Aristocracy, Britain, Crawley, Downton, Downton Abbey, Edwardian period, Golden Globes Winner, Grantham, Julian Fellowes, Lady Violet, Maggie Smith, Mary Crawley, Michelle Dockery, nobility, Shirley MacLaine, TV, TV series, UK
Raving about the award-winning and much loved British drama series Downton Abbey may be regarded as another random fan’s obsession with the Edwardian-era show. But after watching all three series (or seasons, in American terms), it would not give the cast and crew of Downton Abbey justice if another fan’s adoration for their work is not made known.
For those still not in the know, the TV series focuses on the lives of an aristocratic family- the Crawleys of Downton Abbey, and their servants. It gives a glimpse on the “upstairs, downstairs” lifestyle of the period. For example, a Lady changes clothes around six, yes 6, times a day.
Before you set this aside and think, “Uh, boring?”. Don’t! You will be delighted with the sarcastic and subtle humor of Dame Maggie Smith (Professor McGonagall of Harry Potter fame) who plays Lady Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham.
The first series starts in the year 1912, the same year that the Titanic made headlines. In connection with this, the apparent heir of Downton Abbey and fiance of Lady Mary Crawley (the daughter of Lord Robert Crawley- the Earl of Grantham and head of Downton Abbey) is said to have died in the tragic accident. Since women during that time were not allowed to inherit titles, the future of Downton is at stake. The series generally is about finding a suitable future Earl of Grantham and a husband for Lady Mary. Yes, romance is part of the series. Why would not it be?
Series Two opens up with the start of World War I. The lives of both the upstairs and downstairs inhabitants are changed; staff are being deployed to the army, Downton becomes a recuperation space for wounded soldiers, one of the Ladies becomes a nurse and Lady Mary experiences heartache.
Another American becomes a part of the Crawley family in Series Three with the visit of Lady Cora Crawley’s mother, which is played by THE Shirley MacLaine. She is a formidable character for the proud Dowager Countess Lady Violet Crawley (played by Dame Maggie Smith).
There will be weddings, heartaches, scandals, grief and babies in the third series. But at the end of it all, the storyline still captures the bond of the Crawley household. Despite the changes time has brought into the family, the loyalty of the upstairs and downstairs for each other remain. Although there are a few naughty characters in the mix.
Downton Abbey is magnificently created by Julian Fellowes. He is able to capture the everyday life of those who lived during the Edwardian era. It seems that every detail is taken into account- from the hair, make-up, CLOTHES(!!), manners, expectations, political issues and a whole lot of other facts.
Here are a few images to convince you to watch it:
There will be more British TV series to be featured in the “The British Are Invading! (…. our Television)” series posts.
La vie est belle,