If you haven’t watched the Downton Abbey season finale of season 3 – then stop reading now – this post contains spoilers. For those of you who watched in horror – keep reading.
In the 2-hour season finale, Mary Crawley gives birth to a beautiful baby boy. Matthew Crawley, her husband, is beyond himself with excitement over the birth of their heir. They both comment on how the future of Downton Abbey is safe, now that there is a suitable heir. After Matthew spends an adorable moment with Mary and his new son, he leaves the hospital (presumably heading back to Downton to tell the others) in his brand new convertible car. He’s driving fast – the wind is blowing in his hair – and you know something awful is about to happen.
And it does – as he rounds the corner, going faster than he should – he crashes head on with another car, and is thrown off the road, with the car landing on top of him. The scenes then go from a blissful Mary, holding her newborn in the hospital, to Matthew, pinned under his car, with blood pouring out of his ears. And that’s it – season over.
Matthew’s death wasn’t a surprise to me (Downton Abbey airs in the UK almost a year before it airs here), but it was still sad nonetheless.
Shortly after the Sunday finale, creator Julian Fellowes starts teasing the new season, saying in Season 4 – a widowed Lady Mary will get a new love interest!
When viewers saw Dan Stevens’ Matthew Crawley pass away at the end of Downton Abbey’s third series, heartfelt concern went out to his widow. However, Lady Mary, played by Michelle Dockery, is going to have a smile brought back to her face thanks to a new love interest.
The distressed single mother will be courted by a new man in the form of Miranda heartthrob Tom Ellis. The 34-year-old actor, who is married to Tamzin Outhwaite, had to audition for a role on the show but left producers very impressed with his portrayal of the new love interest.
According to the Daily Mirror, a source at ITV said that Tom’s legion of female admirers twinned with his acting ability is what won him the part. The source said: ‘He really showed his versatility, and he’s also incredibly popular with the female viewers.’
Welsh born Ellis is best known for his role as Gary Preston in BBC comedy Miranda, but this move to Downton could launch his career in the US. He will be hoping his character doesn’t face as grizzly an end as Dan Stevens’ did after he asked to released from the series for professional reasons. Downton creator Julian Fellowes hinted that Lady Mary and her newborn son will not be alone for long.
When speaking to the New York Times, Fellowes said: ‘We begin Series 4 six months later. We don’t have to do funerals and all that stuff. That’s all in the past by then.’
One thing I’ve really grown to love about ‘Downton Abbey’ is their ability to skip past the hard stuff. Like Sybil’s death. There was a year jump from one episode to the next. When Matthew died in this season’s finale, they didn’t show Mary’s reaction – and season 4 will pick up six months later. I like that. No need to waste time grieving. Let’s move on. I want to get on to Lady Mary’s NEW man. (To be honest, I wasn’t ever a huge fan of Matthew in the first place.)
Here’s a look at Tom Ellis – who will play Mary’s new love interest. YUM. Methinks she traded up!
ONE MORE – for the win.