If you’re not a Downton Abbey-obsessed watcher like myself, you may want to opt out now reading this post. Or stay around and find out why I’m so mad at Dan Stevens. Up to you!
So just for a little background on who Dan Stevens is, if you don’t know already… he is the lovable, sexy, fan-favorite, Matthew Crowley on Downton Abbey. Or at least he was.
He was killed off in the season 3 finale. The first approximate hour and 31 minutes (out of a total run time of 1 hour and 33 minutes) was delightful. It was filled with exciting new plot lines. A highlight was a 1920s carnival showing a mix of whimsical and thrilling scenes that allowed viewers to see the “downstairs” characters’ lives outside of Downton. It didn’t disappoint with the beautiful U.K. scenery Downton displays oh-so-marvelously on almost every episode. We saw deep green, rolling hills of Scotland’s breathtaking landscape and glimpses of what Scottish life was like in the early 1920s (for privileged and titled people, of course). Plus the creator and writer, Julian Fellowes, foreshadowed what was to become of our beloved casts’ lives come season 4.
Then it happened. As you were crying and completely captivated by Mary and Matthew’s happy marriage and long-awaited pregnancy finally ending in the birth of their son, the Crowley heir to Downton, Matthew dies.
I have never been so mad at a a writer of a television show than I was in that moment. What was Julian Fellowes thinking? I mean, when Cybil died, I understood that medical knowledge and medical advances in the 1920s was not what it is today so for a woman to die of preeclampsia was a reality then. Not everything can be rainbows and sunshine and it made for good television. Cybil took one for the Downton Abbey team. Fine, I got over it.
But to kill off Matthew I thought was the stupidest decision Julian Fellowes could have made! He and Mary’s relationship was one of the biggest draws to this amazing drama. Julian had just sealed his show’s fate and would lose his faithful fan base.
But then I did some research and discovered it was not Julian Fellowes’ decision. The actor who played Matthew Crowley, Dan Stevens, decided to leave the show. I’m sure that Julian Fellowes is probably as mad as I! So for that, I apologize, Julian Fellowes. I’m sure you yelled and screamed the day you found out just as loudly and vehemently as I did at the unresponsive television when I found out.
I am mad at you Dan Stevens. Couldn’t you have stuck around for another 3 seasons? Was it so important that you reinvent yourself as an actor in America that you left all us loyal fans with an empty hole in our hearts where Matthew Crowley once claimed space? I really hope you find happiness in whatever you’re searching for because you took a bit of Downton with you when you left.
I think I speak collectively for all us Downton-obsessed fans when I say we are holding a bit of a grudge. It may not be healthy and it may be a little creepy, but just know what you did.
P.S. Just because I’m mad doesn’t mean I’m not still a fan. I’m sure I’ll get over it. Eventually.