Allen Leech (Tom Branson) is very good at keeping people’s spirits up because these are long punishing days for the crew. We work 11 day fortnights which, I think, is inhumane on a crew. We’ve got make-up starting at, say, half five in the morning and finishing at nine at night. So they’re pretty knackered. So to have someone with the energy and good nature of…well, I think everyone is pretty good natured, to be honest. But Allen’s the court jester.
lifewithcourtneyy asked: What were your thoughts on Gillinghams 'Scandalous suggestion'?!?! Because frankly I freaked out!!
Honestly , I found it to be completely in character for Gillingham, or at least the way in which my husband and I perceive his character. I told him last night that Tony was “An ass in sheep’s clothing,” and he completely agreed.
Gillingham’s move into Mary’s bedroom was so reminiscent of Pamuk in many ways, down to Thomas knowing he was there. He came in uninvited, although Mary is far more comfortable with Tony than she was with Pamuk. She told him he shouldn’t be there, but he stayed. He even refers to himself as a “seducer”, although he is claiming his motives are pure. He might have tried to worm himself into her bed that night had fire not broken out.
I think Gillingham wants to force Mary’s hand. He’s running out of money (no valet; he wants to live simpler). He again is asking about the estate and Mary’s role in it. (This is the first thing he asked Charles about back in S4 right after the pig incident.) He may know something is coming we don’t yet, things that may put Blake “back in the game”. He still views Blake as competition, bringing him up out of nowhere last night when Mary hadn’t even spoken of him. (Did anyone else notice the first question we hear him ask when he arrives at Downton is about “the infamous pigs?”) Tony still feels somewhat threatened, although he doesn’t want to come across in that manner. He wants Mary to marry him, and I don’t think it’s out of love. He wants an estate. He wants a comfortable life. And he doesn’t want to work for it. He’s happy to leave that to Mary.
In this episode, Tony demonstrated: 1. No concern for Mary’s reputation 2. That his needs/desires always come first where Mary is concerned 3. That he thinks he is “the winner” and has bested Blake, but he doesn’t want to take any chances that Mary may change her mind 4. That he is desperate for Mary to marry him.
And his conversation with Bates….Hmmmm. Interesting. My husband’s first comment was that he still thinks Gilly killed Green and perhaps Bates witnessed it/suspects something. We’ll see. If this plays out how he predicted at the end of 4x8, I’m going to have to treat him for dinner. ;) Yes—it could be that Bates did the deed and that he was trying to protect himself and Anna. But it would be much more interesting if it were the other way around.
We know Mary goes away with Tony. Whether or not they become sexually involved remains to be seen. It won’t surprise me if they do. Mary doesn’t make the best decisions when it comes to the men in her life. (Until she and Matthew finally got past all of their baggage and got engaged.) And Dockery stated that Mary makes an impulsive decision she later realizes was not the right one. I am betting that decision happens on Sunday.
We are in for the beginnings of quite a roller coaster ride I think once Blake breezes back into town. He won’t try to force Mary’s hand. He never has. He may even back off and concede defeat. But we know that’s just the beginning of the story this season, and I think all of what we saw last night bodes well for our Swine Saving Singer. ;)
I cannot wait for the next few episodes!!!! Let battle commence.
*Disclaimer: The above statements reflect this viewer’s opinions and have not been endorsed by Julian Fellowes, Michelle Dockery, Tom Cullen or Julian Ovenden. Although they have been approved by my husband and Marie the Cat.