Paul Mescal has only gone and increased his popularity in his native land, after his non-participation in the wearing of the poppy for Remembrance Day week.
The star of Normal People, and the newly released Aftersun, was a guest on last night's Graham Norton Show, and chose not the wear the flower which is worn in the UK in the week leading up to Remembrance Day (November 11).
Originally the week celebrated those who fought and died in World War I, but has since gone onto include British soldiers in all wars, and naturally has become a controversial topic given the history of the Troubles.
James McClean has since become the most notable figure who refuses to wear the poppy, coming in for regular abuse throughout the year for his beliefs.
"He is Irish... we don't wear them or celebrate British atrocities on our island," said one Twitter user on Mescal's decision, while another notes, "It’s not our thing really... not overly keen on the old poppy over here... British soldiers committing atrocities in Ireland sort of turned us off it, but hey, each to their own."
Paul Mescal Chooses Against The Poppy
Love that Paul Mescal isn’t wearing a poppy on #TheGNShow ☺️☺️
— Dearbhla Duff (@DearbhlaDuff) November 4, 2022
Paul Mescal no poppy loving it 👍🏻
— Nigel Rossiter (@nrossiter73) November 4, 2022
#GrahamNorton yes Paul mescal no poppy lad
— fadz (@fadzcfc) November 4, 2022
McClean took to the football field today with Wigan in their 2-2 draw with Swansea, and responded brilliantly to the controversy with two assists.
Back in his West Brom days he penned an eloquent letter to fans, which acts as a perfect summation of the reasons for the non-participation in the celebration.
"If the poppy was simply about World War One and Two victims alone, I'd wear it without a problem."
"I would wear it everyday of the year if that was the thing but it doesn't, it stands for all the conflicts that Britain has been involved in. Because of the history where I come from in Derry, I cannot wear something that represents that."
"I don't think we should have any ideas forced on us just as I don't want to force my ideas on anyone else. The Albion fans have been great to me and I just want to put it out in black and white why I do what I do and give my side of the story.
"If I were to sing the British national anthem, then that would be disrespectful to the place I come from. A lot of people are still hurting there and so I can’t pretend that that didn't happen."