25 January 2012

Dumbing it Downton

God knows I love a costume drama. And, although I thought there were some flaws in the plot, I also enjoyed the first series of Downton Abbey.  But now that I am caught up on the second series I must say, I think it's really kind of lame. I won't catalogue the things that made me roll my eyes like I did when I watched the terrible film version of Possession because that film was acres worse than Downton. Besides the often clumsy plotting, blocking, and writing, the thing that most annoys me is that it seems like the writers got out the big bag of WWI-era English costume drama tricks and decided to use a little bit of everything. Even that would be okay if they actually broke some new ground. But they don't.

You can rent a pretty house and dress up a lot of pretty actors but if your script is lame the result will not be quite so pretty.


  1. You raise some very valid points but Thomas...surely the Dowager makes any rubbish bits worth putting up with, no? Hang in there, the Christmas special was wonderful.

  2. Well, I do like your title. A soap opera is a soap opera is a soap opera. An enjoyable one, though!

  3. Sadly I have to agree with you. It's not stopping me from watching though!

  4. I haven't watched the second season yet, but have it DVRed. I remember some of the English bloggers complaining that it wasn't that good.

  5. I agree that S2 of Downton doesn't have quite the intelligence of the first season... I think they have gotten way to caught up in ridiculous melodrama and the Mary/Matthew love triangle/square needs to stop. I am sure the writer is clever enough that people will still tune in to watch even without the whole "will they, won't they?" storyline. Still, it's a good lark and it's not such a huge time commitment that I see myself giving up on this show any time soon.

  6. I haven't watched any of the second season yet, but I'm sad to hear that it isn't as good as the first! I really enjoyed the first season, but there were still a lot of times that I had to tell myself that it was great for a tv program...lower my expectations and enjoy the scenery. And the scenery is lovely. ;)

  7. i loved second series but they did get a bit soap opearish at times and the two main story lines through the series got a bit tiresome after a while I hope it picks up the xmas special was great thou ,all the best stu

  8. I skipped S2 altogether & just watched the Christmas Special. I caught up with everything I needed to know & saved several hours watching time for more reading!

  9. I brought my mum the box set of this for Christmas (both of us have never seen it but its her kind of thing)and she loves it. One of the best presents Ive got her.

    I havent commented on them but thanks for the Hawaii posts which I enjoyed reading! its always been my dream to go one day but my husbands put off by thinking theres nothing but beaches there.

  10. Darlene: Maggie Smith is wonderful of course.

    Denise: I was also toying with Downton Dumbs it Down.

    Stefan: Me either.

    Nan: Still a pleasant way to spend a few hours.

    Steph: I know I keep wondering how the nice Lavinia is going to get the boot.

    Melody: The scenery is lovely.

    Stu: I just hope we get to see the Christmas episode here in the US.

    Lyn: I've heard from friend in the UK that the Xmas special was good.

    Jessica: I am glad you liked the Hawaii posts. There will be more that will give you ammo for your Hawaii pleadings.

  11. Lots of people felt the same about the second series over here in the UK.

    Please don't get too excited about the Christmas special... :-) And make sure you are in it for the LONG haul *yawn*


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