Jimmy/Ivy stuff, except I want Alfred to go become a famous chef.

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Post  naughty zoot on Mon Jan 20, 2014 6:23 pm

I'm delighted to see the back of Edna, but that plot line seems like such an unnecessary detour. I also think her thinking was faulty in the extreme. While Tom is now a loved and accepted member of the family, his situation with them is tenuous enough that it would not survive a relationship with one of the maids.
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Post  inversed on Mon Jan 27, 2014 3:12 pm

I'm so glad we don't have to endure a whole season of Anna keeping the secret from Bates. I was surprised how happy I was to see her smiling at him! That "your suffering only makes you more beautiful to me" thing was kind of creepy though.

IF GREGSON ABANDONS EDITH I WILL BURN DOWNTON TO THE GROUND AND SALT THE EARTH TYPE INEFFECTUALLY IN ALL CAPS ON VARIOUS FORMS OF SOCIAL MEDIA. Her London-going outfit was fab.

The writing seems a lot lazier this season. Anna's reason for keeping her rape a secret and now Thomas' reason for bringing in his friend as Cora's lady's maid both seem really weak. Like Fellowes just needed to move the plot in a certain direction and so he used the first motivation he could think of. I do like the new lady's maid though and I hope she doesn't turn out to be evil.

Is drinking OJ in the morning really not something Britons do?







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