Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Thank You, Robin Williams



The buzz of the week was the sad news that we had lost a comedic genius, Robin Williams. Not only do I have a hard time imagining him gone, I struggle to see him as a sixty-three year old. He was on the flipside and my generation grew up with him (and I use the term "grown up" lightly...you know who you are). His public persona suggested an eternal youthfulness and impossibly wit-laden life. Robin Williams didn't have an off switch, so how can it be that he is gone?


Sorrowfully, we now must acknowledge that he struggled with many demons. In his battle with depression - depression was winning. And on August 11, 2014, there could be no doubt that depression won the very last round.


His grieving widow, Susan Schneider, asked that the public not focus on his death, "but on the countless moments of joy and laughter he gave to millions." 

So let's do that. Consider the contributions, depth and scope of a multifaceted career. Comic master that he was, Robin Williams was never a one-trick pony.

Let's remember:

  • The goofy Mork, practically bouncing off the walls, insanely funny on Mork & Mindy
  • His incredible portrayal of Popeye - a character I thought couldn't adequately be brought to the big screen (he proved me wrong)
  • A surprise breakout from his usual shtick when he portrayed T.S.Garp, in The World According to Garp
  • His crazy Russian in Moscow on the Hudson
  • Good Morning, Viet Nam's Adrian Cronauer
  • The inspiring John Keating in Dead Poet's Society
  • Cadillac Man Joey O'Brian
  • Dr. Malcolm Sayer in Awakenings
  • The tormented Parry in The Fisher King
  • The adult (and forgetful) Peter Barring in Hook
  • Aladdin's crazy Genie
  • The wacky Dr. Kosevich in Nine Months
  • Jumanji's Alan Parrish
  • The Birdcage's Armand Goldman
  • He was Jack!
  • Good Will Hunting's professor, Sean McGuire
  • The big hearted Patch Adams
  • Chris Nielsen in What Dreams May Come
  • Mrs. Doubtfire, the Dad who would do anything to spend more time with his kids.
  • Jakob the Liar
  • The creepy Seymour Parrish in One Hour Photo
  • The voice of Ramon in Happy Feet
  • Maxwell "Wizard" Wallace in August Rush
  • Teddy Roosevelt in Night at the Museum
  • Dwight D. Eisenhower in The Butler

Thank you, Robin, for sharing your talents with all of us.

All flipsters, put your hand on your heart in honor of a great man's passing, one of our own. Say it with me one last time, in unison:  Shazzbatt.

I think he'd like that.


5 comments:

  1. So sad. I think he must have been a very sweet man.

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  2. That is true! That's the best thing we can do for him...remember all the laughter he gave us.

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  3. It felt like a punch in the stomach to learn that Robin Williams was gone. I was breathless and my voice was trembling when I shared the news with Mrs. Shady. Robin Williams was a longtime favorite of hers and she went into shock. I admired Robin most for his stunning dramatic performances. It's powerful when a zany comic actor is cast in a dramatic role, dials it back and delivers a subtle, credible, layered dramatic performance. Robin delivered many such performances and I salute him.

    Robin Williams remained childlike all his life. People like Robin inspired me to adopt the philosophy "never grow up, never grow old." Robin loved to play with people. He found humor in absolutely everything. He was a gentle soul. He was fragile. I could feel his pain in every performance, comedic and dramatic. Selfishly, I wish he hadn't left us so soon because surely he would have given us many more memorable characters and many more of those moments when we laughed until we cried.

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  4. That's a good, comprehensive list, Cherdo. Thank you.

    Love,
    Janie

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  5. You forgot the doctor in Awakenings--possibly my favorite movie of his, which was based on a true story. And his role in Good Will Hunting. I always felt he was under-appreciated as a serious actor. I have to post something soon about that on my own blog.

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Thanks for your personal yada, yada, yada,
Love, Cherdo