Downton Abbey Series 3: Your character guide to series three!
With the premier of the much anticipated third series of Downton Abbey hitting our screens tonight, Unreality TV thought we would give you a memory refresh of all the main cast, as well introducing some new characters, along with a little insight into what you can expect from them in series three! Enjoy!!!!
Without further ado, we present to you your cast for Downton Abbey, series 3:
Robert is delighted that Matthew will soon be his son-in-law as well as his heir. He remains less enamoured with Branson, and struggles with the fact that Sybil has married the chauffeur, a source of gossip in the county. But he has other things to worry about. In the aftermath of the Great War, houses like Downton are being hit by new financial worries. In this changing landscape nothing is assured and, as Robert’s custodianship of the estate comes under scrutiny, he is called to account for his past decisions.
Following her marriage to Tom Branson in Dublin, Sybil is expecting her first child. She is largely free of her role as an aristocrat and has happily settled in to her life as ‘Mrs Branson’. However, Branson refuses to spend Robert’s money on himself, and so their finances are strained. She plans to resume her nursing career as soon as the baby is born, but that does not solve the problem of travelling over for Mary’s wedding. Ultimately, for all her brave talk, Sybil feels safe at Downton and she longs for her husband to be accepted in the world of her childhood.
Lady Edith Crawley (Laura Carmichael)
Edith has always resented her sisters. Mary is so good looking and sought after, Sybil so full of her own passionate dreams, that they both cast Edith into the shade. For Edith, the war brought a sense of possibility, a sense, for the first time, of really possessing a talent for helping, both on the farms and caring for the officers in the convalescent home. Added to which, with so many young men lost, potential suitors are thin on the ground. But she is still keen on Sir Anthony Strallan, despite the age difference between them, and, underneath, she is quite as determined as her sisters to have her own way.
Mr Carson (Jim Carter)
The butler. Carson is keen to get the staffing levels at Downton back up to scratch. He has kept standards as high as he could during the war years, managing without footmen and pushing himself to the limit, and he was mortified to suffer a physical breakdown in front of the family. With opportunities to return the staffing to pre-war levels, Carson is nevertheless aware that the servant class has been changed by the war, and many young men and women aspire to move in different directions. He has to learn to accept Matthew as co-master, but he remains eternally loyal to his beloved Mary.
Life prisoner. Former valet. After being convicted of the murder of his wife Vera, Bates was relieved when his death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment. He continues to protest his innocence, and is grateful for his wife Anna’s unshakeable belief, and determination to overturn the verdict. But he has a long sentence ahead of him, and when he finds himself confined, at close quarters, with some highly undesirable characters, prison life throws up more obstacles for him.
Mary broke off her engagement with the rich and powerful newspaper proprietor, Sir Richard Calisle. Now happily engaged to the heir, Matthew Crawley, and planning their life together, Mary finds her loyalties tested when the future of her beloved Downton is under threat. When Lavinia’s father offers a chance of salvation, Matthew is unable to free himself of a sense of guilt and obligation that prevents him taking advantage of the opportunity, which Mary cannot understand.
The lady’s maid. O’Brien’s responsibilities are to her mistress but she will always follow her own interest. She seizes on an opportunity to give her nephew a position within the household, and is fiercely protective of him. If she had her way, Alfred would be rising up the servant’s ranks even more quickly than most men could hope for, but below stairs everyone is protective of his or her position. O’Brien’s continued disregard of this fact, in her efforts to promote her sister’s son, rankles with the staff, and especially with her former ally, Thomas.
The head housemaid. Anna has made her choice of Mr Bates and nothing will alter that. But with her husband in prison, she works relentlessly to find a way to free him. Encouraged by Bates to carry on and live her life while he is incarcerated, she tries to keep her spirits up and her long service through good and bad times has cemented her friendship with her principal employer, Mary, but it’s her husband’s regular letters which are the highlight of her week.
The Valet. Given a second chance by Robert, after impressing him with his commitment to finding the dog, Isis, Thomas has become Robert’s valet. Despite this, he’s always on the lookout for the main chance, and his transparent self-interest wins him no allies downstairs, in the process alienating his old partner in crime, Miss O’Brien. But even Thomas has a heart.
The former chauffeur is now married to Sybil, and living in Dublin. Tom is still reluctant to conform to the Crawley family’s expectations of him which Matthew can understand. Encouraged by the way Sybil has embraced their new life, he has been writing for rebel newspapers and is a convinced republican. But while he nurtures a rabid hatred of the British Empire and longs to destroy all the Establishment stands for, he is still compromised by his passionate love for Sybil, meaning there is a contradiction in his very heart.
Magnificent in her lack of deference, Cora’s mother, Martha, sweeps into Downton for Mary and Matthews’s wedding and her arrival causes a stir above and below stairs. Her late husband Isidore, a dry goods millionaire from Cincinnati, left her a fortune and she enjoys her money. But, unlike Violet, she is not afraid of the future and advises the family not to try and hold on to the past, when they are bound to be defeated. In other words, her philosophies are diametrically opposed to Violet’s.
Cora was thrilled to receive news that Sybil was expecting their first grandchild. Loyal to Robert in all things, she wants to persuade him to accept Sybil’s marriage and would love to welcome Branson to Mary’s wedding. Cora is less afraid of the changes that the future may bring to them all. The arrival of her mother is a reminder that, despite her father’s fortune, Cora’s blood is less blue, and her outlook less hidebound by history, than those of the Crawley’s.
Footman. O’Brien’s awkward, tall nephew lands a job as the new footman, with the help of his aunt. Alfred used to be a hotel waiter, and as he struggles to meet Carson’s exacting standards, some of his old habits may prove hard to break. However, his real problem is whether or not he is in the right career after all.
Violet continues to expect the same unforgiving standards, from herself and her family that she always did. But even she is aware that the world is changing and the family must look to protecting its kingdom in the new century. She takes a particular interest in Edith. Having once encouraged her meetings with Anthony Strallan, she now believes his disability and age make him an undesirable match. The arrival of Martha Levinson, with her plain-spoken observations about where the world is headed, sets Violet’s teeth on edge.
Jimmy Kent (Ed Speleers)
Footman. Jimmy is incredibly handsome. As former footman to the Dowager Lady Anstruther, Jimmy applies for the job of footman, and immediately catches the eye of the female staff. And he does not go unnoticed by Thomas, either. He has an air of natural confidence and grace which Alfred lacks, and which means that Jimmy takes the role of first footman, as a natural right, a bone of contention.
Matthew is convinced that Lavinia’s heartbreak at seeing him kiss Mary contributed to her death. Now they are engaged, he cherishes Mary, but he cannot throw off a sense of guilt where Lavinia is concerned, and this will cause problems when Downton is threatened. Ideally, he would like to live a simpler life, away from Downton at first, so he and his new wife can get to know each other once they are married. Initially reluctant to involve himself with the estate, Matthew will become drawn into the detail of what he will inherit one day, and his relationship with Robert will be troubled by what he discovers.
Ivy Stuart (Cara Theobold)
Scullery Maid. The pretty and fresh faced kitchen maid will join Mrs Patmore’s team in the kitchen. Her arrival causes some interest among the male staff, and Alfred’s interest, in particular, is bound to make trouble for Ivy.
We really hope you enjoy the premier tonight, and would love to hear all your thoughts and comments about it below.
Watch the trailer for a sneak peak at what to expect in series three in the clip below: