Who knew “Downton Abbey” to be a surprising series? While the ITV series may occasionally kill off a character in grand fashion and cultivate one or two other jaw-dropping moments, we have to say that by and large, this is not a show that tends to accentuate subtlety more than anything else. (Spoilers ahead for Americans!)
The biggest surprise for us is actually the story of Thomas Barrow, who is getting some of the best material he has since the third season. There are still many details to be revealed here, but we love the passion that Rob James-Collier brings to the part.
Mary’s dilemma – She tried to be a progressive woman, but sometimes that has consequences in this world. She had decided that she did not want to be with Tony Gillingham romantically, and that created quite a problem when he told him. He practically would not take “no” for an answer. Meanwhile, she developed more of a friendship with Charles Blake.
Cora and Simon – This is going on still, and Robert is taking notice of how close the two are. He has a reason to worry, but he is going about it all in the wrong way. Rather than showing kindness and trying to woo his wife, he is strictly sniping left and right.
Violet’s past – This was simply just fun, as she worked tirelessly to help a Russian man who she was once very close to. She was also one of the few to point out just how Robert was completely failing when it comes to his wife.
Sarah Bunting versus Robert – Well, here we go again. She simply cannot help herself when it comes to causing problems, and she put the Earl in a position where he summed Daisy to figure out just what she was being taught. Eventually, this led to an angry confrontation between the two, and Robert demanded she be thrown out.
The trouble with Bunting is that while she seems to be a great teacher, she cannot keep her mouth closed. This in turn creates further problems for Tom, who has to figure out who he wants to be.
Meanwhile, Daisy wants to use her education to help Mrs. Patmore arrange a petition-of-sorts for the War Memorial, to honor a man who truly deserves it.
Anna’s new trouble – Finally, we close with Mrs. Bates finding herself in hot water after making a risky decision, visiting the precise spot that Mr. Green died. she was spotted, and the investigation is intensifying. This time, she could be a suspect.
In the end, this was a strong episode of the series, and possibly a turning point for many of the characters. Tom has to figure out his place, Robert has to figure out what he wants to do when it comes to building and development, and Mary’s journey is still not over. Grade: A-.
If you want to preview further what lies ahead on “Downton Abbey,” head over here for a synopsis and much more. Want to sign up to get weekly TV updates in your inbox? Then sign up for our CarterMatt Newsletter today.