Saturday, March 19, 2016

This Week on My TV: March 19, 2016

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(Downton Abbey, season four) Did Robert honestly say "the price of great love is great misery when one of you dies" to *Tom*?? Ouch. -- Mrs Hughes and Carson really bring work husband/work wife to a whole new level (minus the marital bed, of course). I love that their interactions run the gamut of sweet, confiding, bickering, funny, and mundane. -- I wondered who Thomas (sorry, dude, but I cannot think of you as Barrow, promotion or otherwise) was going to target, now that O'Brien has sneaked off into the night. Apparently, he started with Nanny West (foul woman, she deserved it for how she spoke to sweet little Sybbie), moved on to tormenting Anna (whose husband *helped* him keep his employment at Downton, despite seeing Thomas for the toad he is!), sparring with that hussy, Edna (you just stay away from Tom and stop exploiting his vulnerabilities!), and then bringing in Baxter as Cora's new lady's maid. I wonder what he has on Baxter, because he certainly has her under his thumb. -- Anna and Bates were so difficult to watch this season, in the aftermath of her assault. I just wanted to hug them both. But why on earth didn't Mrs Hughes explain to Bates why Anna was afraid to tell him she was attacked? Wouldn't that have at least created the opportunity to head off trouble when that vile Green returned to Downton? I mean, Bates clearly loves Anna so much, there's a chance it might have defused the situation a bit. -- Mrs Hughes: We must all have our hearts broken once or twice before we're done. -- I have never been so happy about a discovery as I was about Matthew's pseudo will and that it was legit. The letter he wrote Mary was so sweet and I felt like we (Mary, too, perhaps?) were given a little closure on his death. I think it will be interesting to see how Mary steps up to to the challenges of running Downton, especially now that it will be in Matthew's stead. An unexpected ripple effect of Mary's involvement is a friendship blooming that I had no idea would affect me so much: Mary and Tom. I love the way they speak with one another and it's the most at ease I think we ever see post-Sybil Tom. -- Mary: Sometimes I don’t know whom I’m most in mourning for: Matthew or the person I used to be when I was with him. ... Mary is just breaking my heart. She knows he brought out the best in her, parts of her she didn't know how to reach without him. To see that ice queen Mary truly loved him was both beautiful and painful. -- How does Cora end up with the most awful lady's maids?? It's like she has the same luck with them as Edith with men. -- Speaking of Edith. Oh, Edith. After being jilted by Strallan, I understand why she is so taken with Gregson, but bidding him an intimate farewell before he departs for post-WWI Germany? That was bound to go poorly. Now she's unmarried, with child, and Gregson has straight up vanished without a trace. Because this is how things go for Edith. I realized that it is her cynicism that makes her not so much a character I'm drawn to, but I can see she comes by it honestly. -- Back to Baxter. I cannot decide how I feel about her. On the one hand, she seems more likable than Cora's other lady's maids (not that that was a stretch, given O'Brien and Edna) and she seems appalled by the way Thomas is plying her for information, but on the other, she somehow knows Thomas and is indebted to him, which makes me suspicious. Everything about Thomas makes me suspicious. -- Isobel: How you hate to be wrong. Violet: I wouldn't know. I'm not familiar with the sensation. -- Robert: Don't be vulgar. What do you of such matters? Mary: I've been married. I know everything. -- I struggle to see the point of Rose. I suppose she's there to fill the void, left by Sybil, of the young and controversial "daughter," but she lacks Sybil's sweetness and good heart, and it just seems to be forced to me. -- I have never laughed so hard at this show as with Mary and the pigs. -- I have to be honest, all these suitors and gentlemen around Mary leaves me confused. I keep mixing up Napier and Blake. And then Blake and Gillingham look just enough similar that I have to pause and remind myself which is which. And Napier would love a go at Mary, Blake thinks she's an entitled snob (which, sometimes, she is, but we'll see how that changes post pigs), and Gillingham, while I thought he was initially sweet, seems to be a bit of a cad, proposing to Mary while he's pre-engaged to Miss Lane Fox, then getting engaged after Mary declines, and *then* showing up at Downton in pursuit of Mary anyway. I'm with you, Mary. I'm not ready for you to be thinking of anyone but Matthew yet either. And certainly none of these guys. -- I loved, *loved*, Tom, Mary, and Isobel, sitting in the nursery with the babies, talking about how deeply they loved, and that, even though they've all lost, they were so lucky to have had at all. And sharing their engagement and early love stories. It all broke my heart in the best sort of way. Also, Tom? You are not allowed to move to America. Or anywhere else for that matter. -- Alfred gone to cooking school! Good for him. Get away from the death stares Daisy keeps giving Ivy, and nasty Jimmy. (I can see why Thomas was drawn to Jimmy. They're both ugly inside, sniping and plotting and just generally being unkind.) -- One of my favorite things about Mary is that when she has no idea how to respond to something said to her, she simply stares back in silence or abruptly changes the subject, then walks away. I laugh every time. What can I say? It speaks to my non-confrontational side. -- Not a fan of Miss Bunting. But I suspect no one will be good enough for Tom in my eyes. -- Tom: Losing Sybil was hard. Compared to that, everything else is easy. -- I want to hate everything about Lord Merton's advances on Isobel, because I really like Dr Clarkson for her. -- What, exactly, is Edith's plan for her baby??

2 with their own thoughts:

Stacy at Exceedingly Mundane Tuesday, March 22, 2016 5:27:00 PM  

I so love these posts, and reading your thoughts on this show that I loved so much. But, on the flip side of that coin, it's very hard for me to comment. I'm always afraid I'm going to give something away! :)

I think Anna and Bates is one of the best love stories of Downton. And I totally agree with you about the friendship between Tom and Mary (are you ok with him being Tom now and not Branson?! LOL! ) I'm not a fan of Miss Bunting either.

Some characters will continue to grow on you, but I can't comment on any of that!

Looking forward to the next update!

~**Dawn**~ Friday, March 25, 2016 10:19:00 AM  

Next update should be coming this weekend, Stacy! I finished season five in quick order. I'm going to wait on season six for a bit though. I need to get some other shows more current, since I've been so heavily Downton for a while now. At least with six, I can savor it and slow the pace, with them all being on my DVR.

You're right. A couple of characters did grow on my more after completing season five. One of them was NOT Miss Bunting. =P

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