Many of us are super-excited for season three of The Crown, a highlight of Netflix's autumn schedule. And a major part of this excitement is seeing Olivia Colman, recent Oscar winner and one of British TV's most consistently excellent performers, playing Queen Elizabeth II.
But in a column for the Daily Telegraph this week, journalist Charles Moore expressed a "doubt" that Colman – who has won two Golden Globes and four BAFTAs in addition to her Oscar – might be poorly suited to the role because of her "leftwing face".
After writing that Colman has "expressed anxiety" as to how well she will succeed Claire Foy in the role, Moore wrote: "There is no doubt that she is one of the best actresses of the age, but I have a doubt, too. She has a distinctly leftwing face. This is hard to describe, but easy to recognise."
Moore explained: “It is something to do with looking slightly resentful and ironic at the idea of having to play a public role which satisfies the demands of others. The real live Queen has no such face – allowing almost no difference discernible in public between the role and the person."
Moore, a former editor of the Daily Telegraph and authorised biographer of Conservative Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, then added: "I have no idea what Olivia Colman’s political views are. I just have a hunch, which I hope will be proved wrong."
Understandably, Moore's views have been widely and mercilessly mocked on Twitter. Former EastEnders actress Tracey Ann Oberman said Moore's comments had caused her jaw to drop "to the floor".
Jaw drop. To the floor . Olivia Coleman and her ‘distinctly left wing face’. ????? by Charles Moore. pic.twitter.com/MC1Pq6suH7— Tracy Ann Oberman (@TracyAnnO) August 23, 2019
Colman's former Peep Show co-star Robert Webb also came to her defence, writing: "Wait to see the performance, you insufferable philistine dunce."
This might well be the stupidest thing I’ve read all year. Collie has a ‘left-wing face’ the way Tony Hopkins has a right-wing anus and Maggie Smith has a social-democrat duodenum. Wait to see the performance, you insufferable Philistine dunce. https://t.co/wIVF35cwm2— Robert Webb (@arobertwebb) August 23, 2019
Of course, Colman and her "leftwing face" won an Oscar for playing another monarch, Queen Anne, in The Favourite.
Colman and her "leftwing face" also won a British Independent Film Award for portraying the Queen Mother in the 2012 movie Hyde Park on Hudson. And Colman and her "leftwing face" earned further acclaim for playing Margaret Thatcher's daughter, Carol, opposite Meryl Streep in The Iron Lady.
I for one am feeling pretty confident that her performance as the Queen will be another smash for Colman and her "leftwing face".