Miranda Christmas and New Years Day Specials

Christmas TV, TV

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/813/66736813/files/2015/01/img_1438.jpgAfter a two year break, I eagerly awaited the return of Miranda for two specials in which we would learn her decision about the proposals of Gary or Mike. Miranda is one of those truly hilarious shows which whilst sometimes criticised for being childish or using dumb humour, is purely entertaining.

The last season was a my favourite, and I must say that I found the first Christmas special very disappointing in comparison. It lacked the sparkle and natural humour which was apparent in the rest of the series. The answer to the cliffhanger of a proposal was handled very quickly before the relationship between Miranda and Gary was messed up to prepare for the inevitable reunion in the final. Having them reunited only for them to split up so soon after seemed unnecessary and disappointing. However I did find the point of Miranda’s self esteem an interesting point and one that became a key aspect in the New Years episode.

Filled with the classic humour we have learned to love, this episode was definitely not disappointing. Miranda’s journey of self love and independence was heart warming and just what we all wanted for our favourite bumbling heroine. I almost applauded when she confidently delivered these lines “I’ve realised that women like me can be sexy, it’s just the world might never affirm it so it takes us a bit longer to realise it.” It was a wonderful message on New Years Day and it was truly touching to see Miranda, despite her flaws and previous self esteem issues, realise her own worth.

And then of course came the final run to get Gary with the words “I don’t need Gary. I want him.” It was like a scene from a classic romantic comedy and they were reunited before marrying at the restaurant. The last scene where she thanked the viewers with tears in her eyes was touching and made me rather emotional. Miranda has demonstrated the amusement and humour of everyday experiences and reminded those who don’t quite fit in or are slightly embarrassing that they’re fine as they are. It was a great last episode and I will deeply miss this show, but I’m glad Miranda got the happy ending she deserved.

Downton Abbey Christmas Special

Christmas TV, TV

(I live in Britain, where the Christmas Special airs earlier than in America, and so if you don’t live in England and wish to remain oblivious to what happens, I would not recommend reading on; it is spoiler galore.)

The past few seasons of Downton Abbey have been a severe departure from the quality of the first couple of series, and so whilst sitting down to the Christmas Special, I expected nothing more than a mediocre episode with fantastic one liners from Maggie Smith. In some ways, that is exactly what I got, but a certain scene elevated it above the dullness which has been Series 5.

The biggest plotline was that of Anna’s imprisonment, a plot line I have never found intriguing. It seems like a simple recycling of the false arrest of Bates in Series 2, and I wonder how Julian Fellowes thought the viewers wouldn’t notice this repetition. There was a dull addition to the plot, that Anna was attacked before – which simply seems like poor writing to me and an unnecessary attempt to add drama. Honestly, the only way that I could imagine becoming engaged in this story was if Anna had actually killed Green, and was shown to have a back bone after all.

There was also lots of boring shenanigans up in Scotland, with a snooty butler, and an avoided scandal involving Lord Syndeby, and a new love interest for Mary – the gorgeous Matthew Goode. All in all, the majority of this was rather dull.

Isobel and Violet both had their romantic hopes dashed in this episode, and I was especially saddened by the end of the engagement between Isobel and Lord Merton, as I found him a sweet character.

If so far it seems I have a wholly negative opinion of this episode, I probably would have, if not for a scene in the last twenty minutes of the episode. In a wonderfully acted and best scripted scene for a long time, Mr Carson finally proposed to Mrs Hughes. As someone who has waited years for this, I was not disappointed, and that scene alone was one of my Christmas highlights.

Overall, the special was bland and overly long, but the heart warming and touching proposal from Carson elevated it past it’s usual mediocrity to something beautiful.