A Revisit and Review to Downton Abbey

Where you a Downton Abbey Watcher?  Did you watch it from release or were you late to the party? 

I was late to the party of Downton Abbey. I did not start watching it until Season 3 was getting underway.  I quickly binge watch the first 2 seasons.  I fell in love with the grandness and elegance of the story telling.  I had favorite characters and storylines that were my favorite. 

I found myself charmed a grumpy butler names Carson and a Dowager Countess.  Being swept in the world of 1912 and the sinking of the grand ship Titanic and the turmoil it created for this grand family kept me company for hours. 

One of the things that kept me engaged was the balancing act of the family.  Some with in the family keeping a strong hold on the “old ways” while the world around them, even members of the family shepherd in the modern era.  It was fascinating to me the way the writers of this series showed how we glamourize things of the past to fight of change.  There were a lot of heavy topics within this series that still are relevant now. 

Bookcase and Coffee is a romance book blog so I would be remiss if I did not touch on the great loves and romances of this story. 

The story of the Earl and Countess of Grantham was one of many in the Gilded Age.  Land Barons of American wanting to bring class and status to their family by marrying their daughters to English Lords in need of cash.  I do believe that they are a couple who great to love one another. We do see this play out even as their children are now adults there Is still doubt about their affection. However, by the end of the 2nd movie you can see how much they truly do love and care for each other.  Their love is more about companionship and lover over time versus strong attraction and desire. I think this is relative to anyone who has been in a long marriage.  Love and desire change over time, love in your 20s if very different than love in your 40s. 

 I think my most favorite of all the romances was the story of Mr. Bates and Anna.  The close proximity of being co-workers and living alongside each other.  The small smiles, leading to casual flirting, to accidental touches.  Their story was not a clear path to an HEA and it came with all sorts of roadblocks but in the end their love and desire never waived.  Theirs was a love affair for the ages.  It shows us what it is to love through the best and the worst, sickness and in health. These two were some amazing characters.  By the end of the show and into the two movies I would have been happy with all the time spent on them. The acting was stellar and I just really enjoyed these two so very much. 

My biggest complaint was the loss of the character Lady Sybil Crawley.  I am still very bitter about this.  And when this happened in the series I almost walk away. I thought this would be the end of Tom and I just revered his character.  His rebellion and character added so much to the story.  I loved that angst and stress it caused the family to welcome him into the upstairs. 

When the run of the series ended, I did not need the movie.  I would have been ok with how things were left.  It truly was more of an extended epilogue, same can be said for the end movie. As a fan and viewer, I am left wondering how the great crash of 1929 will affect the family.  How will the move forward and with how things are left at the end of the movie would there be a new series?  Do I even want a new series?   

Downton Abbey was a fantastical peak into the life of British Society as the dawning of the modern age.  While it was complete fiction, I would have to guess that many in real life families dealt with similar hardships and trails. 

A viewer is easily swept into the grandeur of the time but also the realization of how far we have come and how far we still must go.  In a 100-years of modernization and tech have made our lives in way easier but the plight of women and the poor is not as far long as one would hope.   

I enjoyed my re-visit to the greatness of Downton Abbey and it was a good escape for the time.  I enjoy this series and characters.  Next up on my watch list is Miss Scarlet & the Duke. 

Are you looking for romance books that fit to the Downton Abbey Vibe? I asked our Host of the Corset and Crown Podcast Lady Saide and Duchess Katie and here are the recommendations they provided.