Downton Abbey (2010) Season 1 short review

If you don’t love this ITV miniseries about a wealthy family and their servants in pre-WWI England, then I don’t know if we can be friends! It’s very Gosford Park/Upstairs Downstairs… and the plot goes in directions that will pleasantly surprise you.  The acting is fabulous — I love Elizabeth McGovern as the drawl-y American wife, and Maggie Smith is To Die For as the dowager/mother in law (“What’s a weekend?”).  There are three daughters in the family, and they along with mom get some SMASHING 1910s costumes. Furthermore, the costumes are very well suited to all the characters, with the abrasive older daughter wearing lots of stripes and the soft-hearted youngest daughter in florals. Loved it, can’t wait for the next season!

Further seasons: it’s definitely spinning into a soap opera, and will never be as good as the first season, but keep watching as they move into the 1920s and changes occur.


About the author



Kendra has been a fixture in the online costuming world since the late 1990s. Her website, Démodé Couture, is one of the most well-known online resources for historical costumers. In the summer of 2014, she published a book on 18th-century wig and hair styling. Kendra is a librarian at a university, specializing in history and fashion. She’s also an academic, with several articles on fashion history published in research journals.