Thoughts on Charlie Sheen

CBS finally shut down its hit sitcom Two and a Half Men for the season, but many are criticizing the timing.  I wondered how long the producers would look the other way and enable actor Charlie Sheen's destructive behavior.  His headline-grabbing binges with alleged hookers, porn stars, drugs, and alcohol were embarrassing, and his hospitalization seemed to be a warning sign that the situation could get even worse if those closest to him did not engage in an intervention. 

Yet, the powers-that-be at CBS remained silent since their highest paid star apparently never missed an episode's rehearsal or taping and seemed to keep his off-screen shenanigans separate from his professional life.  But it seemed hypocritical that the public and the entertainment industry would chastise lesser actions by Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan, but seemingly condone Sheen's far worse behavior as if it were nothing more than "Charlie being Charlie."  So what made CBS suspend production of one of its benchmark shows?  It resulted from a ranting radio appearance by Sheen in which he insulted Chuck Lorre, executive producer of Two and a Half Men.

The unfortunate message that Mr. Lorre and the CBS network are delivering is that up until now they cared more about business and profits from their highly-rated show than the personal health and well-being of Charlie Sheen or the bad example and harmful repurcussions his dangerous off-set behavior might cause.  Once Sheen "got personal" and insulted Mr. Lorre, that was the trigger that finally made the producers take action.  It seems rather childish, doesn't it?

Sheen is undoubtedly talented and has managed to work hard and be professional when he chose to be.  But his outrageous personal life antics have escalated into the stratosphere.  Has it all been a desperate cry for help, or a misguided effort to gain more publicity, or evidence of a spoiled celebrity who thinks he is above the law and social mores?  Likely it's a combination of all of the above, with a heavy dose of the latter.

It's a shame that CBS and Mr. Lorre weren't bold enough to act before the "name-calling" incident.  And it is also a shame that the cast, crew, and audience of Two and a Half Men have to suffer the consequences of Sheen's irresponsible actions and the producer's ill-timed reactions.

We shall see what happens next.  Some are finding the whole real life soap opera hilarious, but to me it seems more sad than anything else.  I hope Sheen gets his life in order and I hope the laughs continue where they are meant to be -- on the TV screen during new episodes of Two and a Half Men.


Anonymous said…
I'm not a fan of Lorre or that show, so I'm sort of glad it's gone (for now). It is sad, though. I hope he gets some real help.