Who’s worse off: Lady Edith of ‘Downton Abbey’ or Hannah Horvath of ‘Girls?’

January 16, 2014
Lady Edith, left, has met her sorry match in Hannah Horvath, right. (PBS/HBO)
Lady Edith, left, has met her sorry match in Hannah Horvath, right. (PBS/HBO)

They have so much in common: features a bit askew, weak chins, literary goals, tortured souls. But who’s more anguished: newspaper columnist Lady Edith of “Downton Abbey” or aspiring memoirist Hannah of “Girls”?

Parents problems:

Hannah: Stopped subsidizing her but adore her.
Edith: Pay all expenses but pity her as doomed never to wed.

Mental health:

Hannah: Debilitating OCD keeps her from meeting deadlines (although this season, therapy and meds have helped).
Edith: Inferiority complex due to gorgeous sisters and dismissive dad (“You have nothing of importance to say; you’re a woman”).

Self-image woes:

Hannah: “I am 13 pounds overweight and it has been awful for me my whole life.”
Edith: Portrayed by Fred Armisen in drag on Jimmy Fallon’s spoof.

Romantic life:

Hannah: Once dated a guy who “treats my heart like monkey meat.”
Edith: Boyfriend has mentally ill wife.

The winner (or loser): Edith’s extremely tortured soul. Spoiler alert: Season four holds more woes for poor middle child Edith.

Marc Silver has been watching TV since the days when people wrapped aluminum foil around TV antennae to improve reception.
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