I can't stand her and she is so annoying why could Mr. Bates get her run over too? Jesus Christ!
What irritates me is how this clearly rather well-off girl goes down and patronises the working-classes by pretending to speak for them. Make no mistake, a girl who can drive that car on a school mistress' salary has a well-off daddy (or is living off immoral earnings- which I rather doubt).
I would have loved to have seen her confronted with Thomas Barrow, who is genuine working class but also well read and knowledgeable about current events- and touchy!. She would so hate it if one of the proletariat actually out-argued her, rather than being thankful for her patronage.
we never know what was her background, besides she seemed to be a good teacher, for some reason (except that they needed to cast her out) she was offered a possition in a better school. I didnt found her speech or beliefs patronising, i found it rude with a lot of resentment. But her points were true, in several times of the show, Robert and Violet complained how all was changing and didnt understand why some people wanted leave service (ex, Gwen).
But anywhay, who in the show make something of herself without the help of some inheritance? Mary inherited all from her family and later Matthew, she sais that her job is working for Downton, but we see her hunting and having breakfast in the bed, going to London anytime she wants, etc; same with Edith, she inherited the magazine from Gregson.
The thing is that Bunting maybe is a middle class woman, and the middle class were more resenful of the aristocracy than the working class, mainly from their acces to education, etc.
I dint like the character, but it was so ovbious that JF tried (he always did from time to time) to show us how evils were the one who believed in left policies, oposite to the charm and justice of someone like Lord Grantham, the perfect torie.
Very good points about the middle class (and about Fellowes' politics). Another point about the middle class has been a tendency to underestimate the intelligence and knowledge of the working class- which is why I would love to see her pitted against Barrow. Working class-led education was a big thise days- and I very much think Miss Bunting has a world-view in which it is all led from the middle class.
I found Sarah Bunting to be extremely disrespectful in criticizing the lifestyle of the very people who were hosting her - bad manners. I understand her point of view, but she was out of line on how and where she expressed it. Also, the Crawleys were very accomodating to all those who needed them, including the people who served them. Why should they be criticised for being born into a privleged sitiuation?
To be fair to Sarah, she did not know the Crawleys or anything about their good sides. I agree with you though that it was rude of her to insult her hosts, and Robert was right to tell her off like he did.
Sarah was unable to separate them from their class, something Tom was able to do, otherwise he would never have fallen in love with Sybil (though Sarah did seem to respect and maybe even admire Sybil from what Tom told her about his wife).
To be fair, it took Tom quite a while. The show starts in 1912, and it is only at the end of WWI that he and Sybil become a couple, and it is even until the 1920s that he becomes better acquainted with the other members of the Crawley family and gets to respect and love them. So, the comparison is a bit biased, timewise, for Sarah was only part of the series on 1922 and 1923.
Apart from that, despite being rude and rather ineffective in her "political activism" (if it was that), and certainly prejudiced (which is the case for many characters at some point or the other), her stance is not that wrong.
There is no character in the show who "makes me say things I don't believe" (haha) OTHER than Miss Bunting. While it is true that Tom had much more time to assimilate to the aristocracy personally while holding to his political beliefs, it is clear from the script that Miss Bunting's mission was to agitate, if not on purpose, then out of ignorance. Similar to Daisy asserting herself rudely and wrongly on more than one occasion once she obtained an ounce of enlightenment, Miss Bunting expressed herself with zeal, but without knowledge. Her mission was always to attack the aristocracy personally, without ever seeing "both sides of the argument", as Tom was able to do. Imagine what could have happened if Miss Bunting could have had some manners and conducted her arguments with respect and been more cunning in her attacks. She offended Tom, Mary, Robert, the Russians... anyone ABOVE her social rank. She could easily make herself equal to those below her, but not those above. Look at how Tom was able to endear himself to lower, middle, and upper classes. He didn't despise or hate anyone, while Miss Bunting did despise the upper class out of hand. I was especially offended at her treatment of the Russian refugees in a social setting, where she assumed her second hand education could trump the first hand experiences of the people whom she offended.
But hadn't Tom participated in an attack against a castle in Ìreland, and Robert had to pull strings to get him out of trouble? That sounds much worse than just being rude and tactless at a dinner party.
That is true, but a different situation. In every case, Miss Bunting was invited to dinner and/or to participate in a social setting and she ruined it for everyone, including the person she claimed to love... Tom. She couldn't see beyond her selfish dogma, right or wrong, even to endear herself to Tom, and even after he pleaded with her to cool it (like Sybil asked Tom to do when they first arrived at Downton). Tom was exiled from Ireland; Miss Bunting was exiled from Downton. Unfortunate, because had she been more cunning instead of a zealot, the Miss Bunting character could have brought a real twist to the show.
What do you think?