Why Do People Hate Olivia Colman: Dissecting the Divisive Opinions and Hatred

Olivia Colman is an acclaimed English actress who has starred in popular TV shows like Broadchurch and The Crown. She is the recipient of various awards, including an Academy Award, BAFTA Awards, and Golden Globe Awards. However, despite her success, some people have expressed dislike towards the actress. This article will analyze potential reasons why and provide a balanced perspective.

Acting Style and Approach

Some critics argue that Olivia Colman’s acting style is overrated or too subdued for certain roles.

Perceived Lack of Star Power

Compared to more glamorous actresses, some feel Colman lacks the captivating star power and commanding screen presence expected from leading ladies. Her talent is not in question, but rather her ability to draw audiences based on her fame.

Low-Energy Delivery

Additionally, Olivia Colman’s tendency to underplay emotions and deliver performances with a low-key energy levels bother those expecting a bigger, bolder acting approach. Her choices highlight subtlety over theatricality.

Everywoman Persona

By leaning into ordinary, everyday characters rather than those oozing elegance or status, critics argue Colman consciously or unconsciously discourages opportunities for mass market appeal.

Award Recognition

Despite being lauded as one of the finest actresses of her generation, some believe Olivia Colman is overrated and shouldn’t have received so many top acting accolades.

Perception of Undeserved Wins

A common criticism is that her Best Actress Oscar win for The Favourite was undeserved, especially over the other nominees like Lady Gaga’s turn in A Star is Born. This builds onto a sentiment that she is overawarded.

Academy AwardThe Favourite2019
BAFTA AwardThe Favourite2019
Golden Globe AwardThe Crown2022

Acting Showcases More Worthy

Likewise, others argue far more impressive acting showcases from the likes of Viola Davis, Cate Blanchett, Michelle Yeoh and more should have netted top honors over Colman’s still excellent but not as outstanding performances.

Oscar Bias

Some have speculated that Olivia Colman’s Oscar win represents Academy bias towards a certain style of understated British acting and films over those with broader appeal.

Role Limitations

Finally, a segment believes Colman’s success stems primarily from a string of roles tailor-made to enable her acting strengths rather than range.

Political Outspokenness

Olivia Colman has used her platform to promote various social and political causes, which certain audiences have responded negatively towards.

Perceived Liberal Lecturing

When the actress vocalizes progressive viewpoints, makes pleas for compassion towards migrants, or champions leaders like New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, some critics feel lectured, dismiss her opinions as typical liberal posturing from celebrity elites.

###Royal Family Commentary

In an interview, Colman commented that the Royal Family could learn a lesson in humility from Jacinda Ardern’s crisis response. British traditionalists took offense to someone seen as anti-monarchist playing the Queen in The Crown.

Wish for Entertainment Escapism

Other detractors argue actors should focus simply on entertaining, not preaching political opinions. They watch films and TV to escape day-to-day issues, not hear ideological sermonizing.

Looks and Style

Shallow as it may be, physical appearance remains central for actresses, and Olivia Colman’s diverges from conventional expectations about leading ladies.

###Perceived Ordinary Appearance

Unlike slim, glamorous starlets, Olivia Colman has more regular physical features. Some cite her short and curvy stature, lack of striking beauty or fashion style as reasons for dislike based on looks.

Representation of Average Women

However, defenders counterargue actresses need not all resemble Hollywood ideals about runway model looks, applauding Colman’s representation of the average woman’s body type on screen.

###No ‘Leading Lady’ Allure

Connecting back to arguments about her acting approach, detractors say Colman lacks that captivating magnetism and allure expected from leading ladies, negatively impacting audience enjoyment.

Character Personas

The recurring traits and flaws evident across many Olivia Colman characters rub her detractors the wrong way.

Habitual Messy Woman-Child Persona

Critics highlight how Colman routinely plays messy, emotionally chaotic women like her turns in Fleabag or The Favourite rather than well-put together heroines. The tendency for weirdness, immaturity and neuroses annoys some audiences.

Draw Towards Damaged Characters

Additionally, many Colman roles center on damaged individuals battling grief, addiction, trauma or instability. Some argue these emotionally draining characters are less appealing for viewers seeking escapist entertainment.

Preference for Inspiring Heroines

Conversely, many favor actresses who portray inspiring heroines overcoming adversity such as Sandra Bullock and Emma Watson instead of Colman’s messy, struggling protagonists.

Limited Transformations

Lastly, the actress reinforces arguments about her range by seldom undergoing major physical transformations for highly distinct roles set in different time periods.

Voice and Accent

Marks against Olivia Colman’s speaking voice represent another area of criticism, despite its crisp diction.

Lack of Golden Voice Beauty

While technically precise, Colman’s voice gets critiqued as shrill by detractors, especially next to pleasing actresses’ voices with beautiful timbres.

Accent Judgments

Moreover, some judge her working-class South London accent as unattractive or unsuitable for royal roles like The Crown’s Queen Elizabeth II. Posher pronunciation carries prestige.

Vocal Delivery Critiques

Separate from accent bias, critics argue flaws in Colman’s flat, unmelodic line delivery sap emotional impact from speeches that should resonate more powerfully.

Public Perception Shifts

Still, Emilia Clarke’s casting as the new Queen Elizabeth II on The Crown hints Olivia Colman’s criticisms represent only pockets of dissent rather than widespread disdain.

Quieter Recent Backlash

The initial intense backlash against Colman as Queen Elizabeth II eventually quieted after Season 3 praise. Most critics now compliment her performance. Clarke’s casting drew no protests.

Award Recognition Continues

Despite prior accusations about undeserved wins, Colman keeps earning awards in new roles like her 2022 Golden Globe for The Lost Daughter, affirming peer respect.

Box Office Draw

Films featuring Olivia Colman as the central star like The Lost Daughter and The Father post impressive box office returns relative to lower budgets, confirming her commercial appeal.

Bond Song Performance

Colman’s emotional No Time to Die Bond theme song performance earned significant praise, outperforming detractors’ skepticism about her voice. Its chart success contrasts criticisms.


While Olivia Colman faces reasonable critique about playing similar character types, her acting approach inevitably appealing more to some audiences versus others and room for growth achieving greater transformation range, arguments dismissing her talent seem deeply misguided.

Her extraordinary ability at conveying raw, authentic emotion through subtle expressions, gesture and delivery makes dismissing her as simply overrated by disgruntled critics who favor showier acting styles or disagree with her political opinions unfair. Worthy of criticism are only those clinging to restrictive conceptions about conventional beauty standards actors must meet.

Rather than any sharp decline in abilities, periodic ageist jabs about the 48-year old actress “aging out” of compelling lead roles seem premature given her stellar showcases in The Lost Daughter and Empire of Light released just within the past two years.

As Colman heads towards her fifties, early glimpses suggest her talents will likely only deepen more with life experience – not unlike legends Judi Dench, Helen Mirren and Maggie Smith excelling well into their sunset years rather than fading away. With more transformative character arcs sure to come and another generation of actors emerging to carry the torch for their own eras, Olivia Colman’s influence on 21st century film continues blazing brightly.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do some people criticize Olivia Colman’s Best Actress Oscar win?

Her critics argue Colman did not deserve to win over the other talented nominees and that her performance was not as impressive. Some believe the win represents bias towards a certain acting style.

How has Olivia Colman used her platform politically?

Colman has promoted compassion towards migrants, praised leaders like Jacinda Ardern, and made statements interpreted as anti-monarchist. This annoys audiences seeking escapism.

What physical traits may contribute towards dislike for Olivia Colman?

Unlike conventional beauty standards, Colman has a shorter, curvier frame. Some critics say she lacks leading lady looks and magnetism. Others applaud representing average women.

What character types does Olivia Colman routinely portray?

She often plays messy, emotionally unstable woman-child personas rather than elegant heroines overcoming adversity. The tendency towards neurotic, damaged individuals frustrates some viewers.

What vocal delivery critiques does Olivia Colman face?

While technically precise, some call Colman’s voice shrill. Others judge her working-class South London accent as unattractive or unsuitable for royal roles like The Crown’s Queen Elizabeth II.

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