"It profits me but little that a vigilant authority always protects the tranquillity of my pleasures and constantly averts all dangers from my path, without my care or concern, if this same authority is the absolute master of my liberty and my life."

--Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America

Monday, February 20, 2012

It's Official - Downton Abbey Jumped the Shark... Carrying a Ouija Board

Don't get me wrong.   We still love Downton Abbey, and we'll watch it next year when it comes back and Mary and Matthew go through a time warp and have amnesia and have to fend off Martians and learn to love all over again and Mr. Bates is finally exonerated and released from prison only to be struck blind and be lost at sea and Sybil and Branson will have seventeen Irish brats, all of whom join the IRA and William will begin visiting Daisy in her sleep and haunting Downton Abbey's halls, looking for a tray to carry aperitifs... well, you get the picture.   The soap opera that the show became in the second season got even soapier last night when, at the penultimate moment, Anna and Daisy somehow (oooh... spooky!) got the Ouija board the downstairs staff had been playing with to say something like "I want them to be together," and we're supposed to believe it's Lavinia Swire, Matthew's erstwhile fiancee, speaking from beyond the grave (she died in the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1919) to get Matthew to finally get off the schneid and marry Mary.   So I guess we're now supposed to believe that the dead really do speak through a Ouija board (since otherwise it doesn't make sense, as both Anna and Daisy were far too preoccupied with their own problems to bother to pointlessly produce a vague statement from the Great Beyond purely to tease the other, and are both far too nice as characters to do such a thing, or to be the target of the other).    Sheesh!   Talk about your "willing suspension of disbelief"!

Where can they possibly go next year when the driving force of the show was to get Matthew and Mary together?   Maybe they go back to being less soap opera-y?   I can imagine some interesting shows about Matthew getting involved in politics (he used to be a lawyer), or Branson and Sybil getting involved in Irish politics, or Edith finally having a real romance.   Probably not... apparently they are going to go the full-on, snarky old lady comedy relief route with Shirley Maclaine joining as Cora's American mother coming to England to visit the great-grandchildren.  


  1. Yep. I'll still watch it, too. But when Swire was sending her ouija text from beyond I just sat there stunned, thinking, 'No, you can't be doing this to this show.'

    And then it was done.


  2. I felt exactly the same way as 'Anonymous': puzzled look on my face as I wondered "Wait a minute... they're not... uh oh.. what? They are?! They did?!"