Tuesday, January 14, 2014

"Downton Abbey" and the Modern Age-What Are We Really Watching?

January 10, 2014

Americans by the millions tuned in to watch the premier of Downton Abbey's fourth season, eager to enjoy the continuation of the saga of the Earl and Countess of Grantham and their household. According to press reports, 10.2 million Americans watched the first episode, catching up on developments since the end of the third season, which ended with yet another tragedy, this time the death of heir Matthew Crawley. But the heir did not leave without leaving an heir, and so the story continues. But, do Americans have any idea what they are really watching?

The millions of Americans who are now devoted Downton fans are drawn, no doubt, to the story and all of its twists and turns. They are captivated by the historical drama and the grandeur of Highclere, the real-life estate of the Earl and Countess of Carnarvon and the setting for Downton Abbey. They are intrigued by the hierarchies of the noble house and its inhabitants, with the nobility upstairs and the servants downstairs. They are amazed by the lavishness of the estate, the period dress, and the class structure of the society. They enjoy the quality of the acting and the quaintness of the habits portrayed. They must appreciate the attention to historical detail, right down to the soaps used and the dishes served. Many are likely to be unrepentant Anglophiles (I include myself amongst them) who enjoy the look into the history and drama of our English cousins.

Read the full story at www.VirtueOnline.org

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