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Upstairs Downstairs: Season 2 (1972-1973)
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The second season of the acclaimed British dramatic series "Upstairs Downstairs" , deals with the disintegration of the class structure in Edwardian England played out in the microcosm of the Bellamy household in London. Lawrence and Elizabeth return from their honeymoon, with their marriage already on the rocks. James' affair with Sarah the maid is exposed when she falls pregnant. Meanwhile Lady Marjorie has to contend with a blackmailer, and turns to her chauffer Thomas for help.
as Richard Bellamy
as Julius Karekin
as Mrs. Bridges
as Elizabeth Bellamy Ki...
as Mrs. Fellowes
as Michael Dooley
as James Bellamy
as Lawrence Kirbridge
as King Edward
as Thomas Watkins
as Sir Geoffrey Dillon
as Lady Marjorie Bellam...
as Lady Southwold
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The show careens from black humor to near tragedy and then back again. It's a hard tone to master and not always maintained but preferable to the sugar-swathed world of Downton.
Could it be that the makers suspected in advance that the show would not survive a second season on the BBC and, accordingly, threw the new episodes together while packing up their offices?
Even if "Upstairs" doesn't quite rise to public TV's top tier, it's indicative of a service that clearly and happily has upped its game.
This second season of the show's reincarnation turns out to be markedly more entertaining than the first. It's got a better, more engaging story and just generally has its rhythm back.
Frankly, it's a dispiriting season and I won't miss the show nearly as much as I'll miss Blake Ritson's charming turn as Sir Hallam's royal friend, the Duke of Kent.
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