Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Downton Junkie- Season 1, Episodes 1 and 2- The Beginning of an Addictive Journey part 01

Addictive elements-

1.      The Highclere Castle- the castle is my dream home-stately, imperious, beautiful. I always dream of buying a castle or a palace. But what are my chances? At least libre ang mangarap. Kaya naman sa bawat kayod, yang dream house na yan ang nasa isip ko. It’s funny to think that the characters call it a house. When we speak of houses, we think of a average-looking building with a roof, enough for a family of four. Pero sabi lagi nila, bakit ka mangangarap ng malaking palasyo kung kalungkutan naman ang kapalit nito. Well I’d rather be tragic inside a palatial home, because right now, I am not being cheerful inside my rat hole. But think positive. With the right mind and right thinking, things will come out just as planned. Yes!

2.      The English Aristocracy- I’ve always been interested in the lives of aristocrats. They are so gracious and the English aristocracy is quite famous. Even here in Europe we know little of the nobilities of other European realms. Their values and etiquette are so interesting and different- quite a culture of its own. While those of the Italian, French and Spanish are quite similar. Perhaps this singularity of the English aristocratic culture and etiquette that made it stood out. 

3.      Inheritance Issues- The death of a rich family’s patriarch or matriarch always leads to interesting stories concerning its children, cousins, and illegitimate spawns and the struggle for money and financial redemption. I remember the inheritance brawl of the pigs of the patrician family, the Madrigals. Episode one started with the death of the heir apparent of Lord Robert, the Earl of Grantham. Because of some stupid inheritance law, the whole estate could not be granted to his eldest daughter, the beautiful heartless bitch Lady Mary Crawley, because the law states that it must be given to a male heir. Those were the years that women of all classes were regarded only as trophies and nothing more. So they plot and plot and plot on how save the estate and their wealth.

4.      Lady Mary- she is a heartless bitch and a real snob. Pretty much how we envision rich bitches and luxurious brats. But she’s a very interesting character.

5.      The Countess of Grantham, Lady Cora- She is the rich American who married Lord Robert. Lady Cora is very enchanting, gracious, and the perfect lady- her style, her etiquette, her manners, everything. And she’s American, which really got me puzzled. From what I have gathered in the first two episodes, the wealth of the Crawley family was founded on Cora’s dowry. I did some research and I found out that there was a time many British and other European noblemen went abroad, in particular, in America, in search of wives from prominent multi-millionaire families. And I think this is the case. In fact, Lord Robert, in a discussion with his mother, Lady Violet, the Dowager Countess of Grantham, admitted that he was a fortune-hunter and that he married Cora for her wealth.

6.      Matthew Crawley- Oh the prince who came to save the fortune of the Crawleys, except that he is not really a prince. 

He’s a middle-class man and a distant relative of Lord Robert. He is cute and blond and I already like him. But to Lady Mary, he’s an arrogant bastard who doesn’t deserve her or the estate and title of earl. The plotters (Lady Cora and the Dowager Countess) think that the only way to save the estate is to marry Lady Mary to Matthew, the heir apparent. The only thing is that Matthew views the aristocratic life as frivolous and absurd, and refuses to live the life of a lord. I think he’s being absurd. Life is handing out to you happiness on a silver plate and you spit on it? The actor is charming in this episode. But look at him now.
Dan Stevens looking not-so-gentlemanly

7.      Lady Violet Crawley, the Dowager Countess- Dowager is the title added to widow nobles. In these first two episodes, she is the epitome of subtle snobbery and witticism. I loved it when she inquired, “What is a weekend?”. Ah, snootiness at its finest! 

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