Robin Williams passed away, and while this is a blog about music, not movies, I felt like I needed to commemorate him on here in my own way, somehow. As a Millennial, he was a big part of my childhood. Mrs. Doubtfire, FernGully: The Last Rainforest, Jumanji, and, one of my favorites, Aladdin.
Aladdin is my absolute favorite Disney movie. I loved the animated TV series too (even if Williams wasn’t in it due to an ugly dispute with Disney). I like to see the Aladdin show at Disney California Adventure whenever I get the chance (something I highly recommend for anyone who’s never seen it). I’m still eagerly awaiting for the big time Aladdin musical (currently on Broadway) to go on tour and make its way here to LA. I had the movie on VHS, of course. I’m pretty sure I even had a flip-book that was the “Friend Like Me” sequence where Genie is dancing with his own pair of hands. Oh, and I most definitely had the soundtrack. The CD case is sadly broken into two pieces, but I still have it! Completely uncensored, I might add.
I realize now that even when it was just his voice, Robin Williams had a way of making you smile. “Friend Like Me” is one of the funnest Disney songs ever. It’s nearly impossible for me to hear this song and not sing along. Of course, part of that credit goes to the late and great Howard Ashman. But I can’t imagine anyone besides Williams bringing his words to life. There’s such a warmth to his voice, like a funny uncle who knows just how to make you feel loved and special. I think he was every Millennial’s favorite funny uncle-by-proxy. He was a professional clown, without the make-up and red rubber nose. A real-life cartoon character.
I wish I could think of more to say. The sudden announcement of Robin Williams’s passing just kind of took the wind out of my sails. I feel like I’ve said all I can say for now, though I’m sure I’ll be able to think of more later. Great man, great actor, great voice, great song. He will be missed.