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3-1: 2013.01.06


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#301

absolutelyido

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Posted Jan 13, 2013 @ 7:37 PM

Re: Sybil and Tom. After watching the episode again (a couple times) I think I understand Tom's "don't disappoint me" statement to Sybil. It was discussed up thread that that statement bothered some people, and that was my initial reaction as well but Iíve changed my mind.

When Tom & Sybil arrive at DA, Tom is very tense and uncomfortable, and uncertain if he is even welcome. It seems like Downton Abbey is pretty much the last place Tom wants to be, but he is there because it was important to Sybil to see her family and attend her sisterís wedding. After they are greeted, Sybil hugs her mother and the two of them walk toward the house arm-in-arm. Tom smiles as he watches them go, and looks very happy for Sybil. When Tom says ďDonít disappoint me, not now that weíre hereĒ, I get the impression (reading between the lines here) that perhaps they discussed the trip and how uncomfortable he would be among the Crawleys but he still wanted to go for her sake. I can image Sybil telling him that she didnít give a fig if he dressed for dinner or expressed his political views. Then they get to DA and Sybil is all, letís go to town and buy you some tails with some of my family money and please stop expressing your views about Ireland. He found that disappointing and he told her so, she backed off, and they kissed. (FTR, I do believe that Sybil was sincere when she said she just wanted to make things easier for him.)

I do think Tom is very conflicted about his feelings for the Crawleys. He says so when heís speaking to Matthew the night before the wedding when he says how odd it is to be discussing saving the estate when previously he would have wanted to put a bomb under the lot of them. Despite his views on the English aristocracy he really does want to be accepted by Sybilís family and is very touched by Matthewís gestures of friendship, Violet wanting him to attend the wedding with Sybil, and even Robert seemingly accepting him on the morning of the wedding.

I was disappointed that they didnít show Tom & Sybil discussing how Tom had been accepted by the family far more than certainly he expected. Iím sure this meant a lot to both Tom and Sybil. I would have liked to have seen them discuss it, perhaps in the car as they were leaving DA. I even think it would have been nice if it had been Sybil with Mary (talking with her as Tom talked to Matthew) when Matthew and Tom came to Maryís door. I would have liked it if Sybil and Tom had worked together both knowing (as the more experienced married couple) that their argument seemed big but wasnít big when two people are meant to be together, just as Tom said.

My favorite scene is when Violet and Isobel bulldoze Tom into the morning coat. I liked that when Matthew came in Violet said that Tom had no choice about it, nor did Matthew. It made it clear that Violet wasnít forcing Tom into the morning coat because she felt he was still an inferior that she could give orders to; rather she and Isobel as elders of the family expect the younger generation, including the future Earl of Grantham, to comply.

Edited by absolutelyido, Jan 13, 2013 @ 8:05 PM.

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#302

spankydoll

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Posted Jan 14, 2013 @ 11:36 AM

Dear Robert and Mary. You are not entitled to take money from everyone around you go continue your fantasy life of King and Princess of the vale. Robert's sadness at being seen as a failure at keeping Downton's culture aand importance to the region is such a sham. Robert and his ancestors were already in a financial mess. Which is why he married the Mrs. and her vulgar American fortune. Why the Lady ever allowed the Lord to have control over the finances when he was clearly a financial dimwit is beyond me. I am writing it off to the culture at the time??? What fuels Downton is the practice of the titled heirs prostituting themselves to anyone with enough do-re-mi to keep the brothel's staff polishing the silver, tying their bowties and readying the dogs for the hunt.

I am a vulgar American myself. SP you will have to forgive me for viewing Downton as the perfect setting for a grand B&B where social climbing monied proles can spend a week like a royal.
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#303

1732

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Posted Jan 15, 2013 @ 11:58 AM

In fairness to Robert, it was Mary and Lady Violet who were trying to take money. Robert didn't join in the run for Martha's cash, or the dash for Matthew's magical inheritance. He is a self-important dolt, but at the same time, he is 'only the caretaker', whose job it is to employ many people, and pass off the estate, in all it's splendor, to the next generation. Estates have been money-losers for a couple of centuries, so it's not merely Robert's admitted incompetence that is causing the problem, it's a continue need for cash infusions to keep the whole thing afloat.
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#304

lisagd

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Posted Jan 26, 2013 @ 9:59 PM

Tom, i know that you have political issues with the English. But, whatever else the Crawleys are, they are Sybil's family. Common decency dictates that if they welcome you into their home, the least that you can do is act the part. And Sybil? You grew up in that world and couldn't coach him?


My ex-husband was much like Tom, although without such a specific focus for his outrage at life. My family tried to welcome him as a member of the family, but he refused to meet them halfway. Whatever they did was against his vague "principles," and he was never in the wrong. I tried to get him to at least see where they were coming from, but he wouldn't hear it. He expected me to automatically side with him, but I disagreed with most of the things he said and did around them, so I didn't.

The point I'm trying to make is that there really are people like that in the world, and they can't be changed unless they decide on their own to change. Trying to coach them just makes the situation worse for the person stuck in the middle.

I have never been able to figure out just how he, of all people, was ever persuaded to move to Downton in the first place. I mean, I understand why it made sense to the Granthams to have this unknown move onto the estate and get to know it (and they him), but Matthew was so resistant to all the change that came with that move that I just can't see him actually agreeing that it was important for him to totally pull up roots and move into a situation where he'd be hovering, essentially waiting and watching for some previously unknown, distant relative to die.


In the scene where Matthew gets the letter telling him that he's the new heir, I remember him saying something about turning it down and his mother telling him that there was no legal mechanism for him to do that. Maybe it wasn't possible to turn things like that down.
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#305

Andorra97

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Posted Jan 27, 2013 @ 4:45 AM

My ex-husband was much like Tom, although without such a specific focus for his outrage at life. My family tried to welcome him as a member of the family, but he refused to meet them halfway.


I don't see where the Crawley's welcome him. Robert is pretty much treating him like dirt. I don't call that "welcoming". He on the other hand tries to meet them halfway. He didn't start one single of the Ireland-arguments. They were all started by the family who absolutely know that they won't agree on this. The polite thing would have been to avoid that topic in front of him, but no, they challenge him with their tory and ignorant British view on it. They picked on his clothes, he was trying to behave as best as he could. He is poor and can't afford dinner jackets or morning jackets, but they have nothing but snide remarks for him and expect to waste his money on those superficial things instead of, for example, saving things for their new baby, because they're just ignorant and don't spare one thought at the living conditions of working people. It's like Marie Antoinette, who asked why the poor didn't eat cake when they didn't have bread. Then Robert talks french in front of him because he knows Tom won't understand it. Good way to talk bad about him without him knowing.
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#306

absolutelyido

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Posted Jan 27, 2013 @ 12:25 PM

Then Robert talks french in front of him because he knows Tom won't understand it. Good way to talk bad about him without him knowing.

Does anyone know the English translation of what Robert said?

I agree Tom has gone more than halfway to fit into the family. First, he came to DA to attend Mary and Edith's wedding, when he could have just stayed home and Sybil could have come by herself. Also, he did change his stance on dressing for dinner although they (maddeningly) never explain why. Starting in Ep. 2, Tom now dresses in black tie for dinner, and he wore a morning coat to Edith's wedding. My fanwank, is that his stance softened after he learned that Violet had send the money for both he and Sybil to attend Mary's wedding which he admitted touched him.
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#307

Andorra97

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Posted Jan 27, 2013 @ 12:35 PM

Does anyone know the English translation of what Robert said?


Mary says: "Sybil, take him upstairs" and Robert replies (as far as I understand it) in french: "He won't be missed"

My fanwank, is that his stance softened after he learned that Violet had send the money for both he and Sybil to attend Mary's wedding which he admitted touched him.



That's what I think, too. And it shows again that if they're willing to meet him halfway (as Violet showed in this scene) he's very willing to fit in with them. Just as he promised to Sybil in season 2.
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#308

lokison

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Posted Jan 30, 2013 @ 10:45 AM

It feels so strange to see O'Brien doing something that doesn't make me hate her. I am enjoying the growing rift between O'Brien and Thomas.
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#309

commenter

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Posted Dec 10, 2013 @ 2:18 AM

I was away when DA Season 3 aired last winter and I’m just watching it now for the first time. I hope others are too, or are re-watching it and looking to post here. (I’m so glad TWOP split up the Downton Abbey forums by episode; I always wished they would.)

 

 

I always loved Sir Anthony Strallan: his sweet smile, his sweet personality. I was delighted to see him again. (I have by now seen Season 3 episode 2, which aired the same night.)

 

 

O’Brien’s and Thomas’ scheming this time resulted in such visible problems witnessed by the whole Crawley family – missing shirts, burnt tails, false resignation rumors –  that I can see the pair eventually being fired. It may be seen by many as a move that gets rid of some bad seeds, but I had always liked that the two of them shook things up a bit in the storylines. At least until now I’d always enjoyed it. Now it’s rather more uncomfortable than anything. I had especially enjoyed Thomas (whose looks don’t hurt his standing with me, I’m afraid I have to admit).

 

 

When Bates’ cellmate said he’d forgotten he was rooming with a murderer and Bates told him not to forget again, I didn’t take that as a confession, just a warning to keep an unsavory cellmate intimidated and at bay. But the thought briefly crossed my mind.

 

 

I think it was Anna who used the phrase “in that scenario” to refer to a possible explanation for Mrs. Bates’ death. I didn’t think the word scenario was used in that context back then.

 

 

 

After being quite disenchanted with last season, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this.

 

 

I enjoyed this tremendously too after being a bit disappointed with the previous season (and the Christmas special that preceded it IIRC). I don’t know if I’ve just lowered my expectations, or two years of being Downton-less (as I missed this season when it aired) has lowered them for me, by making me just happy to see everyone. Sir Anthony having many appearances helped too, but I got into the storylines and loved the same characters and dialogue I loved before (and was indifferent to some of the same ones as before, too).

 

Several actors do look a bit different though, a bit older or more tanned. I don’t remember any such differences between the first two seasons.


Edited by commenter, Dec 10, 2013 @ 2:21 AM.

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