Downton Abbey (2010–2015)
4 user 4 critic

Episode #3.2 

A conflict between two members of the house staff escalates. Meanwhile, the family tries to impress Martha by planning a lavish dinner party.


Brian Percival


Julian Fellowes (written and created by)




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Hugh Bonneville ... Robert Crawley, Earl of Grantham
Jessica Brown Findlay ... Lady Sybil Branson (credit only)
Laura Carmichael ... Lady Edith Crawley
Jim Carter ... Charles Carson
Brendan Coyle ... John Bates
Michelle Dockery ... Lady Mary Crawley
Kevin Doyle ... Joseph Molesley
Siobhan Finneran ... Sarah O'Brien
Joanne Froggatt ... Anna Bates
Robert James-Collier ... Thomas Barrow (as Rob James-Collier)
Allen Leech ... Tom Branson (credit only)
Phyllis Logan ... Mrs. Hughes
Elizabeth McGovern ... Cora Crawley, Countess of Grantham
Sophie McShera ... Daisy Mason
Matt Milne ... Alfred Nugent


Mary and Matthew return from their honeymoon but he is still reluctant to take the Swire inheritance so the family plans to impress Martha with a lavish dinner party, entertaining locals, in the hope that she will bankroll them. When the oven breaks down, Martha saves the day with her indoor picnic but is unable to provide the financial help the family wants. A jealous Thomas sets out to sabotage Alfred and replace him with Molesley but O'Brien gets revenge by humiliating Thomas whilst Isobel, working at a charity in York to help single mothers, spots Ethel, who runs off after being recognized. Mrs Patmore accompanies a nervous Mrs Hughes to the doctor after the housekeeper finds a lump on her chest. He takes tests but the analysis will take two months and the women agree to keep it secret from other staff. Despite her father's early disapproval that he is too old for her, Edith finally gets engaged to Sir Anthony. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Drama | Romance


TV-14 | See all certifications »






Release Date:

6 January 2013 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

16 : 9
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Daisy has been warning Mrs Patmore that the wood stove is not functioning properly. There is a big dinner party for the evening and the guests are arriving. In the kitchen, all of a sudden Mrs Patmore is panicking because no food is ready, nothing has been cooked because the oven is not working. This is patently ridiculous. For a party that size, the kitchen would have been cooking for 2 days and 90% of the food would have been ready when the guests started arriving. See more »


Cora Crawley, Countess of Grantham: You don't have to give money after every conversation, Mother.
Martha Levinson: No? Isn't that what the English expect of rich Americans?
See more »


Downton Abbey - The Suite
Written by John Lunn
Performed by The Chamber Orchestra of London
See more »

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User Reviews

A Lavish Dinner Gone Wrong
25 December 2017 | by jp281995See all my reviews

A perilous situation puts Downton Abbey in danger of being sold. To save the estate, the Crawleys plan a perfect dinner party for Cora's wealthy mother Martha, who might be the one to save Downton Abbey. Meanwhile, downstairs, the once allies Thomas and Miss O'Brien are now clashing. Now, in this episode, you might find yourself liking Miss O'Brien a little bit.

Another perfect episode. Martha is an adorable character who adds more spice to the series.

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