Last Sunday provided yet more evidence that Julian Fellowes wrote the final season of Downton Abbey during visits to Colorado weed dispensaries. I’m well aware that jerks have been populating literature since cavemen first scrawled a picture of someone getting sucker-clubbed, but how could he possibly have given the shrew Lady Mary a happy ending? And were we supposed to cheer when she tied the knot with Henry Talbot? I was waiting for someone’s ulcer to burst all over the bridal party, but alas, no such luck.
If it was me doing the writing, I’d have thinned out the cast as a means of tying up a few loose ends and clearing some “cap space” (football speak) for the final episode. Instead, we have Mr. Barrow slitting his wrists in an attempt to kill himself but only succeeding in falling into a deep slumber (note to the producers: I don’t think that’s the way exsanguination actually works), such that when he’s found unconscious in a bathtub full of bloody water, everyone’s like, “Oh, let’s just tuck him into bed.” Missed opportunity to put him out of his misery and not have to worry about him in the final episode.
Then, there’s Mr. Carson, who’s become the foremost ass in service after scoring the eminently human and reasonable Mrs. Hughes as his mate. “You’re a curmudgeon, but you’re my curmudgeon,” Mrs. Hughes tells him, with a kiss on the cheek. Ech. How about, “You’re a curmudgeon, and I can’t believe I married your sorry ass!” (I’ll get some real writers to embellish with 1920s lingo). In a just world, Mrs. Hughes pulls out a gun: bang, bang. Carson’s dead and she’s in jail.
The only good bit in the whole episode was finding that Mr. Sprat was the secret female advice columnist of Edith’s newspaper. This means we won’t have to watch him and Ms. Denka go at it any longer.
And where, pray tell, is Lady Sybil?!