Obsessed With PBS: Downton Abbey, S6, Part Six

Downton Abbey opens its doors for one day to the public to raise funds for the hospital. “Roll up. Roll up. Visit an actual dining room,” says the Dowager Countess. Yes, see where Lord Grantham SPIT UP BLOOD AT DINNER.

Alas, that has been cleaned up and Donk is resting in bed the whole episode. He isn’t too keen on the open house saying, “I think it’s crackers.” But the open house is a success and they raise a lot of money. Branson even gauchely suggests having regular tours for profit. Now who would do that? *cough* Highclere Castle where they film Downton Abbey *cough* Hopefully, the real manor has better than tour guides than Mary, Edith and Cora. Examples:

“Who are those people?” “They were marvelous people and lived the life.”

“Why is the shield blank?” “I never noticed that before.”

“What else did he collect?” “Horses and women.”

This one was courtesy of the fit-to-be-tied Dowager Countess. Yes, DC finds out that York is taking over the hospital and they asked her to step down as president. Donk tells her to be logical about it. “If I must choose between principle and logic, I’ll take principle every time!” To add insult to injury, her successor is Cora. Doctor Clarkson will stay on at the hospital and Isobel will stay as almoner. This is good because I just learned what almoner meant.

Mary takes Anna to London to see the London Gyno (no worries, just regular pregnancy stuff) and Branson comes along. To London. Not to the London Gyno. Branson and Mary have dinner with friends and Henry Talbot, Mary’s “car mechanic” according to Edith (“I’m a car mechanic,” says Branson). Henry invites Branson to a race and you can see him blush from excitement. Man Crush in full gear (“He likes you, and he likes cars. What more is there to say?” he tells Mary). Talbot also invites Mary to the race. Later when they are walking after dinner, Mary tells Talbot why she doesn’t like cars because of Matthew’s death. He says, “The car is your enemy but it is my friend. Can you give them another chance?” Oh yeah, he kisses her, slips the word wife in there accidentally and says he’s falling in love with her. Later Mary tells Branson that she should go to the race to try and get over her bias. Who’s this sensible person in front of me? Where’s my sister Mary? says Branson. “Oh shut up,” she says.

I say “Shut up” to Carson! Fix dinners and make beds your own damn self if you want it done a certain way. Hughes is getting near a breaking point, I can see it. I don’t blame her either. You can eat smoked salmon without lemon for once, dude.

Downsizing is still a looming theme this season. A boy wanders from the open house tour into Donk’s room where he’s laid up. The boy asks him why he lives in such a big house. You’ve got money. Why not get a cozy place? Donk is all like, good question. “We like what we are used to.”

Later Donk and Carson discuss simplifying the staff. Carson says that Barrow is looking for new employment. When Carson talks to Barrow later he says that the Under Butler position is the most logical first position to go (“…a post that is fragrant with the memories of a lost world.”). On top of that, the staff is noticing weird, sneaky things with Barrow and Andy. Carson sees Andy coming out of Barrow’s room one night. Carson confronts Barrow and doesn’t believe him when Barrow says it’s nothing. “So my word is still not good enough, Mr. Carson, after so many years?”  “I so wish it were.” Ouch. Barrow was just teaching Andy to read! The episode ends with Barrow crying in the dark.

What else did I learn from Episode 6? Daisy is sitting her exams soon. The schoolmaster asks Moseley to sit a general knowledge test as a job interview for a teaching assistant position. Baxter gets a letter from Coyle, asking her to visit him in jail. (I thought this was done?) Edith introduces Bertie to a sleeping Marigold. Lord Merton brings his soon to be daughter-in-law to meet Isobel. The daughter-in-law is very friendly and trying to make amends for Lord Merton’s son. I’m not sure if I trust her. Mr. Mason sends a thank you note with Daisy for Mrs. Patmore. Mrs. Patmore finds it in the trash. Later Mr. Mason stops by with vegetables for Mrs. Patmore. Daisy is again super rude. I guess Daisy is a Sgt. Willis/Mrs. Patmore shipper.