Thursday, September 20, 2012

Upstairs Downstairs

While perusing the DVD shelves of my local library yesterday I came across an unexpected gem.  It's a British reality show called Manor House; much like the 1900 House series of a few years ago.  Here's a description I read on IMDB:

"21 people from the 21st century are being brought together in an Edwardian Country House. 6 of them are the Upstairs family and the 15 others are the servants. For three months, these people have only the rulebook and each other..."

I put it down at first because as a rule I hate reality television, but then I realized this show fits right into my particular tastes.  The point of the show is to have the family and other people involved live with the social protocols and everything else contemporary to  the Edwardian manor house style. If you've ever seen Gosford Park (one of my favorite movies ever)  or Downton Abbey, these illustrate perfectly the kind of life this show is trying to have the participants recreate.  Thankfully, it's not a contest, but it is a challenge to the people involved to cleave to the social roles (as well as the lack of technology) from back then.  I love movies that take place in this kind of household.  I don't long for those times, let's make that clear, but I do think a (fictional) manor house is a perfect place to have dozens of intrigues going on at once.  Scandalous!

Here's a clip of Manor House!

As far the upstairs vs. downstairs in my own house goes, I'm finding that I have to be sure I'm not just hiding things from myself, that they really are being put away or given away.  The room I'm sitting in right now has become the defacto extra storage room, especially when guests arrive.  They think my house is so clean because the walls in here are straining with junk!  And that's what I'm trying to do away with in general.

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