Robin Williams is a man who needs no introduction and yet find it terribly hard and sad to write about his passing.
I’m sure everyone remembers the first time they watched something with Robin Williams in it. Mine was in the early 90s on Channel 4. Back then with their endless repeats of Happy Days, it was around that time I watched Mork and Mindy. After school whilst doing my homework, this funny sitcom was always on and for someone who grew up watching Star Trek: The Original Series, Mork and Mindy provided a perfect contrast in my young sci-fi viewing. I mean, it’s an alien who lands on Earth inside a giant egg and says “Nanu Nanu” – what’s not to like?
It’s funny as I sit here and reflect that I realise that there wasn’t a moment where Robin Williams wasn’t part of my childhood. Aladdin was the first film I ever watched at the cinema. Mrs Doubtfire, Hook and my childhood favourite, Jumanji all got watched multiple times in my household – didn’t matter whether it was on TV or on a VHS tape, that man knew how to make me (and the world) laugh.
But he wasn’t just about the comedy. His versatility showed through in dramatic films like Good Will Hunting, Dead Poets Society, Insomnia and One Hour Photo. You only have to take a look at his IMDB page to know how much of an acting gift he had. It was that versatility that made me appreciate him even more, making him the complete actor.
In the strangest of coincidences, the night before it was announced I was watching an episode of Family Guy on BBC3. In it, Peter got struck by lightening and suddenly realised that everything he touched turned to Robin Williams. From Patch Adams to Good Morning Vietnam, Family Guy had it covered. I went to bed smiling.
That is what I will remember him by. A talent who brought so much joy to the world. One that will be greatly missed.
To Robin’s family and friends – my thoughts and prayers are with you.
To Robin – O’ Captain, my captain…sleep well.