[In which our correspondent revamps CBS's now Charlie Sheen-less Two and a Half Men by gleaning inspiration from other TV shows -- borrowing from everything from Howdy Doody to, well, see for yourself... and see how many "inspirations" you can identify... -- DB]
Recently there have been any number of suggestions on how to save CBS's Two and a Half Men in the wake of the Charlie Sheen meltdown. Replacements for poor Charlie have included, among others, Matt Dillon, John Stamos and Rob Lowe.
Replacing one television actor with another, in the same role, has worked on Roseanne, Bewitched (right, with Dick York swapped mid-series, without comment, by Dick Sargent), and any number of daytime dramas. Or they could simply cut (and recognize) their losses and change the show's title to One and a Half Men.
But I think we could learn from the past that there are other creative solutions...
Even our fearless leader, Bianculli, suggested that they move Sheen into a house with Mel Gibson and Lindsay Lohan and call it Two and a Half Brains -- a title that I thought was too high, in its estimate, by a brain and a half.
One of my ideas, instead, is for a special A&E installment of Intervention, in which Charlie Sheen faces a group that includes Valerie Harper, Wayne Rogers and David Caruso.
But I have other ideas as well, ones that spring from watching a lot of television over the years:
-- Jon Cryer spots a one-armed woman running from the building and then discovers his brother dead in the kitchen. The authorities believe that Jon killed his brother. The rest of the series has him searching for the one-armed woman and being tracked down by an obsessed detective, Matt Dillon. Hilarity ensues.
-- We discover the Half Man staring at an image of Charlie Sheen in a snow globe. His uncle, John Stamos, tells him to stop playing with his globes and go read a book.
-- For older viewers, we open with a digitally inserted Charlie Sheen in a clown costume. The camera slowly closes in to an extreme close-up of his face and we hear him quietly say, "Goodbye, career."
-- After the untimely death of his brother, Jon Cryer and the Half Man move in with a zany group of Italian young people in Seaside Heights, New Jersey.
-- After the untimely death of his brother, Jon Cryer and the Half Man become judges on the brand new reality/competition show, America's Got Co-Stars.
-- Jon Cryer enters the kitchen for breakfast and discusses a nightmare he had in which Charlie Sheen was his roommate. His son (Half Man) and real brother (Rob Lowe) assure him it was only a dream.
A really, really bad dream...