The end is nigh, friends. After five jam-packed seasons filled with affairs of the heart, money troubles, prison scares, tarnished reputations and glorious machinations, Downton Abbey is finally coming to an end with its sixth season. And, now we know that a pretty important part of the series will indeed be back for the finale.
According to Deadline, actress Lily James will be bringing back adorably naïve and plucky Lady Rose MacClare for the end of the show. Along for the ride with Lady Rose will be her husband Atticus Aldridge (Matt Barber) and her father Shrimpie (Peter Egan).
In case you’ve been living on Mars since 2010, Downton Abbey follows the upstairs and downstairs trials and tribulations of the Earl of Grantham, his family and servants in the massive estate known as Downton Abbey, at the beginning of the 20th century. James joined in the third season, after the shocking death of the Earl’s youngest daughter Lady Sybil. And, it was a nice addition to the cast and the storylines of the show.
James’ Lady Rose filled a very crucial role after Sybil’s death. Sybil was the family firebrand. She’s the one who gleefully started wearing pants when women were in no way, shape or form supposed to do that. Sybil also became a WWI nurse when she didn’t have to and married an Irish socialist who worked as the family chauffeur. Lady Rose basically took over for Sybil in that department, and that was lucky for us, since Downton Abbey’s noble family needed someone willing to put themselves out there and go where their heart leads.
In just a couple of short seasons, Lady Rose gave the show back it’s naïve, sweet, well-meaning heart by following hers to the hilt. It’s because of her that Downton Abbey had its first hint of an interracial love story when she fell for an African-American jazz singer. Rose somehow couldn’t understand why a guy she was attracted to could be wrong just because of his color. After realizing he was falling for her as well, and knowing that she’d do anything to pursue the relationship, the singer had to leave to keep the situation from becoming dangerous for both of them.
Lady Rose didn’t learn from that near debacle, either. Right before she left the show she met, fell in love with and married her Jewish husband. At the time, obviously, any kind of intermarrying was mostly off the table, especially for nobility, but Rose just stuck with her heart and figured everything else would work itself out. And, for the most part, it has. Rose got the chance to walk off into the sunset with the love of her life, and we got to watch Lady Rose stir the staid life of those nobles up a bit, much to our benefit.