I don’t usually care about celebrities. I do follow a few entertainers on Twitter and Facebook, mostly because they may occasionally post something I find interesting. But as far as caring about a celebrity’s comings and goings, I can usually care less. But hearing that Robin Williams had passed away was a real blow to me and my husband, as it was to so many of his fans around the world. Our hearts go out to his family, knowing that our grief must pale in comparison to theirs.
In the glitz and glamor of Hollywood, actors and actresses come and go, with talent often tertiary in importance to looks and a good agent. But Robin Williams was a true talent — an unflinching comic with a gift for improv who also happened to be a hell of a dramatic actor.
From Mork and Mindy to all the movies through the 80s, 90s, and 2000s, he’s entertained generations of movie goers with his brilliant portrayals of comedic and dramatic characters. So many comedic roles in Hollywood are all too often one dimensional, relying on slapstick, toilet humor and shock value to be funny. But Robin Williams was above this. His comedy was witty, sharp, intelligent and especially in the latter part of his career, sometimes quite dark. Meanwhile, his dramatic performances were thought provoking, poignant and inspiring.
He was the best of what Hollywood had to offer.
Yet one of the reasons that Robin Williams’ death is such a blow for the geek community is that not only did we lose a fantastic and influential entertainer but we also lost one of us. Unlike celebs who may be lauded in the geek community for their roles in prominent geek franchises, Robin Williams was really just one of us. A gamer. An anime fan. A real geek.
What’s more, we lost him to a disease that so many of us in the geek community know all too well. We may have struggled with depression ourselves or because we have friends who suffer from it.
Depression is a deep, dark hole and sometimes, the more you try to get out, the deeper the hole you dig. I’m so very sorry that this brilliant man who brought laughter and joy to so many throughout his career, a fellow geek who loved games and anime much like my friends and I do, dug so far down that he felt suicide was his only way out.
Robin Williams, your presence on this Earth will be missed. Rest in the peace you could not find in this life.