Skip to main content


10 REASONS WHY DOWNTON ABBEY IS THE NEW CRACK

It took me a year to finally hunker down and see what some of my friends were raving (or tweeting) about back in 2011. A British costume drama? On PBS? Is it a remake? Well, at least it's got Dame Maggie Smith, and you know I just looooove me some Dame Maggie Smith...

Ladies and gents, I can honestly say that after watching - no, consuming - all seven episodes from the first season on Netflix and catching the two-hour second season premiere earlier this week, I am hooked. Actually, more than hooked. Obsessed.

And it looks like Brian Moylan over at Gawker has already articulated why my Downton Fever is growing by the day. Check out his explanatory breakdown here. I couldn't have said it better myself.

That said, allow me to offer some other explanations as to why I, and the rest of America, can't get enough of this engrossing slice of British television:

1. I consider myself an Anglophile, and for me, this is almost like porn.

2. The producers and writer/creator Julian Fellowes have created a miracle: electrifying chemistry amongst all twenty - yes 20 - characters and a pacing style that keeps us hanging on every scene, every line of dialogue, every inquisitive stare.

3. It's a more intelligent Dynasty...with British accents: Love affairs. Scandalous secrets. Oh, and World War I.

4. The opening theme song. It's an elegant score that perfectly captures the drama and melancholia which runs throughout that countryside manor.

5. Those piercing blue eyes of Matthew Crawley (Dan Stevens).

6. The sinister schemes and seductive glares of Thomas, the repressed footman (Rob James-Collier, right).

7. Those dinners in the dining room make me salivate every time a dish is served (not to mention those finger sandwiches with afternoon tea).

8. The star-crossed romance between Bates and Anna.

9. The star-crossed romance between Mary and Matthew.

10. Two words: Maggie. Smith.

H.P.M.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Class of '98 Turns 40

We are the Class of '98.

We're a little too old to be Millennials, yet too young to be GenXers. As of now, half of our lives has lived in one century while the other half lives and moves forward in another.

For us, Cabbage Patch Dolls were the 80s, Tamagotchi was the 90s, and Napster was the dawn of the 00s. We grew up with cassette tapes and Saturday morning cartoons. We came of age with CGI dinosaurs and the rise of the Frappucino. And we approach middle age with memes, reboots, and viral videos all designed to distract us from middle age.

We were too young to fully understand the words "Challenger explosion." We were too young to appreciate the fall of the Berlin Wall. But by the time places like Waco, Oklahoma City, and Littleton pinged on everyone's radar, we started to grasp how scary the world could be.

Our adolescence was defined by jagged little pills, prescriptions from Dr. Dre, and the fact that some of us were naughty by nature. We learned that nirva…


13 Things You Probably Didn't Know About 'The Golden Girls'

When one nostalgically binges on all seven seasons of The Golden Girls like me (I swear I have a life), you pick up on a few things. Certain patterns appear as you continuously witness the consumption of countless cheesecakes inside a fictitious Miami kitchen and hear one St. Olaf story too many.

Here's what I noticed after playing my DVDs of this 80s classic over the past several months (and if you're already familiar with the following factoids, excuse me for underestimating your fanaticism)...

1. Actor Harold Gould, who played Rose's long-term boyfriend Miles Webber from Season 5 to Season 7 (and throughout most of the short-lived spinoff, The Golden Palace), also appears in the first season as Arnie Peterson, Rose's first serious beau after her husband's death.

2. The same can be said for Sid Melton, who played Sophia's deceased husband Sal (in flashbacks and dream sequences). He also appears in a Season 6 episode as a jester in a medieval-themed restauran…

Just Because: 9 Music Videos That Take Place in Laundromats

It's one of the biggest music video tropes that's rarely explored in pop culture.

The public laundromat has become a go-to location for artists when making a music video for a single they wish to sell to the masses.

But WHAT IS IT about a space where ragtag groups of strangers gather to fluff and fold their delicates? Is it the obvious metaphor of dirty versus clean? The scintillating possibility of people stripping off their clothes for a wash?

I was feeling a little nostalgic (as usual) and took a look at some of the vids that have fallen under the spell of spin cycles over the past 30 years...

"EVERY HEARTBEAT" / AMY GRANT (1991)

Back in the early 90s, the Christian pop tart followed up her massively successful "Baby Baby" with "Every Heartbeat," a personal childhood favorite of yours truly (the Body & Soul Mix, of course). In one of the two vignettes featured in the video, a laundry-toting hottie attempts to flirt with a young woman who re…