If I had to choose a TV granny, Lady Grantham would definitely be at the top of my list!
Downton Abbey’s resident grandmother, played by Maggie Smith, is the perfect light relief from some of the show’s old fashioned issues. Despite these out dated issues, modern audiences can’t get enough of the trials and tribulations Downton Abbey faces. This is mainly down to the character and hilarity of Lady Grantham. Her brilliant one liners and mannerisms are an integral part of what makes Downton Abbey so successful.
She’s a Traditionalist
A woman of Lady Grantham’s social standing can be forgiven for her traditionalist views. As the seasons have progressed, she has developed a more accepting attitude to the changing times she finds herself in.
“I do think a woman’s place is eventually in the home, but I see no harm in her having some fun before she gets there.”
Matthew: “Edith has had an invitation to write a newspaper column.”
Lady G : “When may she expect an offer to appear on the London stage?”
She’s a Realist
Harsh and heartless as she may appear to viewers towards her granddaughters and son, Lady G is a great dose of welcome reality.
Carson: “Hard work and diligence weigh more than beauty in the real world.”
Lady G: “If only that were true.”
While she may be open to accepting new inventions, social etiquettes and freedoms, Lady Grantham is still a woman of class and dignity.
“Don’t be defeatist, dear, it’s very middle class.”
“Edith, you are a Lady, not Toad of Toad Hall.”
Witty and Subtly Sarcastic Sense of Humour
“We can’t have him assassinated. I suppose”
“I do hope I’m interrupting something.”
“That is the thing about nature: there is so much of it.”
Lady G: “You are quite wonderful the way you see room for improvement wherever you look. I never knew such reforming zeal.”
Mrs. Crawley: “I take that as a compliment.”
Lady G: “I must’ve said it wrong.”
Robert: “I’ll do it on one condition – no, two. First, Matthew must agree . . . Second, you will both admit it when you realize you were wrong.”
Lady G: “Oh, well, that is an easy caveat to accept, because I’m never wrong.”
An Old Soul in a Modern Age
I think this conversation with Matthew says it all.
Lady G: “What am I sitting on?”
Matthew: “A swivel chair”
Lady G: “Another modern brainwave?”
Matthew: “Not very modern, they were invented by Thomas Jefferson.”
Lady G: “Why does every day involve a fight with an American?”
See Downton Abbey at 9pm Sunday’s on ITV or 9pm Wednesday’s on TV3.