Robin Williams

‘Being a comedian is not a psychiatric condition’: John Mulaney honors Robin Williams in Netflix special

Netflix’s new streaming comedy special “The Hall: Honoring the Greats of Stand-Up” premiered yesterday, featuring an A-list lineup of comedians inducting a group of legendary comedians into a new comedy hall of fame at the National Comedy Center in Jamestown, New York.

The comics on the receiving end of the short tribute sets included George Carlin, Joan Rivers, Richard Pryor and Robin Williams, who was inducted by John Mulaney. Other comedians doing the inducting included Jon Stewart, Chelsea Handler and Dave Chappelle.

Mulaney began his set by declaring what sets the beloved San Francisco comic apart from his peers.

“There is no footage of Robin Williams phoning it in. There exists no recorded moment when he wasn’t giving his all,” Mulaney said, praising how Williams was equally dedicated to his charity work as to performances at marquee venues. He went on to comment on some of his movie highlights, like the first classroom scene in “Good Morning, Vietnam,” as well as smaller roles in films like “Nine Months.” He then called “The Fisher King” the best work on film ever by a comedic actor.

Next, Mulaney debunked a common myth about great comedy coming from a place of inner darkness.

“Being a comedian is not a psychiatric condition. Are many of us also very f—ked up, myself included? Yes. But whatever. There are depressed people who don’t even have the decency to be great comedians, why don’t you pick on them for a change?”

But perhaps the most emotional moment came when he read a note from Robin’s daughter, Zelda Williams.

“In my eyes, so much of what Dad wanted to do was to brighten people’s lives. Especially those he thought may need it the most. In that way, I think his drive had much less to do with his own sadness, and much more to do with lifting the world’s.”

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