Season 5 of the international hit finds the Crawley family and the staff struggling with responsibilities and choices as they adjust to life in the Roaring Twenties.


“Downton Abbey” enters its fifth season on a bit of a quieter note. Most of the cool characters have left or died. The help are starting to realize that they are people and not vessels meant to please the Countess. Hell, they even threw in some Nazi action to keep things going. So, why do I feel like this season was missing something? British period dramas have those sour patches, but that’s why most of them never make it this long. That is unless you count “All Creatures Great and Small” which went on FOREVER.

1924 was an amazing year for nothing to happen in the United Kingdom. Baldwin became Prime Minister, Hitler start the Beer Hall riots and Maggie Smith got to flirt with some Russian wang. I also noticed that this year seemed to run shorter than most. That might be in my head, but everything about the pacing this year suggested that Fellowes is running out of story material. That’s not the worst thing, as I’m not sure that the Grantham can keep this lifestyle going until World War II. But, what do I know? British shows seem to thrive when they’re tackling the World Wars and the last days of the Empire. I wonder if they’ll get a new dog next season?

The Blu-Ray comes with the Christmas Special as a bonus feature. As far as I know, the Christmas 2014 special hasn’t aired in America yet. I don’t know appointment watch PBS, so I’m sorry people. My heart belongs to BBC America on that front. The 1080p transfer pops and the stereo track does what it can. In the end, it’s a purchase for fans.

RELEASE DATE: 01/27/2015

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