'Downton Abbey' finale takes 'Christmas Episode' to heart

March 2, 2015 9:55 AM

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'Downton Abbey' finale takes 'Christmas Episode' to heart

Given how fashionable it has become to grouse about "Downton Abbey," Sunday's fifth-season finale offered a welcome reminder of just how splendid the show can be - warm, funny and emotional on a dazzling assortment of fronts. Taking the term "Christmas episode" to heart, series creator Julian Fellowes advanced so many storylines to satisfying points it frankly wouldn't have been a bad place to end the show entirely; still, for those who eagerly anticipate a new journey into the past each January, PBS' show horse happily gallops on.

Admittedly, the continuing arc surrounding the murder mystery and police suspicion directed at Anna (Joanne Froggatt) and her husband Bates (Brendan Coyle) has grown a bit tedious. Even with a British gift for stiff-upper-lipped understatement, Robert (Hugh Bonneville) wasn't kidding when he said, "...

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