Downton Abbey has made a serious faux pas in a recent photo promo for the new season. The show is continually attacked for some of its historical inaccuracies, and it seems like the photographers still have no idea of things to look out for.
The promo for season five was released this week, getting U.S. fans ready for it starting in January 2015. However, fans were disappointed to see the glaring mistake within minutes. Overshadowing the beautiful photo of Lord Robert Crawley and Lady Edith Crawley is a modern-day plastic water bottle behind them.
It is unclear whether this was left by the cast members or the crew. However, it is safe to say that the photographer never even considered that it was in the shot. Did the photographer even know that it was there? Even if it was spotted after the photo was taken, some careful Photoshop techniques could be used to get rid of it.
Shortly after the release of the promo, a number of Photoshopped memes went viral online. Some of those included Lord Crawley wearing Google Glass and an iPad where the water bottle originally was. Some users went all out by adding happy birthday banners and giving Lord Crawley a boom box to hold.
There are some skeptics that wonder whether the Downton Abbey faux pas in the photo promo was not quite the mistake others believe it to be. Some wonder whether this was an attempt for the show to create more buzz around the upcoming fifth season. It would certainly lead to more people talking about the show and it has even led to it being one of the most talked about topics on Google News.
Sometimes show runners do make these deliberate mistakes. It can be very difficult to keep the buzz around a show during breaks between seasons. While the show runners often try to create a cliff hanger—like Vampire Diaries did with the question over Damon Salvatore and Bonnie Bennett’s fates—it can still be too long for some people to remember just why they should tune in. Period dramas often find it most difficult compared to supernatural and fantasy shows.
Other Downton Abbey promos were shared, but very few have been seen due to the mistake in the one with Lord and Lady Crawley. Those in charge of the website removed the promo as quickly as possible but all the damage had already been done for the show. So far, nobody has commented about the mistake and there is no clue as to who approved the promo for release.
This is certainly something that will be remembered for a long time. When it comes to period dramas, fans are never happy when modern-day elements are added. During The White Queen, fans were annoyed that drainpipes appeared on the buildings, which would not have been around in the 1400s. Others accepted drainpipes could not be removed, but were angry at the appearance of zips in dresses; another inaccuracy for the times.
Fans do get excited about seeing historical accuracy in their period dramas. It is one of the reasons for them getting so annoyed at the Downton Abbey faux pas in its recent photo promo.
By Alexandria Ingham