The subplot involving Edna, the pretty new maid who doesn’t know her place, mostly feels like Ethel v. 2.0 – and god knows one Ethel v. 1.0 was more than enough. It does at least demonstrate what a strange social limbo Branson is trapped in these days. He’s neither a member of the family nor one of the staff. Credit where it’s due: His character has also evolved nicely this season, from the revolutionary pull-string doll he was at the outset into someone whose rough edges have been softened by tragedy and who knows which fights are worth picking.
It should be interesting to see how Branson fares next season without Matthew, his closest ally. Perhaps he’ll turn to Mary, someone who knows the pain of losing a beloved spouse.
--Carson was in top form this week. I loved seeing him get all flustered about Mary going into labor, and how he opted out of the fair so the servants would be able to enjoy themselves.
--In what I doubt is a coincidence, Matthew’s death scene is reminiscent of the opening of “Lawrence of Arabia.”
--Violet: “No one can accuse me of being modern.” “That is the thing about nature, there’s so much of it.”
-- Michael is even worse at stalking than Edith. He comes to Scotland claiming to be on a “sketching and fishing holiday.”