Downton Abbey has ended, and now some fans want to know if it was just because the show couldn't go on without Maggie Smith as Lady Violet Crawley.
The answer to Downton Abbey fans, it seems, is no. Sort of.
Those in charge of Downton Abbey say it was just better to end on a high note than to drag it out beyond its prime.
And end on a high note, it did!
During the two-hour special ending of Downton Abbey, Lady Edith finally got that happy ending she always wanted, Lady Mary discovered she was pregnant and Anna gave birth to her child with Mr. Bates, all in joyous holiday fashion.
What an amazing episode of Downton Abbey that was!
While Downton Abbey ended on top as planned, Producer Gareth Neame did admit that the show would have struggled without Maggie Smith, though a seventh season would have been possible.
He said, "We easily could have gone for a seventh season but if I'd have said 'We haven't got Maggie', it would have been a shadow of itself."
He added, "We all feel very blessed. Nobody regrets ending when we did. We have a final season that's as strong as the first because we quit while we were ahead."
However, a spokeswoman for production company Carnival Films was a bit more adamant that she show didn't end because of Maggie Smith's departure.
She said, "Downton Abbey ended at season six because the producers and writers wanted to close the show on a high and that has been clearly demonstrated with the Downton Abbey finale on ITV being the most-watched show on television across all broadcasters on Christmas night."
She reiterated, "The show did not end because any of our cast wanted to leave."
Dame Maggie Smith's departure came at a time when she was tired and the role just didn't make sense anymore.
She said of her role on Downton Abbey earlier this year, “They say this is the last one, and I can’t see how it could go on.”
She added, “I mean, I certainly can’t keep going… To my knowledge, I must be 110 by now. We’re into the late 1920s.”
What do you think? Do you think Downton Abbey could have had a successful seventh season?