CBS and Warner Bros. ain’t takin’ no guff from Charlie Sheen. The companies responded to the Mayor of Awesometown’s most recent outbursts by shutting down production of America’s most popular sitcom, Two and a Half Men, for the rest of the season. That’ll really learn ‘im.
The extraordinary step to shelve the cash cow came after Sheen called into the paranoid delusional fantasy land that is Alex Jones’ talk radio show and spewed a legendary tirade (mp3) in which he insulted his show’s creator, Chuck Lorre, and called Alcoholics Anonymous a “bootleg cult” and Thomas Jefferson a “pussy.”
“There’s something this side of deplorable that a certain Chaim Levine – yeah, that’s Chuck [Lorre]’s real name – mistook this rock star for his own selfish exit strategy, bro,” Sheen told Jones. “Check it, Alex: I embarrassed him in front of his children and the world by healing at a pace that this un-evolved mind cannot process. ‘Last I checked, Chaim, I spent close to the last decade effortlessly and magically converting your tin cans into pure gold.’ And the gratitude I get is [that] this charlatan chose not to do his job, which is to write.”
Sheen took the attack further in a TMZ interview later on Thursday afternoon: “I violently hate Haim Levine. He’s a stupid, stupid little man and a pussy punk that I’d never want to be like. That’s me being polite. That piece of shit took money out of my pocket, my family’s pocket, and, most importantly, my second family — my crew’s pocket… You can tell him one thing. I own him.” He then proceeded to challenge Lorre to a fight. “If he wins, then he can leave MY show,” Sheen contiunued.
CBS and Warner Bros. responded thusly on Thursday: “Based on the totality of Charlie Sheen’s statements, conduct and condition, CBS and Warner Bros. Television have decided to discontinue production of ‘Two and a Half Men’ for the remainder of the season.”
In reality, so far only four scheduled episodes have been shelved. The door remains open for a ninth season of the show, but Sheen will need to hug it out with Lorre and CBS for that to happen.
Sheen, trying to get the last word, fired back in a sternly worded letter obtained by TMZ: “What does this say about Haim Levine [Chuck Lorre] after he tried to use his words to judge and attempt to degrade me. I gracefully ignored this folly for 177 shows … I fire back once and this contaminated little maggot can’t handle my power and can’t handle the truth. I wish him nothing but pain in his silly travels especially if they wind up in my octagon. Clearly I have defeated this earthworm with my words — imagine what I would have done with my fire breathing fists. I urge all my beautiful and loyal fans who embraced this show for almost a decade to walk with me side-by-side as we march up the steps of justice to right this unconscionable wrong.” Fire breathing fists, he says!
So what’s at stake for Sheen? Two and a Half Men is the most-watched comedy in prime time with an average of more than 15 million viewers. And seeing as how it pulls more than $200,000 per ad, the show generated $155.1 million in CBS ad revenue last year alone, according to Kantar Media. Sheen earned $30 million last year on the back of the show, according to Forbes.
Comments sections and blog posts are killing Sheen for being selfish and, well, being an asshole. But the entertainment world is a much more interesting place when Sheen’s not sober. How can you possibly take all this seriously? Unless you work on this show and your personal livelihood’s at stake, this Charlie Sheen Shitshow is more enjoyable to watch than any laugh-tracked episode of Two and a Half Men.