March 1920. Cora’s mother, Martha Levinson, sweeps into Downton for Matthew and Mary’s wedding, astonishing the Dowager Countess with her critical and "revolutionary" American way of seeing things.
Lord Grantham learns that his massive investment of Cora's fortune in the Grand Trunk Railway has failed, leaving the estate near bankruptcy. Salvation is possible, as Matthew is entitled to inherit a large amount of money from Lavinia's father, but his high values will not let him keep the money, feeling it a betrayal of Lavinia and her father.
Meanwhile, O'Brien's nephew Alfred joins the staff downstairs and struggles to satisfy Carson's high standards, made worse by Thomas' jealous behaviour.
Sybil and her husband, Tom Branson, return to Downton to a muted response, particularly as Branson remains highly vocal about his political beliefs. Matthew repairs things when he chooses Branson to be his best man, and despite hesitance the night before, Matthew and Mary are married.
I love the scene of the night before the wedding outside Mary's door! Branson advising Matthew - hear, hear! Anna advising Mary that Matthew's not a bus! And the closing of the eyes. I laugh out loud and cheer them on! I love Mary's wedding dress! Downton Abbey is pure escapism for me! xx
(All Downton Abbey posts contain spoilers)