P.S.-Pooh Says...

"What day is it? - 'It's today' - squeaked Piglet. 'My favourite day' - said Pooh."- A.A. Milne

06 January 2013

A Date with Downton

Jessica Brown-Findlay(Lady Sybil) for Vogue UK

After almost a year of teasers, previews, snippets and shorts Season Three of Downton Abbey is finally here.  Sadly, I know WAY too much about the new Season.  As hard as I tried to avoid all the spoilers flying around, given that the series has already aired in the UK, I have more info than I want about the trials, tribulations, romances and fate of the Crawley Clan and their downstairs residents for Season Three of Downton Abbey.  Now the question is will that stop me from being glued to every episode?  Not a chance!

Downton Draws Downton-
David Downton's illustrations of Michelle Dockery (Lady Mary) in Oscar de la Renta for Vanity Fair

Why watch when I know what is going to happen?  Well you could ask why I have re-watched Season One more times than I can count-Thank you Netflix!  or why I selectively watch my favorite scenes from Season Two---I know who dies, I know who gets kissed...but yet I hit play again and again and again.  I can't help it-I am a Downton devotee and I am not alone!

Dan Stevens (Matthew) via Vanity Fair

 Why has Downton taken on a life of its own and become such an adored series?  Why do we wait impatiently for each episode devouring any little bit of gossip and info we can about what happens to each and every character?  Downton Abbey, much like Mad Men, captures a time and period impeccably , not simply as a back drop but as a character central to everything that happens.  The setting of Highclere Castle, the wardrobes mirroring the changing status of women as they make the transition into a Post war world-an inspiration to Ralph Lauren as well -and the characters ,the vast array of personalities all beautifully sketched and layered by creator and writer Julian Fellowes-even when they are in absurd circumstances we care and want to know what becomes of them-I like these people, even the ones I hate, I like.  
Shirley Maclaine as Cora's American Mother Martha Levinson

 Julian Fellowes has meticulously recreated a world and immersed his viewers in that world down to the tiniest details-everything is done as it was--from vocabulary and diction to table settings and costume to the tenuous roles and relationships between the upstairs residents and the downstairs staff.  Amidst the fiction there is history and the real lifestyle of a class structure and a way of life that war and progress in the early 20th century upended.  Lord and Lady Grantham and the exquisite Dowager Countess can only adapt or risk being swept aside and surprisingly it is Violet, the Dowager Countess, the personification of everything Downton, played with pin point perfection by Maggie Smith, who smooths the way.

"It’s true I think a woman’s place is eventually in the home, but there isn’t much harm in her having some fun before she gets there."  Lady Violet

 Despite all the spoiler details I know about there are so many questions and plot lines I want to see answered---will Lady Edith and Sir Anthony Strallon make it as a couple?  How about Cousin Isobel and Dr. Clarkson?  I would love to know what became of Gwen.  Wouldn't Lady Rosamund and Sir Richard make a couple worth watching?  My favorite potential pairing though would have to be Mrs. Hughes and everyone's favorite Major Domo Mr. Carson-meant to be!  Dear Mr. Fellowes, a Downton prequel would be delicious---we know the Dowager Countess had to have had chapters worth reading!!  

 Downton Abbey is lush and soapy and gorgeous---simply yummy!!  So if you are looking for me on Sunday evenings don't bother-I will be dining at Downton!