Keith Robinson 1955 – 2017
June 16th, 2017
How do you write about a man so full of life and energy, filled with a never-ending passion and joy, whose time has now come to an abrupt end? If you had the pleasure of meeting our very own Keith Robinson, you understand how he made it seem like every day was Christmas morning. Which made sense, considering that the man looked and acted exactly like Santa Claus.
In 1985, Keith created the weekly comic strip “Making It,” which ran in 50 newspapers in the United States and Canada, led to three book collections and a Sega Genesis video game (“Normy’s Beach Babe-O-Rama,” 1994). The comic strip was inspired by his experiences as a lifelong resident of Manhattan Beach, a city he loved and that celebrated in his work. His cartoons and illustrations were also featured in Playboy, Cat Fancy, and Dog Fancy, Easy Reader, as well as in gift books. “Making It” is still featured on GoComics.com. But that’s just a fraction of what Keith is known for.
A pioneer in the video game industry, Keith was part of an elite group of programmers known as the “Blue Sky Rangers” brought on by Mattel Electronics in 1981 to create games for its Intellivision console. Though the division eventually folded, in 1997 Keith and another former Mattel programmer, Stephen Roney, obtained the rights to Intellivision and its games. They founded Intellivision Productions, Inc., and licensed the games for play on recent and current platforms including Windows, Mac, PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube, DS and iPhone through publishing partners Activision, THQ, VH1, Microsoft and others. As President of the company, Keith earned the nickname of “Mr. Intellivision.” Keith’s passion and love of his products was evident, and was known for his enthusiasm, kindness, and great conversations at comic and gaming conventions. He single-handedly kept the Intellivision brand alive, introducing it to a new generation of fans.
Keith is survived by his father, Norman, 90, and his stepmother Sally. Keith lived for the NCS Reuben Awards, and has said that the “Reubens high” would last for months afterwards. He loved the beach, conversations with friends and fans, being subjected to whatever ridiculous gag Tom Gammill asked of him for NCS Reuben Awards videos, drawing for charity, and pastrami sandwiches. Life as we know it will never be the same without his hearty laughter, big smiles, and even bigger heart. You were truly one-of-a-kind, Keith, and you will be missed more than you’ll ever know.
– Chari Pere