Sherlock actor Benedict Cumberbatch has launched a verbal tirade against Downton Abbey calling its second series "fucking atrocious".
Cumberbatch made the remarks while discussing his role in a rival period drama soon to hit our screens. Parade's End is set in the years prior to and during World War One, like Downton, and also explores issues of class.
But despite the emotive historical context, the BBC2 drama will, according to Cumberbatch, dodge the sentimental pitfalls he believes Downton tumbled into.
In an interview with Reader's Digest he said: "Although Downton traded a lot on the sentiment in the last series... but we won’t talk about that series because it was, in my opinion, fucking atrocious.”
Cumberbatch will play Christopher Tietjens, a repressed and overweight civil servant with an adulterous wife (Rebecca Hall), who hankers after a campaigning suffragette (Adelaide Clemens).
Parade's End is adapted from the novel by Ford Madox Ford.
Parade's End' is on BBC2 on 24 August