STRICTLY speaking it must be autumn because Downton’s back on the box and I’m sure I’ve also seen a picture of that chap who conducts choirs and wears a bow tie.
No not Thom Meredith, Gareth Malone.
But shock horror. It could all be about to go horribly wrong.
Strictly’s gone all competitive with some gold medal contenders who actually fit into their costumes on week one and it seems so has Mr Malone’s choral workout series. Gone competitive I mean. The bow tie always fitted.
He’s decided that one choir isn’t enough and that after his medal winning efforts in search of musical talent last winter he’s gone for promotion and is about to get four workplaces singing.
Gareth’s Military Wives series produced a Christmas No 1 single last year.
This year’s musical manoeuvres will see our music maestro training singers in Lewisham Hospital in south-east London, at Manchester Airport, the Royal Mail at Bristol and Severn Trent Water.
But could our Gareth be about to be ambushed by the reported response from one participant, consultant surgeon, Edmund Chaloner, whose response shall we say has been more muscular than vascular.
Mr Chaloner has apparently enjoyed the singing but described the filming as a pain in the er, now where was it?
And this before the programme has even aired!
As for Downton? Well where do you start? Dowagers at dawn or clash of the titans? Take your pick.
My money is on Maggie Smith. We Brits battle so well don’t we especially when it comes to ladies of a certain age. I can say that can’t I because I am standing well back from the action so to speak.
Give Shirley MacLaine full marks. An American playing an American and she is, well, so American. And when it comes to a put down, or a withering look Dowager Countesses just have it every time.
Episode one of series three (not that I’m counting really because this kind of TV could go on for ever as far as I’m concerned) made that proposal in the snow seem just a flick of the remote away.
And speaking of young Mr Matthew. Well he’s gone and made a hash of things by marrying Lady Mary but everything’s about to turn splendidly dashed awful because daddy’s just lost all the family money by stashing it all in the same basket which brings to mind eggs, investments and didn’t anyone ever tell him?
Apparently not? For the purposes of a storyline it was something to do with Canadian railway lines and it not run according to plan. So there’s nothing new in railways.
Not a perfect time either for looking for help from Lady Grantham’s American family. History isn’t on anyone’s side in this show after all.
Downton might still be emerging from the twilight of the Edwardian era into the Twenties but the dark days of the Thirties are looming and with Americans and the Irish gathering on all corners of the family there is nowhere to hide. Change is coming.
Nine million viewers tuned in for Sunday night’s Downton reunion and Twitter has been, well, atwitter.
Do we believe the naysayers who would have us believe that golden boy Dan Stevens, the actor who finally lured Lady Mary up the aisle, is about to head across the Atlantic to New York. And no, it’s not because he’s taken one look at her American grandma and decided Downton isn’t big enough for both of them.
Dan’s actually off to appear on stage in a Broadway play so good luck to him. But be warned Hollywood. Hands off our boy.
Oh and for those of you who are wondering. Thom Meredith is our very own musical maestro, principal of Kirklees Music College, musical director of Colne Valley Male Voice Choir, elegant wearer of natty bow ties and even wowier waistcoats. Come to think of it, he could do all three shows. No worries.