A Lack of Compassion is as Vulgar as Too Many Tears: Downton Abbey Episode Recap


Downton Abbey Season 5 – Episode 7 Recap

Hey faithful viewer/reader, welcome back. As always, these recaps work best if you have already seen the episode. There will be spoilers.

I jinxed Isis. At our first Must Talk TV event, I said nothing bad could happen to her as her butt is the opening shot of the credits. Now she has cancer and is about to die. I’m sorry. It was actually the saddest moment of an all around weepy episode. Full disclosure, I got my first pet, my first puppy, a few months ago. I am a dog person now. I cried about Old Yeller, sure, but now, I’m a sucker for the dead dog. I tell authors at Books & Bars, whatever you do, don’t kill the dog. The audience gets more upset about a dog dying than most. Julian Fellowes are you really going there. Tread lightly.

After finding Edith in the most obvious place, the magazine she now owns, Cora comes up with the winning plan to try to bring Marigold into Downton as an adopted orphan. Edith mainly wants the truth hidden from her father and downright rude sister, Mary.

Why hide it from Lord Grantham?

“He’s a man. Men don’t have rights,” – Lady Violet

It’s certainly the women’s season 5 here. Also, doesn’t this feel like the penultimate season. So much talk of  the future and making plans for later, especially downstairs. OK, so a sitcom-like confusion on the train platform ensues in which the farmer gets on the train in first class with Marigold and Edith leaves without her. Whew, right? No, because Anna Bates saw something and told Mrs. Hughes. How long before everyone knows Edith is Marigold’s mother? Season finale shocker maybe?

“When you have property, you have choices,” says Anna to every renter out there. Everyone wants in on some retirement property. Now would be a great time to set up a time share condo meeting with the downstairs Downton staff. Those beleaguered Bates are talking about selling the London house to look ahead to their future family and retirement, too. I loved the imposing gauntlet the Bates couple made for Baxter to pass through and justify herself. For all the troubles they’ve had they seemed kinda happy and kinda bad-ass for once. This whole business with the missing train ticket was the most ticket talk in England since Willy Wonka hid one.


Molesley continued his tutoring of Daisy, but Tony finally gets the hint after seeing Mary and Charles in a staged kiss at the cinema. Remember at the end of last season Tony and Charles made it sound like a battle for Mary would be coming? Well, Tony is out now and Charles is going to be in Poland for another half a year. Do you think Charles has a chance with Mary later or will she maybe never remarry as an attendee at Must Talk TV predicted? I am starting to think Charles is not the man who will win her either. And let’s be honest. She’s becoming less of a prize. I think Charles was a helpful friend in this situation, allowing Mary and Tony and Mabel to move on in a somewhat timely fashion, well Downton time is always a bit more laid back than Margaritaville.

Lord Merton’s sons top Sarah Bunting for the rudest and worst dinner guests at Downton this season. Fortunately, Tom sticks up for Isobel yelling at Larry Merton, “Why don’t you get out, you bastard!” Wow, now, why didn’t Lord Merton, Robert or Violet come to her defense first? This leads me to believe that Isobel will not end up with Merton. Do you think there’s still a chance for Dr. Clarkson and Isobel to end up together next season? Violet was very touching with her admission to Mary that her friendship with Isobel is so important to her that she is sad to lose her. Almost as sad as Robert and the rest of us for Isis, but not quite.

Tom talks of moving to Boston, actually spends more than 2 minutes with his child. Ever notice how easy parenting is at Downton? No wonder Edith wants Marigold raised in the nursery there.


Atticus proposes to Rose, taking a knee for just long enough. Rose has definitely become the Sybil of the season. They figure they have a tough road ahead so way not make more waves. Ok, how long have they known each other? How many times have they even been together? But, they’re young, cute, and romantic. I don’t fault a couple of nice and likable and purely good characters here. Go for it, kids.

Only two more episodes remain this season. I feel like this is the calm before the storm. But what do you think? Leave a comment, please or tweet at us with #DowntonPBS and #MustTalkTV.

Praying for Isis,

Jeff Kamin / @Jefe23