With the Season 5 finale of “Downton Abbey” on Sunday night, we said farewell to our vaguely high brow soap opera. It was a bumpy season, one that started off on fire and saw its way through more bigotry, marriage, eavesdropping and prison time for the Bateses. HuffPost Entertainment spoke with executive producer Gareth Neame to go over these last few years on the estate and find out what we can expect when the Crawleys move further into the 1900s come Season 6.
Thomas was as conniving as ever in these final few episodes. What’s in store for him? Can you ever see him having a fully fleshed out, requited love interest?
Yes, it’s very interesting to a modern audience, particularly to a younger audience to see a character like Thomas living that life all those years ago. It would be illegal and subject to execution. It requires secrecy and it’s really interesting to explore that. He is stuck in a very unhappy place, as other characters are in different ways. Tom Branson is stuck in an uncomfortable place, because he is neither from the upstairs family nor is he now one of the servants. Edith is stuck because she’s not married, she doesn’t have the man she loved, she has a child. So many characters are placed in real extremes in the show and Thomas is one. I wouldn’t rule out the idea that it would be love for him one day.
Fair enough. But, hypothetically, if you had to pick a way to send her off right now, what would you want the Dowager’s farewell scene to be?
I think if we were unfortunate enough to have Maggie leave the show at any point then she will go off and live by the seaside, in case she ever changed her mind and decided to come back.
This interview has been edited and condensed.