Monday, July 11, 2011

Finally Finished Watching Downton Abbey

Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey (Original UK Unedited Edition)

I never got to see all of "Downton Abbey" on television so I ordered it from Netflix and we finally watched the last episode. I love this type of series. All those years ago when "Upstairs, Downstairs" was on I didn't miss an episode.

Just as with "Upstairs, Downstairs," I was more caught up with the downstairs people than I was with the upstairs family and their guests. However, my favorite character was the Dowager Countess. The actress must have had a blast playing that role. She was outrageous to the point of being hysterically funny. Every time she walked into a room I chuckled because I just knew what was coming. When she said something uncharacteristically charitable, I said, "Whoa! Did she just say what I thought she said?"

The two conspirators downstairs, O'Brien and Thomas, are characters you love to hate. Unfortunately, O'Brien's heartlessness had a tragic outcome. I can't say much more without ruining the series for those who haven't seen it yet, but the period (just prior to WW I), the clothes, the manners, the confining restrictions on young women, the entail that required the nearest male relative to inherit everything, the architecture are all fascinating and sometimes maddening. The series ends as England declares war on Germany.

I read yesterday that there will be new episodes of "Downton Abbey" next year. Since that will take them into the war years, I'm sure the new ones will be just as engrossing as the last. I can hardly wait.


  1. I haven't seen this series or Upstairs, Downstairs but I want to. Do you recommend seeing Upstairs, Downstairs first?

  2. It has just been sent on Danish TV so I have watched several episodes, but I am not a very good follower of a series. I just don´t want to feel I have to plan my week according to which series they choose to show so like you I love buying them and watching everything at leasure in the proper order.

    I think my daughters watched most of them, though. We have the pleasure of three grown-up children who appreciate good, historical series.

  3. Margot, It doesn't matter which you watch first since they are entirely different stories. The commonality is that both include the lives of the servants as well as the family so you see the life of the estate from two different perspectives. I loved both series.

    Dorte, I can't/won't plan my life around TV either so I use my DVR to record everything I can't watch when it's on. Since we go to bed about 10 normally and most of the programs we like begin at 10, I use the DVR a lot. The best part is that I can fast forward through commercials that way.