The end of an era is upon us: ITV has released the trailer for the final season of Downton Abbey.
And it is fantastic.
It is also, as we all probably expected, a veritable five-alarm Kleenex fest, complete with loads of nostalgia, long looks, many repeated meta references to things ending, and the completely unfair use of Time to Say Goodbye as a soundtrack, just in case you weren’t already in a state of complete emotional collapse.
Filming wrapped up this week on the final season of beloved, megahit costume drama Downton Abbey, which has been something of an emotional affair for all involved. And will doubtless be an extremely emotional affair for fans when Series 6 finally broadcasts. (And by the way, it’ll be airing here in the US beginning January 3, 2016 if you missed that memo).
Several members of the series’ cast and crew have been sharing the experience on social media as they bid farewell to the world of the Crawley clan, using the hashtag #LastDaysofDownton. And, fair warning, even just scrolling through that hashtag is likely to make you a bit sniffly.
It’s official: The countdown to the end of Downton Abbey is underway.
It’s not like we didn’t know that the show was ending, of course – but it certainly feels more real now that we know, officially, when we can expect to see it.
During PBS’ session at the annual Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour, it was officially announced thatDownton Abbey Season 6 will premiere in the US beginning Sunday, January 3 on Masterpiece.
One of the only good things about knowing for sure that Downton Abbey’sending after next season is that it gives Julian Fellowes and company plenty of time to plot satisfying resolutions to all the main story and (hopefully) give all the major characters an appropriate happy ending.
Determining what those endings should look like though will doubtless occupy those of us that think and obsess and write about British TV through the rest of the year. How can we say goodbye to these characters? What sort of endings do we want to see for them? And what sort of closure do we need from their current story arcs?
Fans apparently aren’t the only people thinking about these obviously super important issues. Masterpiece put together a cute video featuring several of the series’ major cast members contemplating the question of what sort of ideal endings they’d envision for their characters next year.
“Millions of people around the world have followed the journey of the Crawley family and those who serve them for the last five years. Inevitably there comes a time when all shows should end and Downton is no exception," Executive Producer Gareth Naeme said in a statement. "We wanted to close the doors of Downton Abbey when it felt right and natural for the storylines to come together and when the show was still being enjoyed so much by its fans. We can promise a final season full of all the usual drama and intrigue, but with the added excitement of discovering how and where they all end up."
Every since Downton AbbeySeason 5 wrapped here in the US a few weeks ago, speculation about the show’s future has been rampant, pretty much everywhere. The start of filming on Season 6 has done little to tamp down on this topic, with another new speculative piece popping up every day.
What’s going on is this: Downton had already been renewed for a sixth season, which will likely screen in the UK this September and in America beginning in early January 2016. However, many of the cast’s contracts are ending following Season 6, and internet scuttlebutt says that many of them are ready to move on to other projects.
Oh, dear. Downton Abbey fans, brace yourselves, it looks like big changes could be headed our way – star Maggie Smith has indicated that the next season of the world’s most popular costume drama will be her last with the show.
In an interview with the Sunday Telegraph promoting her upcoming film The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Smith commented a bit on the next season of Downton Abbey, and her words definitely seem to imply that she doesn’t plan to have much of a future with the show beyond next season.
Previously, on Downton Abbey: Rose and Atticus get married amid drama that includes: Rose’s awful mother’s existence, her awful mother’s attempt to frame her future son-in-law for an affair he wasn’t having, her awful mother telling her future in-laws that she’s divorcing and bringing scandal upon them in an attempt to stop the wedding. In short: Lady Flintshire is THE WORST. Edith spends a lot of time mooning over Marigold and doing a terrible job of pretending that’s not her kid. Robert figures it out and is surprisingly not a jerk about it. Tom has decided to go to America, and Tony Gillingham has decided to marry Mabel Lane Fox. Mary is depressed over both these developments. The London cops literally have no other crimes to solve (poorly) other than Green’s murder and have arrested Anna, because this show hates the Bateses (and its viewers, possibly). Need more details or just want to squee about it? See last week’s recap.)
It’s season finale time! Hasn’t this season gone by in a blink? What will happen? Read on and let’s find out.
Previously, on Downton Abbey: Cora and Rosamund track Edith to London, where she’s fled with Marigold and convince her not only to return to Downton with the child, but that lying about the Drewes ability to take care of the child is enough cover for her to just adopt her. Sure, okay. Isobel gets engaged to Lord Merton, but his hellspawn sons ruin the dinner party the Crawleys throw in their honor. Daisy mopes about the state of progressivism in the world. Rose and Atticus are so adorable they are basically made of kittens and puppies and also they get engaged. Isis is diagnosed with cancer because this show hates me so much. There’s more stuff, but just see last week’s recap.)
It’s the penultimate episode of the season and there is a lot going on. Let’s dish.
Previously, on Downton Abbey: Edith’s boyfriend Michael Gregson is officially declared dead and everyone ignores the fact that the timeline of this show has become so wonky that he has both only been dead a year and also somehow has a two-year old daughter. Whatever! Anyway, Edith mopes and ends up basically doing a snatch and grab of her illegitimate child and fleeing to London. Bates, who super sucks, accuses Anna of trying to keep herself from getting pregnant, but it all works out in the end because he confesses that even though he totes wanted to kill Green and plotted out how he’d do it, he couldn’t go through with it in the end. Anna’s relieved. Baxter forces Thomas to see Dr. Clarkson, who tells him to stop his weird conversion therapy treatment. Mary gets a new hairdo and there’s a horse race. Yeah, kind of a lot happens. Just see last week’s recap.)
Alrighty, now that we’re all caught up – time for Episode 7. Let’s do this, folks!
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