One of the most watched series of the last few years in that of Downton Abbey. We’ve been settling down in our sofas and comfy chairs to see the comings and goings of this well to do family and the opulent wealth they have. The series runs through the turbulent years of the early twentieth century (not that there weren’t many of those in that century) from 1912 to 1926. It covers the effects of the First World War, the serious Government scandals, the creation of Ireland as a nation and the abortive start of Hitlers rise to power and the sinking of the Titanic. Whether you are in your home or are in one of the many Residential Park Homes like those at http://www.parkhomelife.com/ its a Sunday night treat.
It’s basically a reworking, but not a reboot, of Upstairs downstairs and a less funny version of You Rang M’Lord. In this age the Upper classes of Edwardian Britain held sway, just, before the fledgling successes of the Labour party and the First World War began to erode the due deference that the working and middle classes all paid to them. Here, everyone knows their place and talk of bettering yourself or thinking that getting an education that lasts longer than 5 years or maybe some workers rights.
That being said it’s a good bit of historical drama and the performance, Dame Maggie Smith and Hugh Bonneville and Jim Carter being the standouts. It also illustrates the fact that even the downstairs had a class system operating as well.
“George Banks”, played by Steve Martin is the overprotective Father of “Annie”, portrayed by Kimberley Williams, the “Bride to Be” in this hilarious American film Comedy released in 1991. Poor “George” is devastated when his only daughter, “Annie”, comes home from College and announces she is engaged and planning to marry a young man called “Bryan MacKenzie” after only knowing him for three months! To add to “George’s” despair his wife “Nina”, Diane Keaton immediately approves of the whole idea and after meeting “Bryan’s” parents and the cost of the wedding seemingly spiralling out of control, George loses his usual calm demeanour and his actions become more and more erratic! He plans to split the couple up and when “Annie” and “Bryan” have a huge fight over a blender it seems like “George’s” meddling has worked.
Like Georges temper, things can snap. From sash cords that become brittle and eventually break to belts that crack under the constant stress and strains they are put under.
Then he finds the forlorn future Groom at the pub where he tries to talk to him about “Annie” but they end up discussing whether or not the couple will buy their first home together! Eventually the young couple reunite and the wedding plans go ahead at full speed with the help of Frank Eggelhoffer, their eccentric wedding planner.
One year after starting the wedding preparations the couple finally take their marriage Vows and have their lavish Reception at the Family’s Home. With “Annie” and “Bryan” safely off on their Honeymoon, “George” can relax and dances with “Nina” as they take solace together.