We have always loved Downton outdoors—not scenes of the ladies roaming the hedges at some tea party, gossiping about Sir Evelyn Napier’s hot friends, but the outdoor scenes of country sports, like the pheasant shoot last season, the family hike where Sir Richard wears the wrong tweeds, or that fan favorite, the fox-hunting gallivant with Kemal Pamuk. Whereas Downton’s whole upstairs-downstairs shtick depends deeply on its Carnarvon interiors—on the judge-y appraisals of those fringed lamps—the outdoors really remind you the show is on (gorgeous) location. It’s like stumbling upon a vivid, perfectly preserved colorplate in the middle of an ancient, yellowing library book. Especially for American audiences, where the closest thing to Matthew casting his fly rod in a west-highlands stream, the amber evening sun catching the sine curve of his line, is, what—Bassmaster?

Our Downton Abbey Season Three finale recap in full, here!

We have always loved Downton outdoors—not scenes of the ladies roaming the hedges at some tea party, gossiping about Sir Evelyn Napier’s hot friends, but the outdoor scenes of country sports, like the pheasant shoot last season, the family hike where Sir Richard wears the wrong tweeds, or that fan favorite, the fox-hunting gallivant with Kemal Pamuk. Whereas Downton’s whole upstairs-downstairs shtick depends deeply on its Carnarvon interiors—on the judge-y appraisals of those fringed lamps—the outdoors really remind you the show is on (gorgeous) location. It’s like stumbling upon a vivid, perfectly preserved colorplate in the middle of an ancient, yellowing library book. Especially for American audiences, where the closest thing to Matthew casting his fly rod in a west-highlands stream, the amber evening sun catching the sine curve of his line, is, what—Bassmaster?

Our Downton Abbey Season Three finale recap in full, here!


“The Great War quite agrees  with old Matthew, now the decidedly hunkier ‘Captain Crawley,’ who has  lost his weak chin and the milquetoast mumbling, as well as a sizable  chunk of his solicitor’s pudge. (Lest you think this is some scripted  sop to W.W.I.’s ravaging effects—a Fellowes allusion to the scarcity of  rations in wintertime France?—actor Dan Stevens helpfully allows it was because Twitter kept calling him fat).”

More recap of Downton Abbey’s Season Two premiere episode, here!

“The Great War quite agrees with old Matthew, now the decidedly hunkier ‘Captain Crawley,’ who has lost his weak chin and the milquetoast mumbling, as well as a sizable chunk of his solicitor’s pudge. (Lest you think this is some scripted sop to W.W.I.’s ravaging effects—a Fellowes allusion to the scarcity of rations in wintertime France?—actor Dan Stevens helpfully allows it was because Twitter kept calling him fat).”

More recap of Downton Abbey’s Season Two premiere episode, here!