Michelle Dockery Dishes on Downton Abbey's Emotional Truce Between Lady Mary and Lady Edith
Could this last until the series finale?
Well, for now, at least.
Spoilers warning: Details about the eighth episode of the final season of Downton Abbey lie ahead.
In the show‘s second-to-last episode, just before Lady Mary walks down the aisle to wed Matthew Goode‘s Henry Talbot, the two sisters share a poignant moment – and appear, it seems, to put aside their past spats and move forward as sisters.
Before this sweet scene, it was a rougher-than-usual episode for the two sisters who never really got along (read: at all).
Mary, in a foul mood after sending her future husband Henry away, heads to breakfast where Tom (Allen Leech, Edith and her almost-fiancé Bertie (Harry Hadden-Paton) are waiting. Mary then makes a reference to Marigold’s (Edith’s out of wedlock daughter) true maternal parentage, thereby rupturing Edith’s relationship with Bertie.
All in all, it was a seriously harsh move, even for Mary, and the next time Edith and Mary are in the same room, the former is calling the latter a “bitch” (honestly, overdue) and is fleeing Downton in response.
Just before Mary‘s wedding, however, she comes back. Mary, surprised that she did after she was so cruel to her, asks her why. Edith replies, “Because in the end, you’re my sister. And one day, only we will remember Sybil. Or Mama, or Papa, or Matthew, or Michael, or Granny, or Carson, or any of the others who have peopled our youth. Until at last, our shared memories will mean more than our mutual dislike.”
It’s a moment guaranteed to send any Downton fan into tears – mentioning the Matthew and Sybil (Jessica Brown-Findlay) in the sentence, is quite frankly, too much to handle. But as emotional as the scene was for the fans, it was perhaps even more so for Dockery and Carmichael, who were acting alongside each other for one of the last times in six years.
“There were such strong parallels in that dialogue,” Dockery said in an interview with PBS’ Masterpiece Studio, which was shared exclusively with PEOPLE. “Laura and I have this closeness, and memories that we will only share. When she said those words, there was a double meaning to it. I was really tearful.”
Plus, it gives us all what we’ve been waiting six years to see: Mary actually being nice to Edith. When Dockery watched it back with her IRL sister, she said much of the same.
“As Edith walks in, my sister said, “Come on, Mary!’ ” Dockery said. “As to say, ‘Come on Mary, you need to be the bigger person and apologize to your sister.’ ”
Fingers crossed this détente lasts until the series finale on March 6!