7.5/10 After three fantastic seasons to start this show off, followed by two decent but rather disappointing seasons, I am glad that the show has ended on a high note. There of course were still some hiccups that occurred over the last season but overall I was very content, happy with how things ended and regained my desire to jump from episode to episode without pausing in between them. In regards to the problems, some involve plot lines and some involve pacing. One plot lines involving several prominent characters involved in a debate over the hospital and who would be running it. As much as some of the bickering between characters, particularly between Violet and Isobel, was enjoyable, the plot line was rather boring and took away from all of the other engaging story lines going on. Some elements involving Richard Grey and his children also felt like footnotes instead of being fully developed. One very brief subplot in the opening episode of the season which finds Mary being blackmailed was ridiculous filler. My final problem was that the season started a tad slow and then thrusts into break neck speed to wrap everything up by the end of the season, as if the showrunners found out that this would be the last season halfway through plotting out the episodes. Every single plot line happily concluding felt like it was wrapped up a little too nice and tidy, even if my heart enjoyed some happiness at the end. Despite those complaints, so much worked this season where the previous two stumbled. Thomas Barrow’s character has the best arc of the season and my complaints in earlier seasons regarding him just being a jerk for no reason and having no other character traits have definitely been handled well this season. It was nice to see certain characters who have been struggling for so many years finally achieve their various goals. The stakes still felt high with all that was going on. Several characters who left the show come back and the main one in particular was a very welcome addition to the final season. Edith, Mary and Sybil’s children feature a bit more than they have in past seasons (it helps that they can finally talk now). Spratt and Denker continue to have some hilarious back and forth like they did last season, which provided some much needed comic relief. Every supporting character had something to do and I enjoyed the path the showrunners took Mr. Molesley. The finale taking place on New Year’s Eve was perfectly set to end the show at the same time that 1925 concluded. The production design, costume design and this season, the score, all upped their game to end on a high note. Though not perfect and tied up a little too nicely for my tastes, the final season of “Downton Abbey” harkens back to the first few seasons in terms of high quality and engaging subject matter. The emotional and heartfelt conclusion left me satisfied and even though there really is no need for a follow up film, I sure am excited to finally go see it.
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