Well...Downton is officially over for me. Matthew's death was the point of no return, jump the shark moment if you ask me. Not that I cared that much about the character since season 1. Frankly, I thought he was written so blandly the past two seasons he became a completely flat character; but regardless, killing off a central--perhaps even THE
most central--character whose plotline is the crux upon which the entire series is based upon, is a nearly impossible obstacle to overcome while still maintaining the integrity of the story, if there was any left to begin with.
Now that Matthew is dead, the entire series--built around all the drama regarding Downton's inheritance and Matthew's role in it, his on-again-off-again relationship with Mary, the clashes with Robert over modernizing the estate, etc.--feels like a complete waste in hindsight, especially given the lazy and flippant way they killed him. Downton's writers have a notorious history of hitting the "reset" button when it comes to its storylines--a cheap writing device that I would directly attribute to the show's decline in quality--but this reset takes the cake. Yeah, basically all the drama and crap we put you through for the past 3 years? It meant nothing. Doesn't matter. Mary just conveniently has a baby boy just as we kill off the only other sole inheriter, so yeah, that inheritance crisis we've drawn out for 3 seasons is all fixed in one episode, wrapped in a nice bow. Bleh.
Look, I know Julian Fellowes had no other choice. Dan Stevens wanted to leave. But the guy could've at least thought of a more compelling way to kill him...one that doesn't undermine everything that came prior and thus dissolving all sense of conflict/tension those moments were built on.
So yeah, I guess this is just a long-winded way of saying, "That sucked."
Oh, I also wish to echo those who said they were utterly bored by the episode. It was soooo boring. No sense of tenson whatsoever with anything.