RIP Robin Williams – The Mad Misfit King
Robin Williams' death last night came as a great shock to a lot of people, and really saddened me when I heard. This will be one of the few serious posts you'll see from me, and I normally don't get incredibly emotional over celebrity deaths, since they only superficially touch our lives, but Robin Williams' passing really hit me.
I've been watching this guy work for so long, playing so many different roles, making me laugh, playing amazing dramatic roles...and one thing he mastered with a lot of these roles is the misfit.
Whether it's his first hit as Mork, the Russian seeking asylum in Moscow on the Hudson, the doctor in Awakenings, the crazy actor in Mrs. Doubtfire, or the creepy dude in One Hour Photo or Insomnia, Robin Williams portrayed a lot of misfits.
He gave laughs, he gave hope, he made you really connect with the characters he played. He wasn't just the manic comic that some people pidgeon-hole him as, and his dramatic roles had as much impact on people as the comedic ones.
He challenged people's perceptions of not only what comedy was with his standup, but also challenged what people expected of him from project to project. Instead of playing it safe after Mork & Mindy, and doing another kid-friendly comedy, he jumped right into the strange film The World According to Garp, which had some dark comedy and drama.
He continued to challenge people, so for a while you only knew what kind of movie it would be on whether he had a beard or not. Beard meant serious movie, shaved meant comedy.
BUT THEN HE DID A SERIOUS MOVIE WITHOUT A BEARD!
I see a marathon in my future this weekend. So many great movies, so many different characters, so much amazing work he left us with.
Thank you, Mr. Williams. I don't know if people said it to you enough while you were alive, but I think you deserved to hear it more.