Upstairs or Downstairs: A Downton Dilemma

So last night, as I was watching Downton Abbey, I was thinking about where I’d most like to be in the house. Not forever, just for a short stay to hang out.

Upstairs would be fun cause you could just hang out doing not much but you would have to deal with Soppy Edith. I was slightly impressed with her new direction in last night’s episode but still, she was an idiot in the first series, which put me firmly in Camp Mary in the Mary-Edith face off. So Edith gets no sympathy from me. And if you lived upstairs, you’d have to hang around and smile nicely at her.

You would get to hang out with Cousin Violet though, who should write a book of wisdom. One of her recent quotes always makes me laugh. The others are looking at the massively overdressed table before the guests arrive and going, oo is it too much, have we gone over the top? And Cousin Violet just glances over, looks pleased and says, “My dear, nothing impresses like excess.”

You’d get to hang out with Mary and Matthew, who I was really rooting for the whole first two series. Then they finally got together and it was very exciting but the excitement needs to come from somewhere else now. I think Matthew is fun and he’d be good company. I’m still working out whether I just really love Mary’s dresses or whether I’d like to be friends with her or whether I’m a little bit scared of her.

I like Lord Grantham too. He seems wise. And Sybil’s nice, although I do not like Sybil’s new haircut.

After a while though, you’d want something to do. That’s the problem with Upstairs. You’d be much frowned upon, I think, if you pottered off for a swim or a bike ride. I think you wouldn’t be allowed to, Lord Grantham would look deeply disappointed, as he did when Sybil married Tom.

Downstairs though, you’d want to go for a bike ride or a swim but you probably wouldn’t have any time. But a lot of the gossip is from Downstairs. I love how Carson is very proper and slightly gruff, to the extent he’ll tell the members of Upstairs off if he needs to. And he totally fancies Miss Hughes.

There’s the Anna and Mr Bates excitement which kept things going a bit in the other series. But now Mr Bates is incarcerated, the excitement factor has been reduced somewhat.

Thomas The Meanie is an exciting character because I’m constantly waiting for his demise. I can just feel it’s going to come sometime soon.

There’s always something brewing with Daisy as well. She works in the kitchen, preparing the food, so obviously I feel an affinity with her. That’s the thing about being downstairs as well. I’d get to be around the food and cook.

It’s tough. It’s a tough decision. Upstairs…. Downstairs…. I guess in terms of cooking, which is high on my priorities list, I’d have to be downstairs because there’s no kitchen upstairs. Do you think Lord Grantham would allow me to have a little kitchen upstairs? I think he’d say it’s not proper.

Maybe I’d go downstairs. I’m someone who likes to have stuff to do so Downstairs would be busier. Do you think they would have any truffles for me to cook with? But actually, when you’re Upstairs, you can take holidays and stuff. I like holidays. Hmm…. I’m now sure now….

6 responses to this post.

  1. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE THIS POST!! (And thanks for not giving anything away–the States doesn’t get it until January.)

    From day one, I was definitely Team Mary. Like her, I’m the oldest child, so relate to her on that level, and plus, I really, really don’t like Edith. (Although she started to redeem herself toward the end of season two.) I’m a Sybil fan, too, and I’m hoping she’s a regular in season three. I would love to have tea with Mary, Sybil, and Maggie Smith/the Dowager Countess; having a drink or two with Matthew and Lord Grantham would be fun, too!

    However, I know I would get bored upstairs very easily. Carson is my favorite downstairs, with Mrs. Hughes coming in as a close second. And I totally agree with you–there’s something between them! 😉


    • Posted by lazylauramaisey on October 10, 2012 at 07:13

      It’s a tough one isn’t it? The leisurely I-can-float-about-doing-what-I-like of upstairs. Or the potential for gossip and the busy-ness of downstairs….


  2. It’s worth remembering that real downstairs life in Victorian/Edwardian Britain was something of a nightmare for many of the servants. If you’d like to see the sort of lives they lived there is a good series on the BBC at the moment. Here are the first two episodes if you fancy a watch:




    • Posted by lazylauramaisey on October 10, 2012 at 07:17

      This has been recommended to me by other people as well. I’ll have to check it out. Thanks for the recommendation.


  3. I thought Tom the Meanie was going to die in the Great War. I loathe him. Loathe! I tell you! Lord Grantham got a tad randy there for a bit so I don’t know that he should be denying people a kitchen if they want one.


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