Lady Mary and Henry Talbot’s kiss means that their relationship is really heating up — and she isn’t the only one with love on the horizon! Lady Edith gets closer to her suitor and Cora and the Dowager Countess are at war over the hospital.
Lord Grantham is back from the hospital and Mary and Tom decide to open the Downton Abbey house for tours, accepting the fee for charity to raise funds for the hospital. Although he doesn’t seem thrilled by the news, he knows there’s no sense in arguing since Mary already made her mind up.
Lady Grantham asks Edith if she would like to invite her friend to Downton and Mary is quick to ask if he’s worth it — and Edith is quick to reply about Mary’s ‘car mechanic.’ Two can play at this game!
I feel like love might be in the cards for Mr. Mason and Mrs. Patmore — and much to Daisy’s discontent. She throws a note intended for Mrs. Patmore from Mr. Mason in the garbage, but Mrs. Patmore finds it. When she says she plans to write him back, Daisy throws an absolute fit. Mr. Mason stops by the Downton house — a pleasant surprise for Mrs. Patmore that Daisy gets mad about. How annoying can she be this season? I don’t think I can take another brat outburst — first it was over the farm, and now it’s over who Mr. Mason socializes with.
Carson smuggles some wine up for Lord Grantham, but he politely declines — his drinking days seem to be behind him because of the ulcer. He tells Mr. Carson he wants to simplify the household. Poor Barrow.
Mr. Carson, again, brings up Mrs. Hughes’ cooking and cleaning skills. He pesters her about cooking lessons — who knew Mr. Carson was so picky?
Lady Mary decides to take Anna into London for a checkup and sees it as an advantage to enjoy a night out with Henry Talbot, AKA “her car mechanic, (well, according to Lady Edith). This time, she even brought a sharp dress for the date. She invites Tom so he can enjoy some fun while Edith gladly decides to stay behind, away from her sister.
The plans for the hospital are almost in place — and the new system wants the Dowager Countess to step down and they want Lady Grantham to step into her shoes as president. This is definitely going to stir up drama.
Lady Mary and Tom step out for dinner in London. “A table of singletons at our age,” Mary says about the group. She is hesitant about going to watch Henry race and Tom is eager — she finally tells Henry that it’s because of how Matthew died. After dinner, they get caught in a rain storm and seek shelter under an archway, where Mr. Talbot kisses her. Lady Mary thinks things are moving faster than she would like and he points out that he’s obviously looking for more — although she certainly looks intrigued.
This love story is completely dragging on — it took a downpour and the threat of rain completely messing up her hair to finally drive her into Henry’s arms. Now this is surprising, especially because she couldn’t book a hotel room with Tony Gillingham fast enough.
“He’s nice, he’s mad about you and he loves cars,” Tom says when Mary asks why he’s playing cupid, pointing out that he might not be as rich as her, but he’s a gentleman.
“Who is this flexible and reasonable person?” Tom asks about Mary’s change of heart over the race.
Edith’s love prospect comes to Downton, but her sister isn’t impressed. “Boring to an Olympic degree,” Mary calls him. She brings up Marigold’s true identity to Tom, trying to feel out the situation. Why won’t she just come out with it already? I know she probably won’t be able to help herself, but I really hope Lady Mary doesn’t spoil Edith’s new romance.
When Edith’s suitor, Bertie, arrives he gives her a kiss. He comes with her to look on the children, who are peacefully sleeping.
The charity visit seems to be more work than the family expected. The day has finally come to open the home for visitors. Those visiting the home don’t seem pleased with how little the family knows about the history of the house.
Mr. Carson sees Andrew leaving Mr. Barrow’s room and is suspicious of what they were up to. Mr. Carson confronts Barrow about his situation with Andrew, and Barrow grows agitated realizing that Mr. Carson doesn’t trust him enough to take his word for it.
The Dowager’s response to the news of the hospital is even better than we could have imagined. This is war! “I am sick and tired of logic. If I could choose between principle and logic, I would take principle every time. Tell Cora I do not wish to see her face until I’m used to seeing a traitor in the family,” she says.
The episode ends with Barrow crying in the dark, looking hurt. Oh no — he is definitely on the brink. Although he was quite evil throughout the series, I feel bad for Barrow — he’s definitely misunderstood, and I don’t want him to do anything dire.