Rejoice, American Downton Abbey fans, the soapiest costume drama in the land returns to TV on Sunday and hopefully you haven’t been so much Internet searching on the goings on of the Crawley family and their employees that you haven’t had the entire season spoiled for you yet. (Seriously, stop searching, because those spoilers will catch up with you!) One of the best things about the show’s return to PBS’ Masterpiece — especially now that it’s at the height of popularity — is seeing the cast in their modern street clothes, laughing and joking like their fictional counterparts never would. We’ve seen Hugh Bonneville (Robert Crawley) tweet from the subway, Robert James-Collier (Thomas) talk sexual politics in Out and those two joined by Jim Carter (Mr. Carson) in a silly Downton/Breaking Bad mash-up on The Colbert Report. Guest star Shirley MacLaine trotted out her paranormal expertise to talk about the ghosts haunting Highclere, the estate where the show is shot. Dan Stevens (Matthew Crawley) has been gracing the New York stage with Jessica Chastain in The Heiress all season, while Joanne Froggatt and Sophie McShera showed that when they put on makeup and get out of those dreadful maids’ uniforms, they’re total knockouts.
Sure, it must be fun to traipse around a fancy English estate for a living, but we get the feeling the cast revels in the chance to show the world what they’re like in real life. See for yourself in the gallery below:
[Photos: Comedy Central, Getty Images, Twitter]
In the latest issue of Vanity Fair, James Wolcott points out what a great time it is for female characters on TV. From Downton Abbey to 30 Rock, our screens are filled with complex, strong, flawed women that reflect real life as much as they entertain us. And also, as the VF cover and photo spread demonstrate, a lot of the actresses portraying those great characters also happen to be smoking hot. We at the Fab Life pride ourselves on being solid feminists as much as we love being shallow, so this is the perfect way to combine those interests: Making you (seriously, we’ll put toothpicks in your eyelids if you disobey) look at the 10 brainiest beauties, or the 10 most beautiful brainiacs, on TV right now, and then forcing you to vote for your favorite. Are you an avid follower of Kalinda Sharma’s ass-kicking investigative techniques on The Good Wife? Were you rooting for Lady Sybil to ditch her parents AND her chauffeur suitor and run off to become a doctor? Aren’t you sure that Sterling Cooper Draper Price would crumble without Joanie’s capable guidance? Peruse the gallery, add to your DVR queue, and get to voting. Poll ends on Monday at 2 p.m. ET.
[Photos: Showtime, Fox, CBS]
The fact that the British Film and Television Awards took place on the same day as the Grammys probably only annoys folks like us, who would really like to be giving both events our full attention. And so it goes that we basically ignored the U.K.’s Oscars, missing adorable speeches from The Artist’s Jean Dujardin and Michel Hazanavicius (whose Best Actor and Best Director wins were two of seven awards for the film), and not catching that cute moment in which Best Actress winner Meryl Streep lost her shoe climbing the stairs to the stage and Colin Firth ran to get it for her and place it on her feet. Until now, of course. On the red carpet, there were a handful of A-listers, a few Mad Men and Downton Abbey faves, and a lot of Brits that haven’t fully crossed over to the states yet. To our slight disappointment, there weren’t too many total fashion fails, but we managed to find a few (Oh, Christina Hendricks, why must you do that to your body?). Mostly, though, we saw some sexy strutting from the likes of Viola Davis, Christina Ricci and Brad Pitt. See for yourself who was hot, and who was just a hot mess, in the gallery below.
[Photos: Getty Images]