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Downton Abbey

January 17, 2011

Downton Abbey, the 2010 British television series set in 1912 Edwardian England, is now airing on American television.  The scriptwriting, with varying degrees of success or relevance, presents and explains social and cultural attitudes and actions of the times.  This series begins to feeds my thirst for how-things-were (like the 1900 House and Manor House PBS series), but so far falls short in portraying the use of the vast landscapes these houses sat in.  Filmed at Highclere Castle in Hampshire, most of the action takes place indoors or in town, but there are short scenes of fox hunts, tea in the garden and walking in the Capability Brown-designed grounds.  The drama primarily involves the interactions between upstairs and downstairs characters.  Conspicuously absent are servants who worked outside the house, maintaining the gardens and park.  Perhaps the addition of outdoors workers would have expanded the scope of drama from upstairs-downstairs to also include inside-outside.

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From → Film and Theater

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