It was back in 2005 that my girlfriend at the time introduced me to Robin Williams‘ comedy; we watched “Live on Broadway” on a rented DVD.
Up until that night I had only watched Williams in movies like Hook or Jumanji. His wit and energy brought both tears and laughter in my life, sometimes both at the same time. Of course I’m talking about Hook. I don’t think there is a single person in the whole world who can’t identify with the role he disappeared into in that movie; I believe there’s a Peter Pan in all of us, no matter how low or how high we are in our lives. And if you ever feel like nothing is working in your life, all you have to do is think a happy thought, and everything will get better. I promise.
Ms. Doubtfire was such a wonderful example of how far a father’s love can go. I watched it several times and every time I found in myself something different that resonated with the story and with his acting. I’ve heard people comparing it with Tootsie. Oh boy were they wrong. Tootsie is great, but other than the fact that it features a guy disguised as a woman, it’s a completely different movie. Might as well compare The Fast and the Furious with Gone in 60 Seconds because both of them have something to do with cars. There can be only one Ms. Doubtfire and she will always be Robin Williams.
I remember watching The Birdcage one night, and towards the end we saw this scene where all the “girls” from the cabaret walked in front of the camera. My girlfriend at the time asked her 16 year-old son: “can you guess which one of these people are not women”. It was hilarious to hear him go: “this one. And this one . And I think this one too” Took him a little while to realize that none of them were women. Too funny.
There’s something special about Robin Williams. I think (and feel free to disagree with me in the comments) that he came into our lives and took over some space, and that space will ALWAYS be his, and no one else will be able to take it. Of course, the same can be said about other personalities who have left this world, timely or not. But Robin filled that special place with a range of emotions no one else could even come close to covering. For me, he’s the rebellious comedian who went off the script in “Live on Broadway”, and he’s Ms. Doubtfire at the same time. To you, he might be Peter Pan or Alladin. It doesn’t matter what that space looks or feels like. What matters is that we look after it and cherish it. Because if he hadn’t given himself to the world the way he did, we would be a bit more hollow without it.
It’s so hard not to miss him.