We’ve Lost Snape, Gruber And Dane All At Once (RIP, Alan Rickman)
SportsGrid takes a humorous look at sports stories, but we have been known to branch out. We'll generally talk about most viral groin-shot videos (ouch!), pornography (duh), and anything related to the generally sports-free Star Wars (okay, the Bunta Eve Classic was a lot like NASCAR and they do do a lot of fencing...). So when I saw the news about Alan Rickman's death this morning, I tried to think of a way to justify writing about it. I came up with two answers. First, from Die Hard:
You heard the word "quarterback," right? Also, this kinda from Harry Potter:
That's right, Quidditch is a real sport (why has no one made a Quidditch shirt that says "Snitches Get Stitches" on the back?).
While he was rarely a leading man, Rickman was usually the performer who made the movie memorable. For example, it goes without saying (but I'll say it) that Hans Gruber was the best villain in any action film. In fact, he was so good he MADE Bruce Willis's career. Okay, we can forgive him for that, but honestly, Willis owed him an annual Christmas present for lines delivered like this:
And in the Harry Potter movies, he gave what could have been a one-dimensional villain such depth that we hated him for seven movies and then mourned his death in the eighth. But to me, his real tour de force performance was as Alexander Dane, the Shakespearean actor doomed to sci-fi convention hell for his popular performance in what should have been a kids show (sound familiar?). Perhaps the greatest line ever uttered in the history of film might have been this one:
You can just see his soul evaporating in front of you. Everyone had their own Alan Rickman impersonation (I know I do), and he got so much out of delivering lines with that deep bass voice and a tongue that never once touched his teeth. The best review of his acting ability was likely this oft-quoted line from Cracked.com:
Alan Rickman can pack so much tragedy, rage, injustice and disgust into a single line that you'd swear it was a McRib.
Rickman's death really has created a hole. Add it to David Bowie's passing, and it's just been a shit week for my generation (site stats show I'm probably about a quarter century older than you). In fact, go back to Robin Williams' death in August 2014, and it's been an awful 18 months as my heroes are passing before my eyes. If you told me that a second Mt. Rushmore was being chiseled with the likenesses of Bowie, Williams, Rickman and Leonard Nimoy, I'd hand over my Paypal info and say "Take what you need." I've stayed away from the internet most of today because I don't think I can take another loss, but I know they're going to keep coming.
— The Independent (@Independent) January 14, 2016
But, on the happier side, even though we've lost them, we can keep enjoying them. I've been listening to Bowie's "Darkstar" nonstop in the car, and I plan to watch at least "Die Hard" tonight. So to Williams, Nimoy, Bowie and Rickman, I say "Thanks for the memories, and Yippe-ki-yay Mudder-fuckers!"
Photo via Getty
David Young has been a columnist for ESPN and Sports Illustrated and thinks 2016 has a lot to answer for already.
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