'Downton Abbey' vs 'Sherlock' star Benedict Cumberbatch: A war of the words

benedict-cumberbatch-downton-abbey-readers-digest-cover.jpgA civil war is brewing in the UK, y'all: It's "Downton Abbey" vs. "Sherlock," and things are getting ugly.

"Sherlock" star Benedict Cumberbatch recently did an interview for Reader's Digest magazine, in which he ruthlessly slammed "Downton Abbey." Cumberbatch is starring in the upcoming series "Parade's End," which Cumberbatch says plays on the current nostalgia for the pre-WWI Britain.

"'Downton' traded a lot on the sentiment in the last series," Cumberbatch says. "But we won't talk about that series because it was, in my opinion, f****** atrocious."

He continues to trash the show as he explains why "Parade's End" is so much better. "This is so much more sophisticated, so much more unusual. You rarely see a piece about this class of people that's this accurate, funny and pointed. We're not making some clichéd comment: 'Oh, isn't it awful the way there's this upstairs-downstairs divide.' This is about class and love, an elegy to a dying era."

Um, ouch? The "Downton Abbey" cast certainly took note -- actors Hugh Bonneville, Dan Stevens, and Allen Leech all changed their Twitter photos to the September cover of the magazine. On it, a wary-looking Cumberbatch appears alongside the headline, "Move over, Downton."

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Photo/Video credit: Reader's Digest, ONTD