Robin Williams Stories Part 1

A look at Robin Williams as he went from a nobody to Mork to transitioning into being a more serious Garp….and how much Robin spoke lovingly about his wife in those days.

Today’s episode comes from a great suggestion from listener Daniel Richie. He was on the Facebook group, which is daily comedy news podcast group. And said, you mentioned you never got a chance to talk about Robin Williams when he died, just to catch everybody up. I was between gigs when Robin died. I had previous to that.

I’d been running comedy for Sirius XM, and I’m really used to doing tributes when comedians pass away and I didn’t have any. And they never podcast. I didn’t have the show on live by live. So I had nothing to do other than sit home and be like, Hmm, Robin Williams died. So Daniel said, since you didn’t get a chance to talk about Robin Williams and he died, how about a filler episode?

Robin Williams, tribute I’ll even buy you a coffee while you do it. He’s in to buy me a slash daily comedy news, much appreciated. So here you go. This is going to be at least a two-parter. Here is part one.

Much thanks to the Robin Williams fan site. They have a great archive. That site is Robin DOT’s Williams dot nets, Robin dot Williams dot. And I found a bunch of old articles and one thing to pay attention to here. Now, I actually prepped for this episode for change as you listen, it’s so sad because you hear Robin talking about his first wife and then a second wife, and you hear the love and we all know how the story turned out.

If you don’t spoilers,

they get divorced.

So it’s kind of sad as you read through this first one is from March 12th, 1979, time magazine, the articles called Manock of ORC Robin Williams, Five months ago, Robin Williams was what Hollywood likes to call a complete nobody, a struggling comic. He had passed virtually unnoticed through improvisational clubs and to flop TV series, the revived Laugh-In and the Richard Pryor show.

You would think both of those ideas would work right then last fall, ABC unveiled its new offerings. Robin Williams, 26 years old was given the lead in Mork and.

The program is fundamentally a retread of such tired sitcoms as my favorite Martian and be witched. Hadn’t thought about that. That’s dead on. Mark has the innocence and enthusiasm of a toddler discovering the world, but he’s one toddler who can talk artless gullible and Dearing. He lets the audience in on every transparent thought that worlds through his head, his rambling is wildly unpredictable in part because more talks not only to himself, but to three or four parts of himself and they talk back children.

Because his repertoire of work language can be mimicked. Endlessly Morkes nano nano has replaced the Fonds as a, as the catchword of the nation’s kids. Now I was a kid at that time. I disagree Fonz. Was it? I mean, we watched Mork and Mindy, but we weren’t walking around going nano, nano, sorry.

Sorry, time magazine from 40 years ago, I disagree.

It could be argued that Williams landed on the right role, the rights. But Williamson, not so much lucky as talented in a standup nightclub act, which he does for free to keep in touch with live audiences and to try new material. He displays a range that encompasses Jonathan Winters, Danny K, Steve Martin and Daffy duck.

Now remember in 1979, Steve Martin is a huge comedy star. Actually Daffy duck was a bigger star back in 1979 as well. They’ll always wearing the same costume, baggy pants, loud shirts, suspenders. He whips in and out of a multitude of comic characterizations. He can mimic the cadences of Shakespeare, many foreign languages and Arcan animals, various machines.

His act includes a redneck used car salesman, a Russian comic gay director. And it’s, touchingly mad at grandpa.

Mark first appeared when Robin played them on happy days and a one-shot the episode was so big. They created the spinoff.

Now that is famous. Robin Williams tries to live in the same and casual way. He and wife, Valerie, still like to practice yoga, play back eminent, chess, ski surf, and drive around LA. For the fun of it. Privacy is becoming increasingly elusive. The other day. He was rollerskating in Venice, a funky fashionable section of the city where people like to walk around on wheels.

He coasted into a phone booth to make a call. Remember that. Yeah, that was the thing. But he was quickly surrounded by fans peeking through the glass. He said, I felt like I was in the San Diego zoo.

Robin finds TV’s reading struggles, frightening this season. He became fascinated by a short-lived NBC sitcom called who’s watching the kids. He said, I saw its birth and death. I watched people fight for it.

It’s strange for me to know that I’m being used to cut the guts out of other new shows.

It’s got a five-year contract to play more, but he’s moving beyond TV. A comedy album is on the way and next year he’ll star in the movie pop by William’s hopes. Five seats is Mork will not be too much. He says, if you find yourself stiffening up and not taking chances, then you become a situation.

Comedy comedian

what’s not going to suffer is his bank account. He makes $15,000 per episode in 1979 money. He and Valerie have bought an eight room house in Topanga canyon.

However, he hasn’t bought a Mercedes or rolls. He bought a 1966 land Rover. He says, I can’t deal with new cars. I look at car that’s like me. You never know what’s going to happen. Next

people magazine, October 29th, 1979. The article living with Mork.

Subheading Robin Williams may put on the dog, but his wife keeps him on. Terrafirma see, this is the sad part I told you about. Uh, so melancholy looking back at this Robin said it’s not the work, but the social life that drain me, I was bordering on exhaustion. I got frenetic. I scared myself. There was no time to recover.

No time to go home and say, screw you to a wall. I was starting to go through the roof. You have to say no where else you’d go slowly. Bozo.

None of TV’s breakthrough comedies from the honeymooners to on the family had ever been so dominated by 100 top banana. The previously small time comic suddenly could sell out the Copa or the universal amphitheater in the blink of a blame. Nice job. His very first LP reality. What a concept when platinum.

Paramount’s item up in a $3 million plus five-year contract. It became a national craze. William said it was so much fun my golden age, but a crazy time of nonstop work and play left. Robin Williams drained. He would often leave the Mork set and head straight to the comedy store. We played free shows.

Word began to circulate that his marriage to modern dancer, Valerie Velardi was disintegrating.

The rumors peak this summer with Robin reportedly with model Molly Madden. Well, Valerie took off a, for a few weeks solo in Italy, the gossips stung, Valerie said the rumors are completely false. The press was like a big fly buzzing around the print. Those things cause it sells it’s scary. A long time family, friend, actor, Stan Wilson says those false reports of philandering her heart on Valerie.

When it comes to women, they’ve always like Robin.

He’s a flirt on set swatting, Pam daubers bottom or ogling the ever present lovelies. Valerie says, do I get jealous? There are some people in the world who belong to everyone. Of course, most of them are responding to Robin’s talent or to mark. I love Robin, the person he’s a joy to live with.

When the two meet, they often run toward each other in slow motion to embrace. Robin says she’s very special, basically in artistic gutsy. Down-home.

The lifestyle has changed. Surprising little since mark, they move from the rented beach apartment to a modest under $200,000 canyon home. Robin describes the house as rustic bordering on funk. His old Austin Healey was stolen. So he bought a silver BMW.

He had to give up his trademark rainbow suspenders. Cause he was recognized too easily. Kids would ask him to supermarkets. We take me back to space with you. Yeah. And I don’t know if kids would actually do that, but Moritz wardrobe was based on a star zone and he still buys baggy pants and wine shirts at used clothing stores in LA.

He never carries money and is constantly barring from. One associate says it has nothing to do with cheapness. He just doesn’t know anything about money or time he never wears a watch. And he’s always late.

He misses calls from old friends because they don’t want to pimp you for anything. So he calls them friends, insulate you from the outside, peel away. The crest that gets on you like a ship that’s. Some of his comedy store, colleagues accused him of stealing their material. But Robin says, there’s no truth in it.

Those are all my friends and I don’t want to bad mouth. Any of them, comedian Robert said, I think it’s taken things, but he transcends his material.

Weekends or his time to sleep and hang around the house. My sanctuary. He bought, he serves, he runs, he cleans the parrot cage. He reads science fiction or books on Albert Einstein. His hero.

Robin says when you’re creating, you just become a vehicle. It seems to come from a divine source. A sense of the wonder of God. A member of his management staff said Robin Williams did not become a lunatic. When he became a star, he started off a lunatic. From 1981, New York magazine writes Mork meets gorp.

It’s near midnight at catch a rising star on first avenue in 77th street, New York city. The audience laughs uproariously as this prize, guests has dropped in at the club to perform who would have expected to luck out with Robin Williams. Here he is.

After a hard day, trying to prove he can be a dramatic actor on the set of the world. According to Garp, Robin Williams, craves the change of pace. He hungers for the challenge, the thrill and the tension of living on the edge of the atmosphere. He knows best is mine humming his nerve endings exposes. He serves up some risky new material.

The audience is his face.

one minute. Robin Williams is cavorting in an androgynous black wig with a polka dot Vale. The next he’s the United nations of accented voices. He grabs his crotch and talks to it. Contorts his elastic face through an album of character chairs and fires off a barrage of gags cocaine is God’s way of saying you’re making too much money.

It’s funny to see that in prince, because that’s such a famous Robin Williams quote here. 40 years later, I want to be in a film called altered suits. It’s about a Jewish man. It takes asset and everything fits a young woman calls out. Did you ever make it with Mindy? He shoots back girl. That’s not real.

That’s television. You think Walter Cronkite made it with.

That’s some real 1981 material there that joke

sitting unobtrusively at the table is William’s wife, Valerie velocities taping his ax so they can analyze it later and learn. Clubs.

She says Robin’s unique. I like his mind. He always brings a new dimension, every situation. So life has never dealt with him. He’s so funny. I it’s hard to stay mad at him.

The author changes modes here, writing west 57th street it’s evening three hours before Robin Williams stint to catch a rising star he’s mild mannered and inconspicuously dressed.

No Rube get-ups no rainbow suspenders. He’s wearing khaki pants and a blue horizontally striped sport shirt. He talks softly in an odd unidentifiable Baroque, sometimes a little more than a. A psychiatrist once told him he talks like that to force people to lean toward him. Robin said, I kind of make people ask what’s.

He saying, once he gets going, he speaks thoughtfully on a variety of topics. He still has two seasons to go on Mork and Mindy. He now reportedly earns more than $50,000 per episode, but there’s been a slump in the ratings. Williams said that was kind of depressing at first. Cause I took it on myself personally thinking, oh God, I’m not funny.

At least I realized it was a combination of the other things. They were screwing around with the schedule, changing the times a lot, every other night. And parents got angry when we started doing all the sexploitation shows written specifically to get little girls running around in tight outfits and me dressing in drag.

They lost a lot of people who used to watch with their kids. And some people thought we were heavy handed talking about things like euthanasia. We, that one show about the robot being humble. It’s not about to quit. I still love doing the shows and proud to do them. It hasn’t stopped being fun. Became a day job.

Yet five years is perfect. After that, it will be kind of rough. The single hardest thing to do is try to keep the same energy and creativity.

Keisha wondering, and I was Morgan. Only went four seasons

at the beginning of the fourth season, Mork and Mindy got married and Jonathan Winters, one of William’s idols was brought in as their child mirth. I hated that whole plot because of the different mark laid an egg, which grew in hatch into the much older winters

It had previously been explained that Orkins age backwards explaining Mertz appearance, and that of his teacher who was played by an 11 year old actress, awful after four seasons in 95 episodes, Mork and Mindy was canceled in the summer of 1982. The show ended at 60th place at seasons.

Robin said, I have to try new things like Garp, push myself out, you know, the next chance. Cause my greatest. Is it becoming mediocre, just falling back into the old Bret and turning out the same old stuff without really finding anything new. That’s also true for life. Just try not to get stuck. This fear of falling back, sinking back into myself.

His relationship with his wife has been a stabilizer

in the beginning. There were no managers, no press people, just the two of us. She was important. Just being there and going to clubs with me, hanging out with me. Now we’ve gone beyond that into another phase. It’s sheer emotional. It’s nice to come home to somebody who knows. I could sit down and not say anything.

Sometimes it passed out the other day. I was wrestling for 13 hours. I couldn’t say anything. When I got back, I don’t have to entertain or do anything. She understands. I love her so much. I look at her sometimes and feel very peaceful. We’ve been through crazy things, the wild and wooly times now it’s like, look, lands.

Garp has kicked off something in me, the really simple things, please me now, I like taking long walks, being outside, just doing things with friends more than it did before. It’s wonderful. Before I had to go out and party perform and always be on now I’m content to listen and sit back

December, 1981. It’s dinner time, Robin Williams, a vegetarian who does eat fish suggests a Japanese red.

The place doesn’t have Saki, no Saki. The whole point of this is Saki. We try another place at the sushi. The conversation starts focusing on issues beyond acting and career. This is 1981. Listen to this from 40 years ago, Robin Williams said I recently signed a petition to ban handguns.

I’m also afraid of cutting programs that benefit people in order to beef up the defense budget in San Francisco alone, and some parts of the neighborhood where I used to do benefits. They’re not going to have a lot of programs that they desperately need. And I think there’s going to be a lot of street violence.

He’s also worried about the weapons buildup, the capacity to destroy us all is already there. And the other things, the chemical warfare, the germ warfare, those are more insidious because there’ll be used even before the bombs. The Russians are stockpiling. We stockpile, they stockpile

also there’s the proliferation of terrorism. That’s terrifying.

That’s part one of Robin Williams stories. Check the feed because you will find part two of Robin Williams stories tomorrow. Follow the show on apple podcast, Google podcast, Spotify, wherever you get your shows. See tomorrow.

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