Downton Abbey Season 4 Episode 8 Recap: Let the Battle Begin

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Downton Abbey Season 4 Episode 8 marked the end of what many believe was a disappointing season overall for this British sensation.

It took the Crawleys to London, where we met Cora's mother and brother (Paul Giamatti!) for Rose's presentation to society.

An Ocean's Eleven-type heist then breaks out after Freda's love letter from the prince is stolen, with Bates (of course) emerging as the hero when he swipes it from Sampson's overcoat, ensuring all remains safe with the British monarchy for the time being.

We then turn our attention to Lady Mary's many suitors, all of whom are doing their best to win her over.

Tony Gillingham reveals that Charles Blake is, in fact, heir to a giant estate in Ulster because Mary seemed to be favoring the former since he's "on her side" of the rich estates versus the new world. Mary is always all about taking sides, isn't she? 

Mary does not choose either man in the end, but she does make it clear that she's ready to finally leave Matthew's death behind. Let the battle begin, she decrees.

Lady Edith, meanwhile, is in no such positive state, considering she chose to gig her baby away to a Swiss couple. But did she really choose? Or was her arm twisted by her mom and grandmother? Edith decides it's the latter.

She therefore asks tenant farmer Mr. Drew if he and his wife will raise "a baby" that belonged to her "friend" who has died. We somehow doubt this secret will remain buried for long.

DOWNSTAIRS, meanwhile, Thomas is spying on Tom as the latter brings Sarah Bunting back to the mansion. He tell Robert all about the innocent gesture and we're left wondering just what will be done about it.

Thomas (that scoundrel!)) also attempts to extort intel out of Baxter regarding what happened with Anna and Bates, but Mr. Molesley helps Baxter stand up to Thomas, as she refuses to "cave" to his demands. Good for her!

Mrs. Hughes finds a ticket that places Bates in London the day Mr. Green was killed, but Mary chooses to keep it a secret and we're left to hope Anna and Bates can find real happiness on Season 5. They conclude this year strolling happily on the beach together.

What did you think about the finale? About the season as a whole?

Go watch Downton Abbey online at TV Fanatic if you need to catch up and take heed of Edith's words: "I sometimes think we should make more scenes about things that really matter to us."

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