I enjoyed parts of the Christmas Special but found it to be disappointing overall. I agree that the lack of resolution to various storylines and subplots was frustrating. In addition to that I felt irritated with several of the characters so all in all I can't say that I'm aching for new episodes even though I'm happy to know that the show will return for a fifth season.
Stuff I liked:
Carson and Mrs Hughes walking hand in hand while Carson is fussing. I loved that they ended the episode with that scene.
Daisy showing how capable she is when it comes to her duties.
Everything with Rose and the parties she attended. I liked the appearance of James Fox as a fortune hunter and I liked the snippets of conversation that we'd get at the various parties. I loved Martha speaking to Madeline's father so frankly.
I thought there was a surprising amount of humor in the episode overall and liked things like Cora and Rose admitting that they plotted to make sure that Violet wouldn't be the one to present Rose. I also liked Violet's line about how Isobel was more interested in reading her book than making conversation with Violet. Even though Violet didn't really want to talk to Isobel for the whole train ride she still resented being shut out like that and I found that to be amusing for some reason. Other small moments that were funny to me include Martha's scene with Freda Dudley Ward and Harold attempting to engage the Prince of Wales in conversation.
The fashion. The fashion was half of the reason I enjoyed the episode. I thought everyone looked great, Rose especially.
Stuff I didn't like:
So now Charles Blake is the heir to an estate? FFS! I can't even with this shit and I mostly agree with kavan30013's thoughts on why neither of Mary's suitors are working for me. I totally agree that they seem to serve no purpose apart from being around to tell Mary how great she is. I have no idea why I should care about either one of these guys and I find it to almost be a non-storyline.
Sarah Fucking Bunting. I am so over this character and I really resent that this is the character they're giving Tom for a love interest. She's just not likeable IMO and hate all of the time we're spending on her when we could have Tom doing other things. I liked his scenes with Edith and I would much rather have had more scenes of Tom in London than dealing with the rude Miss Bunting and Thomas the Tattletale.
I hate Thomas. Tom essentially gives him the night off and he uses that as an excuse to complain? He's such an asshole I don't know how any of the characters can stand him. He's a bully and I find it frustrating that he still has a job with them when all he does is cause problems for everyone.
After all of that build up it's Ivy who gets to go and start an exciting new life in America? Daisy seems almost incapable of taking action when it comes to her own life and I find that sad. She seems like she's inclined to turn everything down. Whether it's William or the farm or trying for the hotel position or this new job offer with Cora's brother--she just seems stuck IMO.
Isobel's been single for over a decade and she isn't interested in the nice Lord Merton? Why the hell not?
Mary frustrated me during several scenes in the episode. I can understand her not wanting to share a room with Edith (I doubt Edith would have wanted to share with her and would have made her own comments had she been asked) but I wish somebody would have told her that since she can't be bothered to share then she'll be the one up at the top with the servants. I also hated her changing attitude with Bates. What the hell ever with her conscience pinging or not whenever it suits her purpose.
Edith...I have sympathy for her but I do feel bad for the adoptive family in Switzerland. They've probably already bonded with the baby so I find this all to be sad and frustrating because I'm not convinced that Edith's plan is a good or healthy one and can see it having the potential to backfire spectacularly to the point where both Edith and the child will end up having to deal with the negative consequences.
I thought the American valet sounding a bit like Dean O'Banion of Boardwalk Empire and I found that to be distracting.
Of course Violet takes everything as a compliment!
Re: Violet's line about turning cutting remarks into compliments--Isobel did that very thing one of the first times they met. Isobel takes something that Violet says as a compliment and Violet says "Oh, I must have said it wrong." Violet's comment to Isobel in this episode irritated me because she doesn't seem to recognize that even if Isobel does follow her advice with stuff like this that Violet would still find something to call her out about. IDK I didn't enjoy the writing for Violet as much as I usually do and felt this way for the bulk of the fourth season.
Edited by avaleigh, Dec 27, 2013 @ 6:30 PM.