I have previously talked about writing a creative piece on the matter, and I felt I should explore the topic further, now that I have committed to it. I also feel I need to talk about it, if only to reassure myself I am doing the right thing.
As we all no doubt know, Alan Rickman and David Bowie have died. There is a lot of interesting details with them, but I also want to point out that a number of rock stars and actors have died during the same period,at about the same age that Rickman and Bowie. I also want to point out that there are a number of people suspicious of the whole affair, and are unconvinced of the pair’s demise, particularly when you have to consider the television appearance of a guy who looks uncannily like Bowie.
I want to highlight one essential fact: If they are still alive, then the identities are certainly dead. So, it matters not what has happened, we can say that they have passed away.
Alan Rickman is something of a disappointment to me, as I have certainly enjoyed his performances over the years. Amazing to think that the film Die Hard was his first major role, in both television and film. Before then, he had only a few minor roles. From there, he has had a career that has spanned decades, and covered a range of categories. He had a distinctive voice, and deliverance… It is hard to write about him, strange as it may seem. I am finding myself tearing up a little. No matter what may or may not come out about him, we certainly have lost a great actor. I want to share this quote, something he said, and I feel it tells us a lot about him:
“When I am eighty years old and sitting in my rocking chair, I’ll be reading Harry Potter. And my family will say to me ‘After all this time?’ And I’ll reply ‘Always.’ “
So, why write about him?
I’ll get on to Bowie in a moment, because there is a lot more interesting stuff I can say about him. But since I am now part of a writing group, I now have a homework to complete. And I need to include rainbows and current news into the piece. So, since I am constantly drawn to the supernatural, and horror, I have decided that a nightmare involving the two. Having them appear as animated corpses, along with other visual elements has proven a good starting point. And having Rickman as Snape – possibly his most iconic character – is a suitable homage to him, I feel. Moreover, at some point we will have to write about them, and use them creatively, even though they are dead. I am certain that Alan Rickman wouldn’t mind me doing so, particularly as I have just gone on record as saying he was accomplished, and I feel he had a powerful intellect, and a tenderness to him. I already used him as a basis for a character back in 2013, to create a hero that was so well hidden, the revelation that he was a good guy helping others was a shock to the few who have so far read the text.
As for Bowie…
Well, his real name was David Jones, and when he started off his music career, was going under the name “Davey Jones.” However, he discovered that a band called The Monkees had gotten famous, and had a member calling himself “Davey Jones” as well. So, he changed his stage name, calling himself after the famous knife, to make himself sound more dangerous and mysterious. Similar surrounds his ‘bisexuality.’ He admitted in the nineties that he had said he was bisexual to garner attention, and to cultivate a mysterious image about him.
One thing that is unmistakable is the occult connections Bowie has. Lyrics about the Golden Dawn, being in Crowley’s uniform, talking about the Kaballah… There is a huge amount of symbolism in his work, and he clearly had a fascination with the occult, even if he didn’t practice it. (I have no certainty he ever practised.) In fact, I noted the music Blackstar when it had first come out. It took three attempts for me to watch it over two weeks. There is such an overload of occultism and symbolism in the ten minutes long video that I was on overload, and was on some levels left traumatised by it. Lots of people have commented on it, and I’m not wanting to do a massive breakdown of the video. But if nothing else, there is a huge amount of visual imagery an detail crammed into it, and can be used as inspiration for many, many pieces of literature.
The video Lazarus is also filled with symbolism. Going in and out of that closet, the shadow rabbit that appears when his arms are outstretched and in bed, the dark blue with silver stripe astral travel suit he also wore in the seventies… again, there is quite a bit in there. And I have a sneaky feeling that this was intended, that we carry on talking about him for many, many years to come.
So, I will finish that piece, and go over it a couple of times, to make sure it is right, and respectful. And hopefully is read by them somewhere, somehow, and is enjoyed.