So I think it’s safe to say that by now we’ve all seen this:
Complete with the rip-my-heart-out-and-stomp-on-it caption: “Genie, you’re free.”
Hell, I shared it myself the minute I saw it — To me, it perfectly summed up the way most of us felt when we heard Robin Williams had died: Something magical had gone out of our world.
Now, I’m seeing site after site after site criticizing this image as glorifying/glamorizing/rationalizing suicide and I have just two words for those people:
Fuck you SO hard. That image DOES NOT in any way make suicide into a “happy ending” (as the articles from such outlets as “The Washington Post” and “The Independent” contend). It expresses our collective sorrow at the passing of an iconic film and comedy legend, who happens to have provided the voice for the Genie.
And if you REALLY want to get all nit-picky, as those articles and others do, then let’s dance: Do NOT go off on a tangent about how the starry sky visible in the background of some of the versions makes suicide seem like a good and/or desirable outcome. SERIOUSLY? Dude, they’re animation stills from a movie that came out YEARS ago, there’s no sinister subtext. If that’s really all you’ve got to back up your argument, then get the fuck over yourself.
I can only speak as one specific fan who found that this picture and the accompanying quote perfectly expressed my feelings of sorrow and loss over a man who struggled with depression and addiction throughout his life. I have been there. I have looked at that particular “Exit” door and chosen not to open it — BUT I UNDERSTAND THE FEELINGS THAT WOULD MAKE SOMEONE PULL THAT HANDLE. So, regardless of how Robin Williams made his own personal “exit,” one thing is for certain: He’s done with all that pain now. HE’S FUCKING FREE.
Second star to the right, Robin, and straight on until morning.