Why Downton Abbey Is The Best Show


“Sarcasm is the lowest form of wit.” —The Dowager Countess

The Downton Abbey cinematic universe is filled with class, laughter, and high stakes drama.


Masterpiece Theatre / Via giphy.com

While the Marvel movies and DC films have an undeniable universal appeal; including great characters, impressive effects, and jaw-dropping action, there is one ongoing series that rivals even the most elaborate comic book franchise.

Yes, you heard right, Downton Abbey and its inhabitants can give Captain America and his Avengers a run for their money any day. Don’t believe me? Read on and become a convert.

1.

The One-Liners Are The Best


Walt Disney / Marvel Studios / Via giphy.com

Steve Rogers’ iconic Captain America one-liner, “I can do this all day” illustrates that he is a man who has the time and energy to continuously combat evil.

While the Dowager Countess’s earnest question, “What is a week-end?” shows that she quite literally has no concept of time; as there is no difference to her between the weekdays where people work and the weekends where common folk get to relax.


Masterpiece Theatre / Via giphy.com

She has all the time in the world to live without a care, seven days a week.

And based on this simple phrase alone, she is more badass than any character in the comic book world.  

2.

The Villains Are Nastier


Masterpiece Theatre / Marvel Studios

While Loki might be the God Of Mischief, none are more cunning and conniving than Barrow and O’Brien. Alone they are bitter and angry servants looking to create havoc, but together they are master shit-stirrers.

Loki may be a bad guy, but he has his charm. And eventually, we even unearthed redeemable qualities with Mr. Barrow. But sourpuss lady’s maid Sarah O’Brien remains the nastiest of the baddies, never seeming to feel remorse for any of her evil doings. And since she left the show pretty early in its run, we never got to find a heart of gold inside this cold monster. Because of that, she will live on in our nightmares forever as a stone-cold bitch.

3.

The Orchestral Score Is Phenomenal

View this video on YouTube


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Heavy weight composers like Alan Silvestri, Michael Giacchino, and Hans Zimmer have created some amazing scores to compliment the action and adventure of many superhero movies.

But when it comes to the drama, gravitas, and heartbreak in the world of Downton, nothing beats the instrumentals by John Lunn as performed by The Chamber Orchestra of London.

4.

Downton Promotes Its Underlings


Masterpiece Theatre / Marvel Studios

Tom Branson was a simple chauffeur, but eventually married aristocratic daughter Lady Sybil and after years was promoted to sit at the big table with Lord Grantham and family. He even eventually ran some of the daily business of the Abbey alongside Lady Mary.

Meanwhile, Tony Stark’s chauffeur, Happy, remained simply a driver for his tycoon boss. He was never offered to be a sidekick, let alone wear one of the iconic iron suits. Even after his boss was out of the picture, he still couldn’t upgrade his status.

But I guess if these two men have anything in common besides their automobile trade, it’s that both of their loved ones died tragic premature deaths.


Masterpiece Theatre / Marvel Studios

R.I.P. Lady Sybil and Aunt May.  

5.

Some Of The Characters — Namely The Dowager Countess — Seem To Live Forever


Masterpiece Theatre / 20th Century Fox

At this point in the saga, Maggie Smith’s Dowager Countess seems to have lived longer than Logan’s Wolverine, and without the aid of adamantium. She survives with the help of her manservant, Spratt, an endless supply of riches, and most of all her cunning wit.

6.

Downton Abbey Uses Less CGI Than Many Titles


HBO

When a Starbucks cup appeared in a shot in Game of Thrones, the producers acted quickly to digitally remove it from future HBO streams. 

However, when an out-of-time water bottle showed up in a promotional photo for Downton, the actors embraced the gaffe.

The cast took to social media to show how they are comfortable being the butt of a period incorrect joke.

7.

Downton Has Just As Many Characters


©Walt Disney Co./courtesy Everett / Everett Collection

People were very impressed by the number of characters that appeared on the Avengers: Endgame poster, but it does not compare to the amount of cast members featured on your average Downton Abbey poster. They fit more characters under one roof than Tony Stark could fit into Stark Industries.

8.

The Retro Posters Are Fantastic


Focus Features / Courtesy Everett Collection

While most movie posters gravitate toward the maligned “big head” one-sheet featuring one actor’s…well, big head, the creatives at the Downton franchise have decided to take this cool retro approach to their new film Downton Abbey: A New Era.


©Focus Features/Courtesy Everett Collection


9.

They Don’t Shy Away From Blood


Masterpiece Theatre

Though fighting and death are prevalent in superhero movies, you rarely see blood. But at turn of the century Downton, with The Great War raging, death by childbirth, and fatal car crashes, blood and gore are never shied away from.

Especially in this slap in the face dramatic scene where Lord Grantham’s ulcer bursts; you’ve never seen so much blood on white linen…

View this video on YouTube


Masterpiece Theatre / Via youtube.com

(Warning: Lord Grantham’s ulcer bursts are not for the faint of heart.)

10.

Downton Has Way More Gloves


Masterpiece Theatre / Focus Features / Marvel Studios

Sure, Thanos has ONE glove. But in Downton, nearly everyone wears gloves, especially at mealtime. And it’s not just for the elite; Lady Mary can wear her long dinner gloves to dine and socialize, while butler Mr. Molesley can wear his serving gloves to fill water glasses for the Queen. 

While Thanos hogs his glove, the inhabitants of the Abbey are equal opportunity glove wearers.

11.

The Food Is Way Better At The Abbey


Masterpiece Theatre

Mrs. Patmore and her culinary crew are sure to whip up something fantastic, even in a pinch. Relatives and royalty are stopping by unexpectedly? Watch Daisy and Mrs. P. make an impromptu 10-course meal including a nice crumble for dessert. I challenge Hank Pym to do the same under pressure.

While the shawarma that the team eats at the end of The Avengers looks yummy, nothing can beat the food at Downton Abbey.

12.

Downton Is Much More Scandalous


Masterpiece Theatre

After Lady Mary’s secret hanky-panky rendezvous with Mr. Pamuk leads to his death, she enlists her mother and lady’s maid to help her clean up the mess. 

I don’t think Stan Lee would ever show a group of well-to-do ladies try to dispose of a dead guy in their night gowns.

13.

And finally, Maggie Smith. Need I Say More?

How much do you love Downton Abbey? Let me in the comments below.

Also, check out the latest feature film Downton Abbey: A New Era now in theaters.


Focus Features / Courtesy Everett Collection



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