DOWNTON ABBEY: Previewing the Tumultuous 3rd Season (2013)

"Downton Abbey"
“Downton Abbey”

In the genteel world of DOWNTON ABBEY, calamity strikes swiftly bringing uncertainty to the lives of the Granthams, the Crawleys and their devoted staff. Having survived the loss of the estate’s heir in the sinking of the Titanic in the first season, followed by the upheaval in their lives due to World War I in the second season, the third season brings about a different kind of challenges to the great house and its stately occupants: a financial scandal rocks the house of Grantham and threatens to impoverish them all forcing them to abandon the only home they have ever known. So just as Mary Grantham (Michelle Dockery) and Matthew Crowley (Dan Stevens) are about to finally wed, this latest wrinkle in their path to marital bliss may prevent their blessed union.

The Earl of Grantham (Hugh Bonneville) and his wife Cora (Elizabeth McGovern), along with their three daughters Mary, Edith (Laura Carmichael) and Sybil (Jessica Findlay) and their doting grandmother The Dowager Countess of Grantham (Maggie Smith) and the new estate heir Matthew Crawley and his mother Lady Crawley (Penelope Wilton) comprise the last of a dwindling era. They are the titled property owners that are accustomed to a life of wealth and comfort, with servants and staff waiting on them for their every need. In the regal home of Downton Abbey, the staff is led by the indomitable Mr. Carson (Jim Carter) and the ever- diligent Ms. Hughes (Phyllis Logan), aided by Mr. Bates (Brendan Coyle), Thomas (Rob James-Collier), Anna (Joanne Froggatt), Daisy (Sophie McShera) and Mrs. Patmore (Lesley Nicol). As seen time and time again, all their lives are inextricably intertwined by fate. It is not enough that they all share the same home, but their futures are tied together financially and by the bonds of love. This is not just a home that employs and houses them all, it has made them all family.

And for fans, the Granthams, Crawleys and their staff are family. We have come to cherish each and every one of them as if they were are own. Their loves, their losses, their heart-breaks, their scandals, it touches us all. DOWNTON ABBEY has achieved the impossible and wooed audiences in the tens of millions on both sides of the Pond. British fans and American fans have clamored for more and by the grace of PBS and never-daunted Julian Fellowes, DOWNTON ABBEY returns with its third season to dazzle and delight us all once again. But that does not mean it will all be roses and unicorns, for life rarely exists in a vacuum from pain an suffering and in DOWNTON ABBEY, there will be more than their fair share this next season.

From the shocking news of the loss of Lord Grantham’s fortune to the uncertain matrimonial state of Matthew and Mary, the dogged pursuit of love by Edith, health issues that arise, and the fate of Mr. Bates hanging in the balance as he languishes in prison for a crime he did not commit, there are more trials and tribulations lying in wait for them all. Yet just as there will be tough times and obstacles to surmount, so will there be joyous moments to with weddings, births, fortunes found, and past indiscretions buried. DOWTON ABBEY offers an array of emotional richness to feast upon.

So to revel yet again in their intoxicating lives, be sure to tune in for the 3rd season premiere of DOWTON ABBEY airing Sunday, January 6th at 9:00 p.m. on PBS. It will be worth savoring every delicious minute.

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