Istanbul-Armenian MP Garo Paylan, representing the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) has voiced concern over the film produced by Turkish Radio and Television Corporation (TRT) for displaying an explicit partiality ahead of upcoming elections in Istanbul and Ankara. According to the report by Ermenihaber.am, Paylan’s point of concern has been the various controversial messages and negative images delivered through historical-political drama series.
The Turkish-Armenian MP has specifically pointed to a Turkish historical television drama series named The Last Emperor (Payitaht: Abdülhamid), depicting historical events during the reign of the 34th Ottoman Sultan, Abdul Hamid II. According to him, certain episodes contain negative messages and direct threats to former Turkish President Gul and Prime Minister Ahmed Davutoghlu.
Moreover, in one of recent episodes the film has portrayed an Armenian named Garo as a traitor and villain. Paylan has reminded that numerous high-level Turkish officials were of Armenian origin, notably the mother of Sultan Abdul Hamid, which are not present in the film.
To note, the Washington Times reported earlier that certain portrayals and historical reproductions in the series caused controversy due to their message and historical revisionism even though the show reported itself to be “inspired by real historical events”. It further noted that the series “promoted a worldview uncannily similar to that of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.”