Downton Abbey season five fails to impress

Rachel Cooper

It all started last summer. Naturally, I had ample time to binge-watch numerous TV series over my three-month break from school. I had seen all the shows on my list, and wasn’t interested in the big names like Breaking Bad or How I Met Your Mother, so I looked across the pond for inspiration. My mom had suggested Downton Abbey many times, but I had originally only seen it as a show for the niche British-TV audience: older women who were PBS donors and into dry, aristocratic storylines. So basically, my mom.
But hey, it was summer and the perfect time to take a leap of faith. Thanks to Amazon Prime Instant Video, I found the first four seasons eagerly awaiting me. In only a matter of days, I had watched all 31 episodes that were available. The show had me wrapped around its little finger, with every episode taking me on a never-ending emotional roller coaster, each time ending in a shocking cliffhanger. Needless to say, I went in ill-prepared. But all good things must come to an end. My Downton high was brought to a low when I realized I would have to wait six whole months until the season five premiere.
Little did I know, this season wouldn’t live up to the high expectations I had. (Mild spoilers are coming for those who have not seen season five.)
Every storyline this season was overworked and monotonous. How many times can they throw a character in jail? The limit does not exist. Mary had a new love interest almost every episode. Every time Edith freaked out about her secret baby or anything related to the death of Mr. Greene was mentioned, my love for the show decreased. Unfortunately, these things made up half of each episode. So it’s no surprise by the time the season finale rolled around I wasn’t sad but relieved. Really, the only thing that kept me hanging on was fresh-faced Rose’s new relationship.
It might be time to say this series has jumped the shark. I’ll try once more when season six rolls around (a year from now), but it’s not looking promising. I only foresee the show lasting three more seasons maximum, which would still probably be three seasons too long.