DOWNTON ABBEY PHOTOCAP: Old Friends, New Faces

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Things took a few preposterous turns on Downton Abbey this week. A man with a severely burned face claiming to be Patrick Crawley (the former heir who had died on the Titanic) surfaced at the estate, full of tales of amnesia and Canadian exile. No one really believed that this guy was Patrick Crawley, but the perpetually unlucky in love Edith did, despite the fact that this new Patrick had no trace of a British accent (something I naturally assume the real Patrick would have had). For a moment, I thought this charlatan might be accepted by the family, but instead, [SPOILER] they greeted him with suspicion, and ultimately, he fled, leaving Edith heartbroken again. Poor girl.

The whole Patrick controversy was rather silly, and I feared that if his tale of amnesia were actually true, this show might have jumped the shark. However, it’s pretty clear the guy was a grifter; so all is forgotten. There was no definitive proof, but a telling scene came when he vaguely recollected childhood memories with Edith, cleverly baiting her to fill in all the details. Classsssssic con man.

The saga of Patrick wasn’t the only pulpy revelation of the episode. There was Matthew, who suddenly appeared to regain sensation in his toes (HEAVENS!), and there was Bates, who returned from a mysterious trip to see his wife — a trip that consequently resulted in her MURDER. Did he do it? There were scratches on his face. And will Matthew walk again? So many questions to be answered!

As for Mary, she managed to utter a great line to Sir Richard about paintings, noting that “his lot” buys art while her lot inherits it. Things look to be getting quite rocky between the two, thanks to Mary spending so much time rolling Matthew across the lawn. Richard, however, is an asshole and found quite a simple, two-pronged way to keep Mary in check. First he (with the advice of Cora) brought Lavinia back to town, and this time, she announced a determination to never leave Matthew’s side. EVER. Smell ya later, Mary!

Prong number two: Richard pushed Mary up against a wall and reminded her that he would DESTROY HER if she ever tried to cross him. Now give us a kiss!

Well, Robert was certainly not happy with Lavinia’s return, and he laid into his wife with the most seething insult I certainly have heard: “Sometimes, Cora, you can be curiously unfeeling!” OUCH.

Poor Robert. He was all excited to wear his new tuxedo, which he assured us was only to be worn for informal occasions. Now his night was ruined. Methinks this is just the sort of trickery that will drive Robert away from Cora and into the arms of that new, widowed maid. Danger Danger!!

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“Mary, I do wish you’d stop pushing me around like some pitiful cripple. The simple fact is that I shall never, ever walk again. EVER. The notion of me regaining sensation in my legs is ABSOLUTELY LUDICROUS. I mean, maybe if we were on The CW, sure. But we’re on PBS, Mary. It’s uncivilised.”

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“I have exciting news, Isobel. Today the Dowager Countess and I tried a new cuisine from a place called Mexico. I had what is commonly known as a taco.”

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“Will you be discussing the burriTO?”

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“I must insist, Cousin Cora, that Downton Abbey remain a public facility, a beacon of tacos and burritos and pico de gallo!”

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“You WILL make fajitas, won’t you?”

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“Of course! But privately. For ourselves.”

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“Two for one tacos for Dowagers.”

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“Are you saying that you will not be serving enchiladas to our boys coming back from the front?”

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“I’m afraid that’s not possible.”

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“Cousin Cora, I must insist that you avail the molé to the public.”

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“I’m afraid the molé must be reserved for the family.”

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“I, for one, am particularly excited for Taco Tuesday in the drawing room.”

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“I see. And this Taco Tuesday, is it every Tuesday?”

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“I should hope so.”

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“We must make these tacos useful.”

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“I assure you, Cousin Isobel, that the tacos will be put to great service. Edith has already pledged to teach them how to drive the tractor.”

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“A taco? Driving a tractor? Cousin Cora, this sounds like madness.”

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“Oh dear.”

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“What is it?”

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“Exactly what sort of beans did Mrs. Patmore but in this evening’s chalupa?”

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“Heavens, far be it for me to know. I try to ignore those wretched legumes from foreign lands.”

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“Cousin Cora, are you quite alright?”

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“I’m afraid I may be feeling sudden gastro-intestinal duress.”

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“Surely, you’ll be able to maintain your composure as you are a lady and a representative of Downton Abbey.”

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“Everyone, PLEASE BE QUIET AND LET ME FOCUS.”

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“Oh dear. Shall we fetch you a diaper?”

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“You are a curious creature, Isobel.”

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“I intend to be useful, especially now that Cousin Cora seems to have the diarrhea.”

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“Please. Everyone be quiet.”

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“Oh my. She’s about to lose control, isn’t she?”

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“Lose control? What ever do you mean?”

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“SILENCE.”

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“Oh dear. Molesley. You had better get in here.”

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“Are you suggesting that Cora is about to–“

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“It’s too late.”

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“HEAVENS!”

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“HEAVENS!”

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“Look at Isobel’s face. Totes worth it.”

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“Most certainly.”

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“Hullo. You look desperate. Want to make out?”

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“Hmm… He’s no farmer, but I suppose he’ll do…”

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“Tell me, Carson, am I wrong to think this moment is brimming with sexual tension?”
“You are quite right, sir.”

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“Anna, I need to go see to my wife. She’s causing problems.”

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O’Brien: “And what problem is THAT?”

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“Ignore her. Just listen to me, Anna. While I’m in town, I may purchase some new shoes.”

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“And what’s wrong with your currents shoes then?”

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“I was also thinking–“

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“Thinking about WHAT?”

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“Do you remember the –“

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“Remember the WHAT?”

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“I–“

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“Go on, SPEAK UP!”

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“SERIOUSLY SHUT UP, O’BRIEN.”

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“Heyyyyy cousin.”

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“So I was thinking… maybe we should just be friends.”

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“But I thought… what about… no more kissing cousins?”

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“Sorry. I just remember you as being a little hotter.”

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“PaPA thinks you aren’t really Patrick Crawley.”
“What? That’s ridiculous!”
“That’s what I said!”
“Of course I’m Patrick Crawley. Remember that man or woman from our youth who we hated?”
“You mean that nasty governess that we hid from in the paddock?”
“Yes! Her! And remember that game or story or seminal event from that one summer that one time?”
“You mean when we played Ox in the Ditch in 1901, and you broke your arm?”
“Yes!! And I said to you…. I said– “
“You said ‘Edith, I am in more pain than a splintered wagon wheel!'”
“And then I fainted–“
“You stood up.”
“–and I laughed–“
“You cried.”
“–and I ran away–“
“You stood still.”
“Exactly!”
“Oh, it IS you, Patrick!”

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“Patrick, I want you to try something. It’s called a tamale. It’s from Mexico.”

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“Mexico? Like North America? Where Canada is? WHERE I’VE BEEN LIVING MY NIGHTMARE?”

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“I REJECT THIS TAMALE!!!”
“Heavens!”

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“Patrick, tell me what’s really the matter.”
“It’s just… why is it that because I happen to have burned off my face, the only girl who’s willing to look at me, is YOU. I mean, why not Sybil? Heck, I’d even settle for O’Brien or that slutty new maid with the kid.”

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Daisy: “I didn’t love William. I didn’t! I’m a liar!!! I STILL LOVE THOMAS, AND HE’S GAY!!! MY LIFE IS A MESS!!!!”
Carson: “Ugh. Here we go again.”

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“Just back from murderin’. Did I miss anything?”

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“I just received a letter from London–“

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“A letter? Heavens!”

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“I’m afraid it does little to solve this Patrick Crawley situation. Apparently, Patrick’s body was never accounted for, and there was an unidentified body that was brought back to America.”

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“There! That proves it!”

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“One of the reports has him dying before they reached the shore.”

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“Precisely!”

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“Another witness says he did make it to New York alive.”

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“Exactly!”

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“And yet another witness says his head was decapitated in a haberdashery on the Lower East Side.”

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“Indubitably!”

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“But then come reports that a medicine man from the Far East was able to reattach the head, but not before severely burning the man’s face as part of a tribal ceremony.”

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“Advantage Patrick.”

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“And yet another witness says the news resuscitated Patrick was subsequently locked in a cage with rocks and dropped in the Atlantic, lest the monster terrorize the streets of Manhattan.”

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“And that settles that.”

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“However, Mr. Murray writes that there’s been an account of a great narwhal that mistook the cage for a lover and attempted to mate with the contraption. Patrick was set free, and he washed up on the great shores of Quebec.”

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“One simply cannot argue with these facts.”

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“Patrick was then preyed upon by a wild pack of wolves, who tore his body into various pieces.”

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“An unquestionable end to a tall tale.”

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“But then another witness says it was Patrick who preyed on the wolves, and it was Patrick who tore their bodies into various pieces.”

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“Indeed! He is a man of great strength.”

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“And you are a woman of great idiocy.”

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“Matthew, should you meet this Patrick, and should he attempt to murder you, will you let me protect you? I must be useful.”

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“So is he dead or alive?”

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“We simply do not know.”

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“Well, thank you for wasting our time. Heavens…”

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“Matthew, I’m back. And I will never leave you!”

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“Gosh, you’re plain.”

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“Patrick left. If I can’t keep even a man with NO FACE, what chance do I have for love?”
Sybil: “None.”

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“Bates! I feel something in my toes! How convenient and ridiculous!”

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“Cor, blimey! I done been murdered! HEAVENS!!!”

What did you think about the episode? And if you’ve already seen the full second season, no spoilers please!

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6 thoughts on “DOWNTON ABBEY PHOTOCAP: Old Friends, New Faces

  1. O’Brien is the murderess! She feels bad about sending the letter bringing Mr. Bates’ wife back so she’s killed her! She’s trying to redeem herself after causing Cora to lose the male heir in the bathtub mishap…what better way to redeem yourself than by murdering someone? LOL

    I, like you, thought this show was jumping the shark with the Patrick crappola. The way his eyes kept bugging out was just disturbing…the scars weren’t, just those fish eyes! And no Brit accent? No one noticed at Downton noticed that?

    And I hope Shirley McLain doesn’t ruin the show next season. But she will. ugh

  2. I think Sir Richard had Mrs. Bates killed for some unknown reason. It is too convenient to have Miss O’Brien kill her. O’Brien feels guilty … so she kills the woman? I don’t think so. They have to find a way to get rid of Sir Richard and this is really the only way to do it (so far). Sir Richard told Mrs. Bates that he would stop at nothing to harm her if she didn’t honor the contract to shut her trap about the Lady Mary-PeMUK story. And besides, he’s insufferably one-note. Bates is Thomas’ only friend … and I love me some Thomas. Ergo, O’Brien stays.

    Julia – I totes agree with you … Shirley MacLaine is gonna ruin it for us all next season. Damn.

  3. Fake Patrick said something about I’ve been in Canada all this time and so I’ve developed a Canadian accent. Wow, so clever. Knew he had to be a
    n imposture right then.

  4. Fake Patrick said something about developing a Canadian accent because he had been there to so long. Wow, so clever. I knew he had to be an impostor then.

  5. Charlie, yeah it makes sense that Sir Richard would do it. O’Brien is such a great character she better stay! When she kept being all up in Bates’ business about the telegram…that’s when I thought she did it. :D

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