To follow up on my previous post, after having watched the season premiere of ‘2 1/2 Men’ as well as Charlie Sheen’s roast on Comedy Central, well – Sheen’s roast wins. Kutcher’s performance – while I’m sure was droolworthy for anyone wishing to see insinuations of his nakedness, was far too derivative of his Kelso role on ‘That 70’s Show’ to breathe the fresh air this show desperately needs. Despite his new character Walden Schmidt being an entrepreneur and a billionaire, he actually came across as just another dorky airhead – again, not far from Kelsoland. CBS garnered killer ratings for the debut (27.7 million viewers) but I predict we’re gonna see a HARD drop-off over the coming weeks – possibly not even enough to sustain the show, although it’s a little early to call the patient deceased just yet.
Sheen, on the other hand, definitively has been given the last laugh. Literally. While his roasters were tasteless, brazen and occasionally even racist, like a NASCAR spin-out it was tough to turn away. Sure, Steve-O and Mike Tyson made one cringe and “joke borrowing” Jon Lovitz confirmed his washed-up status by using material that’s been on every Facebook status page for the past 10 months (“How much cocaine did Charlie Sheen do? Enough to kill 2 1/2 men”). Fortunately, with the razor sharp ruthlessness of relative unknowns Amy Schumer, Jeffrey Ross and Anthony Jeselnik as well as veteran zingers Seth Macfarlane and William Shatner, this rag-tag ensemble proved that the prime-time roast sure as hell ain’t dead. And even Sheen’s rebuttal – well, WINNING (you knew I was gonna throw that in here somewhere, didn’t you?). I for one wouldn’t object to a Sheen roast EVERY week instead of the faltering “2 1/2 Men”. Still, hope springs eternal that the show will get it’s legs with the new cast. Had this had been a prizefight, “2 1/2 men” may not have been KO’d but they sure lost on points. And ultimately, the champion remains the same. Well played again, Mr. Sheen.