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Is it Just Me or is Lady Mary of Downton Abbey an Asshole?

Lady Mary of Downton Abbey

You can’t tell me that kid isn’t scared out of his fucking mind.

That’s it, I’ve had it!

Lady Edith finds out that the love-of-her-life and newspaperman-at-large, Matthew Gregson, is indeed dead, killed (most likely) by the henchmen of Hitler, and Lady Mary goes out and gets a fashionable bob?

With which to bewitch Lord Gillingham, whom she illicitly bedded (forcing an embarrassed Anna to procure her contraception!) then decided to dump (whilst still hoping he’ll pine like a monk) and when Lady Edith is distressed by said-death(!) Lady Mary treats her like a big bore.

Yes, yes, I know Lady Edith ratted Lady Mary out about the unfortunate Kamel Pamuk situation back in season one; the Turk dying while ostensibly atop Lady Mary.

But still – hasn’t Lady Edith been through enough with Mary scaring off Edith’s old-guy suitor with the bum arm in season two?

Initially, it’s true, I thought Lady Edith a bit, how shall we say, church mouse-ish in appearance.

But how she grows on you with her vulnerability, her dewy eyes, her gentle, yet steely resolve to raise her own child.

While that fucking, stalactite Lady Mary sees her baby for five minutes between teas and vaginal kegels to create the steel glove that entraps unsuspecting lords and dignitaries!

And let us not forget that she burned the train ticket that would have absolved Bates of murdering his wife Anna’s rapist!

Lady Mary probably used it as kindling to burn a Lady Edith effigy, no doubt fashioned of tea cakes Anna had to fetch Lady Mary along with a 1920 Gustav Zander electric vibrator (making the vibrator the fifth domestic appliance to be electrified, after the sewing machine, fan, tea kettle, and toaster, and about a decade before the vacuum cleaner and electric iron, FYI.)

If I have to see Lady Mary’s smug, self-satisfied (yes, I know they mean the same thing, but I’m suffering Hysterical Redundancy) face just one more time:

I think I might just do this:


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  1. Cindala
    Cindala 24 February, 2015, 13:13

    Shannon – you nailed Lady Mary and made me laugh! Great to see you & catch up a bit at Bar class this morning.

    Reply this comment
    • Shannon
      Shannon Author 24 February, 2015, 13:18

      Cindy great to see you too! I’ll be back on Friday if I can still walk!

      Reply this comment
  2. KymberlyFunFit
    KymberlyFunFit 24 February, 2015, 15:43

    Your video is spot on, though I actually like Lady Mary. Not for a friend or pal, mind you. But I like her sass and snootery! The fact that she is so mean to Edith makes her less than perfect. And it is when I understand better why Lady Mary is thought to be … well kind of cold. Cuz she is And self-centered, but that is not the worst offense for a woman if you ask me. Please ask me!

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    • Shannon
      Shannon Author 24 February, 2015, 17:43

      Hi Kymberly — It is true that Lady Mary makes a highly watchable character. The show would be rather boring if it were all the land of the happy, kind people. But I do think Mr. Fellowes needs to give her a redeeming moment when it comes to Lady Edith. In fact, why doesn’t he just hire me? I’d find a soft moment for her. Hm. Must get on this.

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      • Bobbie
        Bobbie 30 March, 2021, 22:59

        She has very little to recommend her. She is a terrible snob. She seems unmoved by the war and all the men dying to preserve her way of life (until one is Mathew). What does she do all day besides go riding and changing her clothes for dinner? Why is Mathew even interested in her? She appears to have little compassion for anyone but herself.

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  3. KCTee
    KCTee 23 March, 2016, 14:14

    I’m watching Downton all over again on Amazon with the goal of explaining why people seem to favor Edith over Mary. I am now up to Season 5 and must say that Mary is not shown to be nasty to Edith for no reason. From the first season, Edith is shown as a jealous sniping sister and Mary the typical older sibling who puts Edith down, but not cruel for the sake of being cruel. Mary could be kinder and more pitying to her sister, but it seems to me that Edith brings things upon herself. I would consider her revenge (trying to publicly humiliate Mary regarding the Turk) unforgivable, yet people seem to let it pass. Mary may be haughty and naughty, but sensible and noble. After my second viewing, I still vote for Mary over the whiney Edith. As for “poor Edith” I’d say Mary didn’t exactly have a smooth love life herself.

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    • Shannon
      Shannon Author 27 March, 2016, 09:01

      You know you’re right KCTee. I forgot what a bitch Edith was during the whole Kamul Pamuck incident. I think they softened her in later seasons but increased Mary’s bite.

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  4. Miagitanchan
    Miagitanchan 23 September, 2017, 16:55

    I like her at some points, like how she honestly cares about her lady’s Maid Anna and how she has a heart. But I sometimes find her dry. The thing that’s always bothered me is the fact she cried about the Turk man, but didn’t cry about her own sister. And of course how much of a bitch she was about Edith fiancé, I mean you aren’t gonna magically feel better after a year, after the love of your life dies. If you can heal that quickly I doubt you cared that much about them to begin with. She doesn’t have much compassion. My favorite character was Sybil though. Unfortunately she didn’t get much spotlight and died prematurely

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