Downton Abbey: To Watch Or Not To Watch

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Yesterday, while discussing the evocative music in the PBS mini-series Downton Abbey with its composer John Lunn, I 'fessed up to not having watched the series, except for the first episode the night before.  I could certainly see why people get hooked on it, and I felt that if I went on and watched the second episode, I probably would be hooked. So we put out the question, on the air and on our Facebook page: should I make the commitment and watch the whole thing?  Or was it just another pretty face in a long line of Masterpiece Theater series? 

Well, the results came in – on the phones, on our comments page, and on Facebook, and the message from Soundcheck listeners couldn’t be clearer.  Although there were (literally) one or two notes of caution, most of your responses are best summarized thus: “what kind of an idiot are you?  You watched the whole first episode and you’re still not hooked???  Get back in front of the TV this instant, mister!”

So thank you.  Thank you, Soundcheck listeners, for your clear and unambiguous message to watch the series. 

I’m not watching the series. 

I just can’t – I know it’s beautiful to look at, and Lunn’s music is lovely (and to me, quite reminiscent of Michael Nyman’s score to the Jane Campion film The Piano, which had the great advantage of being over in two hours).  But it’s already in season 2, and who knows, if it continues to be a success in the ratings, how many more will follow?  I can’t be watching Anna and Bates’s grandkids getting rich by selling heroin to rock stars in the 70s and using the cash to buy an abandoned, dilapidated Downton Abbey in Season 12… I went down that road with Lost.  By the end of season 1, there were already more guns and people on this uncharted, deserted island than there are in Texas.  Then people started time-traveling and shape-shifting and moving the island and I just wanted it to end.  And I swore, as God is my witness, that I would never be Lost again. 

Don’t bother leaving a comment.  I’ve made up my mind. (Go ahead and leave a comment. Sincerely, -- The Editors)