Pemberley (Lyme Park, Cheshire)

Pemberley (Lyme Park, Cheshire)
Oh, to be in England...

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Downton Abbey Season 4 Episode 2

SPOILER ALERT! This post is intended for those who have already seen Season 4 Episode 2

Oh. My. Stars. Has Anna not suffered enough? If we were ever in any doubt about whether Joanne Froggatt can act, tonight should dispel that. I don't know about you but I found the end of this otherwise light episode really hard to watch. I kept hoping Anna's screams would be heard above Nellie Melba's arias but alas, this was the only time in the history of the house that there was no one in the servant's area of Downton Abbey to hear her!

Well, it is a subject that is just as relevant today so I suppose we should thank Lord Fellowes for a plot line which might help someone, although it made a lot of us really uncomfortable. Very possibly the point.

On a lighter note, Edith's chappie (who looks so much like Michael Palin he actually played him once!) is now not only learning German but cheating at poker to get in good with Lord Grantham. Good work!

Rose is getting everyone dancing to jazz (very awkwardly I might add) and Molesley has his third menial job in 2 episodes. Oh, the indignity of having to wear gloves!

Alfred is cooking again and Lady Mary actually laughed! Poor Tom is being set upon (yet again) by Edna, the I'm-too-good-to-be-a-housemaid. Oh, dear.

I wish we had been able to hear more of Dame Kiri Te Kanawa as Nellie Melba. What I heard was lovely despite half of the cast sneaking out or whispering through it. Or worse.

Ah well, off to best lines:

Lord Grantham: What does one say to a singer?

Mrs. Patmore: How are the squabs doing? What about the syllabubs? Oh my god, the vegetables!

Dowager Countess Violet: If I were to search for logic, I would not look for it in the English upper class.

Molesley: You want me to be a footman? I'm having my career backwards!

Lady Mary: It's been so long since I've been in the saddle. I'll be stiff as a board the next morning. (tee hee!)

Countess Violet: I am afraid Tom's small talk is very small indeed.
Lord Grantham: Not everyone can be Oscar Wilde.
Countess Violet: Well, that's a relief!

TTFN! See you next week!


  1. Jenny,

    I am so glad I found your blog, not only do you write about movies and books I enjoy, but you write with such grace and poise. When I heard about what was going to happen this season on Downton I was apprehensive about watching, but you reminded me, this is such an important topic to bring awareness to, no matter the time period. Thank you for providing such a great and positive forum for period adaptations!!

    1. Hi Tami! Welcome to the Jane Austen Film Club! You are so sweet. I look forward to seeing you here in the future. Always good discussions. :)

  2. As always, Violet has the best lines. However, I really laughed when Cora took Robert and Carson to task for having Nellie eat in her room. It's possible it was the body language and the facial expressions I loved, rather than the lines....No, " Am I the only one in this family who lives in the 20th century"....It's funny :) Robert telling Carson he blamed him and the look on Carson's face....awesome! I loved how Violet worked so hard on Isobel to get her out of her house. My heart broke for Isobel when Mary laughed. What an AMAZING actress Penelope Wilton is. I loved that she immediately recognized that it is going to kill her to see Mary move on, but that move on she must.

    I knew what was coming with the Anna storyline. I succumbed to curiosity and read the spoilers. I'm weak...what can I say. But even if I hadn't, I still think I'd have seen it coming. Mr. Green gave off major creep vibes. Poor Anna. Bates is a smart cookie. I do not believe that he will fall for the "I fainted" line for long. In fact, I suspect he didn't fall for it at all.

    1. Hello Bridget. Glad you are enjoying DA and Violet's one liners as much as I am. Lots of amazing acting and Penelope Wilton is always wonderful!

  3. Loved Violet's quote about logic! So funny! I completely agree with you about how the episode was very light and low-key until the disturbing and heart-wrenching turn it took with Anna. I'm so fearful that there will be more! It seemed to come out-of-the-blue a little, and a little too dark.

    I'm looking forward to seeing what happens with Lady Mary. Also with Tom (he better watch our for Edna!)

    1. Hi Meredith. Violet's quotes are so much fun. And Edna got the full Mrs. Hughes treatment in the next episode, didn't she? I was so glad to see her go!

  4. When I watched this episode in the UK, it made me feel very uneasy and upset. I thought it went too far and was just put in the show for shock value. It made stop watching DA.

    1. Oh, Kate! I thought you were a big Downton Abbey fan. I think it was partly Joanne Froggatt's acting which made it seem so upsetting. I hope you get to watch the rest of the season. I have seen it all now and it definitely got better after this episode. The Christmas episode was lovely, I think to make up for last year when Matthew died on Christmas day. What are you watching now? Death Comes to Pemberley?

    2. Hi Jenny, I forgot to say that I have watched the rest of the DA episodes apart from the Christmas Special. It wasn't just Anna's story that has made me stop watching DA, I just felt the storylines didn't go anywhere in Series 4. I enjoyed watching Death Comes To Pemberley on TV over Christmas, it was good. I have recently discovered BBC's Sherlock and I love it although Benedict Cumberbatch might have something to do with it! ;) I have all the Sherlock DVDs, including Series 3 which is brilliant, funny and moving at times. I hope you get a chance Series 3 of Sherlock soon. :) x

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