Downton Abbey: Delightful or Dated?


Photo Courtesy of Den of Geek.

When I first watched the new Downton Abbey movie, I was enthralled. The period dresses, the polished silver, even the richly-orchestrated title theme seemed grander in the theatre. My interest was immediately drawn into the cinematic experience. However, an hour after leaving the theater, I had entirely forgotten about it—unlike the TV show, with its characters and history, that had me wanting to return weeks after finishing the show. 

I went to see the Downton Abbey movie for a second time with my family. The second viewing did not sit as well with me. While the TV show fleshed out the Grantham household so viewers felt sympathy for the struggles of their privileged lifestyles, the movie did not deliver the same. All the Downton servants and family members were rushed into action, preparing for the arrival of the king and queen, two people most viewers are indifferent to. This classism reeks in today’s society. “For king and country” is not convincing when the media is quick to unveil the mistakes of today’s “kings.” However, the arrival of English royalty was not the only problem to plague the Crawley family. Tom Branson, a fan favorite, held a critical role. Not only did he stop a threat to the King’s life, but it seems he finally found love. The strings of this story could lead to a Downton Abbey movie sequel. Numerous storylines popped up and were quickly resolved to satisfy fans. 

Ultimately, the Downton Abbey movie experience was delightfully ornate, but unnecessary. While the glossed over political problems did not charm me, it was nice to revisit the characters and music that charmed all Downton fans initially. I would suggest watching Downton Abbey simply for Maggie Smith’s one liners.