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Upstairs, Downstairs (2010)
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The most winning aspect of this miniseries is in its display of what the servants attend throughout; their challenges seem equally as difficult as the challenges presented in tandem upstairs. When Agnes promotes ex-housekeeper Rose Buck (Jean Marsh) to hire and manage the house crew, Rose rises to the occasion and commands many interesting scenes in which she hires, fires, and coaches team members like the butler, Pritchard (Adrian Scarborough), head chef Mrs. Thackeray (Anne Reid), young footman Johnny (Nico Mirallegro), and maid Ivy (Ellie Kendrick). Lavish scenes showing preparation for parties, plus those in which the servants simply keep up with daily tasks, may shock those who are not familiar with formal etiquette from the past. Amanjit (Art Malik), Maud's secretary who lives upstairs separate from the rest of the servants, serves as a character who straddles both worlds, offering us glimpses into a man who can relate to both classes. While ultimately modern change is afoot in the Holland household, it is slow moving, and viewers will enjoy watching it come incrementally, through refined displays. --Trinie Dalton
Top Customer Reviews
So I was deeply intrigued by the news that the BBC was reviving the show for a new three-episode miniseries, serving as a sequel to the original series. It's a sleek, glittering affair with lots of actual historical figures and events, but the story never forgets that the real focus is on the people both upstairs and downstairs.
The year is 1936. George V has just died, his feckless son is involved with Mrs. Simpson, and Hitler is on the rise. Sir Hallam Holland (Ed Stoppard) and his wife Lady Agnes (Keeley Hawes) move into 165 Eaton Place, intending to turn the "mausoleum" into a livable house. So they employ Rose Buck (Jean Marsh), who was once a maid at their house, to find them some suitable servants.
Soon the house has plenty of new inhabitants. Downstairs: fussy but kind butler Pritchard (Adrian Scarborough), snobby cook Mrs.Thackeray (Anne Reid), hot-tempered footman Johnny (Nico Mirallegro), and others. Upstairs: Agnes' snotty fascist sister Persie (Claire Foy), and Sir Hallam's bossy globe-trotting mother Maud (Dame Eileen Atkins) and her warmhearted secretary Amanjit (Art Malik).
And while Lady Agnes hoped to have the "perfect" home, 165 Eaton Place is soon rocked by a series of problems -- an arrest, dabblings in fascism, a pregnancy, a birth, a death, constant friction between Maud and Agnes, and the discovery of secret children upstairs and down.
Technically the new "Upstairs Downstairs" is a sequel to the old one, but it's not necessary to have seen the older "Upstairs Downstairs" to understand what's going on.Read more ›
No disappointment from me or my wife with the 2010 3 episode addition compared to the older TV blockbuster series. The new cast keeps up the believable, compelling stories and character delight. Rose and the house (+ music) gives the old lovers the flavor of the past, even if the interior has been redecorated to 1936. It takes only the 1st episode to fall in love with the new upstairs and downstairs families of 165. Excellent cast. With the long bonus feature, there is a hint at more. For me...like handing a fat man a box of chocolates and asking, "Do you want more?" YES!
Interesting that they had the "to be King Geo VI" in the show, prior to the abdication of his King brother, and he did not stutter. After the success of "The King's Speech" about the same time as this series release, that bit of trivia is evident.
As for the original "Upstairs Downstairs" series. It is 27-year span epic winning 9 Emmys, 2 BAFTAs, Golden Globe & a Peabody Award, 31 nominations.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Interesting story plot and I can see myself wanting to watch more episodes, but after the first episode it is not drawing me in the same way Downton Abbey did.Published 12 hours ago by Rene Sollod
I've only watched the first two but so far they are great. I am looking forward to viewing more.Published 13 hours ago by Just Suze