"The first stage of television grief is rejection: when a favorite character is killed off, the desire to distance yourself from a show you love, to disown it, even, is powerful. ‘I’m done,’ you declare firmly.’ I’ve had enough of this crap. They’ve gone too far this time.’ I’ve seen it in a lot of fan communities; I’ve said it (half-heartedly) myself. In the past decade or so, I’ve developed a bad habit of falling in love with a certain type of BBC series, whose writers seem to be collectively united by slim budgets and streaks of cruelty: on one of my favorite shows, three of the five major characters are killed in the span of five episodes; on another, the entire cast of four kicks it in under a season — and it might be worth noting that most of them go violently, too."
Stages of Television Grief: On the Decline of Downton Abbey by Elizabeth Minkel
In the stages of television grief, after denial, denial, denial comes grudging acceptance.
Downton Abbey returns soon. You might want to pad your reading list.
I have been waiting for someone to make this, what I perceive as great, pop-culture observation, but you guys haven’t! So I will do it myself before everyone forgets this show. Am I the only one who sees this? Carson is a British Sam the Eagle, right? I mean, at least a little?
If an Earl reads his paper in the dining room with no one to see him, is he really an Earl?
In the house where I grew up, the child of English teachers, PBS’ Masterpiece Theatre connoted “classiness” in at least two senses. On one hand, its filmed adaptations of classic novels added a touch of literary refinement (and sometimes even of eat-your-vegetables self-improvement) to a television schedule larded with junk food. On the other, it offered a place for us churchmice to indulge our fascination with “class” in the baser sense: idle wealth and posh intrigues and butlers who ring for tea at three.
Garth Risk Hallberg on the literary pedigree of Downton Abbey.