Brace yourselves, Downton fans, because tears might well be shed this Christmas as we bid goodbye to one of our favourite characters. Actor Allen Leech has given the strongest hint yet that Tom Branson could well be bidding the Grantham’s goodbye as he sets sail in pursuit of the American Dream.
At the end of series five, we saw Branson agreeing to stay at the Abbey for one more Christmas with his young daughter Sybbie. Now, according to The Mirror, Allen Leech has opened up about the possibility of him not coming back for series six.
“I think if he does leave, Tom will be leaving under his own steam and he won’t be dead so it doesn’t mean that he’s leaving forever,” he said.
The actor continued: “I think if he does leave, there’s always a chance that he will come back. Will I be sad? It’s been the most incredible journey doing that show so I would be sad. But like I said, ‘Never say never’. I’d like to finish that story out with all those people whenever that is. If he does leave it will be a nice break lately.”
I am surely not alone in those fervently hoping he will stay? Our 4YE dreams for the Tom/Rose pairing may be dashed, but we have really enjoyed seeing Tom ingratiate himself into the Grantham clan following the heartbreaking loss of Sybil. (Still not over it. Never over it.)
Lord Grantham declared that he will miss him, and I am sure he will come to realise that Tom’s absence leaves a huge dent in the family, but someone, somewhere must convince him to stay! I love the relationship Tom has with Mary and Edith, and I would like to see them join forces for once to change his mind, or maybe even Violet could have words? There’s no way you can argue with the Dowager Countess, right?
If Tom does go, and leave me wailing and sobbing on the floor, I do sincerely hope he will return in the not too distant future. Allen Leech is a wonderful actor, and I have adored Tom in this series, even if he did have to suffer in the company of the awful Miss Bunting for much of it.
Here’s hoping we get at least some festive cheer from Downton this season, though their specials are not exactly renowned for it. I have a feeling I might need to watch on Christmas Day with a large gin in my hand.
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