"Downton Abbey" Season 3, Episode 8 Recap

Episode 8 Recap


  • PBS
  • One big happy family

PBS aired two hours of "Downton Abbey" back to back last night - click here for my recap of the first hour.

What a marvelous ending for what was a truly great third season. True, the season is not technically over - there's still next week's grand finale, which finished up as the Christmas Special episode in England - but even if it had ended right here with that slow-motion bounding and bounding, I would have been completely satisfied.

To air these two episodes together was a strange choice, as I mentioned in my recap of the first hour, because while that first hour spent a lot of time on setup, the second hour was like a freight train of plot. The oddest abutment of the two would have to be Mary's sudden announcement that she had just been to London. When did that happen? In the last fifteen minutes? It's easy to forgive those weird bits of editing, though, when the finale gave everyone (save Edith, of course) a more or less happy ending.

As happy as I was about Mary and Matthew's talk and Anna and Bates setting up house and the three men who have been at odds all season - Robert, Branson and Matthew - all coming together in the end to help the estate move forward, the two biggest stories were the advent of Rose, which I'll get to in a bit, and the immense payoff of years of watching the series with how things ended for Thomas.