Downton Abbey: Series 2 [DVD] 
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Julian Fellowes' hit drama Downton Abbey returns with all the regular cast including Dame Maggie Smith, Hugh Bonneville, Elizabeth McGovern, Brendan Coyle, Joanne Froggatt and Dan Stevens. Returning to Downton Abbey in 1916, we see the effects of The First World War on the lives of the Crawley family and the servants who work for them. The new series sees the return of all the much loved characters whose intertwined lives are rendered more complicated by wartime and its impact on the great house itself. And when the storms of war have finally cleared, will the way of life known by all the inhabitants of Downton have changed forever?
- Episode One Commentary
- Deleted Scenes
- House to Hospital
- Fashion and Uniforms
- Romance in a Time of Warfare
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Top Customer Reviews
Admittedly some plot contrivances did not really convince and Mrs. Bates exuded so much venom she seemed to have strayed in from "The Wizard of Oz". Much drama of quality, though, remained as tragedy struck both upstairs and down, all concerned having forever to improvise. Conditions depicted were the result of extensive research. It is easy to mock Lady Sybil's wish to play her part, which meant first learning how to fill a kettle. That is how things were - so many of the pampered classes at a loss how to do even the most basic things for themselves.
The romances rather left me cold, except for Bates and Anna (Joanne Froggatt excellent). Unexpectedly the most moving moments were not the big set pieces but almost incidental: Thomas (of all people) weeping after a sudden death; his crony sourface O'Brien surprisingly sympathetic towards the shellshocked replacement valet Lang.
Maggie Smith's Dowager, as ever, reigned supreme. When Matthew was reported missing, she observed, "The next heir will probably be a chimney sweep from Solihull." Magnificently she championed the cause of badly injured footman William - casting aside pompous officialdom, cutting down to size that odious vicar. In every way a performance to treasure. Others, less showy, also impressed - not least Phyllis Logan as the housekeeper.
The television showing suffered from clutter. DVD spares viewers the adverts, promotions of forthcoming shows (one segment insensitively timed about five minutes from the climax of each episode), the pre-credit spoilers.Read more ›
Downton Abbey is used as a cottage hospital, Lady Sybil seeks independence an marries he chauffer. Spanish flu also manages to turn the Crawley's life inside out. The newspaper mogul seeking to marry Lady Mary, represents the birth of the gutter press.
There are problems in the with the serving class too, Daisy feels guilty for marring William on his death bed, when she knew she did not love him and Mr Bates is convicted of murdering his ex wife. Thomas is taken for a ride when seeking to make money on the post war black market.
However, by the end there is still life in the aristocracy. The times are changing but the old guard is not ready to submit to the emerging new order just yet.
The wartime scenario and the convalescent home setting provide an excellent background for some interesting story lines. The combination of excellent plot lines, great acting and the superb setting display all that is best in TV period drama. This time round we have eight more episodes to add to the seven in the first series. As befits wartime, the costumes are not as flamboyant as in the first series but they are thoroughly researched and appropriate to the period.
There continue to be many superb individual performances but mention must be made of Maggie Smith. What a stroke of genius to cast her as Violet. She dominates every scene she appears in and often has some very funny lines.
Viewers will not be surprised to learn that this is the most successful costume drama since the early 1980s with peak viewing figures in the UK of 11m. It has been sold round the world including the States, and viewing figures have been impressive there too. It is pleasing to learn that a third series is already planned and we now know that this will cover an 18 month period from 1920 to 1921 and will hit our screens in September 2012. This one is likely to run and run and I would not be surprised to see Downton Abbey continuing up to the 1930s eventually.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I am not interested in the DVD’s content, only in whether it contains English subtitles for the deaf. Read morePublished 15 days ago by Deaf Ears
Brilliant! Excellent service, delivery and quality. Highly recommended.Published 1 month ago by Noddy
My item was value for money and worked well. it well packaged i have used Amazon many times and will do again and again.Published 2 months ago by Lynne
Very enjoyable series. Missed a few on the TV so great to catch up properlyPublished 2 months ago by Teeen