At long last, the trailer for Julian Fellows' next period drama is here. The Downton Abbey creator will return to the small screen in 2020 with Belgravia, a lavish story of secrets and scandals set in 19th century London, when the upper echelons of society began to rub shoulders with the emerging industrial nouveau rich.
Based on Fellowes' 2016 novel of the same name, the series basically feels like Downton Abbey's not-so-distant cousin, down to the strikingly similiar piano-based music in the trailer. True, the two series' are not technically connected to one another, from a narrative perspective. But when both are written by Fellowes, and the production teams both include Gareth Neame, Nigel Marchant, and Liz Trubridge, well. It's hard not to expect some similar themes - and hopefully, a similar level of quality.
The story begins on the eve of the Battle of Waterloo, when the Duchess of Richmond throws a legendary high society ball in Brussels for the Duke of Wellington. James and Alice Trenchard are among the guests, and their attendence at the event sets in motion a series of events "that will have consequences for decades to come as secrets unravel behind the porticoed doors of London’s grandest neighborhood.” (Or at least so the description says.)
"We chose a life of lies. Now those lies have returned to haunt us," says Alice, just in case you weren't clear that this is a show about a family that's not been entirely honest with itself. "Do we have the right to hide from her that she has a grandson?" she asks. Her husband James insists, "He's been told his father died in battle and his mother in childbirth, all of which is true."
Who is the "she" in this scenario? Well, our best guess is that it's Walter's character, Caroline, The Countess of Brockenhurst, who happens to be the sister of the Duchess of Richmond, who threw the ill-fated party. But watch the trailer below and take a look for yoursleves.
Spoiler alrert: This trailer is 100% aimed precisely at viewers like me. I'm in, completely.
Are you curious about Belgravia? Sound like something you’d watch? Or does it feel too close to the Downton Abbey we all know and love? Let’s discuss in the comments.