Snoskred – My Downton Abbey will not play.
The Other Half – What do you mean it won’t play?
Snoskred – It is just freezing up.
The Other Half – Which episode is it?
Snoskred – Season 5, episode 3.
The Other Half – So when you watched it before, didn’t it work then?
Snoskred – This is a new episode. I haven’t seen it before.
The Other Half – What do you mean it is a new episode?
Snoskred – It is a new season.
The Other Half – But I thought that series was finished, or something.
Snoskred – No, it hasn’t finished, it is a new season.
The Other Half – Oh, ok. I’ll go check it out. Season 3, episode 5?
Snoskred – No, season 5 episode 3. I can’t tell you the name of the episode, or what happens in it, the storylines, or what cast members might appear in it, or any other details like that, because I need to *watch* it to know that stuff.
Snoskred thinks to herself..
wait a minute.. I probably *can* say what happens in it.
Upstairs, Mary (Michelle Dockery) is her usual snooty self, men chase her for her affections, and she might get uppity because she knows things about pig farming, or perhaps another subject she has chosen to become an immediate expert in.
Edith (Laura Carmichael) pines for her man who disappeared to Germany, and stalks her daughter that she sneaked off to have secretly and then palmed off onto some poor neighbours.
Robert Crawley (Hugh Bonneville) is annoyed and upset about something miniscule and unimportant, and he fights with Cora Crawley (Elizabeth McGovern) about these things, and she will speak in her soft American accent and make everything better with her words and her smile.
Tom Branson (Allen Leech) will be considering whether he should stay at Downton, or leave, given his wife died many moons ago and that was the thing keeping him there.
Isobel Crawley (Penelope Wilton) will still be mourning Matthew – in a fabulously beaded black number of an evening – who died two season ago. Violet (The amazing Maggie Smith) will make amusing remarks many of which when translated to proper English are actually well thought out and delightfully constructed put downs.
Downstairs, Mr Carson (Jim Carter) is upset about something – perhaps progress of some kind, or a newfangled invention, as he likes things exactly the way they have always been. He will make snarky comments in a snooty voice about this to Mrs Hughes (Phyllis Logan), who will tut tut in her Scottish brogue and dispense witty advice and solutions that Mr Carson will totally ignore.
Mr Barrow (Rob James-Collier) will be pining for an attractive boy, or lurking menacingly in corridors, threatening members of staff who he is blackmailing for various reasons.
Mr Bates (Brendan Coyle) will either be committing murder, in jail for murder, suspected of murder, or under suspicion of some other crime. Mrs Bates (Joanne Froggatt) will be dreadfully upset about what is happening to Mr Bates, though Mrs Hughes or Mrs Patmore will have to drag what is upsetting her out of her, with cups of tea and or careful plots.
Mrs Patmore (Lesley Nicol) will be worried or upset about something. Daisy (Sophie Mcshera) will spend the entire episode trying to find out what Mrs Patmore is worried or upset about.
In addition to the above regular storylines, at least one cast member will stick their nose where they should not, and it will cause repercussions of some kind. There will be conversations held in the presence of the larger cast which are amazingly only heard by the two people having the conversation, even though no whispering is involved.
The reality is, none of that stuff matters. Downton Abbey is eye candy for the fans of period costumes and houses. I’d watch it even if they played the same storyline week after week just in different settings with different outfits.
However, it is NOT Emmy award material. I don’t think it ever has been. I think that is just an excuse for the Americans to invite the British cast to the US to party. :)
(oops! This post published as a surprise to me – obviously it is Thursday and I’ve changed the title to suit. I’ll let it stay and apologise for my scheduling boo boo.)