March 6th, 2016 will be a date that diehard fans of Downton Abbey will remember forever.
It’s the episode that every TV fan fears: The Series Finale. After years of obsessing over characters, meticulously charting plot lines, and generally giving yourself over to the world of a show, those final credits roll and you are suddenly left with the uncomfortable feeling that there’s been a death in the family.
On Sunday, March 6th 2016 this fate will come to pass for diehard fans of Downton Abbey, the hit British series about an upper class family and the downstairs “family” who served them. With the Crawley’s and “The Crawley’s” we learned about family, relationships, class dynamics, and the proper way to set a table (Bless you Mr. Carson!). But while this particular family may no longer be on the air, there are a number of other British casts – noble or otherwise – who are equally deserving of devotion.
We scrolled through our library to give you some options to fill that Abbey sized whole in your heart:
UPSTAIRS/DOWNSTAIRS (2010 SERIES)
The Jist: A remake of the classic 1971 series, this version picks up as Rose returns to 165 Eaton Place as head housekeeper to the new owners, Sir Hallam and Lady Agnes Holland. Rose is quickly pulled back into both the ‘Upstairs’ and ‘Downstairs’ worlds, finding that in both lie a labyrinth of secrets, lies and scandal.
Why Watch: It’s about as close to Downton Abbey as anythign out there
The Jist: A fun, sexy romp through the tumultuous early years of King Henry VIII’s nearly 40-year reign of England. Follow Henry’s infamously rotating lineup of wives and watch as he single handedly takes on the Roman Catholic Church in his efforts to end his marriage to Catherine of Aragon (without killing her!).
Why Watch: A pre-Superman Henry Cavill
The Jist: Spain, 1905. A young man passes himself off as a waiter at the luxurious Grand Hotel to investigate the mysterious disappearance of his maid sister. He soon falls in love with the owner’s daughter, who agrees to help him find out the truth about her disappearance. In between the sleuthing, you follow the daily lives of the hotel’s spirited servants, the ruthless familial owners, and the colorful grandees who visit.
Why Watch: This show is in Spanish with English subtitles. Watching TV is the best way to learn a new language!
THE INDIAN DOCTOR
The Jist: Prem Sharma, a highly educated Indian doctor, and Kamini, his beautiful upper class wife, leave India in 1963 and make for England, lured by the promise of opportunities in the new National Health Service and a glamorous lifestyle in London. Their fantasies get crushed, however, when they instead get assigned to a small practice in a Welsh coal mining village. Cultural and social misunderstandings ensue!
Why Watch: Lady Rose MacClare’s parents were British Ambassadors to India. It’s fun to think they hung with Prem and Kamini’s relatives.