So long Ziggy Stardust and Severus Snape


Bianca Salgado

David Bowie fans leave candles, bouquets of flowers, fan art and handwritten notes on his Hollywood Star located off Hollywood Boulevard and Sycamore Street. Bowie passed away on January 10 from liver cancer. Photo credit: Bianca Salgado

Karla Enriquez

The Thin White Duke sang his last song on Sunday, Jan. 10 and the actor best known for his role as Professor Snape, Alan Rickman passed away on Thursday, Jan. 14.

The English artist known as David Bowie passed away in Manhattan, New York City, NY, at the age of 69, while Rickman passed away in London, U.K. at age 69.

Both had been battling with cancer.

Bowie became known in the 60s but garnered much attention in the 70s for his brand of pop music and androgyny while Rickman gained notice for his movie roles and distinct voice.

For Bowie, “Space Oddity”, his second album put his name on the map while Rickman’s portrayal of villain Hans Gruber in “Die Hard” catapulted him to the forefront in the 80s.

The British musician was known for reinventing his image each time he’d release a new project.

Among his most notorious incarnations is Ziggy Stardust. Characterized by the multicolored lightning bolt on his face for the “Aladdin Zane” album cover.

For film buffs, Bowie was known as the Goblin King in the film “The Labyrinth,” and Rickman was immortalized as Professor Severus Snape in the Harry Potter series.

Regardless of their form, self-proclaimed outsiders have listed Bowie as an inspiration and hero, whereas millennials hail Rickman as an integral part of their childhood.

Music professor Jim Simmons stated, “So many contemporary artists have borrowed or been influenced by Bowie, way too many to name.

“Madonna, Peter Gabriel (who was a contemporary of Bowie’s), Kiss, even Mick Jagger began wearing makeup after Bowie.”

Megan Kim, political science major, also believes Bowie directly impacted other musicians’ and their style.

“You see Lady Gaga dressed funky or fashion shows […] and if you think about it David Bowie started that in the 70s.

“He was starting a trend and it trickled down and more people are influenced by that” Kim said.

Simmons believes Bowie’s legacy is one of an artist who did not compromise on his vision in order to be successful.

“He was a chameleon in his stage personas, adventurous in his style, and a great showman onstage. He opened a lot of doors as far as androgyny, sci-fi characters and visuals both onstage and in video” he said.

Simmons acknowledges that Bowie was far ahead of the curve for his time.

“I remember going to see him back in ’73. I believe it was the “Aladdin Sane” tour and it was the first time I saw most of the audience wearing either Ziggy or the lightning bolt make up to his show” Simmons said.

According to Simmons, glam rock became cool, so many bands followed after him. Bowie opened the door to many of the styles we have now.

On Rickman, Kim stated, “It’s heartbreaking that Alan Rickman passed away because he is my childhood.”

Kim expressed that it’s Snape, from Harry Potter, and it was heartbreaking that cancer killed them both.

David Padilla, undecided major expressed, “I watched Harry Potter a few times, I think a lot of people are sad but they’ll get over it.”

Since the news of both figure’s death hit public knowledge, there has been public demonstrations of grief for Rickman. The voices of millennials who grew up watching Harry Potter films are the loudest.