Downton Abbey: Season 6 (2016)

Season 6
Downton Abbey

Critics Consensus

Melodramatic characters and soapy class struggles continue to keep Downton Abbey compelling as this celebrated series approaches its grand finale.



Critic Ratings: 32


Audience Score

User Ratings: 111

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Air date: Jan 3, 2016

The sixth and final season opens in April 1925 with Robert contemplating reductions to the staff; Mrs. Hughes worried about whether Mr. Carson expects them to consummate their impending marriage; and Mary being faced with blackmail. In other events, Violet and Isobel disagree on changes at the hospital.

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Air date: Jan 10, 2016

The location of the wedding reception becomes an issue between Mr. Carson and Mrs. Hughes; Thomas seeks employment elsewhere; Mary takes Anna to see a doctor in London about her miscarriages; and Mrs. Drewe abducts Marigold.

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Air date: Jan 17, 2016

Violet tries to sway Robert to her position regarding the hospital; Edith fires her editor; Thomas has a job interview; Denker digs up dirt on Spratt; Daisy believes Mr. Mason should move into the former Drewe farm; and Mr. Carson and Mrs. Hughes marry.

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Air date: Jan 24, 2016

Baxter is asked to testify against her former beau; Daisy prepares to confront Cora over Mr. Mason's fate; Mary takes Anna to London to see the doctor; and a former maid comes to lunch.

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Air date: Jan 31, 2016

Violet arranges for Neville Chamberlain to come to dinner at the estate, but the meal proves memorable for another reason; Thomas offers to teach Andy how to read; Edith hires a woman editor; and Mr. Carson criticizes Mrs. Hughes' culinary skills.

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Air date: Feb 7, 2016

The hospital board approves the merger; Daisy tries to block the burgeoning romance between Mrs. Patmore and Mr. Mason; Henry tells Mary how he feels about her; and Mary and Tom open the house to the public in order to raise funds for the hospital.

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Air date: Feb 14, 2016

Mary and the family attend one of Henry's motor races; Mrs. Patmore opens her bed and breakfast; Mrs. Hughes tricks Mr. Carson into doing the housework; Bertie asks Edith to marry him; and Violet gives Robert a surprise gift.

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Air date: Feb 21, 2016

Mary informs Bertie that Marigold is Edith's daughter; Mrs. Patmore's bed and breakfast faces a scandal: adulterers stayed the night; Molesley becomes a teacher; Thomas attempts suicide; and Violet helps Mary figure out her feelings for Henry.

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Air date: Mar 6, 2016

In the series finale, Mr. Carson faces a health issue; Thomas takes a new job; Denker informs the dowager of Spratt's magazine column; Violet helps Isobel see Lord Merton, whose family is keeping them apart; Bertie proposes; and Anna goes into labor.

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Downton Abbey: Season 6 Videos

Downton Abbey: Season 6 Photos

Tv Season Info

The sixth and final season of the mannered melodrama opens in April 1925 with Robert (Hugh Bonneville) anticipating reductions in the household staff. It's not a move he wants to make, but one he must, and while he hopes to keep the plan hush-hush, it's not long before word gets out. Thomas (Rob James-Collier) is sure he'll be among those let go, and spends much of his free time searching for a suitable position elsewhere. He also helps footman Andy (Michael Fox), who wants to improve his lot in life, learn to read. As in years past, however, the season's major story arcs are both upstairs and downstairs. Upstairs, Mary (Michelle Dockery) is wooed by race car driver Henry Talbot (Matthew Goode), whom she loves save for his high-risk vocation. She also can't help but to interfere in the burgeoning romance between sister Edith (Laura Carmichael) and Herbert "Bertie" Pelham (Harry Hadden-Paton), a charming estate agent. Edith, for her part, struggles with whether she should tell Bertie the truth about Marigold. Other storylines find Violet (Maggie Smith) in a feud with Cora (Elizabeth McGovern) over the future of the hospital; and Isobel (Penelope Wilton) blocked from seeing an ailing Lord Merton (Douglas Reith) by his children. The downstairs drama is just as delicious: Mr. Carson (Jim Carter) and Mrs. Hughes (Phyllis Logan) butt heads prior to and after their marriage; Anna (Joanne Froggatt), who desperately wants a child, struggles to keep a pregnancy; Mrs. Patmore (Lesley Nicol) opens a bed-and-breakfast; and Mr. Molesley (Kevin Doyle) takes on a new challenge.

Cast & Crew

Matt Milne
Alfred Nugent
Hugh Bonneville
Robert Crawley
Shirley MacLaine
Martha Levinson
Sophie McShera
Daisy Mason
Ed Speleers
Jimmy Kent
Lesley Nicol
Mrs. Patmore
Siobhan Finneran
Sarah O'Brien
David Robb
Dr. Clarkson
Samantha Bond
Lady Rosamund
Jim Carter
Mr. Carson
Phyllis Logan
Mrs. Hughes
Laura Carmichael
Lady Edith Crawley
Cara Theobold
Ivy Stuart
Jessica Brown Findlay
Lady Sybil Crawley
Allen Leech
Tom Branson
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News & Interviews for Downton Abbey: Season 6

Critic Reviews for Downton Abbey Season 6

All Critics (32) | Top Critics (16)

It's really well-crafted. I mean, it's well-written. The production is lavish. The costumes are amazing. Watching these episodes, you're kind of transported back to a time with a lot of turning points for modern society.

Nov 26, 2019 | Full Review…

Downton Abbey has always been television to luxuriate in, and its final season will delight fans with more of the same superb production quality and writing that makes the aristocratic Crawley family feel part of our own.

Jun 29, 2016 | Full Review…

The final Downton season is satisfying, engaging and nostalgic. And if there is, at some point, a movie? You know we'll be watching.

Jun 29, 2016 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

Beautiful, elegant final ride, full of love and nostalgia and joy. The only way to go...

Jun 29, 2016 | Full Review…

Downton simply continues its sharp observations of human behavior among fundamentally decent people, as animated by some of the loveliest faces, voices, and cinematography on the tube, it still has much to offer.

Jun 29, 2016 | Full Review…

I'm happy to report (without any spoilers) that it remains what it has been for years - a pretty melodrama, whose characters we've come to know well, grounded in a thought-provoking historical moment.

Jun 29, 2016 | Full Review…

Downton Abbey isn't trying to change the face of television, so let's just enjoy the loveliness while it lasts.

Jul 31, 2018 | Full Review…

he nation will no doubt be grateful to see its favourite escapist fantasy deigning to engage with our piffling contemporary anxieties.

Jul 24, 2018 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

The acting. The set design. The costumes. The sharp writing. The attention to detail. All of it came together in a way that made this show more than just another period drama.

Jun 26, 2018 | Full Review…

Certainly Downton had its soapy moments. But for most fans, I don't think this was the series' chief appeal. Rather, it was the moments of kindness.

Mar 5, 2018 | Full Review…

The Earl of Grantham having made a tectonic plate shift in his mind set over a myriad of matters. He's up to speed with the changes of the century, but are the fans, as we prepare to say our final good byes?

Jun 14, 2017 | Full Review…

Even though it was feeling a bit threadbare in recent years, its classy departure is likely to leave its legions of fans pining for more. Golly gumdrops, what will we do without it?

Jun 29, 2016 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Downton Abbey: Season 6

  • Aug 12, 2020
    The good news is, Fellowes finally came up with new ideas for subplots after the show's repetitive fourth and fifth seasons. Individual episodes are therefore more interesting to watch in its final season. However, at its terminus, the show's weaknesses at presenting satisfying plot and character arcs are as glaring as ever. Fellowes seems to think Michelle Dockery's Lady Mary character is the star, so we are subjected to yet more bland romance between Dockery and a generic suitor, the culmination of which takes up an entire episode. The relationship between the family and the servants becomes so close it's like Fellowes isn't even trying to pretend there were strict class boundaries in this period anymore. Supporting characters like Thomas Barrow (Rob James-Collier) and Joseph Molesley (Kevin Doyle) are the only who seem like complex and interesting people, though the former's vast changes in personality every season are bound to induce whiplash. This season he gets another tragic subplot, which if you were to look at individual scenes would make you think James-Collier was acting in a totally different, superior show, but which ends in a way that is cliche and rushed. Maggie Smith is of course great, but the novelty of a character who mainly spouts off witticisms has died after five seasons. The good news is, Laura Carmichael as the "forgotten middle sister" Edith outshines her older sister Mary, and Fellowes seems to recognize this, by giving her a solid subplot and romance. The bad news is, Fellowes seems to think EVERYONE needs a romance subplot (except of course the tragic gay character), so a lot of time is wasted pairing up characters who have little in common except age. I don't totally regret watching this whole series, but I would not recommend it either. It started spinning its wheels halfway through its run, and this finale, while superior to the last couple seasons, isn't worth powering through to reach. I'm disappointed, because through it's entire run, I can never say the show rose above mediocre. Even the best actors are dragged down by the poor writing.
  • Jul 07, 2020
    An awesome finale of a great show.
  • Nov 20, 2019
    The best British melodrama series comes to an end. And with very satisfying conclusions for all of Julian Fellowes' beloved characters. This final season of the show was very compelling and funny, particularly the battle royale for the hospital affairs, which was a delight to witness. Finally the two daughters of the family find their right husbands and the servants downstairs get their deserved success. Thank you for all the laughs and the drama! It was the best!
  • Nov 13, 2019
    My favorite season! This show is perfection. The storylines, characterization, costumes, sets, etc. all beautifully done. Bravo!
  • Oct 25, 2017
    every charator has the story to tell.
  • Jan 05, 2017
    Excelente conclusión y personajes!!!!
  • Aug 13, 2016
    A beautiful English Series. Not for everyone's taste of course.
  • Jul 21, 2016
    While it does drag in a few spots, the final season is more than a worthy send off for the series, including some of the best payoffs in the series history, and a nice grand finale.

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