Kenneth Turan, Robin Williams’ rise no surprise to a writer dazzled by unknown comic

Robin Williams in 1978

…He took on different characters with different accents, roamed to all kinds of locations, both physical and metaphysical, made lightning-fast comic connections in time and space that were at once hysterically funny and like nothing I had ever experienced before. It was no surprise people in the know were buzzing about Robin Williams, no surprise at all.

After the show Williams and I had a quick bite in a bustling place on the Strip called the Copper Kettle. It was jammed with people, and absolutely no one cared or even looked up when he walked into the room. How are you going to handle it, I asked him, when your show airs and everyone knows your name, when you won’t be able to walk into a place like this without causing a firestorm.

Oh no, Williams insisted, stubbornly — or perhaps nervously, at this point I can’t be sure — refusing to acknowledge the tsunami everyone around him knew was headed his way. That’s not going to happen, he said, confidently shaking his head, nothing like that is ever going to happen…

The Los Angeles Times


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