At last! Season 2 of the Masterpiece Theater drama, Downton Abbey has arrived on American shores (or on our tubes, anyway). Oh happy silk frock-filled day! In case you missed the first season, the drama takes place in 1910s England when -- oh pish posh, just watch the first season online and rejoin us when you've caught up. And if you haven't seen the premiere of Season 2 stop reading right at this moment, for spoilers lie ahead, dear readers!
Now then, where was I? Oh yes -- so the most delectable plot lines -- in my mind, anyway -- are the unrequited love stories between Lady Mary and Matthew (upstairs) and chronically noble Bates and maid Anna (downstairs). The series wastes no time in toying with our emotions here. If you were hoping at least one of these couples would be enjoying some measure of happiness I'm afraid you're out of luck. But that crafty creator Julian Fellowes, he throws us just enough slivers of hope to keep us hooked!
When last we saw the Crawleys, World War I had just erupted. Oh horrors! That means people who love each other shall be parted. Season 2 opens with dishy Downton heir Matthew fighting for his life on the front and (hooray!) being sent home on leave. Oh -- but what's this? He has a fiance?!? Mousy Lavinia, here to torture us with her not-Mary-ness. And Mary has a new suitor as well, vulgar magazine magnate Sir. Richard Carlisle. Boo! But just as I'm putting the finishing touches on my hate mail to Julian Fellowes he melts me with this: a juicy train station farewell scene between Matthew and Mary. Don't engrave those wedding invitations just yet, Lavinia!
Meanwhile, things are looking up for Mr. Bates and loyal Anna. Bates' mother bites the dust, leaving him with just enough dough for he and Anna to marry! He delivers the most unromantic proposal ever in Masterpiece Theater history, but no matter -- Anna joyfully accepts. And we know, because this is Downton Abbey, that this joy will last approximately 5 minutes. Sure enough, Bates' pesky wife Vera slinks back, demanding this inherited money and Bates. And just because she's such a sweetheart, she threatens Bates with blackmail: She will expose Mary's tawdry/deathy affair with hawt Turkish nobleman Mr. Pamuk, which will also expose Anna's role in the scandal. Bates, who loves nothing more than to suffer the consequences of noble deeds without reaping any of their rewards, disappears without explaining anything to poor Anna.
It's pretty clear at this point that Season 2 is going to give me a heart attack every Sunday night for the next several weeks. At last, an antidote for my seasonal affective disorder! Or at least, a darn good reason to cry all the way through January and February. And I haven't even mentioned love plot line number 3, involving political radicals Sybil and Branson -- a romp in the hay just waiting to happen. (Please make it soon!) As those of you who watched last night know, this doesn't even begin to cover all the action on last night's premiere. And if you missed it, you can still catch all the upstairs/downstairs tumult online.
Do you think any of these love story lines will turn out happily, or will our hearts be broken this season?
Image via YouTube