The fourth season of Downton Abbey premiered on U.S. soil Sunday night and things are well…kind of a bummer at the ol’ Abbey. Sixth months have passed since the death of Lord Matthew and everyone’s black clothes are getting a work out. Lord Grantham is (temporarily) back at the helm of S.S. Downton, Branson is communing with nature and the staff have devolved into a gaggle of middle school ducks.
So for the most part, not much has changed.
But get ready, because I’d like to introduce the Giddy Up America Downton Abbey Stock Market. This season I’m going to be tracking the stock of Downton’s characters- whose is rising, whose is falling, whose is standing pat. Each week there will be a new update, a market report on the stocks of the various characters on Downton Abbey, personally my favorite Abbey.
How does someone’s stock rise?
Simple- by being awesome.
How does someone’s stock fall?
Also simple, by not being awesome.
How does someone’s stock stand pat?
By being neither awesome or not awesome.
With that being cleared up, let’s check the market after the first episode.
Whose Stock is Rising?
It didn’t seem that way at first, with Lady Mary spending the show’s first hour living “amongst the dead.” No really, her words. But then she came on strong in the episode’s second half with the help of Carson and Branson, both essentially acting as her hype men, coaxing her from the wafting pits of despair and back into the game . Thanks to a letter Matthew wrote before their Duneagle field trip last season, Lady Mary now owns half of Downton, much to the chagrin of Lord Grantham. And here we thought Lady Sybil or Lady Edith would become the symbol of women’s liberation, now Lady Mary seems to be that person. You know, right before she becomes a cop. Lady Mary on the rise! She’s an early favorite for season MVP.
The Downstairs Dream Team (Carson and Mrs. Hughes)
Love these two. The stock of both characters individually is rising faster than the temperature of a sabotaged serving plate. But together? Together their stock is a rocket-fueled dynamo. Mrs. Hughes continues to be the Mother Hen of both the upstairs and downstairs of Downton. Broken dish? She’ll help pick it up. Former partner of a co-worker fallen on hard times? She’ll help a brother out. Rogue nanny needed to brought down like a stampeding elephant? She’s on it. As for Carson, his pep talk to Lady Mary was essentially the Downton version of a NFL coaches’ halftime speech.
He’s the Flavor Flav to Lady Mary’s Chuck D! Look out world!
Oh Bates, you lovable little romantic, you. Didn’t think you had it in you.
The Dowager Countess
Because her stock is always rising.
Whose Stock is Falling?
Vulture had a great piece about this albatross of a patriarch and I suggest checking it out. This dude continues to be Downton’s walking buzzkill. His parenting skills are questionable and the idea that he thinks he’d be the best person to handle Downton’s affairs is laughable. Sure, maybe you can forget a financial blunder like losing your wife’s fortune in a Canadian railroad deal, but I’d think the groveling needed to recover from such a blunder would be hard to let go. And come on man, it shouldn’t be that much of a stretch to think that if your daughter is mourning the loss of her husband then she most likely needs to spend less time thinking about it and more time getting on with her life. That’s just my opinion, though.
Downton’s resident villain hasn’t changed at all- still up to his old tricks of smoking, plotting, smoking, shit talking, plotting, giving people the stink eye, smoking. So far his kill count is only one- poor Nanny West, who didn’t even see it coming. But now Anna’s in Thomas’ cross hairs. As is Bates, who let’s face it, is always in Thomas’ cross hairs. Thomas probably has specific cross hairs he uses only for Bates. He sets his sights for “Bates.”
Whose Stock is Standing Pat?
Her stock is generally described as a “wild card” and her role on the show is to spice things up. She’s meeting expectations so far. Promising, but no movement yet.
Edith snagged herself a dude with two positives: a smooth head of hair and a willingness to move to Germany for her and one negative: homeboy is married. I imagine this will get more interesting later. But for now, it’s intriguing. But not yet interesting and her stock, not yet moving.