Thoughts and observations on Green Arrow, classical liberalism, freedom, comic books and matters of social justice.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Heath Ledger Dies


Cynicism is easy. Many will say, and have already begun saying, it's just the life of another rich, spoiled drug addict. To mourn him is tantamount to mourning any other "crackhead," the nameless, faceless nobodies who line the morgues all over the world. Those cases of overdose usually elicit only derision, why should this guy be any different?

Truth is, had Ledger not been cast as the Joker in the Dark Knight I probably wouldn't mention him; he would be another name to add to Hollywood's Greatest Misses; John Belushi, River Phoenix, Chris Farley, etc. There's even a chance I'd echo the thoughts above, Lord knows I've been critical of the mess Britney Spears has made of her life. However, I am a comic book fan and I have seen the Dark Knight trailer and like most was bowled over by Ledger's take on comic books' greatest villain.

I suppose what separates Ledger from the nameless overdoses is talent and potential, Ledger had both and with them he had succeeded. He was a father, which adds greatly to the tragedy; I cannot fathom losing a lifetime with my children. And unlike Spears, this was not a life marked with catastrophe, at least not in the public square.

I wonder how this will affect the movie. I suspect it will be a far more chilling and somber experience, not unlike Brandon Lee's final performance in "The Crow." Almost certainly this will increase the film's revenue, it's all a part of humanity's darker side. People will want to see someone's last act on the screen.

How will it feel seeing those action figures in the stores, the pictures on the merchandising? There's a part of me that's ashamed that I'm glad they finished filming before he died. At least Ledger will have this one finished piece, I hope it's as good as it seems. Either way, watching Ledger parade across the screen adorned in ghostly white face paint will be unsettling.

May his family and his soul find peace in God.

1 comment:

  1. I do not see this mess as more tragic than Britney's. Britney is a mother of two children. She has spent most of her life being exploited sexually by everyone beginning with her own family. Perhaps as a man you cannot appreciate the damage done to a women's spirit when she has endured this?

    It could be said that Heath had an easier go of it with his family, a child he was not fully responsible for (but instead got to be part-time daddy), talent and opportunity. He had also not been under the microscope of public scrutiny the way Britney has and yet he succumbed to his addiction.

    I find her situation infinitely more tragic. There is no rest for her. Heath has found the easy way out. He has left his child, and abandoned the fight for his life. Britney while doing a miserable job is still in the game.

    She may not have the talent that Heath was blessed with, she likely has much less in the way of the love and support that he was blessed with as well. But she has what he does not now...hope. As long as there is breath in our body there is hope to turn it all around.

    We can pray for Heath's soul now and we should, but we should also pray for Britney and all the lost young women like who are not in the public eye but who are mothers. Too many crumble under the cynicism you mention and in such a state find no hope. Women like these abandon their children, fail them, abuse them or worse kill them in the womb.

    I have no cynicism for Heath, I have nothing but regret for him. I have no cynicism for Britney either, for her I have nothing but prayers, sympathy and hope.

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