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Robin Williams' TV appearances were always extra special

As sad as the news of Robin Williams' death was Monday, it was his many TV appearances, especially his live ones, that made so many people happy and will be never be forgotten. He first came to public attention on "Happy Days" where he made his first appearance as the kooky alien Mork (from Ork) being set up for a date with Laverne DiFazio (Penny Marshall).

Robin Williams
Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

Mork from Ork became his ticket to a successful TV series, "Mork & Mindy," where his improvisational comedy style often showed up in the series dialogue. He later was instrumental in bringing in a man who was his big comic influence, Jonathan Winters, into the cast. Williams and co-star Pam Dawber recently reunited on Williams' recent series, "The Crazy Ones."

But it was his live appearances that were his real genius. On his first of his many appearances on "The Tonight Show With Johnny Carson," his wild comments had the audience in stitches. He was completely unpredictable. Williams and Winters also appeared together on an unforgettable "Tonight Show With Johnny Carson" episode. Viewers (and on-air talent) never knew what he would say. That worked perfectly on a memorable episode of the improvisation comedy show "Whose Life Is It Anyway?" hosted by Drew Carey.

Unleashed on Broadway in an HBO special, he was brilliant. He left no subject untouched, including religion and sex. In 2009, HBO broadcast the comedy special "Weapons of Self-Destruction." Through tapes likes these, his humor will live on. His HBO specials and such great movies like "Dead Poets Society," "Good Morning Vietnam" "Hook," Walt Disney's "Alladin" and "Mrs. Doubtfire" are on DVD.

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