Only come to this page if you want to discuss the latest episodes of Downton Abbey – warning: there are spoilers in the comments!!!


Leave your thoughts below and weigh in on everyone else’s!

68 thoughts on “Downton Abbey Season Three Discussions

  1. Hi! So – leave your thoughts here, and we can discuss.

    My main thoughts:

    1. I love that the Dowager sent the money. She always surprises me with her kind heart.

    2. The wedding dress left SO much to be desired!! Especially that drop waist. With all of the fabulous jewelry and fabrics they use – THAT was the wedding dress??

    3. The scene between the Granthams when Lord told Lady about the money – beautiful.

    4. The closed-eyed kiss – I totally re-experienced that kiss in my dreams the next night – except that I was me and Matthew was Chris…kinda.

    What say you?

  2. I agree about the scene where Robert told Cora about the money situation. The depth of their relationship is always surprising, considering how most marriages in those days were in name only.

    I thought the wedding dress was very fashionable for the period.

    For some reason, I am suspicious about the Dowager sending the money. Either she is up to something… or she is lying.

    And, yes, that kiss was special!

    Also, seems people are less tolerant of O’Brien.

    And I kept wondering if John Bates had ever met his wife! He kept saying, “It won’t change anything. It won’t do any good.” He should know by now that Anna will not give up!

    1. Yes. I got really worried about Robert and Cora’s marriage when that other maid was around for a short time. I’m SO glad Robert did the right thing, and that they seem to be doing so much better.

      And the Dowager being up to something… I didn’t consider that, but now I’ll be suspicious!

      What did you think of the other Mother-In-Law? I didn’t really like her. I haven’t seen redeeming characteristics in her yet, and that’s what makes me love the Dowager Countess.

  3. My first thoughts on the dress were – well I guess it was that time period and wow she has no curves.

    I loved her line at the alter “I would hate to be predictable”.

    Loving the other mother in law being in the picture. So fun!

    1. I don’t like the other MIL – she’s just rude and not showing any deep kindness yet. Maybe she’ll grow on me… but it is fun to see the Dowager speechless.

    2. Yup, I agree, the dress emphasised her lack of chestiness… could have done better. (In fact her normal skimpier dinner dresses suit her better in my humble opinion).

      1. Have you noticed that Mary looks shockingly skinnier this season? I was noticing in Sunday’s episode. Her shoulder blades are nothing but bones!

  4. 1. Rachel I agree with you about the dress. Keeping in mind with the times I think it was appropriate but not at all flattering.
    2. I’ve loved Bates since his first episode, but some of the things he is saying make me wonder if he’s not a little bit guilty of something. Like when Anna visited him he kept asking if she was sure he was innocent. I don’t know, maybe I’m reading it wrong. :) I still love Anna and Bates.
    3. Oh my goodness, the money discussion between Robert and Cora…melt.
    4. I don’t like the M-I-L. Not memorable so far.
    5. What do you think about O’Brien’s nephew? I can’t decide if he’s evil like her or if he’s a good chap.

    1. Bates WAS a bit suspicious, wasn’t he? Interesting…

      O’Brien’s nephew, so far, just seems a bit dense and inexperienced – no character traits have been picked up on – yet.


    – If Bates didn’t do it (which I still believe he didn’t), he didn’t help his appeal tonight by basically admitting to it to his cell mate.

    – I wonder when exactly Thomas and O’Brien’s relationship deteriorated – I find it rather sudden.

    – Over/Under: I say three episodes until Downton Abbey is secure again.

    1. 1. Yeah, on Bates. :( But the thought never crossed my mind that he might be guilty…until reading some of these comments. :)

      2. I was wondering that, as well. Also, what was their special connection before? That they were both evil? The curly bangs and the “out to get everyone.”

      3. Maybe, but in the previews, they show the dedication of the new, smaller place.

      +4. Anyone else think that the new guy (Alfred) sounds/looks a lot like William? Also, not so sure of the American maid–does she really like him? Or out to get him and has a secret crush on Thomas?

  6. 1. Bates did not help my speculation of his guiltiness in this episode, and the tension between him and his cellmate makes me nervous. Don’t do anything stupid Bates!

    2. I was slightly disappointed they didn’t show more of the wedding. At least the vows/kiss. For all the anticipation leading up to it from season 2, it was just a little underwhelming.

    3. I’m also not sure about the relationship between Alfred and the maid. And Daisy somehow always being there whenever they kiss just makes it awkward.

    4. Rachel, I sure hope you’re right about Downton being saved! It wouldn’t be the same without it.

    1. Does Daisy like Alfred, do you think? Or is she just frustrated because she has no one to love?

      And Downton Abbey can’t be Downton Abbey without Downton Abbey. Just like Seinfield can’t die because then it wouldn’t be Seinfield.


    “Vulgarity is no substitute for wit” –> Best Dowager Countess quote of the season yet!!

    Elizabeth: It appears that your assumptions about Daisy and Alfred were true. And we had an odd lack of closure between Alfred and the American Maid.

    Edith’s wedding was horribly painful to watch – I wish they’d let her have a tiny bit of happiness! It’s already hard enough being the middle child (I should know).

    The ending with Carson and Mrs Hughes – SO priceless!! That’s why I love this show.

    I’m nervous about Bates. That is all.

    1. Poor Edith! To be left at the altar like that is really going to be a stigma against her (undeserved, but there you go). I hope she goes off and does something useful and finds a handsome young man to marry.

      Her dress was stunning, I thought. Loved the draping and the shining satin. And the diamond hair ornament. Purty!

      I suspect Mrs Bates has got cancer.

      I didn’t like the neatness of Matthew getting the money they needed and being willing to give it to them in the nick of time. Too neat to be convincing.

      However, still loving it.

      PS – there’s another show called ‘Parade’s End’ on in the UK at the mo – quite similar to Downton, through trying to have more ‘themes’. Set during WW1 with posh folk. Give it a go if you can get your hands on it!

  8. Yes, without a doubt, Mrs. HUGHES has cancer. She has enlisted Mrs. Patmore to keep it from Mr. Hughes and anyone else.

    I didn’t think the device of Matthew’s father-in-law leaving him money was too pat. Especially after he read the letter.

    Poor Edith. But remember, in the first series, she was a real bitch. To my mind, this is karma.

    1. Really? I didn’t even consider that she was lying about cancer. What makes you think so – the crying at the end? That came off to me as happy, girly giggling over CARSON.

      (Since we’re capitalizing corrections and all.) :)

      And yes, Edith is due some Karma. And speaking of Karma, during every encounter between Cora and O’Brien, I want to scream, “SHE KILLED YOUR BABY!!! HANG HER FROM THE TREES!!!”

      1. LOL The caps were just because Eleanorjane had posted that Mrs Bates had cancer. It was my hamfisted way of pointing out that error.

        I’m old and my memory sucks… I don’t recall the information about O’Brien killing Cora’s baby. I assume this is historical, not part of the series?

        Oh, the “happy” that Mrs. Hughes was feeling was because she was pleased that Mr. Carson fell for her deception. At least, that was my perception. I will go back and watch this last episode again just make sure I’m not full of beans. lol

        1. Remember when Cora was briefly pregnant, which made Matthew think he was out of the will (if the child ended up being a boy), which made Mary put off her romance plans with him, which made Matthew angry, which is what foiled their romance in the first place? Then O’Brien thought Cora was sacking her because she kept asking about a Lady’s Maid recommendation (when in reality the rec was for Dowager), so O’Brien left the dropped bar of soap, which then made Cora slip and lose the baby?

          (Not that I’m obsessed with this show or anything)

  9. Darn it, Mrs. Hughes is my favorite character (she just seems so reasonable) and I don’t want to think of her dying of cancer. I fell for “benign something or other” too but now that you say so I do think she might have just been trying to protect Carson. I wonder if she’ll go find that man who wanted to marry her. Remember him?

    I think Edith’s dress was much nicer than Mary’s but I knew as soon as she said “all three of us married, all three of us happy” she was dooooomed ;) though I really don’t think Sir Antony would do such a thing.

    1. I’m still convinced that she is cancer-free, and I’m sticking to it.

      I do vaguely remember that man!! But I’d rather her be with Carson.

  10. Don’t forget the Dowager quote at the beginning: “At my age one must ration excitement”. I liked that!

    The sisters both pulled off the drop-waisted gowns

  11. (oops, posted before I was finished)

    ….quite nicely. I wonder if the drop-waist is going to make a come-back.

  12. I am wondering what you guys are thinking about episode four. Some on the Downton fb page said they though it was boring, but I loved it, cried a lot!

    1. I enjoyed it, but after a couple of days, I did have trouble remembering what it was about!

      Oh yes – I did cry when Ethel gave up her son. For sure.

      And I’m very curious about the “Downton Mismanagement” and excited about finding out what he’s talking about.

      1. When Anna and Bates finally were able to receive the bundles of letters from each other, that had me crying too. The previews made me think maybe he will be found innocent soon. I hope so.

  13. I am destroyed! I can’t believe today’s episode.

    Did Cora’s mother go back to America? I didn’t see her today. What a roller coaster this episode was. Good news for Mr. Bates, but the family is definitely at odds. The christening and Cora’s blaming Robert are huge issues looming.

    1. It was terrible, for sure!! We had to watch Saturday Night Live afterwards just to reset our brains.

      Cora’s Mom went back a few episodes ago. And yes, the marriage issues are looming, including potentially Mary and Matthew also feuding about family control issues.

  14. Rachel, I did notice there was no mention of Mrs. Hughes or cancer this week. Apparently, I was wrong. It’s very possible the joy she expressed was over the fact that she is cancer-free?

  15. Okay. So last night’s episode?? SO painful to watch!!

    I had a feeling that was going to happen about halfway through, but WHY did they have to do that?

    And next week’s episode didn’t look much happier.


  16. NOOOOOOOOOOO not Sybil!!!! Why Sybil?!?! It should have been Edith. Haha. No but seriously. That was so painful.

  17. Ugh. My first time commenting on season 3…

    The first couple of episodes were kind of anticlimactic, I have to say. I was starting to enjoy it again after the 3rd episode & now they are ramping it up again with the drama. I am not too surprised of Sybil’s death. She had not been around much towards the end of season 2. For me, that was a tell-take sign she would not be around much in seasons to come. The could have let her & Tom live out a happy existence in Ireland, instead.

    Do you think Tom will give the baby up to Mary & Matthew eventually? I can see the family putting pressure on Tom. My Magic Eight-ball tells me Matthew & Mary may have trouble conceiving, which may lead to their downfall. Sorry to be doom & gloom, but I just don’t see their marriage making it. :-( There already seems to be a lot of stress & neither seem happy. Mary’s brow is always furrowed.

    Also, is the Dowager looking a wee bit frail?

    I think Mr. Bates will eventually see freedom, but I think there will be a lot of drama before his release.

    1. I think I preferred the anticlimactic episodes! They gave me warm fuzzies without the pain.

      I think Mary and Matthew will make it, and I think they’ll have a baby, too. But I could see them adopting Sybil’s first, then having their own.

  18. Any speculation as to what Robert’s behavior will do to the marriage? I suspect they will live in separate bedrooms until one of them dies. Also, I think the guilt will eat Robert up and he will have a stroke.

  19. oh, stop all you naysayers! (LOL) I can’t bear all this talk of marriages falling apart! Of course, Mary and Matthew will adopt Sybil’s baby in order to soothe their pains over infertility, but they will live happily ever after – as will Cora and Robert! We can’t have any divorces!

    There weren’t any real gems out of the Dowager this week but she hit it bang on with her response on the news of the baby being born: “Thank God and Hallelujah”. Even though the episode took a downward turn after that, for those brief moments were able to rejoice in the creator of life.

  20. No comments yet this week?

    My fav quote:
    “It seems such a pity to miss such a good pudding.”

    That’s so me – the world may be falling apart and my reputation might be at stake, but oh, there’s a yummy dessert coming!

    1. Sorry – I was sick most of the week and so got behind on my thoughts. I was SO relieved that it was a happy episode after the last one! And yes, I loved the pudding quote as well.

  21. Are you all still having good luck with Expatshield and/or TunnelBear? We can’t get a good connection with either. It’s terrible slow and choppy. We watched 1/2 of episode 3 and gave up. I’m distracted with Call the Midwife though so that helps :)

    1. It’s taken a lot of work, and several times an episode it has to “think” for a minute, but I assumed that was because we were watching it on Sunday night with the rest of the world.

  22. It has since started working for us again. I think my VPN for work interfered ;) We’ve now seen episodes 3 and 4–Sybil’s death and Bate’s likely release. My favorite part was when all of the Downton women refused to snub Mrs. Crawley and Ethel.

  23. And that’s it (last night’s episode)?? How could that be the end of the season? But I read there will be a 2 hour Christmas special.

    Best part this episode for me… Ethel being able to see Charlie in the future.

    1. I KNOW! British TV series are painfully short. But I too heard that there would be a Christmas special. Although if I had to say, as happy as that one ended up, I fully expect the Christmas special to have all sorts of cliffhangers and misery.

  24. Don’t you think there’s something weird going on with Mary? They sure led us to believe that she was pregnant….I wonder if she’s lying to Matthew and she was pregnant and had a miscarriage. Something’s not adding up.

    1. You think? I figured she was telling the truth when she admitted to him that she had surgery. But yes, things are definitely afoot in her reproductive area.

  25. I was sobbing (yes, again) at the end of the Christmas Special. But at least Downton has an heir. I will be rewatching this season starting tomorrow night.

    1. I was so frustrated with that whole episode, though – it was like they contrived it all in a hurry to make sure that there was an heir before they had to kill Matthew. SO annoying!

      1. I just finished it & I feel the same. Poop on them. How do I keep this news to myself?!?

        I do think Dan Stevens is making a mistake leaving, but I understand the show was too demanding on his family time.

        I wonder how Season 4 will shape up?

  26. Okay, for fun…
    Magic 8 Ball, Will Mary Crawley & Tom Branson produce a 3rd heir together?
    “It is decidedly so.”


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