Ah, Downton Abbey, the series people love to hate on in as equal a number as those who adore it. I fall into the latter category. Mistakes and all, I adore the series, so much so that in my head I keep reminding myself to re-watch the show from start to finish. One of the plots that rubbed people the wrong way is the Downton Abbey romance of Mary and Matthew. The love story is a troubled one with ups and downs, the latter of which the story ends on. But at its heart, it ends up being good, and it, like so many other, deserves a little collection celebration spotlight. Especially appropriate this time of year given one scene happens in the gentle Christmas snow snowfall.THREE ROMANTIC MOMENTS BETWEEN MARY AND MATTHEW of DOWNTON ABBEY. Looking at small moments between Mary and Matthew of #DowntonAbbey. #Romantic #RomanceScenes #RomanticScenes #MaryandMatthew #MatthewandMary Click To Tweet
The Mary and Matthew romance is one I did root on. Did I always like everything about them? Definitely not, but there was always that “something” between them. If you don’t know their story, the bigger picture plot follows a multi-generational family in England called The Crawley’s. From the wise grandmother matriarch, to the rebellious youngest granddaughter, the story is quite the scope of storytelling. Specific to Mary and Matthew, the pair are cousins by relation who didn’t know the other existed until, quite suddenly, the heir to the Crawley family estate dies on the Titanic. This sends the family to seek the next in line, which brings them to Matthew, a working man who surprises the family in unexpected ways.
From there, the relationship between Mary and Matthew shifts and evolves into many things, but with great patience, it becomes something lovely and best of all, honest. It also does Mary and Matthew both good in spite of the challenges getting there. Let’s look at three of their best on-screen moments.
THE DOWNTON ABBEY ROMANCE of MARY and MATTHEW
THE MEET CUTE
EPISODE: Series One, Episode Two
This isn’t cute in the traditional way of thinking of the term, but it is still cute. The scene set up is between Matthew and his mother discussing this change in Matthew’s fortune. He laments that this will mean change as his mother wants him to behave, to which he responds that he doesn’t wish to be anything but himself. Going on, he says, at quite the most inappropriate time that he believes the family will make attempts to “push one of the daughters at me.”
At the same time, eldest daughter Lady Mary has arrived with an invitation for the pair to dine with them. When she’s invited to stay to tea, she smartly quips she couldn’t possibly intrude because she wouldn’t wish to “push in.” It’s an adorable scene that is the first inkling of their future as we can tell Matthew may have a spark of curiosity for Mary.
FRIENDSHIP with TIME and GOODBYES
EPISODE: Series One and Two
Throughout the latter part of series one and into series two, Matthew’s constant presence wins Mary over, despite her refusal to accept him. His consistency and kindness let her see who he is and helps her to see in him someone she can trust and confide in. Even through separation, the pair still have respect and admiration, having learned lessons from one another, with love lingering but rarely spoken of. When Matthew ends up returning to his posting during WWI, Mary sees him off at the train station, giving him a gentle kiss on the cheek, asking him to take care, all as their feelings go unspoken… and away he walks.
AN HONEST PROPOSAL
EPISODE: Series Two, Episode Nine
Much happens between Mary and Matthew meeting. The range includes blackmail, separation and fear, loss and vows to others, but through it all, Mary remains the woman Matthew loves. When one is on the cusp of a marriage of convenience and another mourning the loss of someone, things again change.
Mary gets vulnerable and honest with Matthew in a rare moment of good TV writing, and tells him the sordid details of her past and the reason for her impending engagement. Believing she may also be leaving, he asks her, “Would you stay? If I asked you to.” Gently she tells him, “you don’t mean that,” knowing that they’ve been close to this many times in their past. She asks him if he’s forgiven her. He replies that he hasn’t because there’s nothing to forgive. She’s lived a life. He’s lived a life. Now, he says, they should live one together.
“We’ve been on the edge of this so many times, Matthew. Please don’t take me there again unless you’re sure.”
As a snowfall comes down around them, he asks, “then well you?” Finding some of her sass again, Mary tells him she won’t give any answer unless he “say it properly.”
“Lady Mary Crawley will you do me the honor of becoming my wife?”
The pair kiss under that snowfall, sealing a bond fans have long since cheered for.
Like any TV show with ups and downs, these two have more of both. But I like leaving them here in this pretty picturesque scene as the snow gently cascades down around them, and they are both happy, knowing they share a mutual love and honesty they didn’t have before.
Do you love or loathe these two? What is your favorite Downton Abbey romance of Mary and Matthew moment? What don’t you like about them? Comment all of your thoughts below. Let’s talk about these two!
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