Edith sends a letter to the newspaper about women's rights and it is published. She is on a new path and the modernism creeps into Downton Abbey. In the coming attractions there is an indication that Edith might even be writing a regular column for the newspaper.
Another sign of modernism is Matthew's determination to impose financial management on the way Downton Abbey is run. Now that he is an investor in the Downton franchise he has access to the books. In reviewing them, he told Mary, he found waste and mismanagement. She was not pleased to hear that nor was the Earl. Turbulence is ahead.
And modernism entered in a scary way with Tom Brason, Sybil Crawley's husband, becoming involved in Irish revolutionary politics. As things stand, he cannot return to Ireland without being arrested. Pregnant Sybil wants him to drop all the activism now and just stay in England. But viewers expect the hothead to rejoin the revolution.
Fallen lady Ethel came to the unselfish point of giving her son's wealthy grandparents custody. She wanted him to have the fine schooling which she saw the Crawleys having. In the coming attractions we see her getting a service position in the house of another branch of the Crawley family. We viewers hope to see her blossom and find a decent man to re-start her life with.
Meanwhile Mary has mutated into a matron, the woman who guards tradition at Downton Abbey. All her earlier wildness is gone.