Downton .................pre dictable

(175 Posts)
triplets Wed 26-Dec-12 00:18:09

Won`t say too much for those yet to see....................grrr just knew what was going to happen, they could have thought of another way. Spoilt it.

VestaCurry Wed 26-Dec-12 00:21:51

I love it but found it pedestrian and way too many ad breaks.

EcoLady Wed 26-Dec-12 00:23:16

Can ONE of them be happy? Please? Just one of them?!

jessjessjess Wed 26-Dec-12 00:30:32

DH and I are both wondering why they can never just have things be nice and happy.

HazeltheMcWitch Wed 26-Dec-12 00:46:04

Oh god, they could not have made it any more obvious, even if they paraded about with a giant sign saying

"-- -- -- - -- ---- ----"

(dashes are random, btw)

HazeltheMcWitch Wed 26-Dec-12 00:47:26

random dashes , but have still inadvertently managed to cross out some of my own not-actually-code.

polyhymnia Wed 26-Dec-12 10:37:25

Lazy and painfully predictable solution by the writer to that actor's leaving the show. Think JF is getting too smug and/or overloaded and could do with a team of other writers ( as usually happens with well-written US shows) to challenge him / encourage mote originality.

Actually in JF's defence there had to be a fair bit of hasty re-writing quite late in the day apparently as Dan Stevens only announced he was poncing off to the US leaving after they'd started filming the last series & the Christmas Special was written.

NOT a popular move I suspect! grin

polyhymnia Wed 26-Dec-12 11:17:37

Well, an interview with Stevens in today's Telegraph i've just seen online says he'd decided to leave before he started filming the third series, so that should have given a bit of time to think up other solutions - or at least a better-written script for Christmas!

fussychica England Wed 26-Dec-12 15:12:35

We recorded it so we could run on the adverts. Just watched it as DH warned me I'd find out the end if I went online today. I actually enjoyed it until the end - knew it was coming. Spoilt what should be a lovely festive offering. Not what I want to see baby born and father immediately diessad. Think it could have been done far better. To be honest just replacing Dan Stevens with another actor would have been preferable to that.

AlphaBeta2012 Wed 26-Dec-12 16:14:13

I enjoyed it till the end and then just found it very sad, but i am a bit of a die-hard downton fan! And being 20 weeks pregnant, extremely hormonal and emotional so even the shooting of the deer set me off in tears, let alone the birth of the baby and the ending!

poozlepants Wed 26-Dec-12 16:14:25

I think that's it for me. It needs proper complex storylines. I sat through last nights and it was god awful. Bugger all happened and then the car crash. A boring car crash. I was hoping someone was going to bump him off in Scotland what with all those guns about.

SnowProbs Wed 26-Dec-12 16:16:20

Since the first series, it has got very plodding and schmaltzy. Wont be watchng any more.

AlphaBeta2012 Wed 26-Dec-12 16:18:55

must admit poozle, knowing he was going to die I was sure it would Lord Crawley shooting him accidently which would have done it!

Corygal Wed 26-Dec-12 16:20:37

I was gutted - I hadn't thought he was leaving until the end of the next series.

And painfully predictable too - quite soured the show for me. They should have replaced him. The trouble is we're asked to swallow such incredible stuff anyway, you can imagine the directors & co flapping about straining out disbelief any more & laming out. But he should have been replaced, so many pretty blond actors out there.

SDTGisAChristmassyWolefGenius Wed 26-Dec-12 16:21:37

It was all too blissful and happy after the baby arrived - something bad had to happen. hmm

What really pisses me off is that I had just finished explaining who Mattthew was, why he was inheriting, and that Matthew had marries one of Lord Grantham's dds, which is why the baby was both Lord G's grandson and the heir. What a waste of my time! grin

DuchessofMalfi Wed 26-Dec-12 17:09:50

I fecking hate Downton, but DH loves it grin. The first series was ok, but far too soapy now.

VestaCurry Wed 26-Dec-12 17:19:10

Still not a patch on the original 'Upstairs, Downstairs'.

Northernlebkuchen Wed 26-Dec-12 17:23:25

It was absurd. Really - how many families have TWO children losing a parent at less than 24 hours old? Hussy maid was very annoying and obvious too.

LineRunner Wed 26-Dec-12 17:31:06

I found the maid most impertinent. grin

BoffinMum Wed 26-Dec-12 17:31:38

I was so disappointed. It was a real cheat of a plot. This was too unrealistic even for Downton. Better plot would have been babies accidently getting mixed up or something.

Tryharder Wed 26-Dec-12 18:20:18

Hussy maid is Tanya (vampire) from Twilight series and so couldn't take her seriously. I didn't feel that the character added much to the show though.

I do love Downton though. It's literally the only thing I watch on telly apart from Call the Midwife.

Rosa Wed 26-Dec-12 18:23:49

Couldn't he had popped off to America on a business venture or something ? As for an adult dying after every baby tis a bit lacking in imagination in the script writing.

sprout44 Wed 26-Dec-12 18:27:28

I was shocked too as i never heard he was actually leaving, so sad as he is one of my fav's of the show. I still love it and cannot wait to see it again. Where i am from i know of a young man on the way in to the hospital to see his new bron daughter was killed in a car crash, so it remineded me so much of this storyline. The woman went on to marry again but that was not a good relationshipe despite having more children together.

waitingtobeamummy Wed 26-Dec-12 18:35:43

I had no idea he was leaving and was very suprised and impressed by story (but I am rubbish at guessing what's happening in anything!)

motherofallmuddles Wed 26-Dec-12 18:38:17

Dan Stevens is/was the best thing about Downton Abbey. I wasn't expecting the car crash until the scene when he was driving the car looking totally happy always a give away. Totally ruined Christmas.
Agree with others, Downton needs a bit of a spruce up preferably with ole Dan coming out of a shower talking about a dream he has just had.....

Arithmeticulous Wed 26-Dec-12 18:48:03

They could have disfigured him in the car crash and swapped him for another actor - JF needs to learn that you don't have to kill orf all the actors that don't renew their contracts. They could just go on holiday.

montage Wed 26-Dec-12 19:29:16

I had never seen Downton before and had no idea that actor was leaving but the moment he appeared so happily tootling along in his vintage car it was v obvious they had gone to the trouble of shooting that scene for a reason. I can only imagine how obvious the imminent death was if you knew the programme.

That was like Nigel off the roof.

NuclearStandoff Wed 26-Dec-12 19:50:21

JF is clearly struggling with where to go with it.

Having married off everyone who could be married off in the previous series', he's now aiming for drama by killing off all the key characters, one by one.

redexpat Wed 26-Dec-12 20:14:41

Hurumph. I'm cross. Frankly I expect more from JF!

CunningPlan Wed 26-Dec-12 20:15:40

I thought it was totally ridiculous. Part way through the last series I though it was getting silly, then it redeemed itself. I don't think I will watch next year.

And all those servants being free with the upstairs household makes me want to hoik my bosom.

Santasapunkatheart Wed 26-Dec-12 20:19:11

I am amazed that it has taken people three seasons to realise how weak and lazy the writing is on the show. When the eyes have finished feasting on the clothes, the homes and the beautiful Dan, there really isn't any substance. Reading interviews with Mr Stephens - although he is diplomatic - it's clear that he really wanted out to pursue better avenues for his talent - such as theatre and a small independent film.

clippityclop Wed 26-Dec-12 20:46:48

Bring back Upstairs Downstairs!

The plots have been ridiculous for ages. At first it made me cross, but then I went through all the necessary emotional stages to arrive at laughing and accepting it for what it is.

That said, last night was ridiculous! The main storylines were so obvious and plodding. Any thread with bit of interest ended up going nowhere!

JF's thought process:

"Let's see, we need another young single lady at Downton because I've inadvertently killed or married off the others. How can I spend 2 hours constructing an explanation for Lady Rose moving in, when it actually takes 5 mins to achieve this not very astounding plot development?"

"I'll make Lady Mary 8 months pregnant - no one will ever guess that my plan is for Something Dramatic to happen surrounding the birth. Oh no, no one will sit there for 2 hours thinking 'hurry up with the birth drama you twat'."

"I have to work it that Matthew is somehow in a car on his own, but ow my brain hurts trying to work this out. Ooo, I've got it! I'll script a completely unnecessary conversation between Anna and Carson about the complicated transport arrangements so that everyone will see that it was completely natural for him to do so! Then I'll spend bloody ages filming him driving way too fast down a single track lane without looking at the road properly. I am a genius! No one will have a clue what's about to happen..."

I got into the show back in March (borrowed my mums dvds of seasons 1 and 2) when i was on maternity leave before DS arrived and I loved it. It was silly and had overblown storylines and had unintentionally amusing dialogue. It floundered somewhat in series two due to a greater period of time being covered, but that was fun, too; having conversations about things that had just happened in the story, but that were in actual fact happening a year later.

Series three got very stupid so that it was no longer fun. I commend the show for the shocking death of Sybil because it did blow me away, although I hated what had happened with Sybils storyline. The series ended badly and the Christmas special yesterday just lost it completely. Such a shame. I will probably watch series 4 to see what happens, but I'm not looking forward to it all that much.

JugglingMeYorkiesAndNutRoast Wed 26-Dec-12 21:47:48

I really enjoyed the Christmas night programme (loved the Midwife earlier too)
- but it did leave me feeling a bit sad at the end sad

Vagaceratops Wed 26-Dec-12 22:55:46

Squoosh will be happy. I know we share a hatred of blah Matthew.

3monkeys3 Wed 26-Dec-12 23:05:14

I thought it was boring! Really really boring! I normally love downton.

vjg13 Wed 26-Dec-12 23:46:08

Lady Mary is such a nasty snob I couldn't wait for something bad to happen, hoped she'd die but that would have been too lazy even by Downton standards. Didn't find it sad at all, not like when Sybil died. Lady G is so simpering and vomit inducing too.

triplets Wed 26-Dec-12 23:49:41

Also don`t you think Lady Ediths new beau looks a foppish and similar to the last one? Do you think that Lady Rose will bring romance back into Branstons life?

LadyHarrietdeSpook Wed 26-Dec-12 23:50:35

We are in the US and friend of DH's spent ages figuring out how to get us set up to watch it over here. We didn't manage to yesterday, I fell asleep.

I read the reviews in the DT/Guardian today. Totally don't feel like watching it now but DH says am obliged as his friend tried so hard...

AloeSailor Wed 26-Dec-12 23:59:16

If you look at true life histories of aristrocratic families of the time, a lot had lots of tragedies like this in them. Think of the Mitfords for example.

BoffinMum Thu 27-Dec-12 08:02:38

Right, I have a new plot for JF to consider. Edith continues to become a feminist. It spreads to Mary, who decides to tackle the entail (the assumption it all goes down the male line). She is the eldest, after all. There is a big legal thing as it has to involve an Act of Parliament. Shehas to find masses of money to do that,and her papa is displeased. Newspaper guy tries to pay as a means of getting back into Mary's knickers. Lots of effort finding the money. Eventually an obscure female Scottish peer steps in with the cash (her title/estate already was able to be handed down the female line - forget the technical term for this). Lady Mary takes over Downton and remarries someone German. Then somebody called Hitler meets Edith in Berlin. She dislikes him on sight and comes back to Downton to tell everybody this. End of series 4.

That should stop JF having to jump the shark, as they say.

tribpot Thu 27-Dec-12 08:31:38

It was ... meh. I was waiting for something bad to happen for ages, because nothing dramatic seemed to be happening which suggested we were in some kind of 2 hour build-up to a disaster.

Rose's arrival in the cast (god help us) could have been explained simply by her parents taking an overseas posting, the end.

Is O'Brien jumping ship as well to go with the awful Shrimpie and Mrs Shrimpie?

What was Anna's news that she learnt the reel for, in order to announce it through the medium of highland dance?

I agree it was too cheap and simple just to bump Matthew off. Tedious.

gazzalw Thu 27-Dec-12 08:42:59

the thing is that we all knew Dan Stevens was leaving so JF had to make the best of it....It would have been so much worse if they'd just decided to split up because he discovered he couldn't give Lady Mary an heir....

What other interesting options could you have come up with that wouldn't have left Lady Mary's character on hold for any future series?

BoffinMum Thu 27-Dec-12 08:47:50

Well, one option would have been replacement with a lookalike, frankly.

Aquelven Thu 27-Dec-12 09:27:21

I think it would have been a lot more interesting if the new baby had been another girl, so the hunt would be on for the next heir.

Was anyone else amazed that such a substantial baby came out of such a tiny bump?

BoffinMum Thu 27-Dec-12 09:37:20

I am so slow on the uptake that I didn't even realise she was pregnant!

JamNan Thu 27-Dec-12 10:10:02

Tedious and dull plot; I switched off before the end thus missing the RTA!

HoldMeCloserTonyDanza Thu 27-Dec-12 11:37:12

At least they gave us a couple of scenes of Matthew's cringey pillow talk so we know what we're not missing next series.

serin Thu 27-Dec-12 15:53:31

I dont know where she kept that huge hairy baby hidden hmm

It was a huge let down and was thoroughly beaten by the gripping kids show (Merlin)

LadyHarrietdeSpook Thu 27-Dec-12 15:59:32

Plots: The lunatics were knocking on the door of the asylum so to speak in Series One with the Bar of Soap incident...

MCs miraculous recovery from paralysis is a notorious bit of TV (that will come back to haunt D Stevens, as I think he knows, but too late now.)

I still loved it though and the plot craziness imo softened in series three.

Think it's the chemistry between the actors that makes everything work despite the mayhem in the script. I think you could never have brought in an MC stand in - knowing JF it would have come across farcical, really don't think even the best of actors could have pulled it off.

ANyway, all the spark went out of the Lady Mary/ Matthew pairing this series - Lady Mary needs someone new.

Very lame to go all miserable on a Christmas special though. It's hard to know where to lay the blame for that - at JF (maybe he insisted he was out of the way totally for series 4????) or DS being really stroppy and saying he wouldn't do any more. Where are the fans in all that?!

ImperialSantaKnickers Thu 27-Dec-12 16:51:46

Not being a 'sleb gossip reader I had no idea Dan Stevens was leaving and was bloody livid when I check the news headlines on Boxing Day, and it was all over the front page. Lots of other people than me must have Sky+ed it to watch once their relatives have cleared off. Have watched it now and enjoyed it, it's a predictable sentimental thing, but that's why I like it!

inkyfingers Thu 27-Dec-12 17:01:12

I knew Matthew would have to leave and really thought he'd get shot with all those guns about. But the worst thing was how boring the rest of the episode was; lots of pointless non-stories like mrs patmore finding someone ...not, and the Penelope Wilton character might get off with the doctor ...not, and Anna has a big surprise, she can dance, sort of, and obrien is quite good at doing hair ... The whole thing pointless.

mumofthemonsters808 Thu 27-Dec-12 17:16:06

I agree inkyfingers it was very slow and boring, but I think that is the beauty of Downtown nothing complicated, exciting or unpredictable ever happens.I find it a welcome change from the stuff I usually watch due to it's light heartedness, absence of bad language and violence, just beautiful costumes and the trivialities of upper and working class life. Occassionally I long for a more exciting plot and Xmas eve was one of them.

Nancy66 Thu 27-Dec-12 17:33:24

nice bit of product placement for Louis Vuitton....

tribpot Thu 27-Dec-12 17:47:11

Oh god and more 'modern words dropped in which are actually of the time but you oiks don't know that'. Jimmy said 'okay' and there were several other drop-ins like this. JF - the joke has worn off. Can it, buddy - as Violet would say.

HazeltheMcWitch Thu 27-Dec-12 18:00:52

Oh, tribpot I do so agree. Yes, Julian, your wife is descended from Lord Kitchener. Yes, you are now 'one of them'. Yes, us oiks do not have as correct a grasp on the language in days of yore of the upper classes and those who served them as do you... (Yes, that was a very poorly constructed sentence there...)

IAmSheWhoMustBeObeyed Thu 27-Dec-12 18:06:22

As Matthew was the only one one who "really knew" Mary and could see her good side, presumably she will now be free to be nasty about and to everyone. She will become the cold hearted, ice madam ruler of Downton.
How on earth will Branson carry on with the improvements to the estate?
Edith is about to embark on an affair with her editor. Hurrah.
Rose- don't care.
Anna and hubby- ick. How are they managing not to have babies? Ick.
Lady G- agree- simper, simper, simper.

Bring on the next series.

headfairy Thu 27-Dec-12 18:09:39

JF is such a one trick pony I can't believe he's going to string this out for another series. Dan Stevens must be feeling rather smug now as he won't have to suffer another series of terrible dialogue. I want to see the Grantham's lose everything in '29 and the women having to work in t'mill to earn their keep grin

Nancy66 Thu 27-Dec-12 18:12:10

they're taking it up to the outbreak of WW2 - so that must mean another 2 series at least mustn't it?

headfairy Thu 27-Dec-12 18:13:35

Oh gawd... spare us. Wish I'd watched the Royle Family now!

LineRunner Thu 27-Dec-12 18:24:04

I though O'Brien was going to get it on with the other hatchet faced lady's maid for just a crazy moment, but sadly the frisson was indeed all just some seething rivalry about a tuft of her ladyship's barnet.

RiaUnderTheMistletoe Thu 27-Dec-12 18:25:21

Thomas was positively nice this episode, even before he got beaten up for Jimmy. I hope he gets a good story (and boyfriend) in s4.

tribpot Thu 27-Dec-12 18:25:50

Isn't Anna pregnant, though? I thought that was what she wanted to announce whilst reeling.

LineRunner Thu 27-Dec-12 18:27:18

Did she dance in code, then? Did Bates understand?

IAmSheWhoMustBeObeyed Thu 27-Dec-12 18:36:43

I thought O'Brien was going to be asked to join the expedition to India. Because of her miraculous ways with hair. And because she said she could fancy it.
If there was a coded message in Anna's reel I missed it. I switch off when it involves her and Mr Bates.
I found thomas's following Jimmy and fighting his attackers a bit creepy.

headfairy Thu 27-Dec-12 18:44:21

I love Thomas, he's the only decent one in the whole bunch and can always be relied on for a catty comment at the most saccharine moments.

HazeltheMcWitch Thu 27-Dec-12 18:51:52

Wasn't the surprise just that Anna could dance a (Scottish) reel? As Bates had told her that he was a bit Scottish, and he feels an affinity for Scotland?

tribpot Thu 27-Dec-12 20:09:51

Yes, possibly confused A random plot point to have made such a fuss about!

NigellasGuest Thu 27-Dec-12 20:59:40

the path is clear for a Branson/Lady Mary hook up!

boogiewoogie Thu 27-Dec-12 21:02:35

I said aloud "please don't die" while Matthew was driving with the wind in his hair and his head thrown back. It reminded me of another scene from "City of Angels" when Meg Ryan's character is cycling and lets go of the handle bars to sun her face.

Anyway, I thought JF could have just used another actor to replace Dan as Matthew. Or... is Matthew really dead? He could just be unconscious and be put in a coma....

Did not like the new maid harrassing Tom at all.
Mrs Hughes was brilliant, the way she is with everyone.
I wondered whether Anna was pregnant when she toasted to the future and Bates' Scottish blood.

boogiewoogie Thu 27-Dec-12 21:04:23

Branson and Mary just no way. They have absolutely zero in common. I did like how Edith asked after Branson when she came back from Scotland.

headfairy Thu 27-Dec-12 21:05:30

no way would Branson and Mary have any kind of connection.

tribpot Thu 27-Dec-12 21:13:36

He looked pretty dead. It was like a scene from the heyday of Casualty, where you see someone cycling along a country lane, not a care in the world, cut to a scene of a lorry barrelling down a country lane, guy completely distracted by something, cut back to idyllic cyclist - the sense of dread is rising, cut back to surly lorry driver and then KA-BLAMMMMMM. <cue music>

I think if Edith is going to shack up with the married editor she just needs to get the hell on and do it. Surely no-one can cope with another ten year will-they-won't-they á la Mary-and-Matthew, and indeed Sybil-and-Pickle, who looked wistfully at each other over the bonnet of that car for virtually the whole of series 2.

lovelyladuree Thu 27-Dec-12 21:33:26

Very lazy scriptwriting. Dr Who, on the other hand, was marvellous.

whiteandyelloworchid Thu 27-Dec-12 21:44:18

glad i only just watched this tonight and not on christmas day.

i thought the baby was going to be stillborn, they way it was going.

didnt really think the story line about tom worked at all either

tribpot Thu 27-Dec-12 22:00:51

Yes - I think they could have handled the Tom thing better. It's obviously now extra-weird for him to be a member of the 'family' but without Sybil there. Equally Giant Baby Sybil needs her dad to be part of the 'above stairs' set so he can't really be nipping out for a fag and a gossip with O'Brien or whatever. I would have liked to have seen more of the awkward dinner below stairs and less of the Slut Maid number 5 (is it 5 now?) making an arse of herself. Why did we need the fascinating look into Victorian manners exemplified by the servants all having to be called weird things like Miss Crawley and Mr Grantham?

Yellowtip Thu 27-Dec-12 22:32:15

Well obviously Branson and Rose are going to get it together once she arrives at Downton. She's Sybil's replacement, up to and including the marvellous classless bonding with Anna whilst teaching her to reel. What giggling and girly hugging they had! Boring. But Branson can't risk an affair below stairs because the Grantham lawyers would swing in (even in these enlightened Downtin days) and snatch Baby Sybil. So he's going to have to play safe. Ho hum.

Yellowtip Thu 27-Dec-12 22:33:49

Downton. Not Dowtin. They're still posh up there.

LineRunner Thu 27-Dec-12 22:38:19

When does the new series start?

hellymelly Thu 27-Dec-12 22:50:47

I thought it was really rather horrible for a Christmas special. Last year'appropriately cheerful and romantic but the ending of this one with Matthew's bloodied staring face was just gruesome . Agree the slutty maid was a ridiculous bit of storyline, rather like the maid who came on to Lord 6 a while back. This time slut-maid was so laden with fake tan/bronzer that I laughed out loud. Far too many tans at the fair too. The makeup generally has gone downhil since the first series, Lady G is always layered in vats of eyeliner.

Angelico Thu 27-Dec-12 23:19:51

Totally crapola sad Unbelievably boring and uneventful until the last 15 mins, then really miserable for a Xmas edition. And Mary is becoming increasingly wooden and detestable at the same time - which is a kind of anti-achievement...

tribpot Fri 28-Dec-12 07:48:24

In retrospect, it also seems a bit unfair not to have given Dan Stevens something more exciting to do for his last episode. The Sybil actress got to do drama and a truly horrendous death scene. Dan got to mildly reprimand Edith's adulterer and say how happy he was with Mary. I appreciate they wanted to keep the news under wraps beforehand, but sending him off with no fanfare seems harsh.

grannyscalpay Fri 28-Dec-12 10:33:43

Why, oh why, can't we have happy endings in the Christmas specials? You are feeling the joys of the season, then turn on telly, and it's murder, death and mayhem everywhere. Thank goodness for Miranda. Will miss Dan Stevens, though sad, and after the funeral, what story lines will there be for Lady Mary? I find Edith interesting, and hope there's more drama coming for her, although I fear we will be seeing more of Branson and Rose than we want.

headfairy Fri 28-Dec-12 10:41:27

trib I thought that too, he should have had a torrid affair and caught syphillis or something grin

imogengladhart Fri 28-Dec-12 11:19:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

diddl Germany Fri 28-Dec-12 12:03:02

Maybe lucky for JF that DS wanted out as now there´s Lord G´s own GS to take over-without having to have a pesky MC type in the mean timehmm

Hoping for something good for Edith-& much much less of boring Mary in the next series.

phantomnamechanger Fri 28-Dec-12 13:45:53

I'm assuming Lady Rose will eventually marry Tom Pickle, no?

And yes, ediths new fella looks like the other one, but younger

Had not heard DS was leaving, so it was a shock to us until the few minutes before, driving along, I suddenly said "Oh no, he's not being killed off is he?!" a few more seconds of sunshiney driving, and all those oh-so-sickly things MC has been saying replayed in our heads, and we knew. Oh look, there's a lorry.....

Oh great. No happy ending. Happy Christmas Everyone. Thanks a bunch JF!

diddl Germany Fri 28-Dec-12 14:37:28

"I'm assuming Lady Rose will eventually marry Tom Pickle, no?"

Oh God no, I hope not.

I doubt he´d manage to marry above himself a second time!

I think he´s destined to be a widower, isn´t he?

tribpot Fri 28-Dec-12 15:50:40

God - surely Pickle doesn't deserve that. He is in a tricky situation as (for the sake of Giant Baby Sibyl) he can't really marry into 'his own kind' <channels Violet> but can hardly expect to bag another aristo either. Like Mary he needs to look to the middle classes to save him - a highly respectable doctor's daughter would be much more acceptable.

Which reminds me, why the HELL did Dr Wotsit try it on with Isobel after all these years? He can't stand her, for one thing.

Animation Fri 28-Dec-12 16:06:51

I think the signs were there when Mary did that very odd glacial reaction - and kept looking down at baby when Matthew was whispering lovey dovie words. I thought oh no he's going to have to go.

Animation Fri 28-Dec-12 16:13:15

I believe Pickle is THE man - and will handle Mary.

tangofan Fri 28-Dec-12 22:34:50

I had no idea DS was leaving so spent the whole of the episode missing the Christmassy factor of last year and wondering why they had chosen no Christmas theme to notice the now-glaringly obvious doom and gloom ending approaching fast.
Thanks very much, JF, merry Christmas to you too. sad
Agree with all of the above but nobody's mentioned the lack of Lady Violet's moments...? I missed her cracking one liners and withering looks, in an episode that length there could have been a bit more.

cocoachannel Sat 29-Dec-12 22:28:41

Just finished it. Boring and ridiculous.

tribpot Sat 29-Dec-12 22:39:22

Yes - as a 'Christmas Special' it kinda failed on both counts!

They might as well go the whole hog and have a Dynasty-style massacre, perhaps leaving Anna as the sole survivor bringing up Giant Baby Sibyl and Unnamed Heir on her own.

RiaUnderTheMistletoe Sat 29-Dec-12 23:07:06

Who else thinks the baby will be called Matthew?

tangofan Sun 30-Dec-12 08:51:48

Why are people calling baby sibyl giant? It was a year later so she looked about the right size to me...confused

tribpot Sun 30-Dec-12 08:57:31

Sorry tango GBS is her name from our Downton thread when series 3 was on. She is no longer a giant baby but correctly proportioned - however 'correctly proportioned Sybil' isn't so catchy grin

LIZS Sun 30-Dec-12 08:57:51

Just how many more clichés are there in JF's "repertoire" ! Overlong , over signposted and plenty of ignored unfinished plot threads. Presumably Daisy didn't move to the farm after all ?

tangofan Sun 30-Dec-12 09:12:10

Ahh, I get it now tripot, thanks.

foxymoon487 Mon 31-Dec-12 01:54:38

As Matthew was the only one Edith's bloke confessed to about his locked-away
wife,(except Edith of course) what are the chances that some sort of
bigamous marriage might be embarked upon in the next series ?

tangofan Mon 31-Dec-12 07:55:17

^hmm, interesting thought. Would have to be without her knowledge though as she would never enter into one willingly so can't end well and she's already has one disastrous marriage storyline....

diddl Germany Mon 31-Dec-12 08:15:13

Well obviously others know that he´s married, which is how Edith found out!

tribpot Mon 31-Dec-12 10:26:11

I'm hoping Edith will do something far more scandalous and just live with him. Remind me - the problem is the wife can't consent to a divorce?

OComeAllYeFaithBaby Mon 31-Dec-12 12:31:31

Just finally caught up (what with visitors and having to go to work). It was rubbish. Not Christmassey, I knew enough from FB updates that someone was going to be bumped off then saw his interview in a paper Why I'm happy to be leaving so I spent the whole time anticipating it.

Lady Mary's bump was similar size to mine. I am currently 23+6 hmm

Fiderer Mon 31-Dec-12 12:38:54

I think Edith is planning just that. The wife cannot legally agree to a divorce as she's deemed incapable. Even though she no longer knows who her husband is.

Agree that Lady Violet was underused, no cracking one-liners. Not sure Rose will find life in Yorkshire that agreeable. I felt sorry for Cordelia Susan, though. Not sure that she deserved it, but she was very bitter and unhappy.

foxymoon487 Tue 01-Jan-13 02:42:34

Yes, I felt a twinge of compassion for Susan too.Can't have been that much fun
stuck in the highlands with a husband named Shrimpie watching all the
money drain away

SavoyCabbage Tue 01-Jan-13 03:09:45

I could not cope when the slutty maid didn't stand up when Tom Pickle came into the kitchen. He must have been there for twelve seconds at least and she just sat and sat. Horrifying.

Fiderer Tue 01-Jan-13 11:14:47

Shocking, indeed, Savoy grin

Mrs Hughes seems to have developed some sort of eye tic. She used to convey a lot with a Look but she's taken to squinting with displeasure - at SluttyMaid3, at PortlyDriedGingerMan. Maybe she was envious of Carson's eyebrows and thought she'd add her own non-verbal acting accessory.

Sad to say I thought the detailed packing shots were the most interesting of the episode, and I'm a great lover of Downton tosh. All those cases for 10 days shock Diamond stars and a tiara.

Did enjoy the O'Brien/SharpfacedMaid skirmish. And Molesley's dancing grin

ppeatfruit Tue 01-Jan-13 11:59:36

trib I love 'correctly proportioned Sybil' smile. Apart from the incredibly predictable and badly written ending. I enjoyed most of it. I used to really LOVE Peter Egan (actor who played Shrimpie) I also think he deserves congratulations and respect for not going down the botox route but he's not PRETTY any more sad.

diddl Germany Tue 01-Jan-13 12:08:19

So now that there´s an heir & no Matthew-will Lord G-with Mary´s help- run the place into the ground?

The heir dies in WWII & Downton just disappears or is taken over by a Carlisle type?

tribpot Tue 01-Jan-13 12:11:52

diddl, I was hoping Nameless Heir would be too young for WWII (not that a lot of civilians didn't die of course).

ppeatfruit Tue 01-Jan-13 12:22:53

What date is it meant to be? It looks like 1921 or 22 to me. Just right date for dying in W.W.2.

diddl Germany Tue 01-Jan-13 12:25:58

I thought 1921.

So aged 18-24 for the war?

tribpot Tue 01-Jan-13 12:29:26

I had thought it was a bit later by now, like 1925. But this was wishful thinking ...

ppeatfruit Tue 01-Jan-13 13:39:03

It IS hard to go by the costumes and hair in DT; I spose in RL they would've all bobbed their hair and shortened their skirts at different times the ados first. It COULD be 1925ish.

tribpot Tue 01-Jan-13 13:43:51

Well, from the way Thomas described Jimmy as 'the shizzle' I think we can see this is clearly no later than 1923 hmm (bloody JF and his ridiculous Vocab Lesson No-one Wants).

Anyhoo, Wiki to the rescue - it is indeed 1922, September to be exact.

diddl Germany Tue 01-Jan-13 13:46:41

I read somewhere else that it was Sept 1921!

tribpot Tue 01-Jan-13 13:51:21

Hmm, good point. The Wiki entry references a Daily Fail story that makes no mention of the year.

It said 'One Year Later' at the very beginning, but didn't Mary announce her pregnancy to Matthew at the end of season 3? Which was supposedly set in January 1921 despite the fact they were all playing cricket?

diddl Germany Tue 01-Jan-13 14:00:06

Well it seems odd to me that they wouldn´t visit Rose´s family until 18 months later.

There´s not usually such a gap, is there?

Well, for me I think that´s the end of it.

There´s an heir-& wasn´t that the whole point.

I haven´t bothered to watch the Christmas one, just caught up on here-that´s how bothered I am!

ppeatfruit Tue 01-Jan-13 14:02:41

Thanks for the link tribpot. So we can look forward to Lady Violet fainting with indignation at the new short styles of hair and skirts.

tribpot Tue 01-Jan-13 14:07:29

I think the only historical reference of note in series 3 was to women's suffrage being ratified by Tennessee in 1920 ... which I think is more likely to make this 1921 than 22, but anyway.

No doubt Violet will be sporting a Mary Quant geometric hairdo by the end of series 4 and smoking a pipe. As was common practice in 1925.

ppeatfruit Tue 01-Jan-13 14:13:25


Getting fed up with the 'spoon fed' story lines we seem to be getting. The Matthew thing at the end, more spoon feeding.

MarthasHarbour Tue 01-Jan-13 20:21:06

i was jolly cross to say the least [fanrgy] i didnt know DS was leaving but knew something sad was happening (only watched it two days ago and tried to avoid social networking!) so i sat there going 'oh FFS' when they were talking about how fabulous MC was whilst he was driving through the wind with a big grin on his face.

Just jolly cross i was - i agree that having two parents die within a year of eachother less than 24 hours after the birth of their child - pfft

Also - y'know when Carson went and gave Giant Baby Sybs a cuddle, first of all i thought they had neglected her - left her in her crib whilst they all buggered off to the fayre - but i got it that there was a nanny floating about somewhere. But when Mrs Hughes came back and saw Carson in the Library with GBS she said 'where's nanny' he flippantly said she was somewhere or other and would find them.

I got myself all in a fluster - poor nanny would go to the nursery and find GBS 'gawn'. And there would be a 'Giant Baby Hunt' <geddit?!> all in the style of Call the Midwife....

<need to stop watching TV..>

MarthasHarbour Tue 01-Jan-13 20:21:56

Lady Violet's funniest hmm line was when they left for Scotland and they were talking about how to entertain Branson - she said 'welll that is one night taken care of - only nine to go' <yawn>

MarthasHarbour Tue 01-Jan-13 20:23:34

Didnt Jimmy say 'sod this i am bushed'

Really? Can we have the vocabulary almanac of the time please to check authenticity?

I think that Edith will either bump off Mrs Editor, or they will get married anyway as only MC knew about the lurve triangle

tangofan Wed 02-Jan-13 09:55:56

^ah yes, wouldn't be a proper episode without a glaring anarchism in there somewhere though. There was another that made me go hmm but I can't remember what it was...
Also thought it a bit weird that no-one seemed to be looking after baby Sybs but probably only noticed at all because it was such a dull episode.

diddl Germany Wed 02-Jan-13 10:02:57

I don´t think that Edith would marry an already married man.

Also, maybe his wife has family-and it´s known that he is married & his wife is in an "institution"!

Fiderer Wed 02-Jan-13 10:46:12

It is known, though. Edith only had to ring up the Daily Telegraph (?) didn't she to find out if he was. So illicit relationship with Editor chap then.

Mary is going to be insufferable without Matthew. She was horrid to Edith (as usual) about Editor (what's his name?), even the Blessed Matthew told her that. And all that smarm about the "real" Mary being so much nicer than "Edith's version". Gah.

diddl Germany Wed 02-Jan-13 10:56:37

Yes Fiderer-that´s what I meant by "it´s known"-Edith found out easily, didn´t she.

Also, would Gregson commit bigamy?

Wish Mary had died!

OComeAllYeFaithBaby Wed 02-Jan-13 11:01:59

Yes, Mary will be very, very bitter. I don't think it'll be very much fun next season with all the death in the family!

I'm still holding out hope that Edith will become a feminist writer who wears trousers and has affairs and cuts her hair off and adopts a monocle. THEN Downton will kick ass. gavel

ppeatfruit Wed 02-Jan-13 11:11:28

Ah but baby Sybs is a soap baby in a soap cupboard grin

diddl Germany Wed 02-Jan-13 13:20:21

I feel sorry for Isobel.

Lost her only child.

Snooty bitch for a dil.

Only GC in the clutches of the Granthams to be brought up as the next heir.

Wonder if she´ll ever get to see him?

MarthasHarbour Wed 02-Jan-13 13:40:05

my thoughts too diddl after all he went through during the war too: lost in action, turned up again, got wounded, never to walk again, walked again, lost his mojo, got it back.......... confused

JugglingMeYorkiesAndNutRoast Wed 02-Jan-13 13:53:05

"but baby Sybs is a soap baby in a soap cupboard" ....

... visions of a very bubbly, soapy baby with maybe a topknot wisp
as in a Pears soap advert or similar grin

ppeatfruit Wed 02-Jan-13 14:41:16

grin juggling At least baby Sybs has a nurse to care for her; in the other soaps their babies are put in the cupboard on their own sad!

JugglingMeYorkiesAndNutRoast Wed 02-Jan-13 16:23:41

That puts me in mind of the Mary Poppins movie I was watching with the DC's yesterday on't telly. DD (13) was complaining that the children were abandoned for ages at the funfair whilst Mary Poppins went galivanting off with the chimney sweep and watching him dancing with penguins. Then they just reappeared on the merry-go-round with no explanation or expression of concern by anyone !

diddl Germany Wed 02-Jan-13 16:27:59

OK, I´ve given in & am watching it.

God that new maid-she´s in everything & bloody annoying in all of it!!

I´m thinking that Rose is the new Sybil?

ppeatfruit Wed 02-Jan-13 16:30:11

Those were the days juggling grin they were probably dancing and or swimming dangerously with the cartoon turtles!!

ppeatfruit Wed 02-Jan-13 16:33:36

Yeah Diddl I just remembered that annoyingly self satisfied maid's smile she doesn't get her wicked way though; Pickle is too much of a good wee catholic boy for that grin.

ppeatfruit Wed 02-Jan-13 16:35:45

Oh and Mrs Hughes is outraged by her behaviour and kicks her out; sorry am I spoiling it for you diddl?

diddl Germany Wed 02-Jan-13 16:37:58

Don´t worry, I´m only half watching!

Love the Scottish place & scenery though.

ppeatfruit Wed 02-Jan-13 17:32:11

yes I agree about the scottish scenes and the hunting is very normal for the aristos. Shame about the aging of Shrimpie Peter Egan though! ( i used to fancy him grin)

tangofan Wed 02-Jan-13 17:40:11

Does anyone know where it was filmed? I'm Scottish and quite fancy a trip there next time I'm back home.
I've been to Highclere, don't you know...?<smug>

MarthasHarbour Wed 02-Jan-13 19:31:07

SlutMaid #76 was in White Heat, a really good BBC2 drama set in the 60s-00s in a 'This Life' stylee

She was a bit slutty in that too grin

diddl Germany Thu 03-Jan-13 08:43:34

Saw her in White Heat & The Poison Tree recently.

I know it´s not her fault, but her voice really grates on me.

diddl Germany Thu 03-Jan-13 08:45:31

Oh heavens-was going to watch Ripper Street & she´s in that as well.

MarthasHarbour Thu 03-Jan-13 09:30:00

oh bliddy hell - i have Ripper St on record - she is going to be confusing me as a slutmaid/slutstudent 60s style in Ripper London confused

shhhgobacktosleep Thu 03-Jan-13 11:10:29

tangofan the Scottish location is Inveraray

Personally I'm pleased MC is gone, I found him deeply irritating as a character and nothing to float my boat either grin.

And what was the point of Mrs Padmore's & beau storyline?

Hoping for much more of Maggie Smith in S4 with her cutting comments <love her>.

tangofan Thu 03-Jan-13 13:39:54

thank you shh, that's not far from my neck of the woods, how exciting - will plan that in next time I visit!

I agree about MC he annoyed me a bit after he got with Mary, was too sickly sweet. Also agree re Maggie, very underused in the "special".

diddl Germany Thu 03-Jan-13 14:24:34

Just got through it.

Didn´t think that it was too bad overall-well, it helped the ironing go quicker!

But JF really spells it out in an annoying way.

Lord G-finally realises that Matthew was right re Downton.

"We now have two healthy heirs..."

Talk about spoon feeding!

I love Isobel!!

I guess Edith will see Gregson now as with Matthew´s death she´ll be thinking she has to grab chances whilst she can.

diddl Germany Thu 03-Jan-13 16:14:07

Also, this means that Mary will never be Lady/Countess/Dowager Grantham?

If the other heir showed up, would he still inherit rather than the new baby?

Fiderer Thu 03-Jan-13 16:30:46

I've just had an awful thought. What if Matthew's death makes Mary nicer ? <faints> and she tells Edith to gather her editorial rosebuds where she may?

Unlikely, she'll be even more sour.

What was all the instant romance in that episode? Mr GingerCasanova declaring love for Mrs Patmore on the strength of her Vichyssoise, the Doctor (having known Isobel for years and never been much taken with her) proposing after 1 supper extended in friendship - at least SluttyMaid was more believable grin

ppeatfruit Thu 03-Jan-13 16:33:38

I love Isobel too; a very diplomatic brush off to the presumptuous doc. WTF? maybe he's lonely or something.

tangofan Thu 03-Jan-13 17:19:56

grin at Fiderer
There was a lot of random instant attraction. Even the latest slutty maid seemed a bit quick off the mark.
It all felt a bit rushed and thrown together but I think someone said they had to re-write hastily after the actor who played MC announced his leaving plans.
I'm kind of hoping for the return of sour lady MC, made a more interesting character...

diddl Germany Thu 03-Jan-13 17:22:27


i don´t think she knows how.

Maybe she´ll realise that Downton isn´t the be all & end all now though.

I guess they´ll be wanting the cousins to marry...

HazeltheMcWitch Thu 03-Jan-13 18:17:37

diddl ^Also, this means that Mary will never be Lady/Countess/Dowager Grantham?
If the other heir showed up, would he still inherit rather than the new baby?^

You're really not JF, are you? The other heir can show up and be proven the righteous one (perhaps this is where Matthew's secret letter comes in?). Mary can then marry him - doubly good as it'll make her Lady G AND piss orf Edith.

diddl Germany Thu 03-Jan-13 18:48:08

Wouldn´t surprise me if JF does that tbh, as he does seem to adore his LM creation!

What secret letter?

HazeltheMcWitch Thu 03-Jan-13 19:12:46

Lavinia left a letter from beyond the grave... Lavinia's father did too. I think there was another...

Matthew has surely left his own, some how?

diddl Germany Thu 03-Jan-13 19:37:11

Oh I see-I thought that a letter had been referred to & as I was only half watching, I´d missed it!

TwoIfBySea Fri 04-Jan-13 00:05:28

Ending was ridiculous, like a cross between Casualty (guess-the-disaster) and Eastenders (misery).

Perhaps JF could have Matthew survive, need extensive surgery (yes, I know we saw his face but still...) and be replaced by a new actor. I mean it couldn't get any more silly and lazy.

diddl Germany Fri 04-Jan-13 08:29:24

But now that there´s another heir-and Lord G´s GS at that, Matthew is hardly needed anymore, is he?

M&M were so bloody boring together anyway.

ppeatfruit Fri 04-Jan-13 10:23:05

AAAh a correctly proportioned baby Sybil and a mournful Matty\Mary sprog wedding sad grin

CaroleService Sat 05-Jan-13 19:29:23

I don't reckon he's dead. They're hedging their bets to see how DS's career goes in the States.

HoldMeCloserTonyDanza Sun 06-Jan-13 01:59:56

I've been thinking the same thing Carole. They still have months before filming the next series.

Isobel used to drive the Doc up the wall when she was interfering in his hospital! Not sure why he suddenly forgot how much she annoyed him.

DuchessofMalfi Sun 06-Jan-13 06:26:30

I thought that too Carole. I was talking to DH about it, and we decided it was JF's way of keeping the door open if the actor hadn't completely decided to stay or go yet.

diddl Germany Sun 06-Jan-13 08:22:19

But what would the point?

He could die when he did decide to go iyswim.

I think that that´s it tbh.

ppeatfruit Sun 06-Jan-13 10:06:40

NAAH I agree with Diddl he made a good corpse; deffo dead sad

DuchessofMalfi Sun 06-Jan-13 13:05:41

Yes I know he probably is dead, but was trying to explain it away - too sad for Christmas, having just killed off Sibyl grin.

As far as Downton goes, that's it for me. Don't want to watch it any more.

LadyHarrietdeSpook Tue 08-Jan-13 00:23:34

Isobel was dreadful in this episode until the hilar quasi proposal from el Doctoro aka Romeo. She is so patronising and so smug. Gag when she was giving Tom the proverbial slap in the back for 'how well he's done' or whatever she said about ' integrating upstairs'. As Tom said: 'That was some speech!' I think she was pissed she wasn't asked to go to Scotland either.

Mary is back to her mad wicked old ways though. 'Why do you like me then Matthew,' then the nakedness comments from MC. Scarily sinister in that one although I do like the character overall.

I liked shrimpy and co and would be happy to see more of them even miserable Susan and lady's maid who I reckon is bringing a vile of poison with her to Bombay.'no one around for 100 miles' as Susan said except the maid who HATES you.

It wouldn't totally surprise me if they found a way to revive MC but would be tacky even by JF standards. Reckon Patrick is on his way back.

Started watching foyles war. Antony Howells to play Mary's next love interest.

ppeatfruit Tue 08-Jan-13 10:59:32

I LIKE Isobel at least she TRIES to be human not like Lady V who's a walking cliche or/clever remark.

I liked Shrimpie and co too. Especially Peter Egan who used to be soo smile

diddl Germany Tue 08-Jan-13 11:29:49

I like Isobel as well.

At least she´s not a bitch for the sake of it like Lady V-that´s really boring now imo.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now