Downton Abbey
Episode Five

Episode Report Card
Couch Baron: B+ | 3 USERS: A-
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Life Goes On

In the kitchen, Ivy's humming and dancing to herself when Alfred and Jimmy James join her. She explains that she loves the foxtrot and Jimmy James says he thinks it's all right before sniffing that Alfred wouldn't do it. "He takes himself too seriously for that." So much for the easy noncompetitive flirting, then. Mrs. Patmore enters, which is the boys' cue to scatter...

...while Daisy's turning up at the farm, to Mr. Mason's unabashed delight. And quickly, we cut to the part where he's offered her a job; in addition to cooking for the whole place, she could do a great trade selling jams, jellies, cakes of all sorts and eventually, he'd train her to run the entire farm and leave it to her. Oh, show. Why did you bother making Daisy, like, 25% more tolerable if you were going to get rid of her? Daisy wonders about the fact that she's, you know, a girl, but Mr. Mason tells her there's precedent with widows having run farms before and adds that she's liked in "the big house," so they wouldn't refuse the idea. He concludes by saying that he owns all the farming equipment and livestock and has quite a bit of money saved, and geez, Daisy, with this pitch I'd think marrying him would be the right course if that's what he wanted, so merely taking the job should be a no-brainer. Regardless, Daisy says she can't answer now, but he encourages her to think about it and earnestly adds that his dream would be for her to come to the farm so he could teach her. Daisy hesitantly admits that she always thought she'd spend her life in service, but he points out that she's got 40 years of work ahead of her. "Do you think these great houses like Downton Abbey are gonna go on just as they are for another 40 years?" Mr. Mason, what you're saying suggests that this show will come to an end at some point, so excuse me while I stick my fingers in my ears. Or instead, I'll tell you about my revelation, which is that you played Nathan Maloney's asshole dad back on the original Queer As Folk. Despite what you just said, I like you better now!

Who's showing up at the Dowager Countess' summons but Dr. Clarkson, whom she informs she's called on "a melancholy matter." Looking none too comfortable, he takes a seat and she tells him Cora is quite convinced Dr. Clarkson could have saved Sybil, had he been allowed to. He demurs, saying one can never speak of these things with certainty, and if he's being unduly modest he'll live to regret it, as the Dowager Countess replies that this is precisely the point -- what exactly are the chances it would have worked? Dr. Clarkson can only say that there are cases in which a C-section after the onset of preeclampsia saved the mother, but he only knows of a few. So the Dowager Countess asks him to tell her son and daughter-in-law that. Seeing where she's going with this, Dr. Clarkson reiterates that there was a chance, but the Dowager Countess counters that he's created a division between Cora and Lord Grantham, "when the only way they can conceivably bear their grief is if they face it together." He bluntly asks if she means for him to lie to them, to which the Dowager Countess replies, "'Lie' is so unmusical a word." Ha! But as bullied as Clarkson may feel here, she's opting for kindness instead of brutal honesty, which I think is as admirable coming from her as it is unexpected.

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Downton Abbey

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