Imagine traveling back in time to the early 20th century. You are no longer on the 21-mile marathon marker, but the beautifully unspoiled English countryside. As you venture over the rolling green hills in your horse-bound carriage, confusedly looking for a Mod party in this strange land, you see something extraordinary appear in the distance. Is it Gasson? Is it Stokes?
No, it’s the estate of Lord Granthem, known as Downton Abbey. Extravagance has never left us common folk feeling less bitter and surprisingly sympathetic with its wealthy inhabitants as they struggle to find the changing times (as most Englishmen do) but not become obsolete themselves.
There was a time in my life when I did not watch Downton Abbey and I did not understand why so many people raved about it. I can now say that I was a fool for simply putting off the inevitable addiction that I have fallen prey to, as so many have before and after me.
Still, your skepticism may be justified. I mean, who the heck watches television on PBS besides our grandmothers, right? Allow me to give you a few reasons to open up your life to this "instant classic."
According to boys, girls live off of it. According to girls, it's all we ever try to avoid. Either way, watching drama unfold before your eyes and while on your safe couch in your dorm is irresistible to any of us. The real drama of “Downton Abbey” is enough to make you squeal and gasp for air, but satisfying beyond anything you have ever experienced before.
Not only is this drama cutthroat and vivid, but the time period of “Downton Abbey” gives you even more to feed off of. Feuding sisters and workplace drama is nothing new, but with classic British accents surrounded by enough grandeur to make the Kennedys blush? Now you're talking.
The Ladies of Downton Abbey are very different in their desires and personalities. But their strength through hard times, both personal and public, is something that any girl can admire. Each character goes through changes through the series as they suffer personal heartache, find love and endure the first World War.
But, grow as they try, it is not lost on most viewers that their follies continue to plague their judgment and be their greatest downfalls--not unlike the herds of freshman girls roaming the Mods on any given Friday night. However, we love the characters even more because of these imperfections. Same goes for you freshmen. We love to watch you struggle and eventually grow wise in the ways of BC.
The romance of this television show is nothing short of dramatic, but it still deserves its own explanation. There is something about watching young love unfold before your eyes in such a foreign but traditional manner.
Imagine your parents ordering you to marry the man sitting next to you at dinner but not allowing the two of you to spend time alone together. Or losing your one true love only to have him come back from the dead after years had passed. Or seducing a Turkish diplomat only to have him die in your bed before the night is out. This, my friends, is just the tip of the Downton Abbey love-iceberg, and it makes the modern day love scene look tame.
Downton Abbey is pure genius. It is a soap opera clad in PBS grandeur and is essential for any college student looking to class up their TV addictions. Based on the lives of people who once lived in that grand house on the English countryside and filmed on site where a real earl and lady live today, you will feel nothing short of enchantment as you experience the Granthems and their humble abode.
Tune in Sundays at 9 p.m. on PBS or watch full episodes online here.