3:50 pm - 01/21/2013

Downton Abbey "Poses A Threat To The Left" Because It Portrays Nice Rich People, So Says Fox News

The popularity of Downton Abbey in America is a threat to progressives because it celebrates rich people, according to FOX & Friends:

“Rich people, powerful people, in America today, are reviled,” Varney said. “They’re dismissed as fat cats who don’t pay their fair share.” The general consensus is that “rich people are evil.”

Then comes along Downton Abbey… making rich people seem nice. The characters in the show are kind and generous. “They create jobs, for heaven’s sake. They’re classy, they’ve got style.”

“It poses a threat to the left, doesn’t it?” he asked. Because the left says we must hate rich people.

Source(video at source)
tlcspice 21st-Jan-2013 10:00 pm (UTC)
Isn't the show set in like the early 1900's? Rich people back then were probably nicer or less corrupt, but the entire thing is fictional so WTF is Fox News even talking about?
grammaire 21st-Jan-2013 10:03 pm (UTC)
Rich people back then were probably nicer

I doubt it.
tlcspice 21st-Jan-2013 10:10 pm (UTC)
yeah you are prob right.
suzycat 21st-Jan-2013 10:05 pm (UTC)
What Faux fails to realise, not being English, is that Downton is set at a time of massive social change, where the world of the British elite was unravelled and irrevocably altered by WWI, and it was all middle class and blah by the end of WWII. IF the series continues, they'll have no staff and have sold the country house by the end of it. I saw Upstairs, Downstairs. GHOD.
freeze_i_say 22nd-Jan-2013 07:23 am (UTC)
ia but the series hasn't gotten up to WWII yet, it's still set in the 20s although it is reflecting the change you mention. If and when they go into WWII, I'm more than certain it will conveniently *forget* to mention all the aristos who thought Hitler was brilliant.

hera_bearrra 21st-Jan-2013 10:16 pm (UTC)
I don't think they were nicer...

I mean, this was before child labor laws and unions so...
tlcspice 21st-Jan-2013 10:25 pm (UTC)
Ugh you're right they were probably much worse actually. Powerful people have always been pretty corrupt..
nin_o_zara 21st-Jan-2013 10:59 pm (UTC)
Well, no, not quite.

Basic working laws were in place - mainly regarding factory work, and Education Acts that meant children under 12 had to be in school. And Unions had been going for a while, they had the Labour Party, which was founded by the unions, was fairly established by then, in fact they are about to come into power on Downton.

But, the rich probably weren't nicer, no. The characters are nice because we are supposed to be sympathetic to them.
ediesedgwick 21st-Jan-2013 10:21 pm (UTC)
i can't
devolute 21st-Jan-2013 10:37 pm (UTC)
They weren't necessarily nicer, but the class difference was more pronounced and less questioned. You were more or less born into it, and while the same is true today to some degree, you don't have the gentry vs. the working class where pretty much nobody ever switches unless a girl is "fallen" (basically has sex or is thought to have been compromised before marriage and gets kicked out of her family) or a family completely loses all of their wealth, which rarely happened, and in that case the family members still had options like going into trade or becoming a governess or something so they didn't have to enter servitude.

Downton Abbey is set right at the time where this was all falling apart, like web the series starts everyone is scandalized that Matthew is a lawyer or whatever because he's not a ~real rich person~. But after the war and shit things start to come undone and women are getting jobs and marrying poor people and all kinds of shit. Contextually it's just not a comparable situation, the point of wealth on the show is to show the class breakdown during that period.
x_butterfly19_x 22nd-Jan-2013 01:02 am (UTC)
I <3 this comment :)
beoweasel 22nd-Jan-2013 12:10 am (UTC)
Oh no, they were just as nasty and corrupt as they are now.

If you want a crash course on just how vicious and horrible the ultra-wealthy of late 19th to early 20th century, just look up Henry Clay Frick.
x_butterfly19_x 22nd-Jan-2013 01:01 am (UTC)
They definitely weren't nicer.

The people at Downton have nice lives, but there is no way in hell that it was aspirational - the whole class system was constructed around rank and knowing your place.

Unless you were born in the right circles it wasn't going to happen. Pre-WWI, anyway.
uss_galactica 22nd-Jan-2013 01:01 am (UTC)
Yeah, the first season starts in 1912 (right after the sinking of the Titanic), and has currently progressed to about the 1920s.
wauwy 22nd-Jan-2013 08:50 am (UTC)
LOL they were just as corrupt as ever. The guy who makes it is on the British right-wing.
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