With news that a third series is on the cards for Downton Abbey, one might be forgiven for imagining that the production is turning into the world’s most expensive and high-brow soap opera. More so, when one considers the events of season two, episode four, when the storyline turns salacious and viewers get to see a bit of shoulder.
The Dowager Countess is making trouble by spotting Sybil’s weakness for a member of working classes.Mary does her best to guide her younger sister in a path better than her own, but is accused of meddling and snobbery.
Isobel is riled by the challenge to her position as a senior nurse and leaves the house to tend to the wounded in France. With Matthew also gone, the servants of Isobel’s house are at a loose end and begin to look for other opportunities.
Helping wounded soldiers gets a number of the kitchen staff into hot water, though the Countess’s late change of heart on all practical issues relating to the war gives them something of a reprieve.
Meanwhile, Thomas asserts his independence by not telling the Earl of the return of Mr Bates. The Earl is shocked by the news and takes the unusual step of paying a personal visit to a public house.
The trifles of those back home pale into insignificance when news of a development on the front gets back to Downton. Nobody can concentrate on matters at hand with the news hanging over them. There is a positive development, however, when a friendly face returns to the estate bringing a cheer to the staff and family alike.
Mrs Hughes has to manage the personal affairs of the household when Thomas begins to get high-handed with Daisy. Not only that, but she is faced with a major dilemma, right at the end of the show, when it is revealed that a member of the household will be having a baby.
Downton Abbey Season 2 Episode 4 on airs on ITV at 9pm on 9th October 2011 for UK viewers only.
- Lady Rosamund Painswick played by Samantha Bond
- Earl of Grantham, Robert played by Hugh Bonneville
- Lavinia Swire played by Zoe Boyle
- Lady Sybil Crawley played by Jessica Brown Findlay
- Lady Edith Crawley played by Laura Carmichael
- Mr Carson played by Jim Carter
- John Bates played by Brendan Coyle
- Lady Mary Crawley played by Michelle Dockery
- Molesley played by Kevin Doyle
- Vera Bates played by Maria Doyle Kennedy
- Sarah O’Brien played by Siobhan Finneran
- Anna Smith played by Joanne Froggatt
- William Mason played by Thomas Howes
- Thomas Barrow played by Rob James-Collier
- Tom Branson played by Allen Leech
- Mrs Hughes played by Phyllis Logan
- Andrew Lang played by Cal Macaninch
- Countess of Grantham, Cora played by Elizabeth McGovern
- Daisy Robinson played by Sophie McShera
- Mrs Patmore played by Lesley Nicol
- Ethel Parks played by Amy Nuttall
- Doctor Clarkson played by David Robb
- Dowager Countess of Grantham, Violet played by Maggie Smith
- Matthew Crawley played by Dan Stevens
- Isobel Crawley played by Penelope Wilton
Written and created by Julian Fellowes
Executive Producers: Gareth Neame, Julian Fellowes
Producer: Liz Trubridge
Line Producer: Charles Hubbard
Director: Ashley Pearce