Monday, January 31, 2011

Watch Downton Abbey Season 2

Watch Downton Abbey Season 2 - A scene from “Downton Abbey” featuring Maggie Smith

Secrets, blackmail, gossip, sex scandals, mysterious deaths, rivalry and scheming mark PBS’s latest period costume drama mini-series, “Downton Abbey”. At times, the show has as much in common with a prime-time soap as it does with an Austen adaptation — though it still features the requisite talk about marriage, property and class.

Downton Abbey” is an original drama penned by “Gosford Park” and “The Young Victoria” scribe Julian Fellowes and set in the titular Edwardian manor house. The show covers the lives of the aristocratic family “upstairs” and all their servants “downstairs,” who have their own histories and agendas, and who can sway the fate of the wealthy folks above them.

The formula of fast-paced plotting meets classic costume-drama tropes seems to have worked. In the UK, “Downton” aired on ITV and was the network’s most popular drama since 1981’s “Brideshead Revisted.” Early figures stateside, according to ITV, make “Downton” one of Masterpiece’s biggest successes as well. Indeed, while “Downton” initially hooked me in with its twists and cliffhangers, the flawed and fascinating characters have grown more human over the course of a few episodes–and now I’m quite desperate to find out what their fates are for more than curiosity’s sake.

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