Tuning into Downton Abbey has become as much of a generational ritual as intrigue and posh houses for millions of people across the world. Jump back to five years ago and tell every TV critic on the planet that one of the biggest shows on Earth follows the lives of a bunch of prim, upper-class British nobles and the scandalous intrigue that plagues their closeted lives and they’d probably laugh you out of the house and watch The Walking Dead pilot.
But how wrong they would be, with even Kim Kardashian declaring her desire to appear on the most blue-blooded drama since Attenborough’s last reptile special. Without further ado, let’s look at how the grandiose charm of Downtwon Abbey has changed our lives.
You’ve Got To Be Pithy
While there aren’t too many belly laughs to be found in Downton’s hallowed halls, there’s a whole lot of pith. No, not that stuff you peel off oranges- the stuff that powers Maggie Smith’s eyebrow like a piston. Basically, everyone who ever truly loved this show understands that humour is overrated, and snark rules supreme. But the struggle is real- how do we work that snark into our everyday life? Sure, you’ve got the eyebrow and that genteel sneer down, but how much can you get away with in a board meeting? At a family dinner? You just wish you could have the same don’t-give-a-damn attitude and reel off witty putdowns ad nauseum, but you tried it once and you’re pretty sure everyone hates you now. Totally worth it, though.
It’s a Cult
Basically, the problem is this: you love Downton Abbey, and you know a few of your friends watch it, but it’s still a show about posh Britons and their servants. There are hardly any boobs, explosions, or Walter White. So you feel a little bit weird about loving it as much as you do. You find yourself eagle-eyed for any reference to Downton In conversations you’re privy too- was that a reference to the 2014 water bottle scandal? Are they indoctrinated to the cult of Dame Maggie? So you gingerly broach the subject, and wait for the anvil to drop. Hey, if P-Diddy is an Abbeyhead, no-one is above suspicion. Not one person.
Even more insidious and dangerous that the inherent snark gene, you’ve found yourself becoming a bit posh for your liking. While many Brits don’t rate the show too highly, it’s got a huge overseas following, and you’re starting to notice a certain….twang to the accents of your inner fan circle. Where did those gowns come from? Why are you having dreams about the class system in a mid-war manor house? There’s really no excuse not to thank your server, no matter how much you’d like them to secretly be your butler (who you’re maybe having an affair with). Battling that urge to go full-on gentry is one that all abbey fans face every day. You’ll struggle through….till the next episode.