The Downton Abbey movie was a smashing success, bringing in $194 million and becoming the highest-grossing film in Focus Features’s history. The movie caught up with all of our favorite aristocrats and the working-class folks who kept the great house running. Among the returning characters were Edith Crawley, the black sheep of the family who was always full of surprises.
Though Edith started out as one of the villains of Downton, she grew by leaps and bounds to become one of the best characters on the show. She was the most relatable out of all the Crawley sisters and showed an independent streak pursuing her own happiness instead of following tradition. While waiting to see what happens to Edith in the second sequel movie, here are ten memes that will make you laugh and think, “I know that feel.”
Edith had some epic bad luck with men. First, her sister Mary got engaged to Patrick Crawley, who she really loved. Then Matthew Crawley showed absolutely no interest on her one and only date with him — and asked after Mary instead.
Then Mary destroyed Edith’s chances at a highly anticipated marriage proposal. Do you see a pattern here? All Edith wanted was for someone to give her the love and attention she deserved, but Mary saw only the frumpy dress and plain jane hat.
When the show began, Edith felt overshadowed by her beautiful older sister Mary and spirited younger sister Sybil. She may have had a point, at least where the narrative is concerned: her storyline was strongly entwined with Mary’s in the first season while Sybil had a different plot altogether. In Season 2, she stayed mostly in the background, learning to drive and offering reading material to wounded soldiers.
Season 3 was when things got more interesting for Edith — but until then, she really had nothing that could compare to her sisters’ great love stories.
Like a page out of an Austen novel, there was much speculation about the new heir’s marriage prospects when he first arrived on the scene. Matthew Crawley was intent on getting to choosing his own wife, and he complained that the family would push one of their daughters on him. Of course, he quickly backtracked on this the moment he saw Mary.
Matthew was a distant cousin of the Grantham branch of the family, which made it a little weird that both Mary and Edith were initially interested in him. Mary and Edith were also interested in another cousin, Patrick. Both men were at one point the heir to Downton, but still. Cousins.
7I Hate All Of You
Edith’s situation was especially dire at Mary’s wedding. She was the only single woman in Mary’s dressing room, the other guests being Sybil, Anna, and Cora, who were all happily married. To make matters worse, Edith’s fiance called it quits at their wedding later that season. For once something in the house was about Edith Crawley, and it all ended in tears.
On the plus side, her wedding dress was gorgeous, made of satin with an embroidered train and ruched fabric at the waist.
6And None For Edith Crawley
After Anthony Strallan decided that he was too old for Edith and couldn’t go through with the wedding, Edith bolted straight to her room and threw herself onto her bed crying. When her family arrived to comfort her, she asked Cora to send her sisters away and explained why.
“Look at them,” she cried. “Both have husbands. Sybil, pregnant. Mary, probably pregnant. Just go. I mean it.” The envy in her voice was palpable. Poor Edith.
5Poorly Made Decisions
With nothing to lose, Edith began writing a newspaper column. This opened up a whole new world for her that was much more exciting than the charity work and calls she paid as the unmarried daughter of an earl. She started dating her married editor, Michael Gregson, and spent more time away from Downton, enjoying the company of writers and intellectuals in London.
Edith leaving home gave her a newfound sense of freedom but also exposed her to scandal. At some point, she discovered she was pregnant, just as Gregson stopped returning her letters.
It’s well-known that Mary and Edith did not get along. The world seemed to inexplicably revolve around Mary while giving Edith the cold shoulder. It’s even more confounding when you consider each sister’s personality: Mary was captivating but chilly, while Edith was far more approachable.
The power dynamic between the sisters was reversed in the final season, however. Robert and Cora, who had so favored Mary when the girls were younger, finally started to see Mary for the bully she was, and Edith was vindicated.
3Forever Alone, Part 2
Edith’s misery didn’t stop at getting jilted at the altar. Her next relationship with Michael Gregson ended in heartbreak when he disappeared in Germany. Gregson had been trying to secure a divorce from his institutionalized wife so that he could marry Edith. Sadly, it was not meant to be, and Edith had to raise their daughter all alone.
At this point, one had to wonder if the writers hated Edith to put her through so much. A happy marriage? In her dreams.
Although Edith was a sympathetic character for most of the series, she’s also done some pretty terrible things. A certain letter to the Turkish Embassy comes to mind, as well as the way she gained custody of her daughter, Marigold.
To protect her reputation, Edith first left Marigold in the care of a tenant family near Downton. She couldn’t resist coming over to see her daughter, raising the suspicions of Mrs. Drewe, who had started to see Marigold as one of her children. One day, Mrs. Drewe came home to find Marigold missing, as Edith had taken her to London. Mrs. Drewe was devastated when Edith provided documentation of Marigold’s parentage and tearfully said farewell to the little girl.
1Always A Bridesmaid
True fans know that Edith got her happy ending — and a title that exceeded Mary’s. Nevertheless, her character remains strongly associated with romantic disappointment because of all the terrible things that befell her throughout the show.
That should give all of us out there some hope. If someone as luckless in love as Edith Crawley can ride off into the sunset with her dream partner, so can all of us.