I'm very sorry for the man and his family, and also his true fans.
I'm sure his heart was in the right place on many social issues, and he bravely struggled with his demons.
I certainly think his death was tragic, but I also found his acting annoying, and I already dread the altered TV schedules that will once again
rebroadcast all his movies ad nauseam.
In a sense he reminded me a bit of Krusty the Klown on The Simpsons
Doing the same thing over and over by popular demand must make one a bit jaded.
Perhaps it's like musicians who outgrow their audience, yet they must play the same hits over and over, without any space to grow as an artist.
His more serious stuff was largely ignored, and anywhere he could pull his super schmaltzy face was applauded.
OK, some of those movies had their moments, or they were good despite his schtick.
In that sense, I wondered whether there wasn't some tragedy in that gushing, over-sentimental clown-visage all along?
Could he bear doing it for the umpteenth time?
OK, that may be very politically incorrect right now.
As Francis Wheen points out in his chapter on celebrity deaths and virtually forced public mawkishness (which Williams' main characters knew how to
evoke), one can even become a pariah by just questioning mass public sentiments, and the infectious display of self-love as public grief.
(See: "Candles in the Wind". In: How Mambo-Jumbo Conquered the World: A short history of modern delusions
. Harper Perennial 2004. Pages
Of course nobody should troll a grieving family, or be gratuitously nasty, but almost every post on social media is paying homage to the same stuff. I
guess it would be insincere to question anyone's grief, but I cannot join it if I felt long before his death that his acting was annoying, and I had
the feeling even he was annoyed at times.
I guess grief as an act of duty, or going with the flow would be a bit like the Victorians, who splashed letters of condolences with water to simulate
I do feel touched by admitting what he meant to me, and that was an actor I grew up with, and whose movies helped to mark the years.
Even in being annoyed there are memories - arguments amongst friends about whether to really see Robin Williams pull his "Patch Adams face" again in a
new cinema movie, and call it hilarious.
They were mostly about the triumph of the "little man", and that mass appeal pandered to audiences who were not too critical, and it became formulaic,
since we were made to watch Dead Poets Society
in high school.
That movie had its merits, but the character just kept repeating in different costumes, unless he played the villain, which was rarely repeated.
I obviously don't know whether he really liked the often type-cast roles, or whether the repetitive expectations of the audience and industry actually
contributed to his depression.
Sadly, he was probably very talented with a wide repertoire.
I sometimes laughed at his stand-up comedy shows, where he openly discussed his issues.
I guess they had shock value, because they contrasted his expected movie roles, which were mostly almost cartoonishly cute or sentimental.
Even then I wondered about why addicts on the street are a distasteful, unsightly tragedy at best, but when rich stars do the same and joke about
their addictions it is suddenly funny, and people who otherwise mostly wouldn't throw a dime to an addict will pay to see it?
That debate could apply to many entertainers however, and not just Robin Williams.
I see a lot of other people also found him annoying long before his death, but strangely I don't think his critics were his problem.
I think the expectations to do the same thing repetitively must be an immense burden to a creative person.
I never wished him ill, and he wasn't a big issue if one could change the channel and not have to see Good Will Hunting
13-8-2014 by halfoldman because: (no reason given)