Who’s Going To Die In The New Season Of Downton Abbey?

England’s The Daily Mail is reporting that a major character will kick the bucket when Downton Abbeyreturns to Britain’s ITV for its third season in September.

We already know that Shirley MacLaine is joining the cast as Cora’s mother, and that Matthew Crawley and Lady Mary will finally get married, but producer Rebecca Eaton teased that someone “pretty key in the cast” will buy the farm, hinting that “somebody will be born, and somebody will die.” Without much to else to go on, the field is pretty wide open. Here are a few guesses:

Lady Sybil. In the Downton Abbey Christmas special it was revealed that (spoiler alert) Sybil and her driver-turned-reporter husband Branson are expecting a baby. If she died during childbirth—not wholly uncommon at the time—both sides of Eaton’s prophecy would come true at the same time.

The Dowager Lady Grantham. Maggie Smith has suffered from serious medical issues in recent years, so she may have requested to be written off Abbey. But we have the feeling she’s the kind of Dame who’d keep on working six months after her heart stopped beating. Plus, she’s basically the whole reason we watch the show.

Lady Edith. We’re putting Edith on the list mainly because the show doesn’t seem to know what to do with her—she’s got a fatal  case of middle-child syndrome. Maybe Edith could set herself on fire in the parlor? Her parents might finally notice her then.

Thomas. Doesn’t the evil homo usually buy it in the end?

Who do you think will kick the bucket when Downton Abbey returns? Make an educated guess in the comments.

Photo via ITV

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  • Tony Konrath

    Oh Dear. I’m reliably informed (by my very well informed partner) that Maggie is “over it.” So I expect it’s her.

    That means a wonderful death scene – hopefully murdered or clawing madly at the bed drapes. After which we too will cease to watch.

  • Mikel D McGrew

    There are so many possibilities – John, the imprisoned valet, the aging butler, Mr. Carson, Thomas – oh let it be Thomas. He is such scum that the gay community does not wish to claim him as a member – and one grows weary of his machinations and sullen disposition. On the other hand, Edith would be no great loss – especially to the rest of the family. How about Isobel Craweley? One hopes it is not Maggie Smith!

  • Tee

    God I love Maggie Smith and while the whole show is good, Maggie Smith’s character and her bitingly witty performance of her makes it must-see TV for me. I know they’re bringing in Shirley MacLaine, who can probably spit a bubbly sardonic aside with the best of them, but when I first read of her casting, it was in the context that she was going to be a good sparring partner for Smith, not that she was going to ultimately replace her.

    I’m thinking it’s John the imprisoned valet. A good part of the point of the show is to show the many failings of that society, and as they killed off Lavinia—whose impending marriage to Matthew was so central to the show and the lives of the other characters—partly to illuminate the limitations of medical intervention in those days and how someone could be perfectly healthy one day and dead two later, I’m guessing they will either fail to prove John’s innocence (thereby commenting on a rush to justice and/or the limitations of forensic technology) or disclose his guilt in his ex-wife’s murder (thereby commenting on divorce law and the degree it drove good, longsuffering people to drastic measures).

    To Mikel, I agree, while my heart leapt in that scene where we learn Thomas is gay, I’ve come to see him as the worst movie stereotype of a gay character. I do think there’s some relevance to the limitations for a gay person in those days, not unlike the point I was making about what John’s wife was putting him through, and yet we saw virtually nothing of Thomas’ sexuality in all of season 2, meaning that any struggle or limitation or despair his character is experiencing as a result of his sexuality is totally absent from the show. He’s just a bastard, and it’s annoying that the one gay character is the one villain (Mrs. O’Brien having softened after realizing she’d almost lost her mistress).

    Ye-gads, I sound like a soap queen. I really don’t watch soaps or anything like that…!

  • eva

    I think it will be Thomas.

  • Qban1029

    I hate to ruin it for everyone but Entertainment Weekly had already confirmed that Season 3 would be Smith’s last. Hopefully she doesn’t die until the last episode because I love the Countess!

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