Bravo to Jace on TelevisonaryBlog for writing "In Defence of Dowton Abbey (or don't believe everything you read)" and the most sincere jeers to this piece of daily mail garbage.
First, do I admit that PBS, on occasion, cuts pieces of an adaptation? Yes. Do they do it singularly because they think their American audience is equivalent to a brain-dead piece of celery? NO. This is PBS for God's sake! They're one of the only networks that still has educational value as a central focus. To be quite honest, I'm a little affronted Mr. Hastings thinks we're so painfully stupid. Or that we wouldn't notice.
And cut two hours? Cutting 10 minutes maybe (which happened with the latest Northanger Abbey adaptation), but cutting what would be considered 2 episodes worth of length and plot is basically impossible. Someone should learn how to use his calculator. Oh wait, he's probably too proud to.
What about Mad Men? What about Breaking Bad? What about Lost? Trust me. If we can follow the plot of Lost, American viewers of Dowton Abbey (who are a particular cross-section of Americans) will be able to follow its plot.
There's my rant for the night. Long and short: PBS is not cutting anything from Dowton Abbey, and if they are cutting a few minutes, it would be the opening and closing credits seen in the British version. Oh! And Laura Linney is lovely. Pick on one of your own actresses.