Upstairs, Downstairs (1971–1975): Season 5, Episode 10 - The Understudy - full transcript

Hudson has been feeling unwell and somewhat tired of late. Hudson tells no one but on the very evening that Lord Bellamy is entertaining the French Ambassador at dinner, he has what is diagnosed as a mild heart attack. He'll be unable to serve and the task falls to Edward - much to Frederick's dismay as he felt the task should fall to him. With Virginia away and unable to return - she possibly has the mumps - Georgina substitutes as a last minute replacement as hostess. The dinner goes off without a hitch but when Dr. Foley decides that Hudson should go away for a few months of rest and recuperation, the question of who should replace him comes up. James feels that Frederick should get the job. Frederick and Edward - with Daisy poking him in the ribs to stand up for himself - are practically at each others throats and Rose thinks that neither of them deserve the position.

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[Bell rings]

RICHARD: Ah, Hudson,
the French Ambassador's coming

to dinner --
Monsieur Fleuriau.

Oh, what day is that?

JAMES: Friday week the 16th.

JAMES: Oh, no, no, no,
I'm playing polo that day.

RICHARD: Well, can't you
get back for the evening?

JAMES: What after six chukkas
at Cowdray, I shan't be

on very good form to meet
the French Ambassador, Father.

GEORGINA: Oh, and I'm afraid
I've been invited to Bembridge

for sailing that weekend.

Well, this is most unfortunate.

I was counting on you,
both of you.

Will her ladyship have
returned from Scotland, my lord?

Yes, she'll be back on Monday,
Hudson, she'll be here.

JAMES: Oh, well,
then you don't need us.

RICHARD: But I do, I do.
It'll be a delightful evening.

Quite informal, no fuss.

I've asked George Swanbourne
and his wife, Madeleine.

JAMES: oof!

Well, I needed you, my dear,

to bring your own special charm
to the evening.


RICHARD: And you, James, to take
care of the Fleuriau daughter.

GEORGINA: Ooh, well.

JAMES: How old is she?

RICHARD: Well, she's about 16.

JAMES: Steady on.

Well, she's charming,
mature for her age.

No, no, no, you get William up
from Eton, he's your man.

RICHARD: Oh, good heavens,
I'm not dragging William

up from Eton just
for a dinner party.

GEORGINA: Uncle Richard,
if you want

to make up the number,
what about Pru?

RICHARD: Well Pru's
in Monte Carlo

and won't be back
'til the end of the month.

Besides, it's an extra man
I want now.

Well, you shouldn't find it
too hard to think of someone.

HUDSON: Will it be eight
for dinner, my lord?

RICHARD: Yes, Hudson, eight.

One way or another.

You can tell Mrs. Bridges
she can start thinking

about things
before her ladyship returns.

Very good, my lord.

GEORGINA: We're in the doghouse.
Do you think I should cancel?

JAMES: Good Lord, no --
none of our business.

Are you all right, Hudson?

HUDSON: Quite all right,
thank you, sir.

My shoe was catching a wee bit.

JAMES: I haven't seen Hudson
sitting in the hall before.


JAMES: I haven't been
down to Bembridge since --

about 10 years ago.

EDWARD: Froggie Ambassador, eh?
That's something.

Edward, I will not have
that word spoken in here.

after dinner, anyway.

Oh, it's only a term
of affection,

Mr. Hudson, from the war.

Yeah, like you would call
the Germans "Huns."

Quite so, Rose,
but this is not wartime.

The French are our close
friends and allies.

We want them still to be so
after this dinner party.

RUBY: You know, the best dinner
party we ever had

was when King Edward came
to dinner before t'war.

ROSE: That's right, Ruby.

Do you remember what a tizz
we all got into?

Speak for yourself, Rose.

I wasn't in no tizz.

Neither was I, Rose.

ROSE: Of course not,
Mr. Hudson, not you.

Spoon. Spoon, Rose!

Whoever's eating it,
that's what I always says.

DAISY: Are you going to
give them some

of your French cuisine,
Mrs. Bridges?

Well, I don't know yet, Daisy.

That'll be for her ladyship
to decide.

I've never given French cuisine
to a Frenchman before.

FREDERICK: Maybe they'd like
something simple,

like good old English
Yorkshire pud for a change.

EDWARD: Or some of Ruby's
apple dumplings, eh?

RUBY: Will they?

FREDERICK: That's right, special
request from the French Embassy.

They've heard
about your dumplings.

RUBY: Who told them,
Mrs. Bridges?

EDWARD: Oh, Mr. Hudson's
told their butler.

DAISY: Oh, pay no attention,
Ruby, they're only teasing.

EDWARD: You know him,
don't you, Mr. Hudson?

Oh, yes, yes, as a matter of
fact, I am acquainted with him.

You're not eating anything,
Mr. Hudson.

Feeling all right?

HUDSON: Oh, yes, yes,
thank you, Mrs. Bridges.

I had two large slices of toast
and marmalade for my breakfast.

It's taken my appetite away.

Well, there's still
three days, darling.

Could you travel
overnight tomorrow?

What? Are you sure?

Oh, my poor darling.

Oh, no, no, no,
you must do as you're told.

No, don't worry,
we'll manage, somehow.

Yes, now you go back
to bed and keep warm.

Yes. Yes, yes.

Goodbye, darling.

Virginia's caught a fever.

She thinks it might be mumps.

Mumps? Oh, God.

There's an outbreak
in the village.

The doctor's ordered her to bed

and she won't be here
for Friday.

Well, now we're in a pickle.
What am I to do?

GEORGINA: Can't you cancel?
I'm sure the Ambassador --

RICHARD: Oh, no, no, no,
it's much too late.

I could winkle Pru
out of Monte Carlo, I suppose,

or Ursula Vericker,
she might stand in.

GEORGINA: Who's she?

RICHARD: She's an old friend
of Marjorie's, very old.

She's deaf and shouts
and prefers Italians.

Well, she could be in Italy
this time of the year.

I can't think of anyone else.


to avoid
a diplomatic incident --

RICHARD: No, no, why should you?
This is my problem.

GEORGINA: Oh, don't be silly.

RICHARD: Would you, really?

GEORGINA: I was never awfully
fond of sailing, anyway.

RICHARD: You're an angel.
Well, I must rush.

I've got a committee
in the House at 11:00.

DAISY: These salt cellars
need polishing.

FREDERICK: No, they don't.
You can see your face in them.

Well, there must be something
you should be doing.

I'm rushed off my feet --
every time I come in here,

you're reading --
what is it?

FREDERICK: It's a book.

DAISY: I can see that.

Mr. Hudson lent it to me.

DAISY: Oh, what's it about?

It's not for little girls.

DAISY: Oh, come on,
let's have a look.

ROSE: Here, what's
all this squabbling?

DAISY: He's got this book, Rose,
and he won't show us what it is.

ROSE: Well, why should he?
It's nothing to do with you.

You can get on with your work.

DAISY: I never stop! You'd think
the whole French army's coming,

the way I'm working,
and he sits.

ROSE: All right,
let's see what it is, then.

Oh, a book about wine.

DAISY: Wine?

FREDERICK: That's right.

What do you want to know
about wine for?

FREDERICK: I'm interested
in wine.

I want to improve my knowledge.

It's a footman's duty
to know about these things.

ROSE: Oh, no it isn't, not wine.
That's a butler's duty.

DAISY: Yeah,
that's right, it is.

FREDERICK: Yes, well,

I'm not going to be a footman
all my life, am I?

Frederick's learning up
about wine.

EDWARD: Oh, is he?

Yeah, well,
I know all about wine.

Ask me a question.
Go on, anything.

All right. where are
the Saint-Emilion wines grown?


it's easy, that one.

EDWARD: Yes, well,

you don't have to know
Where they come from.

- DAISY: No.
- FREDERICK: All right.

Give me the name
of four different clarets.

EDWARD: Clarets?


EDWARD: Um, Chéteau --
Chéteau --

Latour, Lame,
Margaux, Haut-Brion

Got a long way to go
to catch me up, Edward.

James, you've got to be here,
it's only fair.

I've given up my weekend.

I really do need your support.

Jumbo, please?

JAMES: All right, all right,
I'll be there.

Now, don't panic.

Have you seen Mrs. Bridges
yet about the menu?

GEORGINA: Yes, I've rung for
her, she's coming.

JAMES: Right, now,
the important thing is

to not let her bully you,
that's what mother always said.

You've got to be absolutely firm
and positive with her.

GEORGINA: What about?
I don't care what we eat.

HUDSON: Mrs. Bridges,
Miss Georgina.

JAMES: Ah, come in,
Mrs. Bridges.

Morning, Miss Georgina.

- GEORGINA: Hello.
Morning, sir.

JAMES: Good morning.
Now, this dinner.

Had any ideas, have you?

Well, I did have
a mind's eye to it, sir,

if you'd care to hear.

Yes, please, Mrs. Bridges.

JAMES: We'll start with the main
course and then work outwards.

What mother always said?

JAMES: Yes, yes, she did --
now, then, what about

a fillet of beef a la pompadour,
roast potatoes.

MRS. BRIDGES: I was thinking
of saddle of lamb, sir,

pommes puree, cauliflower,
for the entree.

Oh, were you? Yes, all right,
but plenty of garlic.

MRS. BRIDGES: Not too much.

And my onion sauce, if you
thought that was suitable.

Yes, all right.

Now, then, soup.

MRS. BRIDGES: Mock turtle, sir.

What do you think, Georgina?

MRS. BRIDGES: Followed by
fillet of sole a la Colbert

and my vol-au-vent of oysters.

JAMES: Oh, yes, yes,
must give a Frenchman oysters.

And after the lamb, partridge.

Oh, must it be partridge?

I've had my fill of them lately.
Can't it be grouse?

the partridges are just ready

at Southwold now, sir --
with one of my salads.

Then sorbet, and meringue
or peach melba to follow

and perhaps a little
apricot soufflé.

JAMES: Hmm. Georgina?

Oh, it all sounds lovely.
Thank you, Mrs. Bridges.

Thank you, Miss.
Thank you, sir.

EDWARD: Mr. Hudson?

Why haven't you undone
the wine yet, Mr. Hudson?

Well, I'll do it,
if you like.

HUDSON: No, thank you, Edward,
that's my job,

at the right time --
have you nothing else to do?

Well, not down here, no.

His lordship's clothes are
all laid out, and the Major's.

I'm just waiting
for them to call me.

- All right.
- FREDERICK: Cocktails are

already in the drawing room,
Mr. Hudson, fire's made up.

HUDSON: This is not
Paddington Station, Frederick --

knock before you come in.



Wait a minute.
Come back here.


Walk over there.


HUDSON: Now back.


Your shoes are squeaking.

FREDERICK: Well, I bought
them special, Mr. Hudson.

They are squeaking!
Away you go and soften them up.

There is nothing more
intolerable at a dinner party

than a footman
with squeaky shoes -- go on!

And, Frederick,

is the drawing room ready?

Yes, I've just told you,
Mr. Hudson.

HUDSON: Right, off you go!

ROSE: The most beautiful bunch
of flowers has just arrived,

from her ladyship
to Miss Georgina,

wishing her luck --
isn't that nice?

Why have these place cards

not been put around the table?
I told you hours ago!

ROSE: You never told me.
Anyhow, that's Daisy's job.

HUDSON: Well, take them,
for heaven's sake, here.

ROSE: Your hands are shaking.
Are you all right, Mr. Hudson?

Yes, I'm quite all right, Rose,
if I'm left to change in peace!

RUBY: Which one's
cooking order

and which one's serving order,
Mrs. Bridges?

What did you say, Ruby?

RUBY: Well, these lists,
you haven't said.

MRS. BRIDGES: Haven't you got
no common sense at all?

You don't start a meal
with lamb.

That's the cooking order!

You'll never learn, not if we
have a thousand dinners.

Who bearded these oysters?

- I did.

RUBY: Well,
you were watching me.

Oh, dear, oh, dear.

ROSE: Mr. Hudson's in a funny
mood, all hot and bothered.

EDWARD: Yeah, I noticed that.

MRS. BRIDGES: Well, I'm all
hot and bothered, too,

with the help I've got here.

Ruby, where's the soup pan?

- Behind you!
- Oh!

JAMES: The opposition
was most unpleasant.

My poor pony got a knock
on the knee

from those eager Americans.

Oh, I wish Virginia were here.

JAMES: Oh, now,
don't worry, Father,

Georgina will manage
perfectly well.

GEORGINA: Oh, James!
Haven't you changed yet?

- They'll be here in an hour!
“JAMES: Plenty of time.

You look enchanting, my dear.

GEORGINA: Thank you,
Uncle Richard.

Is my hair all right?

JAMES: It'll do, it'll do.
Do you want a booster?

GEORGINA: Oh, no, my head's
spinning enough as it is,

Without alcohol.

JAMES: Now, it's only the first
half-hour before dinner

that's a little tricky
for the hostess,

isn't that right, Father?

RICHARD: Now, don't you
let James tease you,

just be your own natural self
and you can't go wrong.

Right. Now, what are
relations like with France?

I mean, are there any subjects
she ought to keep clear of?

No. well, you might be careful
when you talk about the Germans.

They've just been admitted
to the League of Nations

and the French
aren't overjoyed about it.

Nor are we. Are we?


I think we are, by now.

It's what the Treaty of Locarno
was all about.

JAMES: What?

RICHARD: European fellowship.

Well, I must go and change.
See you all in the drawing room.

Oh, dear, I haven't had time
to brush up on my politics.

I don't know what's happening.

Oh, it's all right for you.

I'm stuck with
the 16-year-old daughter.

Just be your own natural self
and you can't go wrong.

JAMES: Touché.

GEORGINA: Oh, James,
do please go and change.

You're making me so nervous.

JAMES: All right, all right,
I'll go and have my bath.

[Door closes]

ROSE: Mr. Hudson?

Yeah, yeah?

ROSE: Are you nearly ready?
It's half-past 7:00

and Mrs. Bridges
would like a word with you.

Tell her I'm coming, Rose!
In a moment.


everything's ready upstairs

except for the Major,
who's still in the bath.

Oh, Miss Georgina
looks a real peach.

DAISY: Hmm, does she?
Well, what about me?

I know I'm not wearing a gown.

EDWARD: You look a real peach,
Daisy, though.

ROSE: All right,
let's have a look at you.

Well, your hair's a bit messy
and your apron

could be straightened,
but then you'll do.

Now, just remember
all that I've told you.

DAISY: Well, I have done
dinner parties before, Rose,

and bigger than what this is.

FREDERICK: Listen, can anyone
hear my shoes squeaking?

ROSE: I can.

FREDERICK: I can't wear
these old things.

EDWARD: Oh, they're all right,
Fred, I can't hear them.

ROSE: No, you're deaf.
{Daisy laughs]

EDWARD: Oh, thank you.
{Clattering thud]

- DAISY: What was that?
ROSE: It came from the pantry.


ROSE: Mr. Hudson!
Mr. Hudson, you all right?

DAISY: Should we go in?

ROSE: Mr. Hudson!

Oh, my Lord.

Don't just stand there,
go and get Mrs. Bridges!

FREDERICK: Loosen his collar.

DAISY: Mrs. Bridges!
Mrs. Bridges!

[Hudson gasping]

MRS. BRIDGES: Oh, my God!
What's happened?

ROSE: [Crying]
I don't know, Mrs. Bridges.

MRS. BRIDGES: Here, quick, Rose!
Get a doctor, quick.

what about the dinner?

Never mind about the dinner.

Get the doctor, quick!
Dr. Foley.

And tell them about it upstairs.

It's all right, Angus.
It's all right, Angus.

Kate's here.
It's Kate here.

You just had a little fall.

You'll be all right.

JAMES: Here, take this

GEORGINA: Thank you

GEORGINA: Should I go down?

JAMES: No, no fathers down there

JAMES: - too many people
fussing about

GEORGINA: Poor Hudson

GEORGINA: How bad is it?

RICHARD: We don't know yet.

They've got him into bed
and Dr. Foley's examining him.

Now we must keep calm
and decide what to do.

JAMES: Yes, well,
it's too late to cancel.

We must find someone
to take Hudson's place.

Edward will have to take charge.

JAMES: Edward?
What about Frederick?

Edward's been in service

much longer than Frederick.

JAMES: Yes, but he's been
valeting and driving the car.

He's probably forgotten what
to do in the dining room.

GEORGINA: How can we be
talking like this?

Hudson may be dying down there
and all we can do is talk

about a stupid dinner party!

RICHARD: Sit down, sit down.
Be quiet.

Leave this all to us.

I can't go on, Rose,
I can't, not knowing.

Well, you've got to, Mrs. B.

Mr. Hudson wouldn't want us
spoiling the dinner party

for him, would he?
Now come along.

RUBY: The sauce is ready,
Mrs. Bridges.

MRS. BRIDGES: Oh, I can't think
about sauces.

ROSE: Oh, well, you've got to.
Come along.

Taste it and see how Ruby's
done -- here, just a bit.

It's full of garlic!

But I only rubbed the bowl
with it, Mrs. Bridges,

like you told me.

MRS. BRIDGES: [Sobbing]
It's ruined!

ROSE: No, it isn't.
Ruby's done very well.

Anyhow, Frenchmen like garlic.
How's the soup coming on?

MRS. BRIDGES: It isn't his
heart, Rose,

you don't think, do you?

Oh, pray God it isn't
his heart, poor man.

ROSE: Well, it could be
anything, Mrs. B.

Something quite unimportant --
his digestion.

Oh, I feel dizzy.

ROSE: Oh, here, come --

MRS. BRIDGES: I shall have to
sit down for a minute.

ROSE: Ruby, go and pour
a brandy for Mrs. Bridges.

Here, let me. Oh, here.

ROSE: Hurry up, girl.

ROSE: You have a nice brandy, that'll
buck you up, no end, go on.

Thank you, Rose.

ROSE: Don't just stand there,
Ruby, get stirring.

it going to be, then?

DAISY: It'll be Eddie,
of course, he's the senior.

FREDERICK: Hold on a minute.

DAISY: Of course it will.
Tell him, Eddie.

FREDERICK: Edward's a chauffeur.

Footman's next in line,
strictly speaking.

DAISY: Eddie was footman here
long before you ever was.

EDWARD: All right, don't let's
have an argument about it.

I'm not arguing about it,

I'm simply pointing out
the natural facts.

You're pointing out nothing!
There's nothing to point out.

He'll be here in 20 minutes,
the French Ambassador.

Somebody's got to
decide something!

Oh, Rose, Eddie'll do
the butler's duties, won't he?

- I dunno.
- well, it's only fair.

ROSE: Oh, Doctor, how is he?
Is he going to be all right?

He's sleeping,
at the moment.

RICHARD: Oh, come in, Foley.

Well, what's the verdict?

FOLEY: It's rather serious,
I'm afraid, Lord Bellamy.

It is a heart attack.

It's quite a mild one,

but there's always the danger
of a second attack following.

I don't want to move him
tonight, if possible.

He's sleeping quite peacefully,
but he mustn't wake up

and start worrying about
his duties for the evening.

RICHARD: No, I quite understand.

GEORGINA: Uncle Richard,
we must cancel.

I'm sure the French Ambassador
would understand.

FOLEY: Well, in some ways,
it might be better

to carry on as normally
as possible round him.

If he feels
he's let the side down...

JAMES: Yes, yes,
I agree with that.

FOLEY: There's nothing more
I can do, at the moment.

I'll come round first thing
in the morning.

Unless there's any change,
of course,

in which case, call me at once.

RICHARD: Yes, thank you.
Thank you, Foley.

FOLEY: Oh, don't worry,
I'll see myself out. Good night.

GEORGINA: Good night.

[Bell rings]

DAISY: Morning room. Eddie.


DAISY: What's the matter
with you?!

EDWARD: Don't, Daisy,
don't make a fuss!

If they decide on Frederick,
they can say goodbye to me

in this house, Edward,
they can!

And you, too,
if you've got any pride.

[Crying] They are not going to
trample all over us.

ROSE: Here, take these, Ruby.

Sole's all ready
to start baking.

RUBY: What's next?

The vol-au-vents and --

RUBY: Just taking them up.

Well, put the oysters in.

ROSEI Oh, I'll do that, Ruby.

RUBY: I'll do it, Rose!
I'm not all thumbs.

MRS. BRIDGES: It's very sweet
and kind of you, Rose,

but both of you
will make a mess of it.

ROSE: That's right, Mrs. B,
you show us.

You they want.

DAISY: I should think so
as well. Go on, Eddie.

FREDERICK: Don't push him
too hard, Daisy,

he might fall over, one day.

RICHARD: When you bring them
into the drawing room,

you must announce them as

"His Excellency,
the French Ambassador"

and "Madame Fleuriau"
and "Mademoiselle Fleuriau."

Have you got that?

EDWARD: Fleuriau, yes.

JAMES: Now, then, the wine's
the most important --

RICHARD: Yes, yes, James,
We're coming to that.

Our other two guests are
Lord and Lady Swanbourne,

so you must announce them as

"the Earl and Countess
of Swanbourne."

Is that understood?
Now, the wines.

JAMES: Does he know
what we're having?

RICHARD: Edward, we're having
Amontillado with the turtle soup

and then the champagne
to follow,

the Moet Chandon,
Dry Imperial.

EDWARD: I think Hudson's got all
that ready, my lord.

Good. And then the claret

will be Chéteau Le Tour aux six.

JAMES: And then
the Trockenbeerenauslese

with the sorbet.

Now, now, now, what else?

GEORGINA: Oh, the carving.

Edward do you think that you can
manage the saddle of lamb?

Oh, yes,
I think so, miss.

I've often carved before
when Hudson's been away.

RICHARD: Yes, I'm sure you have.

You'll manage splendidly,

What's he going to wear?

RICHARD: Oh. will he fit into
Hudson's black coat?

Mr. Hudson's?

JAMES: He can't be dressed
like that.

RICHARD: Well, you're not
exactly Hudson's build are you?

No, my lord.

[Bell ringing]
DAISY: I'll go!

How is Mrs. Bridges, Edward?

Oh, she's still
very upset, miss.

Yes, but she's carrying on?

EDWARD: Oh, yes, my lord,
with Rose's help.

RICHARD: Good. well, wish her
good luck, Edward.

And good luck to you.

Yes, good luck, Edward.

Thank you, my lord, miss.

RICHARD: Oh, by the way,

when the port's been round once,

don't forget to catch
Madame Fleuriau's eye.

Oh, yes.

RICHARD: Oh, Daisy?

I want you to do
something for me.

EDWARD: Miles too big, Daisy.

DAISY: Well, I'll tighten up
the strap for you.

EDWARD: Come on, then, hurry up.

FREDERICK: Bit of a loose
fit, eh, Edward?

It looks better than it
would on you, great beanpole.

Now, now, no insults, Daisy.

Come on, put Mr. Hudson's coat
on, give us all a good laugh.

Why don't you go and help

instead of standing there,

EDWARD: How's that?

Oh! Oh, that looks lovely.

Does it look all right?

FREDERICK: Well, where do you
get that from?

DAISY: From Mr. Green next door.

His lordship sent me round
to borrow it.

FREDERICK: It's about time
you uncorked the wines,

I should think --
get some air to them.

EDWARD: I'll do that,
thank you, Frederick.

- FREDERICK: I'll do it.
- DAISY: Stand still.

ROSE: Keep your voices down!
He's only next door.

EDWARD: How's that look, Rose?

[Bell rings]
FREDERICK: Front door.

EDWARD: Oh, no,
they're here already.

ROSE: Frederick, answer
the door. Daisy, go with him.

EDWARD: But, Rose, he can't!

He doesn't know about announcing
the Ambassador.

ROSE: Don't get flustered.

EDWARD: Oh, blimey, I haven't
uncorked the wine yet, Rose.

ROSE: Plenty of time for that,
half hour before dinner.

EDWARD: Look, Rose,
I'm supposed to be

up in the drawing room
serving cocktails!

ROSE: Frederick can do that.
Don't forget your gloves.

ROSE: Frederick can do that.
Don't forget your gloves.


MRS. BRIDGES: It upsets me to
see you wearing his clothes.

EDWARD: Well, it's not
Mr. Hudson's coat, Mrs. Bridges.

It's Mr. Green's from next door.

ROSE: Yeah, you keep calm,
Mrs. Bridges.

Everything3 all right.

DAISY: It's all right.
It's Lord and Lady Swanbourne.

Frederick's taken them up
and announced them.

Oh, Eddie you do look smart.

[Bell ringing]

EDWARD: Oh, God, they're here.
Quick Rose, put them down here.

FREDERICK: Here, you can't
leave those there.

Come on, Daisy, give us a hand.

Frederick, what's his name?
- who?

EDWARD: The French Ambassador.
I've forgotten!

FREDERICK: Fleuriau.

DAISY: Here, you're not trying
none of your tricks?

FREDERICK: Course not --
don't leave them

standing there,
Edward, Open the door!

Good evening, Your Excellency.

FLEURIAU: Good evening.

EDWARD: Madame.
- MME FLEURIAU: Good evening.

Am I right, it is Hudson?

EDWARD: No, Your Excellency.

FLELJRIAU:: Because my own butler
was telling me

I was meeting
the famous Hudson tonight.

EDWARD: Hudson is indisposed,
Your Excellency.

- Oh, I'm sorry.
- I am Barnes.

And you are taking his place?

EDWARD: Yes, Your Excellency.
This way, please.

EDWARD: His Excellency
the French Ambassador,

Madame Fleuriau,
Mademoiselle Fleuriau.

They've arrived.

FLEURIAU: My dear, you are
wearing without doubt

the most enchanting dress
I've seen in London

during the whole year.

Oh, thank you so much.

It's from Paris, of course.

Lady Bellamy brought it back
for me on her last trip.

Why can't the English
make dresses like this?

MME FLEURIAU: That plant is most
unusual, what is its name?

RICHARD: Do you know,
I haven't the slightest idea.

MME FLEURIAU: Aimé will know.

He prides himself on being
an expert.

China is in turmoil.
When my father...

The one thing
I always wanted to see...

But now,
with Chiang Kai-Shek...

JAMES: I've heard they're good
for digestion, right --

but I could be about to
disprove the theory.

EDWARD: Going all right is it?


EDWARD: Not here, Daisy.
Look, take this in.

FREDERICK: You weren't going to
serve the claret like this?

EDWARD: Yeah, what's wrong?
- FREDERICK: What's wrong?

That's Chéteau La Tour this is.
It should be decanted.

EDWARD: His lordship didn't say
anything about decanting it.

FREDERICK: He expected you
to know, that's why.

Daisy, go and get
a decanter, quick.

Here, are you positive, Fred?

FREDERICK: If I'm not, you just
look at their faces.

EDWARD: All right, I'll do it.
- FREDERICK: No, I'll do it.

You need a steady hand
or you'll disturb the deposit.

You go and serve the oysters
and pour the champagne.

DAISY: Oh, come on, Eddie,
let Mr. Know-it-all do it.

FREDERICK: No filter, nothing.

RUBY: Mrs. Bridges, look!


You shouldn't be here.
You should be in bed.

HUDSON: ls everything all right?

ROSE: Mr. Hudson.

Oh, help me to get him.

HUDSON: The French Ambassador.

Yeah, he's enjoying himself.

Help me get him back.

ROSE: Yes, don't you worry.
Edward's standing in for you.

HUDSON: But Edward can't.

ROSE: Oh, I've been
up there, listening.

- He's doing a treat.
- MRS. BRIDGES: Now come along.

ROSE: Dr. Foley says
you've got to go to bed.

RUBY: Mrs. Bridges!

They've tooken it wrong
for mutton!

JAMES: Well, good marks
all round, I'd say.

RICHARD: Couldn't have
gone better

if Hudson had been present.

RICHARD: Monsieur Fleuriau
was enchanted with Georgina.

JAMES: Yeah.

And what about Madame Fleuriau?

Oh, I took care of her.
And you?

JAMES: Oh, I ended up with

an extensive course
on the history of China,

from the Ming Dynasty
through to the present day.

Oh, they're certainly not
inscrutable to our sweets alone.

GEORGINA: I would just like
to thank you all

for the wonderful job
you did tonight.

I was nervous --
well, it was the first time

I'd been hostess for such
a distinguished dinner --

but I needn't have worried,
nothing went wrong.

The Ambassador was delighted.

He complimented every course,
Mrs. Bridges.

MRS. BRIDGES: Oh, that's very
kind of you to tell me so, miss.

GEORGINA: And as for you,
Edward, I can only say that

I know his lordship
was as pleased as I was

at the way
you handled everything.

All of you did well.
You did Hudson proud.

I thank you most sincerely.
Good night.

MRS. BRIDGES: Thank you, miss.
Good night, Miss Georgina.

RICHARD: Oh, come in,
Mrs. Bridges.

Dr. Foley's just been
explaining to me

that Hudson's
going to have to leave us.

Leave us, my lord?

RICHARD: Oh, no, not forever,

just for a few months,
for a complete rest.

Have you any ideas
Where he might stay?

I was thinking of his sister
in Hastings.

Oh, well, my lord,

she's suffering very bad
from arthritis,

finds it very difficult
to get about.

That's not too promising.

He'll need a lot of
careful nursing.

Of course, there is his old
friends in Southwold,

Mr. and Mrs. Trantor,
the postmistress.

RICHARD: Oh, of course.

And I think she done a bit of
nursing in the wartime.

FOLEY: Well, it'd be quite
an undertaking for them.

He'll be an invalid
for some time.

Do you think they could manage?

Oh, I think so, sir.

They're a very kindly couple
and they're very fond of Hudson.

They've known him ever since

he was a young footman
at the house.

I know they've kept up
a regular correspondence.

RICHARD: Well, that sounds
ideal -- I'll write to them.

Thank you, Mrs. Bridges.

Thank you, my lord.

He will get all right,
won't he, my lord?

I couldn't bear to think --

FOLEY: Yes. Yes, Mrs. Bridges.
He was one of the lucky ones.

He'll be up and about again
in no time.

Oh, thank you, doctor.

Thank you, my lord.

[Knock at door]
JAMES: Come in.

Ah, got my tobacco, have you?

FREDERICK: Yes, sir.

JAMES: Good man.

FREDERICK: Anything else, sir?

JAMES: Not at the moment.


How's everything downstairs?

Bit unsettled, really, sir.

We've just heard Hudson's
going to be away

from his duties
quite a while.

JAMES: Yes, so I gathered.

Still, you'll manage.

You managed the dinner
all right.

FREDERICK: Thank you, sir.

Apart from the mix-up
about the claret.

JAMES: Oh, what was that?
I didn't notice anything.

FREDERICK: No, we managed to
cover it up, fortunately.

JAMES: Oh, what happened?

FREDERICK: Well, it's all over
now, sir.

Come on, come on, tell me.

Well, it was just --
I happened to notice Edward

about to pour the claret
Without first decanting it,

but, luckily, I was there to --

[Knock at door]
JAMES: Come in.

DAISY: Oh, just come
to make the bed, sir.

JAMES: Oh, yes.

[James clicking his tongue]

JAMES: Not decanted, eh?

FREDERICK: Oh, just a slip-up
in the general haste, sir.

He had a lot on his mind.

And, as I said,
luckily, I was there to --

JAMES: Luckily, you were there
to save the day.

I wouldn't put too much
on it, sir.

JAMES: Oh, I would, I would.
Very sharp of you.

Dreadful blunder, hmm?

If he served our best claret
straight from the bottle.

Especially to a Frenchman, sir.

JAMES: Well, yes, to anyone.

Tell me, you are an expert
in these matters, are you?

FREDERICK: I wouldn't say
"expert," sir.

JAMES: Oh, come, now,
don't be modest.

Very useful information
for someone in your position

who wants to make his way
in the world.

Tell me, Frederick, how long
have you been with us now?

FREDERICK: Seven years now,
sir, as a footman.

JAMES: Feel you're dragging
your heels a bit, do you?

Want to move on?

FREDERICK: I'd be very sad to
leave your employment, sir.

I've been very happy here.

JAMES: Hmm, but you don't want
to go to waste do you?

You're clearly a man
of resource and ambition.

FREDERICK: I suppose,
like any man,

I look to the future sometimes.

JAMES: Wonder what
it holds for you, eh?

FREDERICK: Yes, sir.

JAMES: All right,
Trooper Norton.


DAISY: Don't you try denying it,

I heard you with my own ears.

FREDERICK: You shouldn't have
been listening

at the keyhole, should you?

DAISY: I couldn't help it,

the way you was blowing
your trumpet! Charming!

FREDERICK: Look, he asked me
if there had been any hitches

and I just mentioned it,

DAISY: Casual, I'm sure.

You brought it up deliberate
just to make Eddie look stupid.

- I know your game.
EDWARD: Leave it, Daisy.

DAISY: No, I won't.

FREDERICK: That's right, Edward,
you want to stop your wife

puffing and blowing
or she is going to get me angry.

Now just a minute,

She's entitled
to speak her mind,

so don't you go on at her.

If you've got something to say,
you speak to me about it.

FREDERICK: I've got nothing
to say to you, Edward.

- FREDERICK: I've got no grudge.
- DAISY: No grudge?

No grudge, when you go sucking
up to the Major, telling tales.

Shut up,
you silly cow.

Eddie, don't you let him talk
to me like that.

FREDERICK: I'm sorry, Edward,
but I did warn you.

EDWARD: Shut up, both of you.

I know my worth in this house.

I've had a talk
with his lordship privately,

if you really want to know.

FREDERICK: Well, what about?

Well, not about anything
in particular,

but I know my worth.

Anyway, it's up to them
upstairs to decide.

Pardon me, it's up to Mr. Hudson
to recommend.

Yeah, and you've been
sucking up to him as well.

FREDERICK: That's right, Daisy,
I crept in there last night

with him struck down
with his heart attack

and started telling nasty tales
about Edward.

DAISY: Not last night, but these
past few weeks.

Don't think I haven't noticed
you with your fancy wine book.

EDWARD: Shut up, Daisy.
- DAISY: No, I will not.

Someone's got to do your talking
for you, Edward,

because you're never
going to do it by yourself.

You know you're the better man,

you're older,
you've been here longer,

and you was a corporal in
the war, he was only a trooper.

But at least I saw the war out,
didn't I?

And I was here when they took
you two back on sufferance.

DAISY: You dirty pig!

EDWARD: You take that back,

I can't, it's the truth.

DAISY: You dirty, rotten,
filthy, stinking pig!

FREDERICK: Call me all the names
you like.

DAISY: If I were a man I'd box
your head in for that, I would.

Eddie, you're letting him walk
all over you

and you are doing nothing
about it, nothing!

What's all this shouting?

You're making enough noise
to waken the --

What's going on?

- It's a private discussion.
- what about?

DAISY: About who's taking over

and Frederick's just been
attacking Eddie.

ROSE: Taking over?
Nobody's taking over.

He ain't gone yet.

EDWARD: Well, all right, Rose,
but Dr. Foley was saying --

ROSE: I don't care
what Dr. Foley said,

you'll give me the pip.

There's poor Mr. Hudson lying
there, fighting for his life,

and you've
got him buried already.

Only being practical.

The house has got to go on

ROSE: Not with you in charge,
it hasn't.

Not with neither of you.

The way you're carrying on,
it's disgusting.

[Bell ringing]
You disgust me, the lot of you.

EDWARD: Go on, Daisy, you go.

GEORGINA: Daisy, can you take
this to the post for me?

It's for her ladyship,
to thank her for the flowers.

How is her ladyship, miss?

GEORGINA: Oh, much better.
Wasn't mumps after all.

Just a bad cold.

I shall be very relieved
when she gets back.

DAISY: I expect it will all
be easier when --

GEORGINA: When what?

DAISY: When Hudson's successor's
been announced.

But Edward's managing,
isn't he?

Well, he hasn't been given
instructions not to, miss.

But I think he'd just like
to know for certain

Whether the job's his or not
on a temporary basis of course.

Well, I assumed it was.

DAISY: Well, he hasn't been told
anything definite, miss.

And, well, Frederick seems to
think he's got rights to it.

It's led to a bit of
bad feeling downstairs.

Not that I've anything
against Frederick.

I mended your coat for you,
Miss Georgina.

Hope as though it don't show.

GEORGINA: Oh, no, that's
perfect. Thank you, Rose.

Thank you, Daisy.

Rose --

Daisy was just saying --

ROSE: I know
what Daisy was saying, miss,

and I wouldn't listen to
a word of it.

GEORGINA: But is there really
bad feeling downstairs?


Well, Edward and Frederick is
like jackals, the pair of them.

I know it's none of my business,
Miss Georgina,

but I don't think neither of
them deserves the job.

I reckon that a proper temporary
butler ought to be brought in

while Hudson's away --
teach them both a lesson.

When I think of all that he's
done for them over these years,

it makes my blood boil.

GEORGINA: Yes, I see.

Well, thank you, Rose.

Have Mr. and Mrs. Trantor
replied yet?

MRS. BRIDGES: Not yet.

But his lordship's
definitely written.

It's just a matter of time,

[Hudson coughs]

What if they can't have me?

What then?

Of course they can have you.

They was always so fond of you.

HUDSON: I feel so lost, Kate.

All these years that it should
finish up like this.

It's not finished, Angus.

You'll be up and about
in no time.

Dr. Foley told me so hisself.

Did he?


So long as you take care
and don't overdo things.

He said you was
one of the lucky ones.

HUDSON: Heh -- "lucky."

Kate, if anything
should happen --

Don't talk like that.

HUDSON: No, one must
face up to these things.

I just want to tell you
that sometime ago I...

I arranged to leave
all my possessions,

such as they are,
to you.

Thank you, Angus.

I appreciate that.

I've done the same for you.

Oh, thank you.

Well, there's
a little money and --

and the pair of gold cufflinks
his lordship gave me

after 25 years of service.

You can always sell them.

I could never sell them, Angus.

HUDSON: Yes, if -- if times
get hard, you never know.

I could never sell anything

belonging to you, Angus.

HUDSON: Oh, don't cry, Kate.

You mustn't.

Is everything going all right
Without me?


It's all topsy-turvy.

HUDSON: But the dinner
was a success.

Rose told me.

MRS. BRIDGES: I don't know...
I think it was.

They seemed to be pleased

I'm sure it was.

I'm feeling a wee bit tired
now, my dear.

I think I'll have
a wee nap now.

MRS. BRIDGES: Yes, yes.

You have a wee nap.


I'll come and see you again
this evening.

We can't judge Edward

We can't judge Edward

simply over the matter
of the claret, James.

No, but you must agree
a butler's prime function

is a knowledge of the cellar.

Frederick clearly has the edge
in that department.

GEORGINA: Oh, Rose thinks we
should have neither of them.

She thinks we ought to employ
a temporary butler.

I don't agree with that.

It would unsettle Hudson, he'd
think he was being pushed out.

I don't want to sound
callous, Father,

but Hudson doesn't really have
much say in the matter, does he?

You must face the possibility

that when Hudson leaves
in a few days' time,

it might just be the last
we'll ever see of him.

And it's the smooth running
of this house

that we must consider.

I have spoken to Virginia
about this on the telephone

and she strongly favours Edward,

and so do you,
don't you, my dear?

- Then you're out-voted, James.

JAMES: What's wrong
with Frederick?

I like his spirit, he's a young
man who knows where he's going.

It's not a question of

what's wrong
with Frederick, James.

It's a question of
what's right with Edward.

JAMES: He's soft.

A nice chap, but soft here,
Where it matters.

Oh, it's not his fault,

it's probably the war
to blame for that.

But he went out to make his way
in the world and he failed.

GEORGINA: It's not his fault.
Thousands and thousands --

I know it sounds callous,

But what about Daisy, hmm?

From what I've heard,
she's the drive behind Edward.

And do we really want a butler

who sits in
the parlour maid's pocket?

Don't be silly,
Daisy isn't like that.

No, from what Frederick says.

RICHARD: We can't put Frederick
above Edward

after Edward's performance.

Unless Hudson
strongly disapproves,

the boy
must be given a chance.

[Knock at door]
HUDSON: Come in.

ROSE: You've got a visitor.

His Lordship to see you.

HUDSON: My Lord.

Rose, please.

RICHARD: Good time for a visit?

HUDSON: Yes, yes, my lord.

RICHARD: How are you feeling?

HUDSON: Very much better,
thank you, my lord.

RICHARD: Dr. Foley's
very pleased with you.

I've had a letter from
Mr. and Mrs. Trantor.

They say they'll be delighted
to have you to stay

for as long as you wish.

Thank you, my lord.

They've always been
very good friends to me.


HUDSON: Oh, please.

RICHARD: Foley says you can
travel tomorrow

if you feel like it.

Whatever you say, my lord.

RICHARD: We'll arrange
e for an ambulance

to take you down,
and I'm sure Mrs. Bridges

or Rose will help you with
the packing.

I'm very grateful for

all the trouble
you've taken, my lord.

Oh, it's the least
we can do,

after all you've done for us
over the years.

You've carried
enormous responsibility.

Don't know what we shall do
without you

these next few months.

Well, the way
I'm feeling today,

I'm sure it won't be too long
before I'm back in harness.

RICHARD: Now, you mustn't
rush things.

Foley was very strict
about that.

You just take
as long as you want.

HUDSON: There's just the matter
of my successor, my lord.

Oh, yes, I want to talk to you
about that.

I'm happy for Edward
to tide us over if you are.


Yes, you -- you don't feel
he might be lacking

in any experience
in matters like the cellar

and the household accounts.

RICHARD: Well, we can help him
over that.

He's watched you over the years,
he must've picked up something.

HUDSON: I just want to say,
my lord,

if you feel, for the benefit of
the household,

you need to employ a new butler.

There's no question of that,

I've no wish to be a burden.

I've seen so many of my
colleagues over the years.

RICHARD: Yes, I know
what you're thinking,

but this post is yours
for as long as you want it.

HUDSON: I'm very grateful.

When the time comes
for you to retire,

you'll be the best judge.

And what's that you're reading?

HUDSON: Oh, I've taken to
reading some poetry, my lord.

RICHARD: Robert Burns?

HUDSON: Alfred Lord Tennyson.

Rose found it on my shelves.
I didn't know I possessed it.

Ah, "ldylls of the King."

HUDSON: "The Lady of Shalott"
is my particular favourite.

"Lady Of Shalott"?

Well, I learnt it at school.

Wonder if I can remember
any of it.

"On either side the river lie

long fields of barley
and of rye."

HUDSON: "That clothed the wold,
And meet the sky."

RICHARD: "And through the field,
The road runs by."

"To many-towered Camelot."

RICHARD: "Willows whiten,
aspens quiver."

HUDSON: "Little breezes,
dusk and shiver,

through the wave
that runs forever,

by the island in the river."


"Only reapers reaping early,
in among the fields of barley."

HUDSON: "The bearded barley."

RICHARD: "The bearded barley."
Yes, yes.

"Tirra-lirra by the river,
sang Sir Lancelot."

ROSE: They're spouting poetry
to each other.

What did you say, Rose?

ROSE: Poetry.
Alfred Lord Tennyson.

Yeah? I know about him.

DAISY: Oh, you would.

MRS. BRIDGES: Oh, he was always
so fond of his poetry.

That means
he's really on the mend.

GEORGINA: You don't really

disapprove of Edward,
do you, James.

JAMES: Not at all.

I just thought that Frederick
deserved a hearing.

GEORGINA: Who'd want to be
a butler anyway?

It's an awful job.

JAMES: Oh, I don't know.
Pretty easy life these days.

Unlike before the war.

No, no, Hudson's trouble was
he wouldn't delegate.

Ran himself into the ground.

GEORGINA: Well, it's been
the most awful few days.

Thank heavens Virginia's
back tomorrow.

JAMES: Didn't you enjoy being
a society hostess?

Might have to get used to it
one day.


Oh, one wastes so much time.

Decisions, menus to be planned,
letters to write.

It's so wearing.

JAMES: It's all a question
of delegation.

Like commanding a battalion.

GEORGINA: Hmm, yes,
I noticed how commandingly

you dealt with Mrs. Bridges.

James, you've found
your true vocation

as a society hostess
in battle-dress.

You're welcome to it, my dear.

The keys to the silver cupboard.

The keys to the cellar.

The cellar book.

Remember to record
every bottle that's drunk.

And those are
my pantry accounts.

Reckon them up every week
on Saturday mornings

and never fall behind
with settling the bills.

This house has
a most valued reputation

with the local tradespeople.

FREDERICK: Sorry, Mr. Hudson.

Yes, what it is, Frederick?

The ambulance has arrived,

I've just come
to carry your cases up.

HUDSON: All right.

And this is my pantry book
of useful advice

I've recorded over the years,

for whoever should need them
one day.

You may borrow it
for the time being.

EDWARD: Thanks ever so much,
Mr. Hudson.

Remember, to be a butler
in this household

is a sacred trust, Edward.

Absolute loyalty and devotion to
duty are what is asked of you.

EDWARD: I'll do my best,
Mr. Hudson.

I'm sure you will, my boy.

Time to go now, Mr. Hudson.

HUDSON: Yes, yes, I'm ready
Rose, I'm on my way.

ROSE: Off we go.

HUDSON: If there's ever any
advice you need, Edward,

don't hesitate to write to me,

care of Mr. and Mrs. Trantor,
the Post Office, Southwold.

EDWARD: Yes, Mr. Hudson.

HUDSON: Good luck, my boy.

EDWARD: Thank you, Mr. Hudson.

HUDSON: Ah, what's for lunch
today, Ruby?

RUBY: Rabbit stew, Mr. Hudson.

HUDSON: Good, good.

[Mrs Bridges sobbing]

HUDSON: Come now, Kate.

Just look on it
as a short holiday.

I'll be back in no time,
my dear.

ROSE: Goodbye then, Mr. Hudson.

Good luck.

HUDSON: Thank you, Rose.


Take care of Mrs. Bridges
for me, will you?

ROSE: Of course I will.

DAISY: He's just going, Eddie,
you coming to see him off?

EDWARD: I can't get used to
all this, Daisy.

Don't think I was out out
to be a butler.

DAISY: Course you are.

It just takes a bit of time,
that's all.

Come on.

MRS. BRIDGES: Come on, Ruby,
fetch in the dinner,

it's all getting cold.

MRS. BRIDGES: Careful now,
don't drop it.

Put it here.

That's right.

DAISY: Eddie...


DAISY: Grace.

ROSE: For what we are
about to receive,

may the Lord make us
truly thankful.

ALL: Amen.

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