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4.6 out of 5 stars
Downton Abbey - A Journey to the Highlands
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 25 May 2013
I love Downton Abbey and enjoyed the previous Christmas Edition. This one was less enjoyable, but still worth buying and viewing.
It does feature sports and pastimes away from Christmas, so don't expect a huggy huggy Christmas all the way through.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 19 March 2013
Great show - good soap. Downton is a lovely series. Ending was a bit pants due to Matthew's character not wanting to renew his contract with the show, but understandable scripting. Unfortunate that the speed of his exit caught a lot of people by surprise.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 4 May 2014
Downton Abbey is an amazing series that keeps us enthralled with each episode. a Journey to thre Highlands is the link between the third and fourth series. It sets the scene for the commencement of the fourth series as the Crawley family realises it must adapt to changes in society in the years following the first World War.
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48 of 56 people found the following review helpful
on 3 March 2013
These episodes are always well written and the writer is clearly not afraid to tackle contentious issues as well as highlight day-to-day problems. How the various characters cope with changing times has perhaps been the main theme of the whole series. The greatest disappointment to this particular episode was its ending. It seemed the storyline was going to end on a high note for all the viewers to enjoy and savour with new potential stories for the next series. Then, right at the end, tragedy of the worst sort that left the viewer stunned in disbelief. Rather than setting us up ready for the next series, the ending has actually discouraged us from wanting to view the next episode. There has been quite a bit of tragedy through the various series in the past (and sadness has to be expected in any drama) and it has been very well acted by the cast, but the extreme circumstances of some of the tragedies has seriously dented the story's authenticity and changed the tone of the programme altogether.
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88 of 104 people found the following review helpful
on 26 December 2012
I must be honest, I was thoroughly disappointed with this Downton Abbey Christmas Special. There was virtually no plot, and when something did happen, I wished it hadn't and wondered why I hadn't switched the channel earlier. It's not that I'm not a Downton fan, I really am, and I was so excited for this episode, especially after last years triumph. In fact, if somebody had told me two days ago that I would write a 3-star review for the Downton Christmas special I would have thought them mad. But this year something was missing, it didn't flow well: Julian Fellowes' writing has been reduced to cringe worthy muck and it had one of the most bleak endings there's ever been in a Downton episode (yes, up there with the Sybil episode - followers of the show will know what I'm talking about). I was left feeling utterly numb and truly wished I hadn't bothered with this episode. Hopefully things will pick up for series 4, but, in all honesty, it's hard to see how it will. Another reviewer mentioned that they think Downton has almost run its course which I would agree with; it's no longer a joyful programme to watch, instead I'm constantly anxious about how the episodes will end - there's a developing theme of plot-less episodes followed up by a dramatic final three minutes, which is rather unsettling. The whole way through this episode my family were saying to each other "something MUST happen in a minute". And it did, but not in a good way.
I would, however, highly recommend the 2011 Christmas special, which is fantastic, and I will continue to watch the fourth series in the hope that things will improve. But this episode will, unfortunately, be a disappointment for even the most loyal of Downton fans.
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22 of 26 people found the following review helpful
It seems to me that people who were fans of the first 2 (possibly 3) series are beginning to lose interest. Although I can see their viewpoint, I am not one of those people. The Christmas special for 2012 has been criticised for having very little content until the dramatic ending. However the same can also be said of the Christmas Special for 2011. I do not see the Christmas specials as the ends of a season but as fillers that mark the transition from one season to another. I for one am very interested to see what will happen in the next series: It seems once again the luckless Robert's world has been rocked with a certain accident and with the arrival of Rose to Downton in the forseeable future. I for one am interested to see how Julian Fellowes will deal with so many of the cast leaving. However, I do believe that the next season will be make or break for 'Downton Abbey'. As people have rightly pointed out, some of the most popular characters have moved on: William, Lady Sybil and now you-know-who. Will Downton Abbey still have enough to keep interest? I sincerely hope so, but I don't think the 2012 Christmas Special can be used to make a judgement one way or another.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 9 March 2013
I am a massive fan of Downton, but felt utterly disappointed with this christmas episode. It wasn't christmassy at all, not even a christmas tree/decoration in sight! No real storyline... and a very disappointing ending to the only half decent part of the episode! i'm hoping series 4 will make up for it!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 5 June 2013
I am a massive downton fan and was thoroughly looking forward to this episode. However, as I was watching it I couldn't help but feel that it wasn't as good as it could have been been and (as all fans will understand) was even worse that the Sybil episode. I had become extremely attached to this character and then the writer goes and throws the twist in and I was left empty, sad and crying. I am not going to say don't buy this, because there is no point if you wish to watch the episodes that will continue on after this episode, but do prepare yourself for the worst, chances are it might help you accept it. I found it extremely unfair and don't understand why it happened.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 6 March 2013
When the cast of a soap opera, or of any more serious series, go abroad or anywhere out of their usual environment, it is asking for trouble. Writers tend to think they have to do it occasionally otherwise we would get rather bored. But it very often doesn't work. And it doesn't quite work here. It is clearly difficult for the writer to cover Downton and whereever it was in Scotland in the same episode. The result was that it was very bitty. I think we would have felt more comfortable if the whole episode had taken place at Downton. However, I enjoyed it in (many) parts and look forward to the return to Downton.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
This 2012 episode of Christmas at Downton was good but not as good as last years. Set mainly in the Highlands of Scotland, this special looked great and the story was quite good. I did however feel that there were too many corny moments this time and the story did drag a little but as usual there was a shock that I didn't expect, at least not in this episode.

The loss of a major character is usually moving but this time I felt little or no emotion as the actor that dies had strongly hinted that they may well move on to other things so it was a case of good riddance in a way. It will be interesting to see how things develop in series four but I do get the feeling that Downton is perhaps reaching the end of the road and Julian Fellowes needs to be careful in ensuring that the series doesn't go on for too long.

This was a good addition to the Downton story but not quite at the top of it's game. There is still some life left but it does need to tread carefully.
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