Thursday, January 14, 2016

Top Five Lines from Downton Abbey – S6; E2

You all know why I love writing these Downton post, don’t you? It’s because I get to go back and watch the episode a second (and sometimes third) time. And when I watch the episode by myself, I catch so many more great lines than just the ones that my family and I laughed at (or swooned at) the night before.

Which is also why some of my favorite lines might be a little obscure to you.

A couple of you mentioned that you fully expected to see the “wigs on the green” line here this week. While funny, I suppose, Isobel was just being her self-righteous self and that doesn’t always appeal to me. So that won’t be showing up. (Although I guess it just did.)

And since cooking is one of my favorite things, Mrs. Patmore’s line, ““I know it’s cheating, but I might have to buy a jar of horseradish,” totally cracked me up and should have made my list this week. But, alas, I didn’t have room for it. (Except I did. *wink wink*)

And then there was the line I loved this week that wasn’t so much a line as a look. Remember when Mr. Finch, the livestock man, wanted to talk to someone in charge about the Fat Stock Show in Molton? Mary told him that she was replacing Mr. Branson as the estate agent, and poor Mr. Finch looked like he had swallowed . . . well . . . a finch.

So many great moments in Episode 2.

But I must get on to my top five lines.

1. This episode opens with Mary and Edith sniping at each other . . . again. Over breakfast. Poor Robert can’t even eat his eggs in silence.

They read their letters, and Mary speculates that Rose must be pregnant. Edith asks Mary why she thinks that, and Mary says it’s because Rose says she might not be able to travel in the summer.


Edith gets the last word, however, when she says,

“As usual you add two and two to make 53.”

I’ll be using that one.

2. Anna confides in Mary (way too much, if you ask me) about her problem maintaining a pregnancy, and immediately Mary insists on helping her. She decides to take Anna to her doctor in London.

Anna rebuffs Mary’s offer of help—it will cost too much. She’s probably worried that Mary will get her into this mess and then neglect to actually pay for it. But Mary is adamant.

“Don’t be silly! You’ve earned it fair and square keeping my secrets. Hiding that fearful Dutch thingamajig and carrying poor Mr. Pamuk down the gallery at the dead of night.”

The two giggle like schoolgirls just thinking about the Pamuk episode.

And so do we.

Later, Anna tells Bates that she and Mary will be headed to London for a quick overnight trip.

Bates doesn’t even question the trip because those poor servants had no say in the matter. When the mistress of the house wants to go to London, you drop everything and go.

(What if Anna had her bunco group coming over that night? She’d totally have to cancel her plans.)

Anyway, Bates sees this as an opportunity for Anna to get some rest after her most recent miscarriage.

“Well, be sure to put your feet up.”

Anna replies,

“Yes, I’ll be . . . putting my feet up.”

Anyone else catch that bit of irony?

3. I guess I can’t avoid talking about the hospital takeover, although I wish I could. That storyline is already boring me to tears.

(BUT SERIOUSLY, HOW ABOUT CORA’S HAT IN THE HOSPITAL SCENE?!—the one with the pheasant feathers. Oh my gorgeousness. I am loving all of the clothes so far this season.)

So Cora goes to the hospital for a tour (as if she’s never been there before, right?) with Violet and Dr. Clarkson (Team Vi). While they are there, who shows up but Isobel, whom Cora thinks is right about the whole takeover thing (Team I).

Eventually Cora decides to leave, but not before Isobel can get in one last lick:

“I’ll come with you. We must give them time to gnash their teeth alone.”

Which is exactly what Dr. Clarkson and Violet do.

“I can’t deny it,” Clarkson admits, “Lady Downton would have made a powerful ally.”

Violet, shooting daggers at him says,

I hope you’re not implying that she would be more powerful than I.”

Oh never, Violet. Never!

4. Could we have a moment of silence for the tenant farmers?




Who knew that they lived under such fear of losing their homes and their livelihoods pretty much every single day? I sure didn’t. But it’s starting to make sense to me, especially after Daisy’s rant in Episode 1.

And Poor Mr. Drewe. (Cue Cora’s pseudo-sympathetic tone.)

The man has his hands full, you’ve gotta admit. What with the pigs and Mary as his new boss and his four kids and his crazy-a** wife to deal with.

His family had been at Yew Tree Farm for over a hundred years for goodness sake!!

Didn’t matter.

I really almost lost it during the scene between Mr. Drewe and Robert at the end. There was no loud discussion. No pleading. Nobody claiming injustice.

Everyone just knew that Mrs. Drewe had screwed up royally and something needed to be done. Someone would have to pay and it sure wasn’t going to be the Granthams.

But Mr. Drewe took it like a man and said he’d start looking for a new tenancy in the morning. Adding this killer:

“We made a plan, lady Edith and I. But we forgot about emotion. And emotion’s what will trip you up every time.”

Sure is, Mr. Drewe. Sure is.

And then Robert has to go and show his human side!

“God bless you, Drewe. God bless you and your family.”

Pass the tissues.

And hand the key to Mr. Mason on your way out.

5. I think I’ve saved the best for last. Carson and Hughes.

(Sounds like a comedy team from the ‘40s.)

I think they had their first fight in this episode. Last time they were just discussing The Unmentionable, but this time it was all out war over their wedding venue.

The Great Hall of Downton Abbey is unsuitable for the wedding, according to Mrs. Hughes, but Carson can’t seem to tell the family “Thanks but no thanks.”

Now, could we just stop and think about that for a moment? The Great Hall. Of Downton Abbey. Unsuitable?

Just who does Mrs. Hughes think she is??

I’d give anything to have a wedding in a place like that. And these days you’d pay a pretty penny to have a wedding in the Great Hall of Downton Abbey, if, indeed, such a place existed.

So seriously, who is Mrs. Hughes to thumb her nose at such a generous offer?

She might need a little time out to think about her actions.

But Mrs. Hughes has a point to make (as does Julian Fellowes), and make it she does.

“I want my own wedding to be done in my own way, is that so outlandish?”

You gotta give it to Carson. He tries. He really does.

“It’s my wedding too.”

(I think I’ve heard that one before, too.)

But Mrs. Hughes holds her ground and delivers my favorite line from this episode.

“I am the bride. We’ll be doing it your way for the next 30 years, I know that well enough, but the wedding day is mine.”

Enough said.


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  1. You covered it all and very well, my friend! I guess you don't really like Isobel? I like that she doesn't put up with all the poshy nonsense even though she is pretty posh herself.
    I saw the Mr. Mason getting the Drewes' tenancy thing coming too. That was a little too obvious. But I'm sure we will all be happy about it.
    I hope just about every woman got Anna's pun about putting her feet up. If not, they must not have ever gone to the GYNO.
    Mrs. Hughes has every right to not feel like a servant on her wedding day and I do believe that is what she will feel like if they have it at Downton. She doesn't look at it the same way we do. She wants to have something of her own and I can appreciate that because, well, I just can.
    Well, done, my friend!

  2. Loved this! The zinger lines are just one of the many things that make Downton Abbey marvelous....