<i>Foster Justice</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Foster Justice: Exclusive Excerpt Colleen Shannon "His mind might find her repulsive but his body sure as heck didn’t." Now Win This!: <i>Fifty Shades</i> Poster Now Win This!: Fifty Shades Poster Team H & H You've seen the poster, now here's a chance to have your own! <i>Marked</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Marked: Exclusive Excerpt Rebecca Zanetti "Heat pooled at the apex of her legs, stunning her with need..." Quiz: Who Is Your Ideal Romance Hero? Quiz: Who Is Your Ideal Romance Hero? Team H & H Forget cocoa and eggnog, we want a hero for Christmas!
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Showing posts by: Naz Keynejad click to see Naz Keynejad's profile
Mon
Nov 10 2014 10:15am

Downton Abbey 5x08: Loose Ends and Tied Knots

Welcome back to Downton Abbey and what's sure to be another year of delicious upstairs/downstairs drama. Come, let's see what Series 5 has in store for our beloved Crawley family, shall we?

Note for U.S. Viewers: Downton Abbey returns to PBS for Season 5 on January 4, 2015. We'll be repromoting Naz's recaps then, so feel free to wait to read them until that time to remain unspoiled.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's Series 5, Episode 8. Enjoy!

And here we are! The final episode of the official season. Yes, we still have the Christmas Special to look forward to, but for all intents and purposes, this is the last episode of Season 5. Let’s hope some loose ends are tied up!

The episode starts with the servants running around, preparing for the trip to London. Thomas, looking like his old, spry self, hands copies of the inventory to Mr. Carson and Mrs. Hughes, and in the kitchen, Mrs. Patmore and Daisy are busy creating edible flowers to decorate the wedding cake. Wait— whose wedding are we celebrating? Rose and Atticus? That was fast!

Yes. It’s Rose’s wedding. Upstairs, she’s trying on clothes with all the ladies of the house (minus Edith, but including Violet and Isobel) in attendance. The show’s jumped ahead a few months, clearly. Rose’s parents are going to meet everyone at St. James’s for the wedding. They couldn’t arrive earlier, due to the government hand-over being pushed back. For those of you who are wondering, this is not the actual hand over of India back to the Indian government, but Shrimpie’s handing over his post to the person who’s succeeding him. The wedding is taking place in London, because Rose wants to placate Lord Sinderby with a blessing in a synagogue. Ah, this is going to be a lot of fun! Susan and Shrimpie, pretending to be happily married, in a room with the grumy Lord Sinderby. Can’t you just imagine how things will disintegrate rather rapidly?

[Yeah, we're guessing it's not going to go well...]

Mon
Nov 3 2014 11:14am

Downton Abbey 5x07 Recap: Classless Differences

Atticus and Rose gaze at each other in Downton Abbey Season 5, episode 7Welcome back to Downton Abbey and what's sure to be another year of delicious upstairs/downstairs drama. Come, let's see what Series 5 has in store for our beloved Crawley family, shall we?

Note for U.S. Viewers: Downton Abbey returns to PBS for Season 5 on January 4, 2015. We'll be repromoting Naz's recaps then, so feel free to wait to read them until that time to remain unspoiled.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's Series 5, Episode 7. Enjoy!

This is going to be a really fun episode. I can feel it!

We start with Violet picking Rosamund up at the train station, and figuring out a plan to deal with Edith’s departure. Violet wants to let Cora know everything immediately, because as Edith’s mother, it’s her right to know. According to Violet, Robert, however, doesn’t have any rights, because he’s a man! Ha ha ha! As Mrs. Hughes tells Mr. Carson, Rosamund’s addition to the motley array of dinner guests already at Downton is going to “make for a funny evening.”

[And does it? Let's find out...]

Mon
Nov 3 2014 9:20am

Death Comes to Pemberley Episode 2: Prejudicial Proceedings

PBS's new two-part British miniseries, Death Comes to Pemberley, is based on P.D. James's book of the same name and first aired in three parts on BBC One in the UK last December. The story begins six years after Pride and Prejudice's iconic couple Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet (now Mrs. Darcy!!!) have gotten married, as there's been a murder on the night before the annual Pemberley ball. The miniseries stars Anna Maxwell Martin (Bleak House, South Riding) as Elizabeth Darcy, Matthew Rhys (The Americans) as Mr. Darcy, Matthew Goode (The Good Wife) as Wickham, and Jenna Coleman (Doctor Whoas Lydia.

NOTE: This post contains spoilers for the second half of the PBS (and BBC One) miniseries Death Comes to Pemberley. Enjoy!

We continue the story with Elizabeth sitting alone on the steps of one of the old chapels at Pemberley, surrounded by the beauty of the land. She remembers Darcy’s initial (and disastrous) proposal, and his words about what degradation it would be to marry her. Since Darcy’s been giving her the cold shoulder since the incident, it’s no wonder that she remembers his hurtful words! She must feel that he was right, and that he blames this scandal (although he refuses to call it that) on her and her family. Jane finds her crying, and tries to convince her that Darcy does not regret marrying her, and that it’s just the stressful situation that has everyone, most of all him, on edge.

[We'd be on edge too...]

Mon
Oct 27 2014 10:26am

Death Comes to Pemberley Episode 1 Recap: Death and the Darcys

Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth in Death Comes to PemberleyPBS's new two-part British miniseries, Death Comes to Pemberley, is based on P.D. James's book of the same name and first aired in three parts on BBC One in the UK last December. The story begins six years after Pride and Prejudice's iconic couple Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet (now Mrs. Darcy!!!) have gotten married, as there's been a murder on the night before the annual Pemberley ball. The miniseries stars Anna Maxwell Martin (Bleak House, South Riding) as Elizabeth Darcy, Matthew Rhys (The Americans) as Mr. Darcy, Matthew Goode (The Good Wife) as Wickham, and Jenna Coleman (Doctor Whoas Lydia. Check in next Monday for a recap of the second and final episode!

NOTE: This post contains spoilers for the first half of the PBS (and BBC One) miniseries Death Comes to Pemberley. Enjoy!

Before I start the recap, I want to admit something: I’m a Janeite, through and through. I’m not just a fan, I’m an uber fan. A fanatic. I’ve read all of Austen’s books numerous times (even the Juvenalia), am a proud, card-carrying member of JASNA, have taken classes and written papers about her work, have watched every movie/TV show iteration of her books, and have devoured multiple fanfics repeatedly. Pride and Prejudice is my second favorite Austen novel, and I’m absolutely delighted to share this recap with you! For those of you who haven’t read my recaps before, I tend to write them as I watch, so they are written rather loosely, and edited only enough to make the transitions between scenes easier to navigate.

The story is set six years after the events of Pride and Prejudice. Elizabeth is now clearly comfortable in her position as Mrs. Darcy, and is running the household with a sure hand. We first meet her as she’s overseeing the preparations for a ball at Pemberley. We get a small glimpse of her son, Fitzwilliam, as he runs through the house, dodging servants and his nanny, and we see a grown-up, elegant Georgiana, clearly at ease with her sister-in-law. Amidst the chaos, Mr. Darcy comes out of his study roaring about the noise, only to pass a sweet note to Elizabeth and offer to get out of her hair for a few of hours (she can’t bear his being away for longer than that). It’s an idyllic picture of a comfortable marriage and loving family.

[So naturally that can't last...]

Mon
Oct 27 2014 9:55am

Downton Abbey Series 5 (Season 5), Episode 6: Revelations and Complications

Cora and Robert in Downton Abbey 5x06Welcome back to Downton Abbey and what's sure to be another year of delicious upstairs/downstairs drama. Come, let's see what Series 5 has in store for our beloved Crawley family, shall we?

Note for U.S. Viewers: Downton Abbey returns to PBS for Season 5 on January 4, 2015. We'll be repromoting Naz's recaps then, so feel free to wait to read them until that time to remain unspoiled.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's Series 5, Episode 6. Enjoy!

This week, the episode started with the arrival of a telegram for Edith. Her London editor is planning on visiting the house in the afternoon with some news about Gregson. Robert, who is still clearly upset with his wife and hasn’t moved back into their bedroom, tells Cora that they should expect the worst.

Meanwhile, Mary promises Anna to not make fun of Edith’s predicament, and tells her about a point-to-point (thoroughbred) county to county race with both Charles Blake and Tony Gillingham participating! Apparently, the men are planning to stop by the Abbey after meeting and Canningford, and Mary tells Anna that she might join the race, too, now that they’ve allowed women to participate. Anna wonders how Tony could think of stopping by at the house after being rejected and Mary tells her that it’s because he doesn’t believe that she “knows her own mind.” Oh oh. Is it just me, or do you see this turning into a fiasco? Eep!

[Yeah...we're sensing that too...]

Mon
Oct 20 2014 1:45pm

Downton Abbey Series 5 (Season 5), Episode 5 Recap: How Do You Solve a Problem Like Marigold?

Edith in Downton Abbey 5x05Welcome back to Downton Abbey and what's sure to be another year of delicious upstairs/downstairs drama. Come, let's see what Series 5 has in store for our beloved Crawley family, shall we?

Note for U.S. Viewers: Downton Abbey returns to PBS for Season 5 on January 4, 2015. We'll be repromoting Naz's recaps then, so feel free to wait to read them until that time to remain unspoiled.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's Series 5, Episode 5. Enjoy!

This week, we start with Rosamund coming over to the Abbey for a visit. Now we all know that’s a ruse! She’s probably there to figure out what’s going on with Edith! And, of course, she is. She tells Edith to come see her in her room before dinner. Uh oh! Any way, Rosamund finds out that Marigold is staying with the Drewes, and that Mrs. Drewe is not too keen about Edith stopping by all the time. She tells Edith that they are in a bad position, where Edith’s reputation is on the line, but there is no emotional reward at the end. I hope she can figure something out. I’m honestly tired of Edith being miserable all the time.

[She deserves something better...]

Mon
Oct 13 2014 9:15am

Downton Abbey Series 5 (Season 5), Episode 4: Breaking Up is Hard to Do

Welcome back to Downton Abbey and what's sure to be another year of delicious upstairs/downstairs drama. Come, let's see what Series 5 has in store for our beloved Crawley family, shall we?

Note for U.S. Viewers: Downton Abbey returns to PBS for Season 5 on January 4, 2015. We'll be repromoting Naz's recaps then, so feel free to wait to read them until that time to remain unspoiled.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's Series 5, Episode 4. Enjoy!

This week, the episode starts with Thomas returning from his trip to (ostensibly) visit his sick father. Guess what? His father is completely recovered! Shocker.

Upstairs, the family’s all gathered for lunch and we find that Rose’s father is due for a visit and is planning to stay at the Abbey. Yay! Shrimpy’s back! I wonder how he’s doing with his wife these days, and whether or not O’Brien will return, too. That would certainly be interesting. Any way, we’re definitely not going to see that during this episode, because Shrimpy’s traveling alone. Something’s up, though, because when Robert asks where Shrimpy’s next assignment is going to be, Mary shakes her head implying that the subject is not up for discussion.

[Let it lie for a while...]

Mon
Oct 6 2014 9:46am

Downton Abbey Series 5 (Season 5), Episode 3 Recap: Free Will and Weekends Away

Lady Mary in Downton Abbey Season 5Welcome back to Downton Abbey and what's sure to be another year of delicious upstairs/downstairs drama. Come, let's see what Series 5 has in store for our beloved Crawley family, shall we?

Note for U.S. Viewers: Downton Abbey returns to PBS for Season 5 on January 4, 2015. We'll be repromoting Naz's recaps then, so feel free to wait to read them until that time to remain unspoiled.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's Series 5 premiere. Enjoy!

Well, here we are! The episode starts with Mary waking up in bed with Tony. They banter back and forth about the “rituals and routines” of early morning preparations. It’s their last day, and while Tony wants to simply continue on, Mary insists on their being as proper as possible and not “tarnish” her reputation again. He talks about their marrying as a foregone conclusion, but as soon as he leaves the room, Mary looks a bit concerned. Hmm. I wonder if she’s really going to marry Tony or is just looking at this as a bit of fun? Any way, she leaves Liverpool and leaves Tony with a “we’ll talk soon” farewell. As she gives him a quick peck on the cheek and gets in her car, we see Violet’s butler, Mr. Spratt, on the street, looking at the departing car. Uh-oh. It seems that Mary’s secret might be out. Can’t wait for the lecture she’s going to get from her grandmamma!

[Keep calm and carry on...]

Mon
Sep 29 2014 12:00pm

Downton Abbey Series 5 (Season 5), Episode 2 Recap: Uncertain Futures

Mary and Gillingham in Downton Abbey 5x02Welcome back to Downton Abbey and what's sure to be another year of delicious upstairs/downstairs drama. Come, let's see what Series 5 has in store for our beloved Crawley family, shall we?

Note for U.S. Viewers: Downton Abbey returns to PBS for Season 5 on January 4, 2015. We'll be repromoting Naz's recaps then, so feel free to wait to read them until that time to remain unspoiled.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's Series 5 premiere. Enjoy!

This week’s episode starts with the staff cleaning up Edith’s burnt-out room. As Mrs. Hughes and Anna go through the singed items, Anna finds a picture of a baby under Edith’s pillow, which she promptly hands over to Mrs. Hughes. Oh oh. We all know both these ladies are pretty smart, so they’re going to figure it out.

Jimmy in Downton Abbey 5x02Jimmy leaves (after a heartfelt, friendly farewell scene with Thomas) and the downstairs staff bemoans the lack of a “bonny lad” in their ranks. Molesley is happy about being the first footman, until Mr. Carson reminds him that since he is the only footman, there really isn’t much of a distinction.

Luncheon is a rather tense affair with Mary accusing Edith of behaving like an  idiot for setting her room on fire, and Robert berating the revolution in Russia for displacing so many people who have to establish new communities in order to preserve their culture. He directs his comments to Tom, who of course, immediately responds that he feels bad for anyone who has been exiled from his country! Meanwhile, Charles Blake is going to stop by for a visit (yay!) with an art historian friend of his to look at a della Francesca painting. Mary reminds the family that she’s going to be off with her friend Annabelle for a rambling-through-the-countryside holiday, but of course WE know that she’s going away with Gillingham. When Isobel mentions the addition of a wireless at the hospital, Rose hints at getting one installed at the Abbey to which Robert responds with an emphatic “No.”

[But it's the future!...]

Mon
Sep 22 2014 9:59am

Downton Abbey Series 5 (Season 5), Episode 1 Recap: Live the Truth

Edith and Marigold in Downton Abbey Series 5/Season 5Welcome back to Downton Abbey and what's sure to be another year of delicious upstairs/downstairs drama. Come, let's see what Series 5 has in store for our beloved Crawley family, shall we?

Note for U.S. Viewers: Downton Abbey returns to PBS for Season 5 on January 4, 2015. We'll be repromoting Naz's recaps then, so feel free to wait to read them until that time to remain unspoiled.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's Series 5 premiere. Enjoy!

And here we are again! When we left the Crawley family last Christmas, Mary was being pursued by a gaggle of suitors (well, okay, really two serious contenders. Poor Evelyn doesn’t really count, does he?) and Edith was planning on reclaiming her daughter, bringing her to Downton and having her raised with one of their tenants, Mr. Drewe. Tom was showing interest in Sarah, the new girl in town, and Isobel was flirting with Lord Merton. And of course, the ever-exuberant Rose fell in and out of love (with the “wrong” man), and had a spectacular coming-out during the course of which, she helped save the Crown Prince from a royal disaster. Downstairs, Daisy emerged as a confident, self-assured young woman, who doesn’t need the attentions of a man to validate herself any more. Anna and Mr. Bates were carrying on as usual, having put Anna’s horrific experience with Green to rest. Or have they? We were left wondering if Mr. Bates really was responsible for Green’s death. Thomas had a hold over Mrs. Baxter, and she, in turn, was looking to Mr. Molesley to protect her. We also saw a glimpse of a possible (?) romance brewing between Mr. Carson and Mrs. Hughes.

So, here we go.

[Whatever happens, we're in this together...]

Thu
Dec 26 2013 11:58am

Downton Abbey Series 4 (Season 4) Christmas Special Recap: Two Lords a-Leaping!

Downton Abbey Season 4 episode 9, 4.09The Crawley family and their devoted staff are back in Downton Abbey Season 4, now airing in the U.K. (U.S. viewers, stick with us! We'll be re-posting Naz's recaps when Season 4 airs on PBS beginning in January.) We're sure you're just as eager as we are to get to it, so without further ado...

Note for U.S. Viewers: Last night's episode of Downton Abbey was aired as “Episode 8” on PBS but originally aired as “Episode 9,” or “the Christmas Special,” in the U.K. in December, when this recap was first posted.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's season finale/Christmas special, 4x09. Enjoy!

And we’re finally here! The two-hour Christmas special that will (hopefully) tie up some loose ends (who will Mary end up with?) and give us a nice, uplifting ending to the season. Yes, I’m holding out hope that we won’t have anyone dying at the end of this season!

We start eight months after we left off, with Mrs. Hughes telling Daisy that the two of them will be going to London while the family’s in residence for Rose’s coming out extravaganza. Apparently, the London housekeeper has fallen ill and Mrs. Hughes has no choice but to step in and help. It’ll be fun to see Daisy in London! And Thomas is back to his bitter self, and is resenting the fact that he has to serve Tom, who if he had remained the chauffeur, would technically be beneath Thomas in the pecking order. Oy, Thomas! Seriously man. Give it up!

[Just let it go, Thomas...]

Mon
Nov 11 2013 10:32am

Downton Abbey Series 4 (Season 4), Episode 8 Recap: Pressing Engagements

Downton Abbey Series 4 castThe Crawley family and their devoted staff are back in Downton Abbey Season 4, now airing in the U.K. (U.S. viewers, stick with us! We'll be re-posting Naz's recaps when Season 4 airs on PBS beginning in January.) We're sure you're just as eager as we are to get to it, so without further ado...

Note for U.S. Viewers: Last night's episode of Downton Abbey was aired as “Episode 7” on PBS but originally aired as “Episode 8” in the U.K. in November, when this recap was first posted.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's Season 4 finale, 4x08. And be sure to check in with H&H again the day after the Christmas episode airs for the final Season 4 recap. Enjoy!

Well, here we are! The final episode (not including the Christmas special, of course) of the season. We start with Mary, Tom, and Edith walking over to check on the pigs. Mr. Drewe (the farmer who borrowed money from Robert to…er…pay Robert back for back rent on his farm) is taking care of the pigs and apparently, he’s doing a great job. Mary and Tom ask him to take on the management of this new farming venture permanently, and he agrees. He thanks them for giving him this opportunity and promises to return the favor if and when they need it.

Violet seems to be feeling better, but she’s going a bit stir-crazy sitting at home all day, so Isobel, who’s stopped by to check on her, suggests they take a walk over to the Abbey in the afternoon and enquire after Robert’s adventures in America. In a bit of expository explanation, we find out about the “Teapot Dome Scandal,” which is what Cora’s brother is involved in. In a nutshell, the scandal involved the U.S. Secretary of the Interior leasing out the naval oil reserves in Teapot Dome, Wyoming, to a private oil company without going through the process of asking for competitive bids. There was an investigation, and the Secretary (who had gotten quite rich from the scheme) ended up in prison. For the purposes of our story, Cora’s brother is involved with one of the private companies. Violet, not surprisingly, is not a fan of Harold’s.

[How will the regular season end?...]

Mon
Nov 4 2013 9:36am

Downton Abbey Season 4 (Series 4), Episode 7 Recap: Like Pigs in ....

Jack Ross and Rose in Downton Abbey Season 4 episode 7

The Crawley family and their devoted staff are back in Downton Abbey Season 4, now airing in the U.K. (U.S. viewers, stick with us! We'll be re-posting Naz's recaps when Season 4 airs on PBS beginning in January.) We're sure you're just as eager as we are to get to it, so without further ado...

Note for U.S. Viewers: Last night's episode of Downton Abbey was aired as “Episode 6” on PBS but originally aired as “Episode 7” in the U.K. in November, when this recap was first posted.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's episode, 4x07. Enjoy!

The episode starts with crazy morning activity downstairs. These are the times when we get a feel for what it’s like to run such a huge house. As the camera pans through the different sections, we end up in Mrs. Hughes’ office where Bates lets her know that Robert is planning to go to America…like, today. Apparently, Robert received a telegram from Cora’s mother urging him to come and help Harold with his Senate hearing.

Bates doesn’t want to go because he doesn’t want to abandon Anna. So, Mrs. Hughes appeals to Mary to see if it’s okay for Bates to stay, and in typical Mary fashion, she tells her that while they are good employers, they “expect to get what we pay for,” and that since Bates’ role in the house is to be Robert’s valet, then he needs to do his job. When Mrs. Hughes tells her that this is a special circumstance, Mary insists on knowing all the details. I guess Hughes tells her, because we see Mary in Robert’s room telling him that Bates simply can’t go with him to America, and that he should take Thomas. Good job, Mary! I’m glad she redeemed her hoity comment about getting what they pay for with this. She even makes a joke about how Thomas would love to go on the trip, what with all those handsome stewards strolling around the ship’s decks! Anyway, obviously, Bates realizes that Mary knows, but she tells him that it’s not his fault, nor is it Anna’s. I’m glad a member of the family knows now. If only she would find out that it was Green!

[Keep looking into it, Mary, won't you?...]

Mon
Oct 28 2013 9:33am

Downton Abbey Season 4 (Series 4), Episode 6 Recap: Birthday Surprises

Earl Grantham and his countess in Downton Abbey 4.06

The Crawley family and their devoted staff are back in Downton Abbey Series 4, now airing in the U.K. (U.S. viewers, stick with us! We'll be re-posting Naz's recaps when Season 4 airs on PBS beginning in January.) We're sure you're just as eager as we are to get to it, so without further ado...

Note for U.S. Viewers: Last night's episode of Downton Abbey was aired as “Episode 5” on PBS but originally aired as “Episode 6” in the U.K. in October, when this recap was first posted.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's episode, 4x06. Enjoy!

We start the episode with Daisy happily giving Alfred preferential treatment at the breakfast table because he’s staying at Downton. Upstairs, Mary tells Anna that Evelyn and his boss, Mr. Blake, are coming to stay in a few days, and that she’s looking forward to learning how to manage the estate better from them. She also asks Anna if everything is “sorted out” now that Anna’s moved back to the cottage and looks a bit better, and Anna tells her that things are not all better, but they’re getting there. It still amazes me how no-one pressed Anna to tell them what was wrong. The infamous British stiff upper lip and all that, I suppose! Bates is “brooding” (as he puts it), but at least the two of them are smiling at each other again.

Meanwhile, Robert has received a letter from America, and apparently, “Uncle Harold” (Cora’s brother) has made a bad investment (involving oil leases) and is in a bit of trouble. I can’t wait for him to show up at Downton! We all know that the incomparable Paul Giamatti has the role, so it’s definitely going to be something to look forward to!

[Every family needs a crazy Uncle Harold...]

Mon
Oct 21 2013 9:29am

Downton Abbey Season 4 (Series 4), Episode 5 Recap: Secrets Revealed!

Mr. Bates and Anna in Downton Abbey Season 4The Crawley family and their devoted staff are back in Downton Abbey Series 4, now airing in the U.K. (U.S. viewers, stick with us! We'll be re-posting Naz's recaps when Season 4 airs on PBS beginning in January.) We're sure you're just as eager as we are to get to it, so without further ado...

Note for U.S. Viewers: Last night's episode of Downton Abbey was aired as “Episode 4” on PBS but originally aired as “Episode 5” in the U.K. in October, when this recap was first posted.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's episode, 4x05. Enjoy!

This week’s episode begins with Mr. Bates walking out of his home, alone. We see Anna back in her room at the Abbey, trying to compose herself, and applying makeup to cover up the bruise under her eye. She walks down to the servants’ hall and sees Bates waiting for her. She tells him that it’s not necessary for him to wait every morning, and he tells her it is, because his “life was perfect, and then in a space of one day, it is nothing.” They’re interrupted by Miss Baxter, the new ladies’ maid, and for about a minute, are back to their old selves: talking about the new hired help, and wondering why such a nice person is friends with Thomas. And then, Anna shuts down again and walks away. This is absolutely heartbreaking.

[Just hang in there, Anna and Bates...]

Mon
Oct 14 2013 9:03am

Downton Abbey Season 4 (Series 4), Episode 4 Recap: Staying Silent, Speaking Up

Gary Carr and Rose in Downton Abbey Season 4

The Crawley family and their devoted staff are back in Downton Abbey Series 4, now airing in the U.K. (U.S. viewers, stick with us! We'll be re-posting Naz's recaps when Season 4 airs on PBS beginning in January.) We're sure you're just as eager as we are to get to it, so without further ado...

Note for U.S. Viewers: Tonight's episode of Downton Abbey was aired as “Episode 3” on PBS but originally aired as “Episode 4” in the U.K. in October, when this recap was first posted.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's episode, 4x04. Enjoy!

Author's Note: I just want to let everyone know that watching this week’s episode was extremely difficult due to the current plotline involving Anna. It is a horrific storyline, and while the show is handling it in a realistic manner, it is not easy to watch. Please be kind in your comments to this post, and keep in mind the incredibly sensitive and delicate nature of this turn of events. Thank you.

Well, like most of you, my biggest concern was how the situation with Anna was going to play out. The episode starts with her walking somberly to the Abbey without Bates. He’s very confused and worried that he’s done something to upset her, but of course, she’s avoiding him, and telling him that nothing’s wrong.

[Oh, my heart...]

Mon
Oct 7 2013 9:24am

Downton Abbey Season 4 (Series 4), Episode 3 Recap: Bust a Move

Tom Branson dances in Downton Abbey Season 4 episode 3The Crawley family and their devoted staff are back in Downton Abbey Series 4, now airing in the U.K. (U.S. viewers, stick with us! We'll be re-posting Naz's recaps when Season 4 airs on PBS beginning in January.) We're sure you're just as eager as we are to get to it, so without further ado...

Note for U.S. Viewers: Tonight's episode of Downton Abbey was aired as “Episode 2” on PBS but originally aired as “Episode 3” in the U.K. in September, when this recap was first posted.

Also, before you go, be sure to enter our Downton Abbey Afternoon Tea Sweepstakes!

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's episode. Enjoy!

The episode starts with a bevy of guests arriving for the house party. There’s an Anthony Foyle…er…now Lord Gillingham who Robert refers to as “the pirate.” Oh look! Gregson’s there. He seems a bit overwhelmed with all the “old money” folks at the house. Tom’s cornered by some tiresome old lady who asks him about Sybil, and of course, Violet overhears and comments that “Tom’s small talk is very small indeed.” Robert actually defends Tom and says that, “not everyone can be Oscar Wilde.” And of course, Violet doesn’t miss a step and quips back, “that’s a relief!” Oh Violet! When are you going to accept Tom as part of the family? I’m suspecting never!

Well, downstairs is a bevy of activity. Mr. Carson is worried that the ten guests don’t have enough staff with them (only three maids and two valets! Imagine that! Snicker) They’re gossiping about all the guests, and it turns out that Lady Raven has fallen on bad times and lost her fortune. She’s now living in “some dingy little house, north of the Park.”

[Never doubt your servants know alllll your secrets...]

Mon
Sep 30 2013 9:43am

Downton Abbey Season 4 (Series 4), Episode 2 Recap: Proof of Documentation

Robert in Downton Abbey Series 4 episode 2Continued from the Episode 1 recap here...

The Crawley family and their devoted staff are back in Downton Abbey Series 4, now airing in the U.K. (U.S. viewers, stick with us! We'll be re-posting Naz's recaps when Season 4 airs on PBS beginning in January.) We're sure you're just as eager as we are to get to it, so without further ado...

Note for U.S. Viewers: The season premiere of Downton Abbey as aired on PBS tonight was two hours long. In the UK they were shown as Episode 1 and Episode 2, so be sure you've read Naz's recap of the first half of tonight's episode (originally posted to H&H in September) before moving on to the recap below. Plus, before you go, be sure to enter our Downton Abbey Afternoon Tea Sweepstakes!

******DOWNTON ABBEY 4.02 SPOILERS BELOW******

This week’s episode starts out with the news that Gwen is married. Remember Gwen from the first season? The one who went off to be a secretary? I hope she comes over for a visit! Edna’s started her job as Cora’s new maid. She’s going to be trouble. I just know it. Thomas is already trying to get on her good side. Of course he is. He probably recognized the potential for a new partner in crime. Anna warns Edna to be careful around Thomas, but I don’t think she’s going to listen. Oh yeah. This is not going to go well at all.

A box arrives from Matthew’s old office addressed to Mary. Mrs. Hughes worries that there might be something in it that could upset Mary, so she suggests that Mr. Carson have someone else see it first. Of course, that someone else is going to be Robert. It’s so sad, you guys! Robert opens the box and the first thing he pulls out is the little stuffed toy Mary gave to Matthew as a good-luck charm when he went off to war. Sniff.

[Way to rub salt in our wounds, show...]

Mon
Sep 23 2013 9:44am

Downton Abbey Season 4 (Series 4), Episode 1 Recap: Taking the Black

Mary in Downton Abbey Series 4 episode 1The wait is finally over (for U.K. viewers, anyway). The Crawley family and their devoted staff are back in Downton Abbey Series 4. We're sure you're just as eager as we are to get to it, so without further ado...

(U.S. viewers, stick with us! We'll be re-posting Naz's recaps when Season 4 airs on PBS beginning in January.)

Note for U.S. Viewers: The season premiere of Downton Abbey as aired on PBS tonight was two hours long. In the UK they were shown as Episode 1 and Episode 2, so for Naz's recap of the second half of tonight's episode (originally posted to H&H in September), check out her recap of Episode 2 here. Plus, before you go, be sure to enter our Downton Abbey Afternoon Tea Sweepstakes!

******DOWNTON ABBEY 4.01 SPOILERS BELOW******

Well, here we go. It was a bittersweet episode, but I feel that they handled the aftermath of Matthew’s death very realistically.

You can tell things are going a different direction this season just by the opening. Unlike past seasons, there is no beautiful montage of activity at Downton while the actors’ names are displayed. We start in the dead of night, Downton, a shadowy prospect against a gray sky. Someone is packing a suitcase in the dark, leaving notes, and walking through passageways on quick feet. There’s a baby crying, and Mary’s lying alone in her bed, unable to sleep, as the camera focuses on a picture of her and Matthew on their wedding day.

[Ow ow ow, my heart...]

Thu
Sep 19 2013 12:30pm

Downton Abbey Season 4 Speculation, Upstairs and Downstairs

The cast of Downton Abbey Series 4 aka Season 4Downton Abbey Series 4 starts on Sunday, September 22, on BBC in the UK, and on January 5, 2014, on PBS in the US. Like most of you, I can’t wait to see what happens. After last season’s (miserable and miserably depressing) finale, I’m hoping that we get some juicy plots and new love-pairings (triangles and quadrangles are also welcome too).

(Before we dive into the speculation, be sure you're caught up and have watched the Downton Season 4/Series 4 trailer!)

Of course, the number-one issue on everyone’s mind is going to be how Mary copes with Matthew’s loss. Actually, how everyone copes with it. Poor Isobel! She’s all alone in the world now. And what about Baby!Crawley? The wee-little heir started his life in the midst of a massively tragic event! Other than that, I really want to know what’s going to happen to Thomas. I kinda fell in love with him a little bit last season, and hope that his new (semi) benevolent streak continues. You never know. He might slip back into his old habits. And speaking of evil people, who’s going to be the new resident meany now that O’Brien’s gone?

[Now there's a good question...]