Why I’m done with Downton Abbey

Spoiler alert: This post contains information that gives away the Downton Abbey season 3 finale, along with other plot points of this latest season. If you’re trying to catch up on the craze and don’t want to know what happens, then stop reading (but come back to this post after you’ve watched the season finale because I want to know your reaction).


I was late to the Downton Abbey party, and ended up watching the first two seasons through Netflix. I got hooked, like so many of my friends who loved to talk about Mary and Matthew and evil O’Brien and Thomas (the conniving servants we all love to hate). And so I was excited about actually watching a season along with my friends for a change and being able to talk with them about the developments as the season progressed.

Most Sunday nights of late, one of my friends has posted on Facebook his favorite quote of the evening from the Dowager Countess (played by one of my all-time favorite actresses Maggie Smith). I usually recorded the show, and so I had to avoid Monday-morning commentary about the show so I wouldn’t learn any of the plot before watching it. But I have enjoyed the banter back and forth about the show and its characters this season.

You know a show has hit it big when there are t-shirts. “Free John Bates” and “Keep Calm and Ring Carson to Bring Tea” are just two that I came across in a catalog late last year. You can even buy a t-shirt that proclaims your affinity for one of the sisters: “I’m a Mary,” “I’m an Edith,” or “I’m a Sybil.”

You can also rate a show’s popularity by the number of spoofs it inspires. Jimmy Fallon has done spoofs on his late night show, Saturday Night Live spoofed the show, and even Sesame Street has gotten in on the act:

But this Sunday was my last episode. Writer Julian Fellowes has gone too far and killed not only a beloved character on the show but also managed to kill my desire to keep watching.  Continue reading