Saturday, March 31, 2012

Downton Abbey

For the past few months, I've heard more and more people start to obsess over this television show on PBS, Downton Abbey. From what I had heard, I knew it would be something I would love - takes place in the 1910's, starting with the sinking of the Titanic. Good acting, gorgeous clothes, romance, drama, and of course, an incredible older British actress. (I just love them! Maggie Smith, Judi Dench, Helen Mirren - if only Meryl was British, she could complete the group). I just never got around to actually watching, despite everyone telling me how much I would love it.

Casual garden parties outside their giant English estate
This past spring break, I had some free time on my hands, my mom had the first season on DVD, so it seemed like the perfect time to start. From the first five minutes I was hooked. I had heard what people were saying about the show, I expected it to be good, but to be THIS good? I didn't know that TV could even be this good. The show explores the lives of the Earl and Countess of Grantham and their three daughters (also known as Crawley family). Due to an unbreakable entail (yes, just like Pride and Prejudice), their estate, Downton Abbey, will pass to whoever receives the title of Lord Grantham upon the death of the current Earl, Robert Crawley (Hugh Bonneville). I don't want to give away anything else for those who haven't seen it - each minute is too good to spoil!

Downstairs at Downton - the servants and staff
There's so many elements that make this show special and unique: the dynamics of 'upstairs' (the Earl of Grantham and his family) versus 'downstairs' (their servants); the captivating romances, from every spectrum, whether it's forbidden love (Sybil and Branson), long-lasting love (Robert and Cora), love that comes with many obstacles (Anna and Bates), and the love that everyone has been waiting for (Matthew and Mary, my personal favorites); the beautiful period costumes and the backdrop of the era, and of course, Maggie Smith's hilarious one-liners.

The women of Downton - Cora, Violet, Mary, Edith, Sybil, and Isobel (in the foreground)
If you haven't started Downton Abbey, don't deprive yourself any longer. Although, now I have to deal with waiting until January to see the season of the show (regretting my decision not to study abroad in the fall). It's available on iTunes for only $10 for the first season and $15 for the second, and the first season is streaming on Netflix. Go watch, NOW!

The most perfect man - ever

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