OK we open on a lawn mower, and Molesley and Dad Molesley discuss the big important annual cricket match. WHAT THE WHAT? We've never heard of this event before and have no warning this is the most important feature of this episode. Since when do they play cricket? Upstairs, downstairs, all around the town, apparently everyone but Violet plays cricket. Did I click on ESPN by mistake? Molesley goes on ad nauseum about his superior cricket playing skills. Pretty soon even the staff suspects Molesley's probably no Jiminy on the cricket field.
Trust me, I got this
Speaking of things we’ve never talked about but now pretend we’ve known all along, TEEN ROSE, the niece we’ve always loved but have never mentioned is coming to visit her Aunt Violet. JUST GREAT. Girl's eighteen and her mother can't handle her. What could go wrong?
Matthew plans on using a cricket analogy to somehow convince Robert to go along with his whiz-bang new estate management plan, because it seems we are running out of things to do at Downton. Wouldn't a PowerPoint presentation have been better?
These boots were made for whining
That little stinker Jimmy insists that Carson write Thomas a bad reference. Carson resents being bullied by this whippersnapper, but Jimmy is all NOPE that nasty man smooched me and that's ILLEGAL and I might just call the police, just watch me. Carson does not appreciate scandal. O'Brien eavesdrops and can barely hide her vengeful excitement. She warns Jimmy everyone will assume he's YOU KNOW, FUNNY if he cuts Thomas any slack. That woman is evil clear down to her toenails. Bates overhears them and decides to ask Mrs Hughes for the skinny on Thomas's misdeeds. Bates would never eavesdrop.
Teen Rose arrives in her rebellious hipster threads. Time to inject some youthful hijinks into the storyline. Edith is the youngest family member except for Little Sybbie and must be pushing forty now, we forget exactly. MATH.
What could go wrong?
Teen Rose tags along to London with Edith who is meeting with her editor at Bitch Magazine. Matthew agrees to come along to keep an eye on Teen Rose, although he has a secret plan to visit a weenie doctor.
Thomas and the terrible, awful, no good, very bad day.
BTW Carson what's up with Billy Bass on your office wall?
Thomas hears the revised, no-reference pink slip plan. Carson agrees to let him stay for a few days, because the script says he should. ONE MORE THING that stinks about being a servant: when you lose your job you are also HOMELESS.
Come inside and I'll make you a cup of tea
Mrs Hughes finds Thomas sobbing outside in the dark. She's all, my my, it can't be as bad as all that, you’d better tell me about it. Dear Mrs H, I wish I could tell you all MY problems. Turns out it really is as bad as all that, but she assures Thomas that Baby He Was Born This Way.
Edith really hates living at home
Mary asks Edith to cover for her while she's in London on a secret mission. Edith whines, WHAT AM I, YOUR SLAVE?
Hello Operator wont you give me #9?
Matthew, Edith and Teen Rose meet at Rosamund's house and decide to eat dinner together that night. Edith’s instincts are correct and Teen Rose finds a phone and calls a mystery number. She changes into a tarty red FLAPPER DRESS and vrooms away in a taxi. SHE IS SO BAD. (Do not forget about the taxi.)
Edith gets it done
Edith's editor flirts with her, calling her clever and stylish. YAY EDITH with the only interesting storyline in this whole episode. This is how you do it, sassy working girls.
Tell me something I don't know
Mrs Hughes tells Bates the story of Thomas and Jimmy. Sure, everybody knew Thomas was gay a decade ago, but since Alfred outed him DON'T ASK DON'T TELL is over. Bates tells Jimmy to man up and move on, but O'Brien hounds him to call the police. We are ready to strangle both Alfred and Jimmy.
Edith realizes what fun she is missing
Aw frig, out past curfew.
The taxi driver (remember?) comes to Rosamund's house and reports that he drove Teen Rose to a JAZZ CLUB of all places! Rosamund, Edith and Matthew storm the club and find her grinding on the dance floor with a married man. The joint is crawling with FLAPPERS wearing ROUGE and LIPSTICK and having MESSY HAIR! Matthew tells Teen Rose he won't tattle to her mother IF they leave RIGHT NOW. We don't know why. The script says so.
Matthew, confused about special doctors, goes to see the gynecologist, for crying out loud, about his woeful weenie and surprises Mary. She had some nameless disorder with her lady bits that prevents baby making and had to have “a small operation” to fix it, but of course BRITISH and also because there is no lady bits problem that fits that description. Dear Julian Fellowes, SERIOUSLY? Anyway, the gynecologist says go have sex. YAY MATTHEW!
Eavesdropping like a pro
Violet overhears the Edith scolding TeenRose and uses her Ninja espionage techniques to find out the whole lurid story. She arranges Teen Rose's exile to distant Scotland with Aunt Agatha to keep her company.
Robert had an experimental phase in college
In short words Robert can understand, Bates explains to Robert what Thomas did. Bates says O'Brien is behind it all, but Robert says heck, there was plenty of smooching back in school, what's Jimmy's problem, and besides Thomas is the best player on the House cricket team so Carson can't fire him. GOOD TIMES. Keep those priorities straight, Your Lordship.
Bates uses his powers for good not evil
Prison taught Bates a thing or three about blackmail and he asks Thomas for anything that might derail Mrs Hughes. Thomas didn’t even realize that O’Brien was behind it which makes us suspect he had some sort of blunt force head trauma we never knew about, but when Bates whispers Thomas’s secret threat, “her ladyship’s soap” into O’Brien’s ear, she is terrified. She convinces that ding-dong Jimmy to let bygones by bygones. Alfred thinks a call to the police might get Jimmy out of his hair once and for all.
WE ARE ALL SO BORED
More arguing about the new plan, BLAH BLAH BLAH This is so BORING! WHAT IS UP with Tom, who practically yesterday wanted to burn Downton to the ground but is now itching to throw out all the tenant farmers to restore THE DYNASTY? We wonder if the person who wrote this episode even bothered to watch the rest of the series.
Robert moans SOME MORE about feeling left out and Tom says something precious about everyone working together to SAVE DOWNTON FOR THE FAMILY’S FUTURE. Tom is SO bourgeois, he even agrees to play cricket to convince Robert he is worthy of being in the BRITISH BOYS CLUB. Robert stops sniffling.
Come over here and let me make you some cookies
Violet is determined to find poor Ethel a new job because the PROSTITUTE CLOUD is hanging over the family. Violet insists it would be better for Ethel to start over someplace else. So Charlie’s Grammy Toll House Cookie Bryant drops by to ask Ethel to take a nearby job so she can watch Little Charlie be rich and privileged through a crack in the Bryant estate’s fence. SEMI-GOOD NEWS FOR ETHEL; not as good for Isobel who now has to toast her own bread and admit Violet was RIGHT AS ALWAYS.
Thomas is permitted to stay at Downton with the rather suggestive title of “Under Butler” which makes him fancier than Bates. We predict no more than five minutes will pass before Thomas gets all hoity toity again and starts treating everybody like his slaves. SO MUCH FOR BEING CHARITABLE, BATES.
I have the worst taste in men
Edith finds out that her cute editor is MARRIED; OH CRAP. But it’s ok because CONVENIENTLY Mrs Editor is in an insane asylum and isn’t competent to agree to a divorce. So once again Edith likes somebody who can NEVER EVER marry her. POOR EDITH. STORY OF YOUR LIFE.
Time to get this over with already
Bad at this
IT’S FINALLY TIME FOR THAT DANG CRICKET GAME and both teams bust out the same white pants and shirts and sweaters and shoes, which is the perfect ensemble for a game played on a muddy grass field. Also, ONE game per year? (Or per decade, it seems.) We have no idea how cricket works except for what Molesley explained, so we are lost for a while, but everyone is having fun in the sun. BTW, Molesley is the worst cricket player ever.
sorry we didn’t invite you to those weddings, Rosamund
You know it’s a good cricket game when the police show up. In a rare burst of 21st century morals Robert stands up for Thomas by telling the police that Alfred was drunk-dialing. He bribes Jimmy to keep quiet by handing him the title of First Footman. POOR ALFRED. You lose this round.
Take me out to the ballgame
At the teatime break Tom decides he and Little Sybbie WILL stay at Downton after all and YAY we will all be one big happy bourgeois BRITISH family. He catches the winning fly ball, and Robert is convinced that the NEW ESTATE MANAGEMENT PLAN will be perfect after all. RIDICULOUS SLO-MO BACKSLAPPING SCENE. We are just relieved to see this embarrassing episode come to an end.
Recap and Jokes by Lillian and Jenny
Editing by Jenny Due to how long this post took to make and the fact that both Marm and I have actual other stuff to do, plus that we want to give the final episode proper attention, the next recap will not be up until wednesday at the earliest.