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S06.E01: Season 6, Episode 1

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It's 1925, with Stanley Baldwin as Prime Minister leading a Tory Government. Times are changing, though and there is mutiny in the air. Robert, Earl of Grantham (Hugh Bonneville) is desperately trying to hold onto the reins of his estate. As the family take to their horses for the hunt, a bystander yells, ‘Your lot's had it'. Lady Mary takes a tumble, and an indiscretion from her past comes back to haunt her. Meanwhile, the servants are getting jittery with talk of Downton downsizing. And romance blossoms behind the green baize door — but is someone getting cold feet?

 

Edited by ElectricBoogaloo
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Previous seasons were recapped here starting in January 2013, January 2014, and January 2015 - when PBS aired it. So I'm guessing they'll wait for the US broadcasts again.

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The season opener felt comfortable and familiar. Happy to see the series back.

So the Mr.Green stuff is over. Thank goodness. I cannot take another season of Bates family legal issues. Their baby will probably come out of the womb and be arrested for murder.

Mary should have told the blackmailer to kick rocks. Hopefully it's the last we see of that.

50-year-old Virgin drama.

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This episode confirmed in my eyes that Mary is still a bitch, and she got off too easy from being blackmailed (which wasn't undeserved but annoying).

 

The Bates are getting annoyingly pulled in and eventually pulled out of weird situations involving suspicious deaths. They are old pros at this.

 

I've updated the John count to two, which means that Fellowes is finally waning off Charles (I've counted no less than 6 characters named Charles in Downton).

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This episode confirmed in my eyes that Mary is still a bitch, and she got off too easy from being blackmailed (which wasn't undeserved but annoying).

 

The Bates are getting annoyingly pulled in and eventually pulled out of weird situations involving suspicious deaths. They are old pros at this.

 

I've updated the John count to two, which means that Fellowes is finally waning off Charles (I've counted no less than 6 characters named Charles in Downton).

I'm pretty sure there are more than two Johns. One of Rose's boyfriends was named John IIRC. He's very fond of using the names James and Reginald for characters on this show. 

 

50-year-old Virgin drama.

Good lord, really? I was sure they weren't even going to get into all of that with Carson and Mrs. Hughes.

It's going to be weird for the family to start calling her Mrs. Carson after x amount of years.

Edited by Avaleigh

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I wanted to vomit at the opening scene--those horribly unflattering outfits!  Those oversized red jackets made the men look 300 pounds and like they were wearing a blanket as they rode.  So gross... 

 

There was nothing new here, just the same old, The Bates's continue their soap opera with no doubt the end of one tragedy leading to another, Anna brushes Lady Mary's hair for four hours every day (while neglecting her own hair--she and Mrs Hughes have the same aging makeup done, and it's not pretty), and Robert has his continual "i'm not sure there's going to be a christmas this year!" moment regarding the estate, a working class caricature comes by to blackmail...  I was hoping for a moment that that woman could have been like a childhood friend of Mary's, but no, she doesn't have any friends, she just hangs out with her father all the time. 

 

Tom and Rose really did leave a big hole, the lives of those still on the estate are boring as hell without them.  I did like Daisy confronting that vulture, and no, their rights should not be dependent on gratifying the over-sized egos of rich bastards.  I really don't care about the dowager's servants, I don't find them funny or necessary for anything.

Edited by Glade
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Good premiere. Feels like "classic Downton" with little stories and smaller moments.

 

Glad to see Violet and Isobel at each other's throats again. Their friendship always felt kind of odd, to me.

 

Why did Fellowes have the bright idea to give George lines? That kid is forced and charmless. Bring back Sybbie!

 

I did have to chuckle (knowingly) when Mary confessed that she would've let the story get printed and be ruined, and Robert's first reaction was "What a shame that would've been for Tony and Mabel." Oh, Robert...you never change, do you?

 

Speaking of the Earl, I did notice he had to go lie down after horseback riding. Nothing would say "the old ways are over" like him kicking the bucket at the end of the series (obviously speculation only).

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I didn't watch it all, but what I saw was really boring. I laughed when Robert basically told Mary, that he is now convinced she's a great agent, because she slept with Tony Gillingham. I was like WTF??? Even Fellows rarely writes such stupid dialogue.

I couldn't watch any of the Carson/Hughes scenes, I find them uncomfortable and zapped away. They were such a great couple until Fellows made that fanfiction romantic pairing out of them.

The Anna/Bates murder mystery was the most ridiculous dragged on storyline ever. Glad that it is over, but the solution is an offense to the audience's intelligence.

Spratt and Denker are a waste of screentime and the same old same old with Violet and Isobel.

Without Tom there's nothing and noone I care about any more.

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I wasn't sure I was going to watch this series but I did.  And honestly, this is the first episode I really enjoyed in a very long time.   Maybe because Edith was presented as a woman with options rather than a woman I was supposed to feel sorry for.  Oh how I want her to go to London and run the paper or whatever, but I want her to have a life.  

 

And I continue to love all things Carson and Mrs. Hughes.   Mrs. P and Carson and their uncomfortable conversation.  Yep.  Good times.   

 

And I don't care about Anna's inability to have a baby, or her fear that it will drive a wedge between her and Bates, but I like that it is a different story, at least.  

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I wanted to slap Mr. Mason's ex-landlord when he kept complaining about his oh-so-terrible fate of having to live in his London house full-time. I know London real estate wasn't as expensive then as it is now, but it was still a luxury very few people could afford.

 

I admit I'd just as soon rather not think about Carson and Mrs. Hughes having sex, but Carson's face when he realized what Mrs. Patmore was talking to him about was priceless. I had to rewind that scene and watch again.

 

Regarding the blackmail - would it really have been that scandalous if Mary's sex trip with Gillingham had come out? It's already the 1920s, she's been married before, both she and Gillingham were unattached, and most people in her circle know about Pamuk, which was a much bigger deal at the time. And the family as a whole has been through quite a few scandals since then: Sybil's marriage to Tom, Edith being jilted at the Altar, Shrimpie & Susan's divorce, Rose's marriage to Atticus, Edith adopting Marigold. At this point, I doubt anyone would raise an eyebrow.

Edited by chocolatine
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I enjoyed the episode and agree with Eolivet that it felt like "classic" Downton.

 

I liked that we got a hunting scene as an opener. I don't think we've ever seen Edith ride. If we have I can't recall. I remember her not wanting to ride when asked back in season 4. 

 

I definitely missed Sybbie and Rose. I miss Tom too but his character still feels like a presence and I like that Mary seems like she's his main contact at the house. 

 

I do think that they spent a bit too much on Carson and Mrs Hughes and I did cringe a bit during the scene with the kiss. 

 

I was happy that Mary didn't cave in to being blackmailed and I'm glad that the Greene drama is done.

 

When Denker first popped up on screen I wondered to myself how she still has a job.

 

The kid playing George doesn't sound like he has an upper class accent.* 

 

Madge is leaving and she never got to appear onscreen.  

 

*ETA: I originally included the Marigold actress here because I thought she got one of the lines but I'm not sure that she spoke.

Edited by Avaleigh
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A nice, unexceptional first episode.

 

Mary and Edith were both looking fabulous. Downton always delivers the costume porn.

 

Could Thomas actually be getting a love life? When they talked about Andy avoiding him, I got the feeling it might lead to a story where he's heard that Thomas is gay and, unlike Jimmy, ends up reconsidering his feelings.

 

At least the Mr. Green plot is finished, but the Bates misery continues. I'm hoping the characters all get to have happy endings, but if Anna gets pregnant after this emphasis on miscarriages, that could be a little too much even for me.

 

Regarding the blackmail - would it really have been that scandalous if Mary's sex trip with Gillingham had come out? It's already the 1920s, she's been married before, both she and Gillingham were unattached, and most people in her circle know about Pamuk, which was a much bigger deal at the time. And the family as a whole has been through quite a few scandals since then: Sybil's marriage to Tom, Edith being jilted at the Altar, Shrimpie & Susan's divorce, Rose's marriage to Atticus, Edith adopting Marigold. At this point, I doubt anyone would raise an eyebrow.

 

I think the point was to show that things have changed. In the first and second seasons, Mary had to fear that her life would be ruined and that society and even her own family would think she was a terrible person. Now in the final season she's a widow in the 1920s and her attitude was publish and be damned: this kind of scandal doesn't matter the way it once did.

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Although I have no interest in the VIolet vs. Isobel hospital drama, I loved when VIolet turn the tables on Denker and said that she would miss her. That's what you get for spreading gossip, Denker! And even more perfect that Isobel was there so that Violet could point out that Isobel gets along just fine without a lady's maid. But aside from that, I am already tired of the "Denker thinks she is a badass shit stirrer" plot.

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I'm turning sentimental - for all that I thought last season (the season of Mary's suitors) were dull, I got all misty-eyed at the beginning of the theme music. I too loved that Edith was planning on moving to London, at least part-time, and I loved her and Rosamund's moment. I'm glad she's somebody's favourite in the family (and I still entertain the idea that she's actually Rosamund's daughter - at least in my mind).

 

I did have to chuckle (knowingly) when Mary confessed that she would've let the story get printed and be ruined, and Robert's first reaction was "What a shame that would've been for Tony and Mabel." Oh, Robert...you never change, do you?

I actually read that scene differently - that Mary hadn't even thought about what a scandal would do to the Gillinghams, as per her stricken face at the end of the shot, and that Robert was gently chiding her for that. I'm not Robert's biggest fan, but since he followed with saying that the affair meant Mary was capable of running the farm (blergh - although to be fair, I think he meant her point of not being blackmailed), I don't think he was talking down to her.

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A nice, unexceptional first episode.

 

Mary and Edith were both looking fabulous. Downton always delivers the costume porn.

 

Could Thomas actually be getting a love life? When they talked about Andy avoiding him, I got the feeling it might lead to a story where he's heard that Thomas is gay and, unlike Jimmy, ends up reconsidering his feelings.

 

At least the Mr. Green plot is finished, but the Bates misery continues. I'm hoping the characters all get to have happy endings, but if Anna gets pregnant after this emphasis on miscarriages, that could be a little too much even for me.

 

 

I think the point was to show that things have changed. In the first and second seasons, Mary had to fear that her life would be ruined and that society and even her own family would think she was a terrible person. Now in the final season she's a widow in the 1920s and her attitude was publish and be damned: this kind of scandal doesn't matter the way it once did.

 

 

Right. there was a little "but what about Tony & Mabel" but in my mind - it was so who gives a crap, Tony was the one who pushed for the Week of Sin anyway, and Mabel knew that those two were together (maybe not in that way) anyway). 

 

I don't think MiLord promoted Mary because she slept with Gillingham, I think he was impressed that Mary just had to guts to stick it through (like three times she was all "kick rocks, you cow." to the blackmailer, which. very random. 

 

It might be very soap-operay, but I REALLY want Edith to be Rosamund's child. I mean i kinda look like my aunt, but i look like my mom - Edith looks like Rosamund. Sibyl + Mary both took after Robert/Cora

 

Dowager vs. Isabel, ding ding ding (my money will always be on Violet). 

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Heh, I loved when Mary referred to the London apartment in question as "Michael Gregson's flat" and then Edith corrected her with "MY flat." The annoyed look on Mary's face was hilarious.

 

I'm glad that Rosamund reminded Edith what awaits her if she continues living at Downton, particularly Mary being a pain in her ass.

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The Green storyline ended pretty much the way I thought it would.  I figured it would be one of his former victims, but I thought it would be that he fell in the street because he was agitated after his encounter with her rather than that she pushed him.

 

Mabel and Tony had broken up long before the "week of sin" so she had no real claims on him.

 

I knew a woman who had 7 miscarriages before she was able to carry a baby to full term.  It happens.  

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Solid opening episode. The awkward conversations about sex were amusing; a new dispute between Violet and Isobel was established for the season, and it's one that pulls in several other characters; Edith is on track to having a life in London; Mary is the new agent; and Fellowes FINALLY got the message that the Bates crime and punishment drama has been dead weight for years, so he ended it and everyone cheered.

 

It's a very strange show though, when the noble, progressive characters -- like Daisy and Isobel -- are the antagonists. Like, it's worse to be rude in public than to evict an old tenant farmer!

 

And no one should ever say "You can have me warts and all" when they're talking about sex. Dreadful line that surely made viewers across the nation wonder if Mrs. Hughes has genital warts!

 

Rose was missed, because her youth and vibrancy livened up the place. I hate to say it but Tom wasn't missed, because he's had so little to do for so long on the show.

 

Based on the this episode, Anna and Bates becoming parents is a good bet, and I'm optimistic about Thomas finding luurve. No man for Edith or Mary showed up though. So if they are going to be paired off with new characters to end the series, the show really needs to get its skates on.

Edited by Kirsty
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So if they are going to be paired off with new characters to end the series, the show really needs to get its skates on.

 

My cynical side notes that Fellowes ALWAYS has the first four episodes written and can't possibly change them at all because you know, his super speshul process, so expect the skates to be put on about episode five since Fellowes would have just found out the entire cast was leaving at the end of season six. :D

 

eta I could be wrong, but I am genuinely curious if things move along staidly and then BLAM!  :D

Edited by ZoloftBlob
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Did Carson say there were six footman at one point? Jeez, imagine how many a place like Chatsworth or Bowood must have had in their heydays. 

 

I feel stupid for not realizing that Mr. Mason was a tenant farmer. For some reason I had it in my head that he would have been able to leave the farm to Daisy but clearly not. 

 

Violet's reaction about the neighbors losing their house was interesting. In a way it was like a social drawbridge had been lifted in her mind and that family is basically done as far as she's concerned. She'll be polite to them if she runs into them in London but she doesn't want to hear about their problems because they're too close to home and disturb her. I think she hates when she's forced to contemplate the same thing possibly happening to her family eventually.

 

And no one should ever say "You can have me warts and all" when they're talking about sex. Dreadful line that surely made viewers across the nation wonder if Mrs. Hughes has genital warts!

 

Seriously, I'm surprised that line wasn't changed. Surely, somebody must have objected. 

 

The actress who played the blackmailer looks so familiar but I can't place where I've seen her before.

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Did Carson say there were six footman at one point? Jeez, imagine how many a place like Chatsworth or Bowood must have had in their heydays.

I'd love a prequel.

I feel stupid for not realizing that Mr. Mason was a tenant farmer. For some reason I had it in my head that he would have been able to leave the farm to Daisy but clearly not.

I'm confused too because I thought Daisy stood to inherit the farm or some assets??

I found the moment where Robert wandered over to the refrigerator and helped himself to leftovers to be quite significant. Perhaps he could do without the large staff if there were forced to downsize. Also, the merging of the upstairs and downstairs to celebrate Anna's freedom to be eventful as well. The divide between classes is blurring.

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I'd love a prequel.

I'm confused too because I thought Daisy stood to inherit the farm or some assets??

I found the moment where Robert wandered over to the refrigerator and helped himself to leftovers to be quite significant. Perhaps he could do without the large staff if there were forced to downsize. Also, the merging of the upstairs and downstairs to celebrate Anna's freedom to be eventful as well. The divide between classes is blurring.

I hadn't thought about how significant it was but you're right. Remember Edith's hilarious comment about how Robert would probably die of starvation with his arms stretched out towards the kitchen if he didn't have people around to do x, y, and z for him. That comment was spot on at the time but even Robert is capable of adapting in certain ways to the changing times. It pretty much started with his clothes and then went from there. 

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I'm glad the blackmail story and the Bates story are over now (please God please). The show really needs to stop digging into events that happened years ago in-show for drama. And Robert was right. A widow sleeping around is nowhere near as scandalous as an unmarried woman doing it. And I love how he's more disappointed in Mary for having a brief affair with an unmarried man, than he is with Edith having a child with a married man. Seems everyone's completely recovered from THAT scandal.

 

I think they shot the wad too early on the Carson/Mrs. Hughes story. Now that he's proposed there's no place for either character to go. And are they seriously going to give Thomas a happily-ever-after with Andy? Boring AND false. What's the point of making a character gay if you're just going to pretend it's 2015? Thomas is boring now. Now that he's not scheming and is nice to everybody he's not fun to watch any more.

 

I'm sort of torn on Daisy. Being the rebel gives her something to do and it's nice that there's SOMEONE on this show who isn't madly in love with the Edwardian era, but we've had enough shrill speeches with Sarah Bunting. Sybil and Tom could make being agitators fun to watch - why can't Fellowes do that any more. There are so many young servants that it's great to see there's someone in that Abbey excited about the changing world rather than terrified of it.

 

Denker and Spratt are boring. I get what the show is trying to do with them: bring back all the fun of the first season downstairs when everyone was scheming ad backbiting. But somehow it's not working with those two. Probably because they're awful, and not fun-awful like Mrs. O'Brien. Just awful like the most obnoxious person you work with. And Violet as written would never get involved in servant squabbles no matter how bored she was. And the dull hospital plot is clearly just an excuse so Dame Maggie and Dame Penelope can snipe at each other, so this show will be a camp classic 15 years from now.

 

I know I just wrote the word "boring" like a million times but I'm glad this show is back. I liked it. It misses Tom and Rose, though. The show needs young people with goals and plans, and right now the only one who fits that description is Eeyore. Er, Edith.

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 I feel stupid for not realizing that Mr. Mason was a tenant farmer. For some reason I had it in my head that he would have been able to leave the farm to Daisy but clearly not.

 

I'm confused too because I thought Daisy stood to inherit the farm or some assets??

Mr Mason would have expected to leave the farm to Daisy, but what she'd have inherited would have been the tenancy, not the freehold. I always assumed he was a tenant farmer, given the social statuses involved, so this came as no surprise to me. That's how farming tended to work back then.

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Finally Rosamund saying to Edith what I've been thinking for at least two seasons: What are you going to do, stay at Downton with Mary sniping at you for the rest of your life? Mary is clearly not leaving Downton for love or money, so Edith has to. Flee, to London!

 

Didn't quite understand the whole "because you refused to give in to a blackmailer, you are now prepared to be the agent" bit. Mary was stubborn and willing to let the woman publish her story, while Robert paid her off with a pittance and got a signed declaration, too. Which one of them made the problem go away better, hmm??

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Was it just me, or were there a bunch lines of dialogue in this episode that seemed REALLY anachronistic? I have to go back and watch it again, but several times I found myself thinking, "They didn't say THAT in 1925!"

 

Mary: you took it up the butt from Mr. Pamuk and killed him in the process. Who cares about your Worst Sex Week Ever with Tony G?

 

Bates and Anna are done with Mr. Greene, but now it seems like they are going to put the 'period' in 'period drama'. Oy vey. Enough with those two.

 

Don't get me wrong...I still love this silly show.

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LOL, this was hilarious, sometimes on purpose. Loved Carson/Hugues scenes; I think they're adorable together and I found her doubts pretty realistic. Also, Mrs Patmore was gold.

 

I laughed when Anna had her first scene and she was already crying. Bates is such a dementor! But thank God that awful plot is over. 

 

Robert finds out about Mary's weekend and his mind says "omg, my daughter spent a week banging that limp noodle, which makes her a slut in the eyes of society; I'm sure she'll make a wonderful state agent". Of course, Robert. Of course. That makes perfect sense in your little brain.

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The actress who played the blackmailer looks so familiar but I can't place where I've seen her before.

 

She was in Death Comes to Pemberley.  Could that be it? 

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I found the moment where Robert wandered over to the refrigerator and helped himself to leftovers to be quite significant. Perhaps he could do without the large staff if there were forced to downsize. Also, the merging of the upstairs and downstairs to celebrate Anna's freedom to be eventful as well. The divide between classes is blurring.

I loved seeing Robert rummage around in the refrigerator too (although as soon as I saw it, I wondered what Mrs. Patmore would say if she caught him digging around in there). What I loved even more that Robert's immediate reaction to the news about Anna was to ask what they had available to celebrate. I think in the past, he would have just shaken Bates's hand, but now he is going downstairs to celebrate with everyone and opening up the good stuff for them.

 

My favorite thing about Thomas this week was that he loves the kids so much. You can tell that he isn't begrudgingly giving them piggyback rides and hating it. Maybe if things could continue on at Downton (in terms of the household staff), he could become the next Carson - the gruff butler who loved the kids from when they were little and would do anything to protect them. But then of course, his time with the kids was balanced by his paranoia that everyone is telling the new guy to stay away from him. I was actually surprised that Thomas was trying to be helpful with him instead of lording it over him as he usually does with the rest of the staff.

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Mary: you took it up the butt from Mr. Pamuk and killed him in the process.

 

I thought the show made it clear that Pamuk was lying when he said Mary would still be a virgin for her husband. I think he just...deflowered her and lied that nobody would be able to know. I can't see Fellowes writing the other version.

 

Then again, this is the show that thinks we somehow would be unhappy if we didn't know, in no uncertain terms, that Carson and Hughes were planning on doing the nasty. Did Fellowes really think viewers were clamoring for reassurance that this would not just be a companionable marriage? Because really, Lord Fellowes, no need to go out of your way on my account. I wish you'd just left it all to our imagination (or extreme lack thereof).

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Also, the merging of the upstairs and downstairs to celebrate Anna's freedom to be eventful as well.

I thought all the "thank god this shit is over" meta comments were hilarious! I lol'd.

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The "thank god this shit is over" party was fun, but it meant the worst thing for me. The only way this shit with the Bateses would be interesting would be if one or both of them were murderers. Instead, they are just a pair of innocent lambs with the terrible luck of the people standing in their way conveniently dying. Now we have to suffer through a fertility crisis. Like the fact that majority of season two and on into season three was concerned with whether or not Matthew's junk worked wasn't enough.

Six seasons in, I don't know why I continue to be disappointed, but I am. This show is just the same shit happening over and over again, usually with little to no consequence. At least it is pretty to look at with a good cast.

Oh, no! Mary is getting blackmailed! Oh, wait. It will totally be resolved before the hour is up! Daisy screams at some upper class dude who owns her father-in-law's farm, embarrassing her employer, and...she totally doesn't lose her job. He could still lose the farm, but there's plenty of time to just undo that. The Bateses are still being investigated for murder! Oh, never mind. That went away by the end of the episode, too. Here - watch Violet and Isabel bicker and watch Mary be a cow to Edith for no reason. Again. Some more. Have we mentioned the times are changing?

Mrs. Hughes really owes Mrs. Patmore a solid. If my friend asked me to ask her fiancé if he was planning on boning her, I couldn't do it.

Violet's servants both suck and they are both deeply stupid. Enough already.

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Mrs. Hughes really owes Mrs. Patmore a solid. If my friend asked me to ask her fiancé if he was planning on boning her, I couldn't do it.

Ha, me neither! And I certainly couldn't have talked around it as nicely as Mrs. Patmore did. It would have been more along the lines of "Look, are you going to bone her or not?" Obviously I was not meant to be a negotiator or anything requiring tact.

Edited by ElectricBoogaloo
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I laughed when Anna had her first scene and she was already crying.

Yeah, I found that amusing too. Like, it's Sunday night, what else would she be doing?

 

Also, the way Carson looked at the chambermaid like she was an insect was funny. Appalling snobbery and classism, but normal for the period.

 

I'm surprised that line wasn't changed. Surely, somebody must have objected.

Agreed. But if there was someone to oversee the scripts who was in a position to overrule Fellowes or even to strenuously object, then surely lots of things would have changed. I imagine the show wouldn't have done years of Bates the murderer drama, for a start. I think it's a case where (because of his huge success) the writer has too much creative control. I often think Aaron Sorkin has the same issue when he's writing for tv. There's no one to rein in his worst tendencies.

 

Mary hadn't even thought about what a scandal would do to the Gillinghams

I totally agree. It never occurred to her to consider them until her father said it.

 

ETA: Of course the Gillinghams' reputations aren't Mary's primary concern. But they're worth a thought! Her father was pointing out that she wasn't the only person to be affected by making it public and he was right.

Edited by Kirsty
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I totally agree. It never occurred to her to consider them until her father said it.

 

In fairness, and I don't normally defend Mary like this but... why exactly does she need to consider the Gillinghams in this?

 

Tony initiated that encounter. Tony is as guilty as she is. He proposed Sex Week. The only real victim is Mabel and even then the scandal is mostly that her husband was tomcatting a widow before Mabel married him.

 

My point I suppose is that Tony knew what he was proposing was not ok per the local culture just as much as Mary did. Why is Mary on the hook for keeping the scandal away from him?

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I don't think she has to consider Tony in this either. He wouldn't get the blame anyway, he would be considered a player maybe, but that is all. "Men will always be men" and all that.

Mabel would be a victim in it though. She didn't do anything and would not deserve the gossip. But the main victim would be Mary, because she would not be able to show her face in society again and certainly be off the marriage market in an instance.

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I don't think that's much of an issue for her. She's a widow with a child, not a debutante. She has looks, title, and money, and the's the cool one of her social set. And she's only interested in marrying for love, and fine being single if no one meets her standards, so this scandal coming to light would only weed out the guys she wouldn't want to marry anyway. It would be embarrassing, but wouldn't actually harm her future. Or Tony's, really. Mabel would probably be the worst off. 

 

Which is why it was so dumb. They already did a blackmail plot, with Mary. Only the stakes were much, much higher. She could lose everything, drag her whiole family down with her, have to run away to America, and lose the man she loved. How is the audience supposed to care when the worst thing that happens is a few old hens (and Edith) sneer at her? The blackmail plot they did with Tom also had higher stakes. And again, how was Robert so upset about Mary's week of sex with an unmarried man, and so understanding when Edith had a child with a married man?

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I don't remember Robert being that upset with Mary for the sex week. Didn't he promote her to Agent right afterwards?

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I don't remember Robert being that upset with Mary for the sex week. Didn't he promote her to Agent right afterwards?

Yes, which made no sense at all! "Oh, you risked scandal for the whole family by sleeping with a man you didn't intend to marry. Great, you're the right woman to lead this estate. Hell, what did I say? Even the kingdom!"

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I would think a thirty year olds sex week with Tony would be less scandalous than a guy dying in 19 year old Mary's bed.

After everything that's happened at Downton, it should take a lot to shock any of them now.

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I thought this was a solid enough start to the season - better than I was expecting, actually!

 

I do find Carson/Mrs Hughes a bit fanficcy in feel but I like it anyway..  I found Mrs Patmore genuinely hilarious.

 

On a shallow note, I thought Edith looked absolutely stunning this episode - the 20s fashions really suit her and the actress was just glowing.

 

As others have said, Robert's "and now, I see that you'd be great at managing the estate" thing was really weird - I didn't follow how refusing to be blackmailed had anything to do with Mary's estate management skills.

 

On that note, I did find it mildly amusing that, just after they'd all talked about how incredibly hard the estate management work was, they showed Mary having breakfast in bed with her lady's maid hovering to help her with the tough task of getting dressed and brushing her hair.

 

All the talk about fewer servants, etc, might actually be meaningful if they showed how the life of the Crawleys had actually changed - there may be fewer servants but you can't actually see any differences.  I'm not saying, to channel Cora, that they have to go down the mine or anything but showing them having to do more things for themselves would help.

 

With the estate sale, as I've said before on here, I just felt like it didn't really mean much because they hadn't bothered to introduce us to these people before - if we'd met them a few times, even in the background at dinner parties or whatever, we might actually care that this family had to sell up.

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I was disappointed when Bevin was paid off. I really wanted Anna to threaten her, as, at that point, she and her husband were still murder suspects. I'm sure Bevin had no clue just how dangerous blackmailing anyone at Downton might be!

  I was freaked out at the end that we might have to witness the soon-to-be-Carsons getting it on in his office! Times really were changing!

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Good God after six seasons this was the best they could come up with for a first episode to a series finale season! Boring! I so loved this show the first two seasons and have been bored ever since but can't seem to stop watching. Actually I've been bored ever since Matthew's death. 

 

Why didn't they just age everyone and make the series finale about WWII and kill off half the male cast? Or they could've just died from old age because most of the male cast's over 50 anyway. A WWII series finale would be fitting for this show because they can't figure out where else to take it.

 

Mary's the most insufferable bitch.

 

Is Mrs. Hughes for real? Her future husband might not want to bone her? Huh? I know it's 1925 but how embarrassing for Miss Patmore and silly for us to have to watch that display!

 

Anna and Bates have been ruined by the inexplicable murder stories that no one ever cared about.

 

Edith has the only potential as of now to move on in life. Good for her! This show definitely misses the younger cast. The current cast's just too old! This show needs more of a mix. I so miss Matthew, Sybil and Tom!

 

Looks like Tom got out of the country at just the right time.

 

Of course I'll stick to the end but I'm glad it's ending.

Edited by kmm49
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Good God after six seasons this was the best they could come up with for a first episode to a series finale season! Boring! I so loved this show the first two seasons and have been bored ever since but can't seem to stop watching. Actually I've been bored ever since Matthew's death. 

 

Why didn't they just age everyone and make the series finale about WWII and kill off half the male cast? Or they could've just died from old age because most of the male cast's over 50 anyway. A WWII series finale would be fitting for this show because they can't figure out where else to take it.

 

Mary's the most insufferable bitch.

 

Is Mrs. Hughes for real? Her future husband might not want to bone her? Huh? I know it's 1925 but how embarrassing for Miss Patmore and silly for us to have to watch that display!

 

Anna and Bates have been ruined by the inexplicable murder stories that no one ever cared about.

 

Edith has the only potential as of now to move on in life. Good for her! This show definitely misses the younger cast. The current cast's just too old! This show needs more of a mix. I so miss Matthew, Sybil and Tom!

 

Looks like Tom got out of the country at just the right time.

 

Of course I'll stick to the end but I'm glad it's ending.

I don't know what soaps are like in other countries, but they missed the point of having kids. Once they are no longer useful to guilt the parents or as props for holidays you age them up! The season could have begun from the POV of a visiting Sybbie and/or Marigold. (Never mind that it would put the Dowager in her hundreds!)

  In Mary's defense, Edith practically wears a "kick me" sign! She finally has her daughter and her own business and still she's whining about never finding happiness? Even Rosamond had to remind her of Marigold! Mary couldn't even handle the blackmailer, which made her father's pride in her over the incident such a headscratcher.

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Edith is bound by in-show demands to remain at Downton - but there's hope that she can finally escape at the end. Until then we'll get plenty of made-up reasons why she has to stay. Healthy country air my a** - I'd rather expose my child to the fumes of London than the poisonous drafts of Lady Mary.

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