Olivia Colman stars in satirical ad mocking the fossil fuel industry

The Oscar winning actress became a fossil fuel baron draped in latex for a recent Make My Money Better ad campaign. Her sarcastic taunts aim to educate the British public about how their pension funds are bolstering oil and gas profits.

Thred Media
3 min readDec 1, 2023

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No reading between the lines is required for Make My Money Better’s latest ad campaign, featuring one ‘Oblivia Coalmine’.

If you’ve twigged that this is a playful slant on the name Olivia Colman, pat yourself on the back. You’re well on your way to deciphering the ad’s intended message. Spoiler: It’s not a subtle one.

The fictional character is the complete antithesis of the Oscar winning actress, whose sickeningly sarcastic portrayal of an oil baron seeks to educate the British public about how their pension contributions help to prop up the oil and gas industry.

Clad head-to-toe in villain-esque latex, she cruelly boasts: ‘People like you have pumped billions of your hard-earned pounds into gas and oil businesses.’ She’s not wrong, either, given big oil profits in the US topped $50bn in Q3 alone.

For the ad’s remainder, Oil puns are pumped out a ‘plenty while a butler fills a champagne glass with gasoline. ‘Every little drop from your precious nest egg adds up’… ‘you know the drill,’ she jibes.

‘We’ve even managed to build a few little wind-turbines to keep Greta [Thunberg] and her chums happy,’ she says, hinting at industry greenwashing and the lacklustre transition to renewables from energy giants.

The grassroots organisation responsible for the ad is called Make My Money Matter, and is cofounded by Colman’s showbiz colleague Richard Curtis — who birthed British fictional icons like Mr. Bean and Bridget Jones.

The company’s primary ambition is to first educate British citizens about the shrewdly concealed link between pensions and big oil, and secondly to empower them to demand that their investment into such projects be removed.

‘The scariest thing about her [Oblivia Coalmine] is that she represents something very real,’ explained Colman.

To date, no pension fund within the UK has committed to divesting from fossil fuel cronies. Despite the indication that 69% of British employees worry about their pensions exacerbating the climate crisis, each pension holder shells out a purported £3,000 per year to energy companies.

The State of New York plans to drop fossil fuels from its state pension fund by 2040, but the UK is still locked into an £88bn annual investment and there’s no palpable appetite from the government to halt its fossil fuel expansion.

Though the reception to the ad has been markedly split, it’s refreshing to have an organisation directly outing the lifeblood of the UK fossil fuel industry, and not calling for everyday people to slash their own carbon footprints.

Nonetheless, that doesn’t make the intrinsic link between the financial security of citizens and the continued destruction of the planet any less disturbing.

All we know is that Colman, already a national treasure, has risen even higher in our estimations.

Originally written by Jamie Watts for Thred.

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