He Felt Dead Inside
Two and a Half Men is not a show that I regularly watch. I’ve maybe seen three episodes, if that. I like Jon Cryer. I like the kid on there, Angus Whatisface. I absolutely adore Conchata Ferrell and Holland Taylor. I think Charlie Sheen, undoubtedly, is a gifted actor. If you can inherit the acting gene, then he obviously got it from his dad. But Charlie Sheen is a tool. How much of his being a tool is genuinely Charlie and how much is his addiction? I don’t know. But he’s a tool just the same.
I’m not sure how he became a tool. His parents seem like such nice Catholic folks. His brother Emilio seems to have his head screwed on straight and his priorities right, and by all accounts is a nice guy. Even exes Demi Moore (they were engaged) and Paula Abdul never have anything mean to say about him and maintain friendships with him. So, what the hell happened to Charlie?
First, Charlie got caught partying in a New York City hotel room with a porn star who locked herself in the closet, while Denise Richards and his two young daughters were in the room next door. In a separate incident months later, Charlie had the ambulance called to his house and had to be hospitalized, for what the actor said was a hernia, but what many people suspect was a bout of pancreatitis. The producers of Two and a Half Men, and the network that it’s on, CBS, decided to enforce a sort of suspension in order for him to get his act together.
They gave him time to go to rehab and sort himself out. This is the second time he’s been given time to go to rehab in less than two years. The first was when he got probation for allegedly physically attacking his wife, while under the influence.
This has created some controversy, since it’s contended that the crew of his show are hurting while they miss the salaries they would normally receive, waiting for Charlie to get his act together. Charlie maintains that he doesn’t have a problem. He likes to party. He has the money to do so, and he shows up on time with his lines learned and delivers a good performance. He doesn’t think there’s any need to shut down the show, and he’s offered some of his own money in order to make up for the loss of salary on the part of the show’s crewmembers. So, maybe he’s not a big tool, just a little one. We could ask any hooker in L.A. and probably find out.
You know who else is a tool? Chuck Lorre. And CBS. Here’s the bottom line, guys. Shit or get off the pot. Charlie Sheen is an addict. Charlie Sheen is hurting himself more than he’s hurting anyone else. Here are the choices: either enforce sobriety and start testing him every day and requiring that he pass the pee test, and then fire his ass if he doesn’t, or continue to enable his behavior and look the other way.
It wouldn’t be the first time that an addict was placated, either in Hollywood or in real life. Sometimes people are so good at what they do that companies decide it’s worth putting up with a few hidden bottles around the office. I remember a job I had in college where one of my coworkers always smelled of alcohol, frequently took two and three hour lunches at the track, hid bottles of liquor in his desk drawers and the ceiling panels, and we all looked the other way and pretended not to see. Charlie Sheen is no different.
The available choices are clear. Take the high ground and say that you won’t put up with this self-destructive behavior, and that if he wants to work for the money that, if nothing else, buys his drugs, he’s going to have to be sober while he’s working. Or take the low road like you’ve been doing for the past eight years.
Let’s face it. Is there anyone on God’s green earth that doesn’t know what they’re getting into with Charlie Sheen…ahead of time? And do we honestly think that these people really didn’t know anything was going on with him?
There is no middle ground of a few weeks off for “home rehab.” This is bullshit. Charlie doesn’t think he has a problem, and giving him a few weeks off isn’t going to solve that dilemma.
You know what? If Charlie Sheen is actually capable of passing pee tests while the show is shooting and then partying during the off season, I would almost agree with him that he’s capable of using drugs recreationally. Not. But at least it would be holding him accountable. Most people in the real world can’t have the kinds of legal and personal problems Sheen’s been having and remain employed for this long. Charlie Sheen is damn lucky. He’s just too arrogant to see that.
Chuck Lorre writes vanity cards and displays them for a mere few seconds at the end of each of his shows. A recent vanity card on Two and a Half Men read:
“I exercise regularly. I eat moderate amounts of healthy food. I make sure to get plenty of rest. I see my doctor once a year and my dentist twice a year. I floss every night. I’ve had chest x-rays, cardio stress tests, EKG’s and colonoscopies. I see a psychologist and have a variety of hobbies to reduce stress. I don’t drink. I don’t smoke. I don’t do drugs. I don’t have crazy, reckless sex with strangers.
If Charlie Sheen outlives me, I’m gonna be really pissed.”
That, indeed, may be how Lorre feels, but it’s a pretty shitty thing to do to put further spotlight on Sheen’s problems, and it’s pretty low. He may be hell to put up with, and he probably is, but Lorre is sort of kicking his golden calf while it’s down. Keep your feelings to yourself, Chuck Lorre, and show a little class and maturity by keeping your mouth shut.
Everyone puts up with Sheen’s behavior because his show is an entire industry in and of itself. It’s a little micro-economy that feeds many, many people. The powers that be are afraid that if Sheen goes, then so goes the show. And maybe that’s the case. Or maybe not. If Chuck Lorre is half the writer that I’m sure he thinks he is, then he can keep the cottage industry that is Two and Half Men afloat by bringing in another actor to replace him.
Sheen thinks that’s impossible. He thinks that Lorre’s writing stinks, and that he literally saves the show every week, all by himself. He doesn’t even give any credit to his fellow actors. What Charlie Sheen is forgetting is that no one is irreplaceable. I don’t care who the fuck you are. What was your last big TV gig before this one, Charlie? As I seem to recall, it was on Spin City, where you replaced the irreplaceable Michael J. Fox, and the show ran for another two years. And you aren’t fit to be a pimple on Michael J. Fox’s ass.
Entry filed under: Alcoholism/Substance Abuse, Celebrity, Crime, Current Events, Entertainment, Ethics, Mental Health, Social Commentary, Television. Tags: Charlie Sheen, Chuck Lorre, Conchata Ferrell, Holland Taylor, Jon Cryer, Michael J. Fox, New York City, Two and a Half Men.