Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Two and a Half Laffs
It's no surprise that the half hour comedy is vulgar and crude. The series has always been a winking nod to Sheen's own bad boy persona. Right from the opening funeral scene, however, there was an ugliness about this episode. It wasn't a vendetta against Sheen--writer/creator Chuck Lorre pretty much kept any cheap shots to a minimum. It was just the utter callousness at tackling the death of the show's main character.
The half man, played by Angus Jones, seemed like he had lost a quarter, not an uncle. His main contribution to the half hour was farting. Holland Taylor--Charlie's mother--got to be her usual callow self and delivered her usual zing. There were herpes and vaginal warts jokes in the first 30 seconds. Charlie's empty bowling shirt by the casket was good for a laugh. It must have seemed nervy and fun at the table read, but viewers at home had to have had mixed feeling attending this dis-spirited funeral.
Later, having John Stamos and Dharma and Greg come in to check out the place was a bit of a yawn. Had Lorre managed to persuade the bigger names he battled with in past shows to return--Roseanne or Cybill Sheppard--that would have been funny.
Much of the heavy lifting was left to Jon Cryer and he gave it a game shot. The bit where Charlie's ashes went everywhere was funny and so was Cryer's suggestion that he would pick his brother up later with a dustbuster.
As for Ashton Kutcher, I kept wanting for Red to come in and kick Kelso's ass. There were indications that the new guy was going to continue with all the humpity-hump-hump. I'm thinkin' for one more season.
Afterwards the Roast of Charlie Sheen followed on Comedy. Again, the urge to shower afterwards should have come as no surprise. The impression that Sheen has friends in low places--Brooke Mueller sitting top table next to Dog the friggin' Bounty Hunter--was pounded home like a Mike Tyson head butt.
Best line of the night was probably Tyson saying he wished he'd bitten both his own ears off so as not to have heard any of this mess. I know how he feels.