Downton Abbey Recap: For episode 2, finally something is going on in this house that’s about Edith!

Downton Abbey Season 3 Episode 2 recap
Downton Abbey Season 3 Episode 2 recap
Photography courtesy eOne Films

By Randi Bergman and Paige Dzenis

The biggest rule of Downton Abbey is that all things exciting will soon turn tragic. In the opening sequence Edith is overjoyed by the preparations for her wedding—only to quickly have “her life’s work” leave her at the altar. However, the benefit of the show is that it satisfies its audience by just as quickly bringing joy back to those it has shunned—so we’re certainly hoping things will once again look up for poor Edith. Until then, let’s discuss the other developments of episode two: Matthew gets a letter that surprises no one (except himself), the Dowager Countess continues to meddle and we wonder if the show will be forced to change its name to Downton Place. What? Read on for our full recap.

Best upstairs downstairs moment:
When the Crawleys journey to Downtown Place to get a look at their future living quarters, their reactions are just as high-class as ever. The Dowager Countess’s stiff “It’s nice enough” is quickly countered with the chauffer Tom’s “You do believe for most people it looks like a fairy palace.”

Best old timey sex joke that’s not even a sex joke:
When Sybil makes a sexy quip about Edith not getting much sleep on her wedding night, the Dowager Countess quickly shoots back “Sybil, vulgarity is no substitute for wit.” While making sex jokes around your grandmother is still not recommended, wouldn’t it have been kind of hilarious if granny lol-d?

Loveliest discarded headpiece:
Oh Edith! We were so nervous when we saw Sir Anthony listening to Gran’s snide remarks about your marriage and can’t believe he left you at the altar. No matter how sad you are now (apparently you can’t even see the food that was prepared for your big day) do hold on to that pretty barrette. It’s very Rodarte and you’ll certainly be able to wear it again throughout the roaring 1920s.

Downton Abbey Season 3 Episode 2 recap
Photography courtesy eOne Films

Newest minion:
Alfred may already be completely loyal to O’Brien, but after Thomas’s latest stunt, it looks like there’s going to be a full-on war between the three. Let’s hope Carson or Mrs. Hughes catches wind of the battle before even more innocent servants unwillingly get involved. (You know how much those two enjoy their pawns!)

Best pseudo-snarky bump watch alert:
Edith may have just had her heart broken by Sir Anthony, but while sobbing she still manages to throw in a spoiler about a baby for Mary and Matthew. What we find most interesting about the “Mary’s probably pregnant” comment is that everyone else sort of nods in agreement and doesn’t seem shocked. Fair enough, seeing as birth control is likely not a top priority when you’re married to an heir and it’s 1920.

Hair trend we are so happy is gone:
Every time we see a Downton lady in a state of disrobe, with a long and flowing side braid, we’re like “Hello!” Can you imagine if hiding your hair was still a thing? Forget the vote, we’d be fighting for hair rights.

Downton Abbey Season 3 Episode 2 recap
Photography courtesy eOne Films

Only good thing about Edith’s failed wedding:
While Edith’s wedding was of course a tradge, the one shocker is that we may have actually liked her would-be wedding dress more than Mary’s? The back beading made for a beautiful choice, especially given that it was the last thing Sir Anthony would see of hers. Womp Womp.

Best nod to newlywed intimacy:
We love that Matthew now sits with Mary while she’s getting dressed! While once the two lovebirds were restricted to garden walks and chatting in between meals, they now seem to spend all their time together, in every possible room of Downton. We are curious, though: do they have separate bedrooms that they split their time between? Whoever’s room is the one with the deep-teal walls, we’re into it.

Best reverse of upstairs downstairs hierarchy:
We would never have taken the Dowager Countess for a schnorrer, but when the family discusses where all the uneaten food from Edith’s wedding feast would be donated, the Countess says “If the poor don’t want it, send it over to me.” Can you just imagine granny with chicken legs in her purse?

Downton Abbey Season 3 Episode 2 recap
Photography courtesy eOne Films

Biggest “let’s get on with it!” plot point:
Um, is anyone else checking Facebook or grabbing a snack from the kitchen when Bates comes on camera? We’re not even sure what he was whispering about in the courtyard with one of his fellow prisoners but we really need him to be exonerated and released because the prison scenes are starting to bore us.

Worst surprise:
Fancy that, the letter from the late Reggie Swire absolves Matthew of any guilt he may have about breaking poor Lavina’s heart! We were shocked. SHOCKED. Kidding! We totally saw this coming the moment Matthew started humming and hawing about giving his Swire inheritance to Downton. Obviously things would work out.

Most hilarious title:
“We will be Joint-Masters,” says the Earl to Matthew upon hearing that he will indeed be able to save Downton with his new inheritance. Joint-Masters. Joint. Masters. Masters of the Joint. Doesn’t really roll of the tongue, does it?

Best “thank god you’re not dead” theme song:
We always knew Carson was a softie, but how beyond adorable was his little sing song sesh after finding out Mrs. Hughes was in fact not dying of cancer?