(Series 5, ep.5) At the moment I’m finding Downton entertaining but not unmissable, while the rest of the family have given up on it altogether. Basically, quite a lot happens, but not much happens. Each week the continuing stories get nudged forward a little, new characters appear and old ones disappear, but I don’t feel any strong story arc. Frankly, it’s feeling just a little bit stale.
So what was happening this week? The Dowager enlisted the doctor’s help to split Lord Merton and Mrs Crawley up, but then they both agreed that actually Lord M and Mrs C are quite well-suited.
Mrs Patmore inherited some money and asked Carson for investment advice just because he’s a man. Then she ignored the advice he gave – mainly because he’s a man, but also he doesn’t know anything about investments.
Edith took Aunt Rosamund to visit Little Marigold, and they stood in the mud at the farm for a few minutes in big hats and made Marigold cry before leaving. The farmer’s wife has had enough of this and is threatening to move away, so Aunt Rosamund and the Dowager are hatching a plan to have the child whisked off to a school in France. Edith is hatching a counter-plan which involves making secret phone calls to London.
The police came to talk to Anna and Mary about Mr Green’s murder. Mr Bates promised Anna that nothing bad is ever going to happen to her again, but she’s not convinced.
Thomas is looking more ill in every scene (thanks to his bogus gay antidote treatment) and Baxter described him as “sweating like a beast.” A thrilling mental image indeed.
Tom friend-zoned Miss Bunting, who decided to move to Lancashire if he cannot reciprocate her love. She told him she wished she’d known him before the Granthams got their hands on him – presumably because he would still have been a chauffeur and he could have given her a lift to the station.
Bricker came to stay while Lord Grantham was out at some event, and seized the opportunity to creep to Lady Cora’s room. She was just advising him to leave when Lord G returned and decked him.
And in other news, Rose met a handsome new man; Lord G overcame his aversion to cocktails and they had a cocktail party; and there was a lively discussion about nudist colonies in Essex.