While there are many characters on “Downton Abbey” that choose to go by Mr. or Mrs., Mr. Carson is one of the few who uses it so ubiquitously that it is easy to forget that the man has an actual first name in Charles. While he may be at times the coldest and most authoritative figure in the entire Abbey, he is also the most fascinating figure because of it. His life is not an open book, and he is bound to a sense of loyalty that is truly admirable, especially in an era where such values are becoming of lesser importance.
Another great thing for Carson moving in to season 5 is that we have at least started to find out a few more assorted details about the man’s life. We know now that he has a romantic side, and that he once had close friends that were torn away from him thanks to a woman. He has held on to pain and regret, and allowed that at times to build up walls so that nobody else can really come in. (Warning: Spoilers ahead!)
When we last saw him – It was a nice little symbolic moment at the end of the season 4 Christmas special, where we saw Carson and Mrs. Hughes wade into the water together. It more or less showed that he was ready to take on his fears, and that it was okay to allow someone to be close to him again. It was okay to have a friend, and while we’re sure that there are some shippers out there of the two, we’re keeping things simple for now. After he made amends with his old friend earlier in the season, this was a nice full-circle moment for him away from his responsibilities as the man in charge of the servants.
What could come next – For Carson, the biggest thing professionally could be tough decisions, as Downton still has a massive staff and you have to wonder just how long they can really keep that operation going. Imagine him working with Robert to determine who were the most effective people for him to keep if they decide to downsize. While Carson hates to admit it, he has become attached to many of these people, and it would not surprise us at all to see him struggle with both this and also trying to figure out whether or not his status as an authority figure remains in an ear of great independence.
What we would like to see – Carson falling in love again would in fact be a ton of fun to watch unfold, or him at least starting to establish more of a personal relationship with people beyond just barking orders. With that being said, though, we would not want to see the show go overboard with any of it. The greatness of this character is that you are always left wanting more, and that is something the writers would need to maintain if this character was to remain a constant favorite of fans around the globe.
What do you want to see from Mr. Carson on “Downton Abbey” next season? Share some of your thoughts below.