Rob James-Collier

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Did Downton Abbey Lose Its Charm? Finale Rounds Out a Frustrating Season

[WARNING: The following contains spoilers from the Season 4 finale of Downton Abbey. Read at your own risk.]

We are grateful to have Downton Abbey in our lives, but our devotion to the show is the very reason we're so irked at how it progressed this season.

Although we've come to terms with the loss of Matthew (Dan Stevens) and Sybil (Jessica Brown-Findlay), it doesn't seem like the writers quite know what to do in the wake of those deaths. So much of this season felt either forced or false or just failed miserably. Has Downton Abbey lost its charm?

Before launching into the season as a whole, let's go over the highlights of the finale, shall we?

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Downton Abbey Season 4 Scoop on Lady Mary, London and More

Pull out your dancing shoes, because Downton Abbey will be entering the Jazz Age.

[Warning: The following contains major spoilers from the past three seasons of Downton Abbey. If you haven't caught up yet, read at your own risk!]

It's been months since fans reeled from that shocking Christmas episode that also rocked the Crawley family, and now they're moving into the 1920s with new babies, suitors and even a musician or two. The story picks up in February 1922, when Downton Abbey is still in deep mourning for the loss of heir Matthew Crawley (Dan Stevens) from an auto accident.

13 reasons we want to grow up to be Downton Abbey's Dowager Countess

"Both the audience and the characters have experienced some passage of time," executive producer Gareth Neame said at PBS' Television Critics Association fall preview on Tuesday. read more

Critic's Notebook: The Emmy Nominations

If it weren't for Netflix's House of Cards making the drama races a bit more interesting, while opening the door to a brave new world of out-of-the-box content for future years' consideration, this year's list of Emmy contenders (see the major categories here) would be most notable for its numbing lack of imagination and...read more

Videos

Downton Abbey Cast, Part 2
Downton Abbey Season 4 [HD]
Downton Abbey Season 4
Michelle Dockery Shines as Downton Abbey Goes Stateside

More Clips & Interviews

 FULL EPISODE
Episode 9, The London Season (Original UK Edition)
 FULL EPISODE
Episode 9 [HD]
 FULL EPISODE
Episode 8 (Original UK Edition)
 FULL EPISODE
Episode 8 (Original UK Edition)

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TV Listings

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Credits

Year Title Description
2014 Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey, Season 4: Part 6
Season 44, Episode 9
Episode, Actor - Thomas Barrow
2013 Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey, Season 3: Episode Seven
Season 43, Episode 7
Episode, Actor - Thomas Barrow
2011 Downton Abbey TV Show Series, Actor - Thomas
Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey Episode, Actor - Thomas Barrow
Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey Episode, Actor - Thomas Barrow

More Credits (56)

News

Downton Abbey: Was Thomas' Downfall Deserved?

[Spoiler alert! The following contains details from Sunday's episode of Downton Abbey. Read if you dare risk the wrath of the Dowager Countess.]

Downton Abbey's Thomas finally got his comeuppance, but was it enough? Or was it unfair treatment?

On Sunday's episode, the sneering servant was finally outmaneuvered by his fellow downstairs nemesis O'Brien (Siobhan Finneran) who convinced him that footman Jimmy (Ed Speleers) reciprocated his romantic feelings. Thomas (Rob James-Collier) made his move by kissing the unsuspecting sleeping Jimmy, who was shocked and disgusted by the unwanted advances.
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Playing Matchmaker for Downton Abbey's Lovelorn Servants

"You know the trouble with you lot? You're all in love with the wrong people." -- the wisdom of Mrs. Patmore

Not every servant on Downton Abbey can have the fairy tale romance of Bates and Anna (false murder rap and imprisonment aside), and a servant in the 1920s is further constrained by his/her status. For every Gwen (Rose Leslie) who opened up her romantic prospects by becoming a secretary, sadly there's a fallen Ethel (Amy Nuttall) who's forced into prostitution after having an affair with a military man. What's one of the serving class to do but flirt awkwardly with one of their own in hopes of safely pairing off?
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How Downton Abbey Broke Our Hearts

[Spoiler alert: The following story contains spoilers from Sunday's episode of Downton Abbey. If you haven't watched it yet, read at your own risk.]

Although Downton Abbey's third season has already played in its entirety in the U.K., a majority of American fans of the series have kept scrupulously ignorant of what happens in order to enjoy watching the series unspoiled. And even for those who already knew what was coming, Sunday's episode was far more horrifying and heart-wrenching to watch than we could have imagined.
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6 Reasons Why Americans Are Bloody Obsessed with Downton Abbey

When Downton Abbey's third season premiered earlier this month, it netted 7.9 million viewers, up 96 percent from the Season 2 premiere and earning larger audiences that week than home-country hits such as The Bachelor, The Biggest Loser and New Girl. So what exactly is it about a British period drama that has Americans in a tizzy? TVGuide.com breaks down the six biggest reasons why... read more

Weekend Playlist: Downton Abbey, Lifetime's Amish Murder, Portlandia, and More

Downton Abbey survived World War I. But can the country manor weather the latest skirmish, a below-stairs battle between those scheming servants O'Brien and Thomas?

That's just one of the many entertaining questions and diverting dilemmas presented by the long-awaited — and well worth the wait — third season of this Masterpiece Classic addiction, which returns like a delicious if bittersweet bonbon. (And how I hope you've kept the blinders on regarding the many spoilers issuing from across the pond during the recent U.K. telecast.)

"No family is ever what it seems from the outside," muses the formidable Dowager Countess (the peerless Maggie Smith) during one of the many crises that beset the Crawleys and their loyal servants over the next seven Sundays (PBS, check tvguide.com listings). read more

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