Author Topic: Counting Down to the End of....Downton Abbey  (Read 152718 times)

Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: Have you been watching … (Julian Fellowes's) Downton Abbey?
« Reply #10 on: January 14, 2011, 03:50:39 pm »
I loved Gosford Park, by one of my favorite directors Robert Altman, so I'm jazzed about seeing this too.
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Offline Brown Eyes

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Re: Have you been watching … (Julian Fellowes's) Downton Abbey?
« Reply #11 on: January 14, 2011, 04:16:05 pm »

I missed the first episode... but I would very much like to see the others.  There must be a way to find the first episode and watch it online or something.

It looks fun.  I love Maggie Smith.

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Offline southendmd

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Re: Have you been watching … (Julian Fellowes's) Downton Abbey?
« Reply #12 on: January 14, 2011, 06:32:23 pm »
I missed the first episode... but I would very much like to see the others.  There must be a way to find the first episode and watch it online or something.

It looks fun.  I love Maggie Smith.

John G. posted a link:


Episode 1 (1:23:04) can be found here:

http://video.pbs.org/video/1724131531/#


I really enjoyed it.  Maggie Smith rocks.

Offline Meryl

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Re: Have you been watching … (Julian Fellowes's) Downton Abbey?
« Reply #13 on: January 14, 2011, 08:17:04 pm »
Maggie Smith rocks.

You can say that twice and mean it!  8)
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Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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Re: Have you been watching … (Julian Fellowes's) Downton Abbey?
« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2011, 07:50:22 pm »


http://austenprose.com/2011/01/17/downton-abbey-episode-two-on-masterpiece-classic-pbs-%E2%80%93-a-recap-review/



Downton Abbey:
Episode Two on Masterpiece Classic PBS –
A Recap & Review


by Laurel Ann (Austenprose)
17 January 2011





Downton Abbey continued last night on Masterpiece Classic with episode two. After a great opening on PBS last Sunday to a record 7.6 million US viewers, this four-part Edwardian drama continues to charm and amaze me. The blending of the upstairs and downstairs lives of the residents of this stately manor house is compelling drama, with moments of total surprise and shock from both quarters. This new co-production by Masterpiece PBS and Carnival ITV was a huge hit when it aired in the UK last year. The second season has just been announced and UK viewers will be dished up eight new episodes next Fall and a Christmas special in December. Great news for North American viewers also since the second season will most likely air shortly after in January 2012.




The second act of a play or opera is always my favorite. We have been introduced to the characters (the aristocratic Crawley family of Downton Abbey) the conflicts have been set up (death of the immediate male heirs) and the hook dropped (the entail must be broken) for us to take the bait. Now we can get to know the personalities at play and watch the drama unfold. In addition, several themes are developing, but two dominant ones in episode two were discovering or honoring our place in life, and harboring secrets and their consequences. Here is a synopsis from Masterpiece.




As Matthew (Dan Stevens) and Isobel (Penelope Wilton), the newly-arrived Crawleys settle into life in the village, Isobel offers her experience with modern medical techniques at the hospital to Doctor Clarkson (David Robb), to the considerable consternation of Violet, the Dowager Countess (Maggie Smith). Both Matthew and Lady Mary (Michelle Dockery) bristle at the prospect of being matched to one another; still, Matthew indulges Mary’s clever barbs even as a suitor in the form of The Hon. Evelyn Napier (Brandan Patricks), the wealthy son and heir to Viscount Branksome is invited for a foxhunt, accompanied by the handsome attaché at the Turkish Embassy, Kemal Pamuk (Theo James).




Downstairs, secrets reflect the ambitions, shames and desperate hopes of the servants, as housemaid Gwen (Rose Leslie) tries to hide the contents of a heavy box set atop the wardrobe in her room; the butler Mr. Carson (Jim Carter) abandons his customary dignity as he skittishly raids the pantry; and Lord Grantham’s valet Mr. Bates (Brendan Coyle) refuses to share the source of his debilitating pain to his co-workers. Their concern and camaraderie markedly contrast the festering discontent of the footman Thomas (Rob James-Collier) and Miss O’Brien (Siobhan Finneran), Lady Grantham’s (Elizabeth McGovern) personal maid.




A sinister stranger Charles Grigg (Nicky Henson) barges into the house, demanding to speak to Lord Grantham (Hugh Bonneville), and an attractive stranger captivates Mary before setting into motion a chain of events that put the fate of Downton Abbey on even less stable ground.




Many plots churning; some resolved; others only leave us craving more of this multi-layered, well-acted, beautifully produced period drama. I always enjoy the surprise element and dutifully promise not to reveal any major spoilers, but the reaction by Lord Grantham when Mr. Carson’s secret from the past arrives and plants himself in his library is classic, the Dowager Countess continues to steal every scene with all her sarcastic lines, and Lady Mary’s push of propriety is an eye popper.




The Victorian costumes and English locations arrive regularly in jaw dropping splendor. The scenes of the foxhunt were especially picturesque, evoking a time when everything had its place in order of social dictum. Victorian-era fox hunting as a sport is as complicated socially as any Regency-era Ball at Almacks. People, horses, hounds, foxes, you name it. Everyone, and everything had its place. A perfect example for writer Julian Fellowes to use to display the pomp of the aristocratic lifestyle that the upstairs residents of Downton maintain, and the downstairs servants must cater to.




My favorite scene of episode two was during the family dinner at Downton with the Crawleys, Matthew and Isobel. As Violet, the Dowager Countess takes pot shots at Mrs. Crawley for volunteering in “her” hospital and disagreeing with the doctors treatment of a sick laborer, Lady Mary, the chip off her grandmother’s ole shoulder, taunts Matthew about his middle-class kind not riding or hunting, “unusual among our kind of people.” Ouch. If you watch closely the reaction by the people who are observing the discussion, Ladies Edith and Sybil, you can see the tension mounting in their keen interest and surprise, and, the temperature of the room rise by the withering looks like poison darts of disapproval issued by Lady Grantham to the Dowager and her daughter Mary. Ha! Not one to take a hint from her lowly American mother, Lady Mary continues to taunt Matthew’s usurper position as heir by telling him the story of Andromeda, with sacrificial maidens, sea serpents and heroic young Gods to the rescue. Matthew gets the point exactly and offers a retort worthy of any Jane Austen hero. Bravo!




Episode three of Downton Abbey continues next Sunday, January 23, 2011 at 9:00 pm ET (check your local listings)

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(and you know who I am...)


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Offline chowhound

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Re: Have you been watching … (Julian Fellowes's) Downton Abbey?
« Reply #15 on: January 19, 2011, 03:33:48 pm »
I only came across this thread today, so let me add that I've been watching it since it started two weeks ago and am enjoying it thoroughly. John Doyle, the TV critic for the Toronto Globe and Mail described it as "instantly addictive" and I now see what he means.

Beyond the overall drama, I'm also enjoying the attention given to period detail - like the kedgeree (a rice and fish dish) which was one of the dishes sent upstairs for the breakfast buffet. I emailed my nephew in Vancouver to see if he'd spotted it as he's served kedgeree over Christmas but for a small family supper not for breakfast. He had.

And Maggie Smith, bless her, is in absolutely tip-top form. Roll on next Sunday's episode!

Offline Meryl

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Re: Have you been watching … (Julian Fellowes's) Downton Abbey?
« Reply #16 on: January 20, 2011, 02:03:46 am »
And Maggie Smith, bless her, is in absolutely tip-top form. Roll on next Sunday's episode!

She's worth the price of admission, as they say.  Superb!  8)
Ich bin ein Brokie...

Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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Re: Have you been watching … (Julian Fellowes's) Downton Abbey?
« Reply #17 on: January 20, 2011, 11:43:22 pm »



http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1345453/Andrew-Lloyd-Webber-accused-Countess-Carnarvon-painfully-rude-bid-buy-real-life-Downton-Abbey.html

Countess accuses
Andrew Lloyd Webber
of 'painfully rude' bid to buy
their real-life Downton Abbey

By Mail On Sunday Reporter
Last updated at 12:33 AM on 9th January 2011




Andrew Lloyd Webber angered the Earl and Countess of Carnarvon after
he made an unsolicited offer to buy their property Highclere Castle, which
was used for ITV show Downtown Abbey




Oscar-winning composer Lloyd Webber
made it known that he wanted to buy
the 300-room pile so he could house his
priceless paintings there



           
George Herbert, the eighth Earl of Carnarvon, and his wife Fiona were angered
by the offer. The countess described the composer's approach as 'painfully rude'



The aristocratic owners of Highclere Castle, the stately home used as the setting for Downton Abbey, were outraged by Andrew Lloyd Webber’s ‘painfully rude’ attempts to ‘buy’ them out of their home.

The fury felt by the Earl and Countess of Carnarvon is laid bare in previously private letters and emails obtained by this newspaper under freedom of information laws.

The Oscar-winning composer of Evita, Phantom Of The Opera  and Cats  made it known last July that he wanted to buy the 300-room pile near Newbury, Berkshire, so he could house his priceless paintings there.

His unsolicited offer angered George Herbert, the eighth Earl of Carnarvon, and his wife Fiona.

The couple revealed their displeasure in an email to consultants who were advising them on a future planning application.

On July 19, 2010, the Countess wrote: ‘In terms of feedback, it was hugely heartening to hear comments from people in the street . . .

‘The consensus did appear to be a sense of surprise and outrage that a rich man would think it acceptable to come along, get his cheque book out and take over a piece of history [to house his paintings].

‘Although the story seems outrageous enough almost to be amusing, it was also painfully rude that he should feel able to dismiss our dedication and determination to sustain the house for future generations, offering to buy us out.’

Lloyd Webber, who lives on the nearby Sydmonton estate, declared an interest in buying the house when the Earl and Countess revealed they were interested in applying for a special kind of planning permission, known as a development enabler.

This would effectively overturn an existing ban on developing land close to Highclere Castle.

The couple claimed that development was the only way they could generate funds to pay for repairs to the castle.

Lloyd Webber then wrote to the local authority saying he would like to buy the castle.

The Carnarvons have been paid an unspecified sum by ITV for the castle’s use in Downton Abbey. The show’s ratings success has also brought a boost in visitor numbers.

But contrary to reports, the money from Downton Abbey will not pay for the repairs.

The Countess of Carnarvon last night confirmed she and her husband had written the email.

A spokesman for Lloyd Webber declined to comment.
"Tu doives entendre je t'aime."
(and you know who I am...)


Cowboy Curtis (Laurence Fishburne)
and Pee-wee in the 1990 episode
"Camping Out"

Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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Re: Have you been watching … (Julian Fellowes's) Downton Abbey?
« Reply #18 on: January 21, 2011, 12:06:23 am »

http://www.andrewlloydwebber.com/news/highclere-castle


19th October 2010
Highclere Castle



Following a report in yesterday’s Daily Telegraph regarding Highclere Castle, the setting of ITV1’s Downton Abbey, Andrew wrote the following letter to The Daily Telegraph, an edited version of which appears in today’s paper.

Dear Sir,

May I express my joy and relief that the success of the ITV series “Downton Abbey” leads the Earl of Carnarvon to announce that its “star”, Sir Charles Barry’s wonderful Highclere Castle is saved.

I, along with the Highclere Society and the North Wessex Downs Preservation Society, have been very concerned that the Earl had proposed to develop housing in swathes of the north Hampshire Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (ANOB), relying on special English Heritage planning guidelines to raise money to restore the castle. Under these guidelines, this sort of development is only permitted if every other avenue is exhausted or if the sale of the building to be restored to a sympathetic buyer cannot be achieved.

The action groups drew my attention to the potential damage to the ANOB. This, combined with my love of architecture, was behind my interest (mentioned in today’s article) in exploring whether the castle, which is not lived in, could possibly become a publicly accessed long term home for my art collection. Today we read that the TV series will generate enough income to save the castle and presumably the proposed development need not take place. This is truly a fantastic outcome for all.

As Bertie Wooster, a previous TV resident of Highclere Castle would say, “Top hole! Jeeves.”

Yours faithfully,

ANDREW LLOYD WEBBER



"Tu doives entendre je t'aime."
(and you know who I am...)


Cowboy Curtis (Laurence Fishburne)
and Pee-wee in the 1990 episode
"Camping Out"

Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: Have you been watching … (Julian Fellowes's) Downton Abbey?
« Reply #19 on: January 24, 2011, 01:58:36 am »
I was surprised in the latest episode to hear the saying "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy." Wow! Shades of The Shining!!
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