It’s very rare that I’m moved to write something like this in the wake of a “celebrity” death. In this era of social media I find it’s all too easy to offer insincere condolences to someone who you probably never met, and you probably weren’t actually that much of a fan of anyway. However, current culture dictates that you should be seen, in the very open realm of the internet, mourning someone – whether sincere or not – that others genuinely held dear.
In the case of Robin Williams though, it feels different. It feels real – and it is genuine. Because even though this guy, this actor – this comedy GENIUS – wasn’t known to most of us personally, he was known to us through the films he made. Whether it was sat in front of a screen as a family, watching Hook, Jumanji, Aladdin or Mrs. Doutbfire. Or as a Film Studies student, learning to appreciate the brilliance of Dead Poets Society and Good Will Hunting. Even through commercial flops like Toys… this is someone who has made many of us laugh, and at points had us in tears – both through joy and sorrow.
There’s not a lot to say, and certainly nothing that others haven’t said better already, but we really have lost a true talent today. I can’t remember when exactly I fell in love with film, but if you were to ask me when I first fell in love with comedy? It was the first time I saw Robin Williams on the big screen.
Remember, no matter how dark things get, there are people everywhere in this world who are there to help: friends, loved ones, strangers. You are never truly alone. Depression is a horrible, dark, devastating thing. The fact that depression drove someone, who brought so much joy to so many of us, to take their own life, makes this death so much bitter. Sadly, it will not be the last talented life lost to this terrible illness.
Thank you for everything, Robin. I hope you’re at peace.
The Samaritans: 08457 90 90 90
CALM: Helpline for men at risk of suicide, or wishing to talk to someone – 0800 585 85 85
HOPELineUK: For young people up to the age of 35, 0800 068 41 41
Saneline: 08457 67 80 00
Mindinfoline: 0300 123 3393