Downton Abbey Addicts get a Fix

On Saturday August 31st we Downton Abbey fiends got a 1-minute taste of Season 4. I can tell you without spoiling anything that Season four will include,

Crying and
Hurt feelings,

as well as

and Tea, lots and lots of Tea.

Here is the trailer, if you are up for an early taste.

I was a latecomer to Downton Abbey. My daughter came home from her first year of college and announced she was going to be borrowing Downton Abbey from the library this summer and if we wanted to we could join her in her quest to get up to date by the time she went back to school.

Many of my friends at work and church follow the series, and have nothing but good to tell, so I decided to have a taste.

I did not realize then (though I should have known by the tell-tale signs my friends were exhibiting) that I would not be able to stop once I started.

There is much merit in taking up a TV series once it is well underway because there is none of that annoying waiting between episodes.

Well, at least not until we got ready to start season 3. Though the library system had 120 copies, we waited for about 3 weeks of my daughter’s brief summer vacation for our electronic library request to be filled. We could wait no longer! I finally found one that I could pick up a mere 20 miles from home. We were back in business.

Season 3 Spoiler Alert – if you have not seen all of season 3 and ever intend to watch it, you might want to stop reading now.

Season 3 was a real change in direction for the series. I should have known by the fact that 4 people at the library check out desk reached for a near by tissue box on sight DVD box I was borrowing. As the librarian took care of my check out, I am pretty sure I actually heard weeping to my left. The librarian handed it over with three simple words “it’s so sad.”

I did not relate this story to my wife.

She agrees with Jesus when He tells us “today has plenty of trouble of it’s own.” She normally will only watch something sad once. If she knows ahead of time that a movie is a tear-jerker she will flip over to the Hallmark Movie Channel and gladly watch one of their “always leave them married” movies.

As I mentioned, I kept quiet about the sadness remark and we were tracking along well until the third episode when dear sweet Lady Edith Crawley, (played by Laura Carmichael) was left standing at the altar in her luxurious wedding dress. She was abandon there by the man she pursued against her father’s wishes. Her fiancé, Sir Anthony Strallan, (portrayed by Robert Bathurst,) was convinced he was just too old to provide a meaningful life for Lady Edith. Added pressure from Robert Crawley the Earl of Grantham and head of the house (played by Hugh Bonneville) to allow Edith to find a younger more suitable husband, and Sir Anthony took her right to the front of the Chapel and walked out.

Thanks to ITV for the pix

Thanks to ITV for the pix

About midway through the season we survived heart wrenching birth/death episode where we lost everyone’s favorite sister, Lady Sybil Crawley, (played by Jessica Brown Findlay.) It was heartbreaking to see the impact of this tragedy. They did such a wonderful job of depicting how such a horrible event sends shock waves through everyone connected. The way the other sisters drew together rang true as did the way blame and shame tore at the core fabric of a decades-old relationship. I was impressed with how well the writer painted this in my heart, but I will confess, it was probably good that he was not in the room with me at the time.

I thought I was home free for the rest of the season, but my daughter, who had heard a few other foreshadowing comments, said she did not think we were out of the woods yet.

Thanks to ITV for the pix

Thanks to ITV for the pix

As we watched the timer tick down to the end of the final episode, at the Scottish hunting lodge, and we watched with warm hearts as Matthew Crawley, (played by Dan Stevens) swore his total devotion and everlasting love for his wife and brand new mother to his baby boy, Lady Mary Crawley, (played by Michelle Dockery,) I sensed a glimmer of hope.

Then I saw it, the utter joy and elation as Matthew drove back to get the others. There was just too much joy in that face.

We did not even get a chance to cry for this one, just shock and silence.

My dilemma now is how do I satiate my recently acquired Downton Abbey addiction? I am not sure whether I can talk my wife into taking even a small sample of season four. She tells me in no uncertain terms, 3 daughters ruined, 3 strikes – and they are out.

What am I to do?

I do have a few months to figure it out since the Season Four premier is currently scheduled to air on January 5th, 2014.

If you want to get up to speed, and are not patient enough for the library, you can pick up the first three seasons on Amazon. If you use the affiliate link below you will get Amazon’s low price, and I will receive a commission too. (thank you!)