Downton Abbey Recap: 'This Is Shocking to Most People in 1924'

“You have to take control of your feelings… before they take control of you.”

Like Anakin Skywalker before her, Lady Mary fell prey to the Dark Side on Sunday’s Downton Abbey — at least that’s what the Dowager Countess feared after that nosy Spratt spotted Mary and Tony exiting a hotel together.

I’m actually surprised the D.C. wasn’t more outraged by Mary’s behavior. She seemed to pretty OK with the situation after being assured that Tony wanted to marry her — and that there was no chance of an unfortunate “epilogue.” (Such euphemisms!)

Anyway, the sex must have been real bad with Tony because, by the end of their trip, Mary decided she was “un-settled” on the idea of having him as her next husband. (And with the return of Charles Blake in next week’s episode, the Mary-Tony union is feeling less likely as the season marches on.)

‘GRANNY HAS A PAST’ | Then again, maybe the D.C. should be reminded not to throw stones in glass houses. When a group of Russians visited the abbey this week — Rose invited them for a tea, which Miss Bunting nearly ruined by being the absolute worst — one of the guests, Prince Kuragin, was revealed to be an old flame from the Dowager’s past in Saint Petersburg! I might be getting ahead of myself, but I’d be so down for a royal wedding by season’s end. I see the Dowager in something classic and tasteful, but also with a plunging neckline.

Season 5, Episode 3THREE’S A CROWD | Speaking of scandals, Cora sort of forgot to pass along Robert’s note to Simon Bricker about not flirting with her (oops!), and after a day at the museum riddled with sexual tension, Simon came real close to doing mouth stuff. I was actually kind of surprised (and relieved) that he didn’t, but not as surprised as Cora was to find Robert waiting for her at Rosamund’s place looking all kinds of fancy. The conversation got heated, things were said that shouldn’t have been said and now I’m pretty convinced Cora’s going to cheat.

TUG O’ BABY | Edith’s plan for a full-time reunion with Marigold faced a pretty major setback this week when Margie made Tim tell Edith she wasn’t allowed to visit her daughter — or “goddaughter” — anymore. Edith was understandably crushed, quickly running home and heading straight upstairs, where I assume she set several more fires.

Other things that happened (and may or may not matter):
* Daisy is really good at math.
* Thomas is making sketchy phone calls. (His dad’s not really sick, right?)
* Bates fared well in his interrogation with the police, but Anna’s still tweaking out.
* Mrs. Patmore’s nephew isn’t being included in a war memorial or something.

Best banter:

“In my day, a lady was incapable of feeling physical attraction until she’d been instructed to do so by her mama.” — the Dowager to Lady Mary

Isobel: “You can’t begrudge him for it. Servants are human beings too.”
Dowager Countess.: “Yes, but preferably only on their days off.”

All right, time to weigh in: Are you still holding out hope for Mary and Tony? What do you think the D.C. got up to with this prince? And is Cora going to be able to keep resisting Simon’s advances? Drop a comment with your thoughts below.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. mes520 says:

    Love your mention of Anakin Skywalker!

  2. I can’t wait to get Netflix and see it from the beginning. I have heard so much about it.

  3. I normally have a soft spot for Edith, but she’s acting like the biggest imbecile known to man and if I were Drew’s wife I would think she was steps away from boiling a rabbit too.

    • pauladuffy says:

      Love it. Even Mr. Drew knew Edith’s gone too far. But you know that Edith unlike Mary, can’t eat her guts out and still show up for dinner without looking like she’s ready to hang herself. BTW, what happened to Gregson’s newspaper enterprise and Edith running it?

  4. Elibu says:

    I think Mary was more put off because she has realized she has nothing to say to Tony. As Charles told her last week, she is cleverer than he is.

    • maggie says:

      Tony isn’t all that bright, and apparently isn’t all that great in bed either. Mary now knows he’s a loser. Why she even considered Tony is beyond me. Charles is smart, and unlike Tony, can help her manage Downton. Charles is wealthy, and Tony no longer is. Charles is inheriting a higher title than Tony. Since Downton, money and position mean so much to Mary, it’s shocking that she wasn’t throwing herself at Charles instead of Tony.

      • herman1959 says:

        Mary doesn’t need his money, she and her son are the heirs to Downton, so she is free to marry for love. That said, I had thought this whole issue was sewn up, but now it looks like it could drag on until the end of the season…jeesh!

  5. S says:

    The Anakin tie-in was great. I love Charles Blake, preferably with Mary as well. As a character he is very smart and witty, while I don’t see much purpose in Tony at all. Can’t wait for his return next week. And indeed, Miss Bunting really needs to exit, quickly!

  6. Simon says:

    For once I agree with Robert. I’m not really a big fan of Miss Bunton. I’m hoping for a much better companion for Tom.

    • maggie says:

      Bunting is awful. She’s a small-minded bigot, who hates the rich just because they’re rich. She assumes the Crowleys are all bigots, without realizing that by assuming that she’s one herself.

  7. Alichat says:

    Please….for the love of god…..can they get someone else besides Sarah Bunting to be a romantic interest for Tom? PLEASE!! I can’t stand that character. Why did they bring her back?? Tom needs someone who will embrace both of his worlds…..not berate him for embracing Sybil’s family…..even tho someone needs to kick Robert in the a$$ for being disrespectful and unappreciative of Tom.

    Speaking of others that need to be kicked…..Spratt and Thomas.

    • leo21 says:

      I am all for getting rid of Bunting. If Tom does want her, I hope Robert goes full Lord of the Manor of hum and takes the young Sybil away. That women is way too lacking in compassion.

      On the Thomas front, I hope this is a lie that allows Baxter to take the upper hand against him.

  8. Mike C. says:

    It just feels to me like the show is running out of gas. I personally was rooting for Gillingham. I agree the Miss Bunting storyline is horrible–since when do bad manners constitute being a civil libertarian? They are ruining Tom with this. Rose is completely two-dimensional, a silly talking mannequin. Daisy learning math is a big storyline? Thomas being evil… again? And why must Edith just get more and more pathetic with each passing season? It might be a blessing if, as rumored, Season 6 is the final season of DA. It just feels thin at this point.

  9. Luli101 says:

    The best story lines are coming from the older set of Crawleys. I’m really liking Rose this year. Mary and Tom’s conversation was nice, although I’m not sure she would have shared so much with him.

  10. Jan says:

    As usual, DC gets all the best lines … understandable, since Maggie Smith is so very good at delivering them. Robert is behaving like such an ass (maybe I should say “still”). May we hope Thomas is applying for another job … AND that he will get it?

  11. RedReddington says:

    I want to see more of the main people downstairs (Mr. and Mrs. Bates, Mr Carson & Mrs. Hughes).. I feel like there’s been way too much of the Crawleys and Tom and Mr. Mosley lately. I miss the Bates’ the most though. Favorite couple on TV. 😍

  12. S. says:

    A bit rich for Robert to act like he has after the shenanigans with Jane the maid.

  13. Katey says:

    Just wanted to point out that there were a lot of “Princes” and “Princesses” in Imperial Russia. A “Prince” in Russia is, if I understand correctly, closer to a titled noble in England. What we think of as a “Prince” or “Princess”, ie the son or daughter of a Russian Tsar, was called a “Grand Duke” or “Grand Duchess”.

    So while it would be a fancy wedding, it wouldn’t necessarily be more “royal” than any other Downton wedding.