Dear Alan Rickman,
We found you pretty late in your career, and at first, we found you annoying. Why are you so mean to this little boy with shaggy hair and a scar on his head? Don’t you know what’s happened to him? Where he came from? What he’s been through to get there? You were rude, passive and judgmental to a poor little boy for the first few years we knew you, when we were about to be proven oh so very wrong.
This man had lost the love of his life within a single night, and was expected now on a daily basis to look her child in the eye and make us believe as though nothing had happened. When, in reality, Professor Severus Snape was perhaps one of the sole reasons Harry Potter survived his battle with Voldemort. The passive hatred we saw emanate from you was now understood, and your mission was respected and admired. Your sacrifice had fans silent in disbelief, in regret, in sorrow and in shame.
But lets talk about you for a minute. You, Alan Rickman, who via this character taught a generation the meaning of true sacrifice, of love, and of honor. Your history is far more diverse than the Harry Potter franchise, however we as millennials owe much of what we learned from this franchise to you. We must admit, however, you taught us a lot as Hans Gruber in Die Hard, the Sheriff of Nottingham in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, and even as Metatron in Dogma and Alexander Dane/Dr. Lazarus of Tev’Meck inGalaxy Quest.
In reading Daniel Radcliffe’s note about your passing, I am completely unsurprised at his description of your character. You treated your three child co-stars with the utmost respect and dignity that any child deserves, but many do not receive. You were humble (yet insanely talented), funny (especially in your signature flat double-bass voice), and charming (despite your characters having, as Hermione would say, “the emotional range of a teaspoon.”)
My heart is broken and my spirits weakened, but in my head I posses an unlimited access to your memory (and all 8 Harry Potter movies helps too.) I cannot sincerely thank you enough for everything you have done for my generation, and hopefully generations to come. You are gone, but your name is not, and your legacy will never be.
Thank you for everything. You’ll always be in our hearts.
Featured image credit: Google, labeled for reuse