Downton Abbey, I Just Can't Quit You

It's the time of year when everyone needs a TV addiction. And "Downton Abbey" is addictive.


Now, those of you too scrupulous to watch pirated British miniseries on illegal download are in luck! "Downton Abbey" is premiering on American television this Sunday. And it does not disappoint.

It's an English country-house drama involving upstairs succession issues, downstairs rivalries, a really good mansion, Maggie Smith, and numerous romances. Sometimes lurid, frequently ridiculous, it is nevertheless completely beguiling. Oh, and the clothes are excellent.

If I have one criticism of the show, it's that it gets a little anachronistic: people's frequently-articulated class-envy, or, alternately, suspicious liberal-mindedness seem a bit much for 1912; we get it. This did not, however, stop me and several friends from having marathon viewing Sunday sessions that left us red-eyed and exhausted and panting for more, followed by hours-long rehashings on IM, obsessive IMDB-stalking of the entire cast, and the various weird Google wormholes that inevitably ensue.

And no, Sting does not have a regular place on the soundtrack.