‘Downton Abbey’ Season Finale Recap: Death Takes Another Crawley

Sun, February 17, 2013 10:43pm EDT by 31 Comments
Downton Abbey Matthew Dies
Courtesy of PBS

The family experiences its most joyful occasion, and most tragic setback, as the season winds down.

The Crawleys made their annual trip to Scotland on the Feb. 17 season finale of Downton Abbey, but even though they got far away from home, they brought all of their baggage with them: Mary (Michelle Dockery) bickered with Edith about her relationship with that newspaper chap, Anna revealed her “racy” side to Bates, and the family officially decided to house Rose while her parents go to India — even though Rose sucks.

very pregnant Mary also had everyone concerned when she had to leave the Ghilles’ Ball early — oh, did I forget to mention there was another time jump and she’s pregnant now? — but she was able to get home and give birth to a healthy baby boy just in time.

Of course, the Crawleys’ celebration will likely be cut short when they learn of the tragedy that occurred just after the birth: While out on a joy ride through the countryside, Matthew (Dan Stevens) collided with another vehicle; his body was discovered in a ditch, and sadly, he didn’t survive.

Read: How Mary Will ‘Move On’ From Matthew In Season 4

The Drama At Home

As always, there was no shortage of drama back at Downton. Here’s a rundown of what happened to our favorite servants this week:

1. A saucy little maid named Edna played mind games with Tom (Allen Leech), trying to make him feel awkward for marrying into a higher class. Of course, this was all part of her plan to lure him in, which she did; she walked in on him naked — shirtless on Downton Abbey is basically naked — and kissed him. Needless to say, she got fired.

2. Dr. Clarkson tried to get all up in cousin Isobel this week by revealing interesting facts about himself, like: I always get drunk before bed. Unsurprisingly, she wasn’t feeling the good doctor, so she let him down gently — and pretty awkwardly. Then he diagnosed her as being a tease and went on his way.

3. A full-on creeper names Joss Tuftin paid a visit to the abbey with a ‘special package’ for Mrs. Patmore. She was so smitten by his incomprehensible accent, and his ability to eat soup with his hands, that she almost agreed to marry him — until he was revealed to have his eye on other laides. All other ladies, actually.

4. After a rowdy game of Tug-Of-War, a group of nogoodnicks ganged up on Jimmy (Ed Speleers.) Fortunately, Thomas (Rob James-Collier) was literally stalking him, so he was there to save the day. He took a beating so Jimmy could escape, which allowed Jimmy to see they really could be friends — just not the kind of friends that kiss each other when they’re asleep.

How do you feel about Matthew’s shocking death? Did you see it coming? How do you think it will affect the series moving forward? Watch the heartbreaking scene below, then drop a comment with your reactions.

— Andy Swift

More Downton Abbey:

  1. ‘Downton Abbey’ Recap: Thomas Finally Puts The Moves On Jimmy
  2. ‘Downton Abbey’ Recap: Robert & Cora Clash Over Sybil’s Death
  3. ‘Downton Abbey’ Recap: Everyone Suffers Sybil’s Labor Pains