Downton Abbey - Season 4 on PBS

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by Artemis@BC, Dec 31, 2013.

  1. my little pony

    my little pony snarking for AZE

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    i think the guy taking over his dad's farm is cuter than anyone edith ever dallied with, is he unmarried?
     
  2. mikemba

    mikemba Active Member

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    Just popping back in to say I love this thread. If you can believe this, I never even heard of "Downton Abbey" until after the 3rd season was completed in America. I caught up on Seasons 1-3 over the summer, but had no one to discuss it with. It's so great watching Season 4 and getting to chat about it the next day with all of you! I really enjoy reading everybody's thoughts.

    ETA: My Little Pony, I didn't catch whether that man was married or not. So far, I like Michael Gregson, but if it does not work out with him, I'd really like to see Edith meet some nice, uncomplicated (single) man. Two of the three men she was ever shown kissing were married, and her family went out of their way to ruin things with Anthony Strallan. Oh, she also had feelings for Patrick, who may have loved her back, but was engaged to Mary. She is more than overdue for some romantic happiness.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2014
  3. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    The Happy Place - Facebook recap is up!

    "Another beast of circuitry and automation has invade my place of work! Comrades, I fear the end is upon us! I cannot hold my shores against the persistent armies of the mechanized future!"

    :lol:

    "When you're done with that, I can think of another tart who can use some filling."

    :lol: :lol:
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2014
  4. znachki

    znachki Active Member

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    Mrs. Hughes shared a link from happyplace.com with Mr. Bates :D

    Mr. Bates and Anna Bates have checked into The Scene Everyone's Been Waiting For For Several Episodes Now"
     
  5. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

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    I like the one where Edith is trying to turn off her location app :lol:
     
  6. danceronice

    danceronice Corgi Wrangler

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    I was like AWWWWWWWW....I felt so bad for him in his last appearance, stuck playing second fiddle to slimy (albeit karmically doomed) Pamuk.

    Funny, but she's clearly not wearing anything doing any serious tight-lacing and really wouldn't be wearing a corset at all unless she's also into retro fashion as they were pretty much out of fashion by then. A lot of people like to point out that even Rose in Titanic really shouldn't be in the kind of corset she's in for the 'lacing-up' scene in 1912 as they were already going out of style.

    On the one hand I sympathize (I get "anger" a lot better than "shame" and in Anna's situation it would not be her HUSBAND they'd have to worry about committing murder) with his being frustrated by Anna apparently having a complete personality transplant and essentially walking out on their marriage. On the other hand, I'm like "Am I going to have to bust out all my Series 3 'prison changes a man' jokes again?"
     
  7. tamuno

    tamuno Member

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    ETA: I somehow forgot how violent Mr. Bates was in pressing Mrs. Hughes. That was inappropriate, and more than a little scary.

    Why do people dislike this scene? I thought it portrayed a man who had reached the end of his tether and desperately needed answers. This was his only (realistic, I thought), and last resort. I am sure he would rather Mrs Hughes not be involved but she is. So what's he to do.........? As for people moaning that this should be Anna's story, Anna's attempt to get over this strictly, almost exclusively her point of view, I really don't see how it can be. She is married and part of her healing and accepting what happened depends on how the person she cares most about accepts her afterwards. Is this not a normal human reaction? She has to be made to 'feel' normal again. Considering there was no counseling or support group or such 21st century contraptions, Bates is the only one whose support will matter.
    Her concern both for herself and her future is double-edged here - fear of pregnancy, feeling 'soiled', her husband and how he would react? How WOULD he react? Suppose he kills him or assaults him? What will become of me/us? I thought it was covered very well by the show. I guess what I am saying is that there is NO WAY it can be strictly only about Anna's internalizing of her feelings of violation.

    Mikemba,
    I always like newcomers to the show. As to your previous ponderings, My take is that Carson has been with Robert since time immemorial and Mrs. Hughes not long after that. I remember that scene with Hughes and Carson about her previous life but I don't recall anything she may have said that confuses their timeline of service. I may have to rewatch.

    I did not like that story about Robert and Jane. I don't know that it was out of character, more like us getting to know and understand Robert's feeling of 'smallness' and uselessness during the war. If you remember Cora 'found' her self also by doing the soup kitchen, running the convalescent home etc. and Robert was not having lunch with her anymore (or doing much of anything else). Enter this maid who looked like Cora and offered her understanding. I did not like it but accepted it as a low moment in Robert's life.

    As far as I can see, Matthew or the family did not know Carslyle before he was introduced to them. At least that's how I read the plot. Lavinia knew him but did not know he was Mary's finance. The family had heard of him as a newspaper man but based on the family's conversations, they were making his acquaintance for the first time. As for Swire fortune, maybe he got it AFTER the Marconi scandal and did not have it at the time Richard called in the debt? I may be missing some things but this is my take.
     
  8. danceronice

    danceronice Corgi Wrangler

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    Jimmy Kent: "Bet that's not a hard group to get into."
    Nobody likes this and everyone thinks Jimmy Kent is an ahole.
     
  9. patinage

    patinage Member

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    Violet, how could you have forgotten Tennyson?
     
  10. Cyn

    Cyn Well-Known Member

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    First post in this thread -- I'd been interested in DA for over a year, but I don't have Netflix :drama:, and it drives me crazy to start watching a serial in the middle, so when our local PBS affiliate began running marathons during their fundraising in December (also to prepare for the Season 4 premiere), I parked my fat ass in front of the TV with a big bowl of strawberries and sugared sour cream (or an equivalent type of snack) every Saturday night for 3-4 hours and got caught up.

    I'm in agreement with most opinions in this thread, but I do have to say that while I like the coupling of Anna/Mr. Bates, it drives me ballybonkers at times. It's as though they have two speeds - all shmoopy-woopy, or angsty at-the-cliff-of-death :drama:. Honesty to god, if I didn't know better, I'd swear they were Bo and Hope Brady with the bi-polar modes of their relationship/trials and tribulations they must bear :blah:.

    Watching Rose, there are a lot of times I look at her and see a very young, ca. 1970s Jessica Lange (minus the Midwest accent :p ).

    Also, if I have my back turned to the TV so I can't see the characters, and Mrs. Hughes starts talking, she often sounds exactly (pitch, tone, accent, grammar, etc.) like Mrs. Doubtfire :eek:.
     
  11. Corianna

    Corianna Active Member

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    Tennyson was given a peerage for his poetry. Byron inherited his title. Guess which one would count with Violet.
     
  12. jlai

    jlai Title-less

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    Re: Bates/Anna. I don't completely get the "ignore your husband" in the most over the top way, but I do get the shame and the guilt.
    I can see Anna blaming herself partly because Bates had expressed his displeasure with her socialization with Green before that tragic night. So now she must be worried that Bates would say "I told you so", or perhaps her conscience said her husband was right after Green after all and she was wrong about him.

    I can see Bates blaming himself for not protecting Anna. During the incident, Mrs. Huges was wondering about Anna taking too long in the servants hall, and instead of checking on her, Bates just presumed Anna fell asleep. Whiile I don't agree with violence, I can see Bates trying to assuage his own guilt by taking matters into his own hands afterwards.

    In some way I like this version of Bates better than the one in Season one and two. The earlier version of Bates got bullied by his wife to an absurd degree (and I didn't get why he allowed it to happen), and this Bates, hardened by prison life, would bend rules to make things happen -- which is a more believable person. There have been early signs of this too -- Bates forged Moseley's signature to give him money, just to make Anna happy.

    Interesting that for all the angst about Mary and Pamuk during the first season or two, Mary is turning out to be the least scandalous of the three daughters. :D
     
  13. Wyliefan

    Wyliefan Well-Known Member

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    Maybe I'm naive, but honestly, I didn't get "protect Anna's honor" out of it. Yes, I know that would have been standard for the times, and maybe there's a little of that mixed up in it, but I read it more as "make the man pay for making Anna suffer." I think it's tearing him up inside to think of what she went through -- you could see it when he left Mrs. Hughes's room and then just stood there and cried.
     
  14. PRlady

    PRlady Smoking

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    I'm with you on his dominant feeling but think that honor did have something to do with it. I thought that scene rang true, anger and empathy and helplessness and leashed violence. The actor who plays Bates (whose name of course I can't remember) is very good. Besides, we are not past the time when a woman's honor is cause for violence, and not just in "backwards" societies either.
     
  15. dardar1126

    dardar1126 Well-Known Member

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    Last edited: Jan 28, 2014
    IceAlisa and (deleted member) like this.
  16. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Épaulement!!!

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    I must admit I didn't consider this possibility:
    :rofl: Lord Tevye
     
  17. Wyliefan

    Wyliefan Well-Known Member

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    :lol:
     
  18. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Épaulement!!!

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    I am picturing Lady Mary calling Cora on the phone, using a fake voice: Hello, this is Susan from Planned Parenthood. Could you please have Lady Edith call us? It's urgent.
     
  19. my little pony

    my little pony snarking for AZE

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    if edith thought she was pregnant, i would think she would have been a little more concerned about the whole thing. she was as excited as someone getting a flu shot.

    did we ever see the wife or hear anyone else talk about her condition? maybe "my wife is nuts and i cant legally leave her" is old timey for "my wife doesnt understand me"
     
  20. dardar1126

    dardar1126 Well-Known Member

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    Twitter:

    Centering on the Violet/Isobel and John/Anna relationships.
     
  21. mikemba

    mikemba Active Member

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    I agree. But the point I was making was that Mary sent her letter to Matthew telling him that she wanted him to meet Richard after Matthew and Richard's initial meeting. My memory is alittle fuzzy, but the timeline went something like this:

    Lavinia and Matthew came to dinner where Matthew met Richard and Lavinia said she already knew him.

    Matthew returned to the war; Mary and Richard got engaged.

    Mary sent a letter telling Matthew about the engagement, and saying she wanted to introduce him to Richard.

    For all this show's strong points, it makes really fundamental errors like contradicting its own timelines.
     
  22. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

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    I think that happens when different writers work on each episode. I know they'll keep track of the big stuff, but there should be someone in continuity who focuses on the details, because fans certainly notice.

    Hopefully you don't watch soap operas :lol: I watched one for decades, and it would drive me nuts when two characters would act like they didn't know each other, when every fan knew they had had conversations in the past, or had worked at the same place, or worse yet - and this happened - that one of them was married to other's sibling ten years earlier so of course they knew each other. The big soaps change writers and producers and often even the actors playing the characters, and nobody bothers to map anything out - resulting in the classic devices of DNA test results being switched and characters having surprise twins that are supposed to explain everything.
     
  23. danceronice

    danceronice Corgi Wrangler

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    No, we've never seen his wife. If she's not in some way mentally ill, they're apparently mutually separated as she clearly doesn't live in the same house. (We also already had a genuine "My wife doesn't understand me" BS pulled on the much more gullible Rose, which Matthew neatly told her off for.) A British TV tropes editor refers to his wife having been "sectioned", which in American English means "committed", voluntarily or not. A better question is exactly WHAT is she mentally ill with? Again I really doubt we're dealing with a Bertha Rochester situation where she's clearly had a full psychotic break and is sneaking around ripping up wedding veils and making animal sounds.
     
  24. mikemba

    mikemba Active Member

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    Thanks for your insights. No, I don't watch any soap operas (my job always prevented me from being able to watch them).
    I guess I felt that "Downton Abbey" is of such high quality in so many ways, that it is quite surprising to see such glaring errors. It's also surprising to me because, unlike a soap opera that airs 5 episodes a week, Downton has only 7-9 episodes a year. So it seems like it is a lot less understandable for Downton to make these mistakes.

    The funny thing is that I don't look for errors. I'm someone who likes to really suspend my disbelief when watching a work of fiction (but I don't expect them to contradict themselves). So if these mistakes are jumping out at me, they should be very obvious to the people creating the show.
     
  25. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

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    I agree. I do wonder sometimes if there's another issue than differing writers as well - I wonder if by the time they go through several drafts of the script, then it changes while filming, then it's edited, that the people involved in the show lose track of what made it to air and how it was presented - perhaps thinking they've covered something that then never made it to air, or not realizing something changed after the script left their hands. Again, there's no excuse on a quality production - there should be someone keeping track of this stuff.

    I recall on Lost, there were a couple of people whose sole job was to review scripts and point out when something wasn't making sense or contradicted something two seasons earlier or was out of character. They pretty much had to on that show given that many fans were pretty much breaking it down frame by frame and word by word.

    Sometimes it just becomes a joke - the dog on Revenge, the SORASing on soaps, or the time they went back to the original Becky on Roseanne, but I definitely see why it bugs you because it bugs me too.
     
  26. dardar1126

    dardar1126 Well-Known Member

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  27. Wyliefan

    Wyliefan Well-Known Member

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    Sybbie and George are darling. I wish we could see more of them, but of course there are all the difficulties of working with child actors -- which of course fits in nicely with the old "parents see their kids just a few minutes a day" idea that we're dealing with here. (I remember this being mentioned in The King's Speech also.) I wonder how the parents could stand it! I mean, obviously it would be awesome to have lots of help with the nitty-gritty of parenting -- diapers and vomit and food-flinging and "but why?" every five seconds and all the rest -- but this just seems extreme.
     
  28. dardar1126

    dardar1126 Well-Known Member

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  29. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    Re: the "hurricane" in the nursery ... I was watching Sunday's episode with a friend, and when Mary responded with "A hurricane? In Yorkshire?" my friend and I turned to each other and said, pretty much in unison, "In 'artford, 'ereford, and 'ampshire, 'urricanes 'ardly hever 'appen."

    I'd be willing to be we weren't the only ones.

    :lol:
     
  30. Wyliefan

    Wyliefan Well-Known Member

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    YES! :respec: