21 thoughts on “TBT: Upstairs, Downstairs (1971-1975): Back to Where It All Began

  1. I remember it well. The shock of what happened to Lady Marjorie!
    I think the series did an amazing job with Hazel (crossing class lines and the social changes occuring), the Spanish Flu epidemic, and especially with James’ (and Edward’s) PTSD. James in particular became a damaged man, and the show wrote that plot line brilliantly. And though at the end there was a ‘brilliant’ marriage, it was a sad ending after the crash of 1929. Much more poignant than Downton.

    1. Yes! I’ve read that Upstairs, Downstairs was the first TV drama in Britain to seriously address WWI, & veterans appreciated the sensitive treatment. You have to think that was people’s grandparent’s era at the time, so contemporary viewers would have been affected.

      1. Nevermind. I just discovered this wonderful new service called Google.

        That is both badass and profoundly sad.

        1. what happened to Lady Marjorie is both badass and profoundly sad.

          If I had actually just discovered Google, that would just be lame.

      2. She was on the Titantic…her maid survived, she did not. I am watching this today ,after decades since first seeing it…had forgotten so much. The bouffant hair is bugging me a lot…especially on some of the young women. Must have been a lot of hairspray used. But the series is very engrossing.

  2. I didn’t watch it until a few years ago. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Tried the new Upstairs Downstairs, not so impressed with that one.

  3. I remember Elizabeth having a sexless marriage with her poet husband. He was all about beauty and the thought of physical love was repugnant to him. Poor Elizabeth was on her knees with frustration, so it was arranged that she have an affair with a family friend, (Charles Gray from “The Rocky Horror Show”) so she wouldn’t go off her head and remain married to her drip of a husband, who would read to her, stroke her hair and nothing else. I was only about 11 but that has always stuck in my memory……………..

  4. I tried watching Upstairs Downstairs, and caught the remake by accident. It wasn’t bad, just not what I was looking for.

    1. The remake was… OK. As it’s own thing, fine, sure, whatever. But it didn’t really match the same heart & soul as the original, probably bec. the servants were not a big focus. Ironic since Jean Marsh — who co-created the original & played Rose — was involved in the remake as well.

  5. I used to watch this with my parents. We loved this, The Pallisers, and the Duchess of Duke Street. Such good shows!

    1. I loved The Duchess of Duke Street! My mom would late me stay up late on Sunday nights to watch it, despite it being a school night (long before we had a VCR.) My father was not pleased.

    2. I was more of a fan of Duchess of Duke st perhaps because I was a bit older when it was on. Pallisers is one of my all time favourites.

  6. When Downton started I thought it was just a rip-off of Upstairs Downstairs — and I was watching the UD reboot, so avoided Downton. Eventually I did get sucked into Abbey fever though. But UD was definitely the original, and the best.

  7. I remember my mom watching this when I was young. I was never interested until I watched DA and was in withdrawal over the summer, when I watched all of UpDown. Great stuff!

  8. I think the reason I never really got into Downton Abbey is actually this show. I used to watch it with my mother as a teen so when Downton Abbey came out it felt too familiar and didn’t really interest me.

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