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‘Two and a Half Men’ critique: boring Kutcher debut

Photo: AP Photo

Everyone knows the sweet, funny and slightly raunchy show, “Two and a Half Men.” It was created by Chuck Lorre and is one of the only long running sitcoms left on television. It stars that guy from “Pretty in Pink” and the notorious Charlie Sheen. OK, it used to star Charlie Sheen. If you have been living under a rock for the past year, Sheen had a strange but slightly entertaining breakdown that ended up getting him fired from his day job. So what did this mean for the fate of “Two and a Half Men?” The only logical answer is Ashton Kutcher.

I think I speak for everyone when I say that I have probably seen way too many “That ‘70s Show” re-runs. Ashton Kutcher is the reason why. Although he doesn’t always make four-star movies, you have to admit there is something about him. However, I had my doubts that he could save “Two and a Half Men.” After last Monday’s premiere episode I have to be honest that I still have my doubts.

It wasn’t that Kutcher did a terrible job or that the show handled the whole Sheen-leaving thing badly; it was just so boring. I wasn’t expecting fireworks, but I thought it would have been a little more exciting. After I watched it, I was almost depressed. It was sad seeing Charlie’s funeral. It was awkward the whole episode; they got rid of him that easily by just pushing him in front of a train.

There were some positive things in the episode, though. When Kutcher finally made his grand entrance the crowd went wild, and even though the rest of the episode was awkward and dull, this one moment made you want to run to the door and let Mr. Kutcher in. I think this was the moment viewers needed to lift themselves out of the deep, Charlie-deprived funk. The rest of the episode explains that Kutcher’s character wanted to commit suicide because his girlfriend had broken up with him. Instead he decides the water is too cold and stumbles into Charlie’s pad, which Alan has to sell. Alan takes him out to a bar, they bring home two girls, and in true “Two and a Half Men” fashion, he ends up walking into the kitchen naked the next morning. He also agrees to buy the house.

It sounds like a weird episode, and if you didn’t see it yet, let me tell you that it was. I do, however, believe that this show knows what it is doing. Thirty minutes just isn’t long enough to appreciate the new and improved show. Yes, Ashton Kutcher is not Charlie Sheen. Yes, Charlie made the show, but I’m not giving up hope just yet. Ashton Kutcher has the potential to save this show. He just has to get a good story line first and maybe that will unfold in the episodes to come. Also, I think they should let the half man, Angus T. Jones, have more than three lines next time. We will have to see what this week’s episode brings.


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  1. Lisa Robbins September 25, 2011

    I too wanted more in the 1st episode with Ashton. The mother trying play realtor at Charlie’s funeral just didn’t come across as that funny to me. I kept waiting for a good laugh, but it never really came. I think it might take 4-5 episodes for all the cast to get into their own groove. It’s coming across as “forced” acting, instead of natural. So I wish them luck, I hope it all turns out, though Ashton coming across as a dumb billionaire just isn’t cutting it for me. How dumb and pathetic can a billionaire really be? I mean lets be serious. I think Ashton being so upset over girlfriend yet doing 2 girls in the bedroom is diving in a little too deep to fast. Some times you just need to build up to the climax. There was no foreplay and nothing is enticing me to watch it again except for the sheer hope that the next show somehow gets better.

  2. ken m. September 25, 2011

    i think the show was not worth watching it was not as entertaining and it just didn’t have the same addictive entertainment feel that make you want to keep watching it . It just is not two and a half men without charlie sheen yes he is arrogant but damn he does his job and does it extremely well this show will in my opinion be just like the dukes of hazard the show did not last long when they replaced the STARS of the show

    1. Mary September 26, 2011

      So agree with you.

  3. sam September 25, 2011

    It was boring indeed, it definitely wasn’t as funny as the show used to be.
    The only funny scene was Evelyn’s pitch.

  4. Terrible show September 25, 2011

    This show will be done after this season and I am being generous. They may have to kill it in January or February. This episode was terrible in so many ways: the way they dealt with Charlie’s departure, the parade of bimbos at the funeral, and Kutcher’s nude debut. Awful.

    Most fans of this show will drift over to Sheen’s own sitcom soon. You can’t just get rid of the star of America’s top sitcom and hope that Kelso is going to save it.

  5. Madalyn D September 25, 2011

    I think Two and a Half Men was a hiliarious show when Charlie was Uncle Charlie. The show was ornery at times, but it made you forget for a little while some of the problems of today. I know Charlie Sheen really spouted off about winning and his boss, but he was not Charlie, he was a man high on dope. People who are taking drugs including alcohol will do and say alot of things they regret, I am sure that he is one of them. It is a shame that they couldn’t come to some kind of a agreement to keep Charlie on the show. I’m sure Ashton will do a good job, but it won’t be the same. I may be wrong, but I don’t think it will last very long without Charlie Sheen. I DON’T THINK HE SHOULD HAVE TALKED TO HIS BOSS THAT WAY, but like I said before he was not without the influence of drugs.

  6. Rebecca Pettit September 25, 2011

    Come on Charlie Sheen sucks!! The star for me now and always will be Allan Harper.. Sheen does nothing for me. I think that Ashton will develop his own on the show as he did to that 70’s show. Everyone loves Ashton on 70’s show. He made that series and with a little bit more time he will make Two and a half me as well.

  7. "Sam September 25, 2011

    I didn’t see or hear much to laugh about. The whole episode was one bad-taste unfunny comment after another. It seemed they were going for raunchy and didn’t care if the words were funny or not. I get tired of tv shows pushing and pushing the sex, raunchy, unfunny stuff. Let’s get some good writing back.

  8. Not a Fan September 25, 2011

    See, here’s the thing. The show sucked with Charlie Sheen. Not only because his lack of timing and delivery was painful, but because the writing was lame. So I couldn’t sit through more than 10 minutes of an episode. I tolerated it occasionally because I adore Jon Cryer, and y’know, HE is the one who got Emmy noms, not Sheen.

    Now with that said, the reason the first episode of the new cast sucked? Not merely the awkward casting… the WRITING, folks. When Chuck Lorre canned Sheen, he should’ve dumped the entire writing staff and started fresh – IF he was intent on keeping this pathetic excuse of a show on the air. I mean, really… fart jokes? Nakedness? Sex? I didn’t smile, chuckle, laugh or guffaw even once. In fact, it was a waste of 30 minutes of my life, and damn it, CBS – i want my half hour back!

    This show is 2 1/2 times LESS FUNNY than Frasier, Everybody Loves Raymond, Friends, Will & Grace… It’s as ridiculous as Jim Belushi’s cancelled show. Someone please put this show out of its misery and cancel it already! The bad premise can’t be salvaged with a similarly bad premise.

  9. Stella H September 26, 2011

    This is one of the worst, most misogynistic show on television. I can’t believe that people find it funny to watch men treat a parade of hapless women poorly, ostensibly while imparting these values as acceptable/appropriate to the Jon Cryer-son-character. It’s also disgusting how much glee people have gotten from Charlie Sheen’s drug-fueled mental instabilities — and how much money tabloids have made selling the story.

  10. Desert Rose September 26, 2011

    The reason Charlie Sheen made Two and a Half Men the most watched show was he has class. He could have been saying, “Blah, blah, blah, blah,” and we still would have watched because of the energy in his body, expressive facial expression and voice. He is fully present when he is acting. He reminds me of Kirk Douglas in that respect. The new episode lacks class, internal expression, and transcendent acting. The script is repulsive and pornographic whereas the script with Charlie never went to that degree. It was done with class, and the energy combination between the three became more than the sum of the parts which is called creativity. The rest of the cast fueled the fire for an amazing show. Sorry, without class the grade for this show is an F.

  11. twoandahalfmen fan. September 26, 2011

    I believe Ashton Kutcher will destroy this fantastic show. Charlie Sheen was fired because of his drugged-up rants, but instead of trying to help him, people instead chose to sit back and do nothing. And as for Chuck Lorre, ditching Charlie for some stupid comments is quite infantile; surely we’ve all said something stupid we’ve regretted at some point in our lives?
    Sadly, I predict Two And A Half Men will be dead at the end of this series. Charlie being Uncle Charlie was what made this so popular. Also, Angus T Jones should be given more than three lines.
    Rest In Peace, Two And A Half Men.

  12. carmen September 26, 2011


  13. Keshi September 26, 2011

    Regardless of what Sheen’s personal life is like *and its really none of our business..I guess we all hv our weaknesses?*, this show was an ace with him in it. No doubt it was the brilliant synergy of rich bro Charlie & his loser brother Alan that not even the law could eliminate from Charlie’s house, simply cos it was a ‘family matter’, that made this show a hit sitcom. Now Ashton Kutcher spending 25mins of a 30min episode in the nude isnt gonna replace that synergy is it? The sudden twist in the whole CONCEPT of what made it such a success, contributes to it’s demise. When the core concept of something that made it a success is rearranged, the whole thing collapses. Now it’s like a cheaper, lite version of the whole thing. Really, do we have to go on with something w.o. what made it such a great thing, just cos we cant part with it? It should hv ended with Sheen’s departure. After all, all good things do come to an end. I miss Sheen in the show!

  14. darlene kay January 11, 2012

    Writing has declined dramatically. Acting forced and immature. Along with Ashton, regular
    staff’s acting has declined. I’ve tried watching a few times but find it unbearable. Someone
    needs to look at revamping show or giving it up!

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