Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Downton Abbey Recap; Baby Mama Drama


Author's note: We felt sorry for that rickety old dog having to wag her fanny at the top of every post.  Isis (although still present in each episode) has retired from her role as Dog Butt. And now: on with the show!

Stardate: 1924.  We can’t tell if Edith has been spying on the unsuspecting Drew family ever since she loaned gave them her baby (wrenched from her Swiss parents' loving arms last season), or if this unsettling behavior is new.   

Oh drat, there’s my precious little Marigold doing chores in the dirty old yard like a tiny wretched peasant.  What was I thinking? Here’s what you were thinking, Edith:  Are there any unwed aristocrat moms in 1924? Yeah, no, there are not. Which of that child’s many parents actually named her Marigold?  The Schraders probably called her something like Ingeborg, which, admittedly, is a bit of a burden for a little British child, but Marigold? Come on.


Mrs Drew is all, since you were, uh, out there in the yard [again] I thought you might like to come in for some tea, Lady Edith. Nothing peculiar about that at all!  Say, speaking of disasters, did I tell you my stubby little hubby was made captain of the Downton Fire Brigade?

Not awkward very normal tea time

Mrs Drew hasn’t yet guessed that Edith is the actual Baby Mama and is thoroughly weirded out by Edith crowding around all the time. She is pretty sure that Edith is crushing on her man. We would say she has nothing to worry about, but remember that time during the war when Edith was driving a tractor and, eeww, smooched that lumpy farmer Mister Drake?  Because all the farmers’ wives definitely remember.

Little Marigold doesn't look like anyone I know either

That evening, the upstairs family is talking about the farms and the school and whatever, when Robert suddenly blurts out that the town probably wants him to head the board of the new War Memorial fundraising committee.  Everyone gets super quiet for a moment because they had forgotten he was even in the room, and can’t imagine anyone would let Robert near any amount of money larger than a child’s allowance.

When did you get here?

This doesn't have anything to do with trains, does it?

A contingent from the Island of Misfit Toys hikes out to Downton Abbey to extend an offer of Head of the Board to...Mister Carson! Womp womp, sorry Robert.

A nurse, a priest, and a differently-abled WWI veteran walk into a bar...
Or how about this one? What has nine legs and an awkward civic duty to assign?

Are we there yet?

Robert can barely contain his frowny face when he finds out they actually want Mr Carson and not him. Maybe next time, buddy. You can't win them all! Or even most of them, if you are Robert. They do however want him to give them some land for free, which he agreed to, but before they told him about not being picked for the team.

May we please have a few square feet of your vast estate?

I'll think about it and get back to you
Robert (still in a sour mood) complains about Tom making friends with a cheeky teacher lady while the rest of them were in London last year.  He coyly refuses to tell Cora how the two sneaked upstairs together, or that Thomas (right, Barrow) tattled on Tom, even when Cora asks him point-blank what the hell he is yelping about now.

Robert mansplains everything to Cora

Rose and Tom run into Miss Bunting at the school.  She's been away taking a course in a town that must have an Aveda Salon, as her hair is now an alarming shade of Pomegranate Moonfruit Maroon.  Tom is a bit frosty and doesn’t offer to get together.  We don’t like her either, Tom!

You didn't call me...
Violet has Doctor Clarkson over for tea to feel him out about Isobel, since she rebuffed the advances of Lord Minturn, whom we actually like a lot.  Although Doctor Clarkson appreciates Isobel’s help at the Minute Clinic, he is still smarting over her outright dismissal of his affections way back when Matthew was alive.  Lillian and Marm agree that Isobel needs a man like she needs a hole in the head. You go, Isobel!

No cake for you! 

Every day I'm meddling 

Downstairs, Daisy is convinced she's too dense to understand math.  We can totally empathize--but of course Daisy stands to inherit a farm, just like Robert, who was also too dense to understand math and also inherited a [very large] farm.  Daisy definitely doesn't want the same thing to happen to her legacy from dear Mister Mason.  

Well... f**k math
Molesley, who has patiently carried a torch for Miss Baxter all this time, supposes he would look more dashing if he had Lady Clairol Polynesian Midnight black hair.

I'll look just like Valentino!

Mister Carson doesn't see the resemblance

Flop sweat does not look dashing

Thomas is more aggressive and scary than ever towards Miss Baxter.  He threatens to tell Lady Grantham THE TERRIBLE SECRET if Miss Baxter doesn't give up the goods, whatever those might be, on Mister Bates.  We are afraid for her, but also privately relieved that we will soon learn THE TERRIBLE SECRET, which we figured wasn't anything terrible at all, like maybe hand warts, and Thomas is full of crap.   

OMG Halp!

Molesley encourages Miss Baxter to come clean with Cora and get Thomas off her back with this little poem:

“Secret secrets are no fun;
Secret secrets hurt someone!”

Which is just the confidence builder she needs.  

Just tell her the truth and you'll feel all light and sparkly inside!

So Miss Baxter confesses to Lady Grantham THE TERRIBLE SECRET, except for the important part that makes it sound forgivable, and naturally Cora is conflicted about firing her.  Before Cora can tell Miss Baxter to go pack, Robert blunders into the room and starts grousing about all his dopey problems. Has anyone else noticed that this is a total recycle of Mister Bates's story line? Loyal servant steals some stuff, but we find out after we have had enough time to like their character and there is more to the story but loyal servant is too loyal to tell the thing that makes the story make sense? Except Molesley is the Anna in this version.

I'm bummed I don't get my own storyline

Surprise!  Jimmy's former boss and paramour invites herself to Downton Abbey for dinner.  Remember that time he sent her a valentine?  We don’t know what he wrote inside, but Lady Anstruther has apparently missed her good boy very much.

Knock three times on the ceiling if you want me

Rose takes it upon herself to invite that insufferable snot Miss Bunting to be Tom's date at Robert and Cora's anniversary dinner. She returns the favor by being appallingly condescending to both Rose and Rose’s friend Kitty Somebody.  At dinner she scorns the notion of a dumb War Memorial, and then mocks Robert for being too weak-ass to get chosen to head the committee.  

Do all your party guests know what a loser you are, Bob?
Of course Mr Carson swoops in and announces that the committee DOES want Robert to be its patron! IDK what a patron does, it probably means the person who doles out the money. He neglects to add that they only agreed to let Robert join when Carson threatened to step down. 

Way Harsh
After dinner Edith slumps in a chair in the corner silently mooning about how everyone else in the world is happy, even Robert, who gets to be a patron. Mary's all, nobody could be a bigger drag than you are, Edith, and Edith goes, I doubt that; remember when Matthew died and you were an even bigger drag, for like, ever? And Mary's like, maybe but the difference is that nobody cares about you or your stupid problems.


Cora corners Thomas Barrow and says, let me get this straight--you let me hire a convicted felon to put her sticky hands in my jewelry box but didn't think I should know about that? Are you totally bananas?  And if you are trying to blackmail her, then you're in even bigger trouble, you little worm. Except she uses dignified Lady Grantham words.

I know everything!

Well, no I don't, but I know this thing!

Later that night, Thomas Barrow, in a rare show of  misguided comradeship, points the way to Lady Anstruther's bedroom so she can tell Jimmy how much she misses him.  He'll probably even get a spanking!

So get to work, you hound dog

Tony barges in on Mary in her Golden Girls Collection bathrobe to suggest a weeklong booty call; so they can “get to know each other” while they get to know each other. Mary considers the offer and says, how good are you at keeping secrets? Because I am a Level 73 Secret Keeper. You have no idea.

Do you snore?

Edith, all alone, sniffles over a book Mrs Hughes found with [still missing] Michael Gregson's name written inside.  She boo-hoos over a picture of Baby Ingeborg Marigold, but in anguish hurls the book into the fireplace.  Aflame, the book bounces out onto the carpet which starts to smolder as Edith cries herself to sleep.

So this is love?

crackle crackle crackle

Crap, now we have to be grateful to Thomas again--don’t forget that Nanny West debacle--because no sooner does he steer Jimmy towards Lady Anstruther's chamber, than he spies smoke curling under Edith's door, and bursts in to save her from a fiery fate.  

This girl is on fire!

Robert and Tom snatch Sybbie and George from their nursery (where IS their nanny, for pity's sake? Even wicked Nanny West probably wouldn’t have let the kiddies burn to death) and start squirting water on the flames.  Good thing the Downton Fire Brigade will be here any minute!  And to think that yesterday we had no idea there even was a Downton Fire Brigade.

Robert storms into Lady Anstruther’s room where she and Jimmy are rolling around under the covers. Jimmy says, I was her ladyship's bed for...sparks. I guess I'll go back to my room now! Awkward! Seriously Jimmy, we don’t think that is what they mean by “service.” 

Out of the frying pan and into the fire

Fourteen seconds later, The Downton Fire Brigade arrives, in full uniform with their charming little red fire truck! WTF? Do they all just sit around all dressed in their turnouts and wait for the townsfolk to start burning things down?

Aside from Edith’s barbecued bedroom, the rest of the Abbey is fine.  Lady Anstruther wisely decides to slink away before breakfast because, you know, and Robert tells Mister Carson to throw Jimmy his walking papers because, don’t ask; but Mister Carson is not surprised.  He thinks of all the trouble Jimmy has caused since he came (Ivy and Alfred! Thomas and that gay thing!) and is only too happy to see the back of that little stinker, even though they’ll be down to just one blue-haired footman.

Marvin the Martian at your service

Secret Agent Elsie Hughes's super sensitive shenanigan senses are shivering, and she catches Edith whispering with Mister Drew, who is proving to be pretty good at keeping secrets.  They clam right up, but if we’ve learned anything in five seasons, it’s that nobody hides anything from Mrs Hughes for long.

Pardon me, but I believe your pants are on fire

Recap by Marm and Lillian
Links By Lillian
Editing by Marm
Captions by Marm and Lillian


  1. Yay! Love your recaps! I love how Mary is so blithely considering jumping into another scandalous situation, because it all turned out so well the last time she did -- it's not like anyone DIED or anyone else went to JAIL or there was any kind of lingering drama for many, many episodes! ;)

  2. I FINALLY got to watch the first 2 episodes, so now I can read your fun recaps!

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