"Downton Abbey" has struggled with modernization — telephones, electricity, farming — but it currently faces its most harrowing challenge yet: pop music. Specifically from fellow Brits One Direction.
Yes, Maggie Smith's Dowager Countess would be revolted ... that is, if she weren't joining in. You see, the cast of "Downton Abbey" is singing One Direction's hit "What Makes You Beautiful," and, as they say in Downton, it's marvelous.
The choppy mashup video comes courtesy of comedian Richard Sandling for "Richard Sandling's Perfect Movie," the comedian's monthly live show about entertainment. He's also songified Alec Baldwin's iconic speech from "Glengarry Glen Ross" and had the cast of "Mad Men" mash up Rick Astley's "Never Gonna Give You Up." But with the third season of "Downton Abbey" ending on such a down note, Sandling is doing a pretty good job of cheering us all up.
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"This wasn’t just a cynical exercise, this project was meant with love & respect for both and I am very happy with the result," Sandling said on his website. "I think we have created a video that people who like Downton Abbey & One Direction will enjoy watching and I also hope that anyone who doesn't like Downton Abbey or One Direction will enjoy this for what it is — another awesome mash up from Team Sandling!"
Save for making it "do your hair" instead of "flip your hair," and swapping the word "overwhelmed" to Hugh Bonneville's Lord Grantham saying "flabbergasted," the cast hits just about every lyric. Nearly everyone joins in the British collision: the Dowager, Lady Grantham, Bates, even Carson, Thomas and O'Brien. And it sure is comforting to see Lady Sybil, Matthew and Lavinia Swire alive and well again in the three-season montage.
Listen for Sandling's expert use of the Grantham daughters' signature "mama" and "papa" lilts late in the video.
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