Charlie Sheen Show A Complete Debacle. Who Could Have Anticpated That?
Charlie Sheen is an embarrassment. I feel bad for his friends, his co-workers, and most of all his children. They all are pretty much forced to put up with this drug-addicted, psychotic, lunatic. What I don’t get is why people would plop down their own money to see this weirdos “stage show.” Is Charlie Sheen a funny guy? No, he isn’t. He’s a mediocre actor who, prior to his public melt-down, was best known for two pretty solid dramatic films (Platoon and Wall Street), that stupid Major League movie and its sequels, and Two and a Half Men, a contrived, corny television show that someone became a huge hit. Anyway, for the last couple months Sheen not only lost his mind, but he did so in such a public way that one almost has to wonder whether the whole thing was some kind of Andy Kaufman/Joaquin Phoenix-esque piece of performance art. Sadly, that doesn’t appear to be the case.
Sheen has only been “funny” in two settings: spouting off absurd quotes in some interview or reading a line written by some hack writer, waiting for the laugh track to dissipate, and then spouting off his next banal line. By all accounts, stand-up-comedy is one of the more difficult things in entertainment to successfully pull off. Even someone like Larry David, who created two of the funnier television shows of the past 20 years, struggled with it. An audience is a very unpredictable thing; sometimes they don’t laugh, an occurrence which Charlie Sheen was apparently unable to handle.
According to this article from USA Today, “Sheen gave a rambling speech, starting with “I am finally here to enlist and train the Vatican assassin in all of you.” It included put-downs of both Thomas Jefferson Sarah Palin. When that bit went on too long, the crowd got restless. He ran a video mash-up of his now-famous interviews, he offered to ‘tell stories about crack,’ he tried to take questions from the audience. Nothing worked. When someone asked about AA, he didn’t answer. When someone asked about porn stars, he didn’t come up with anything interesting.”
The fans were not happy, obviously. Many of them demanded their money back, but what kind of show did they think they were getting? It’s like going to a freak show; no matter how weird the freak is, the hype is never going to live up to the anticipation. I also think there’s a law of diminishing returns type thing going on with this guy. When he first started freaking out, and saying things like “I’m not bi-polar, I’m bi-winning” it was hysterical. After a few weeks, the whole thing had pretty much run it’s course.
But for whatever reason, people will continue to support this guy, at least for a little while longer. They’ll go to his shows, follow him on Twitter, post his quotes on their Facebook pages. As P.T. Barnum said, you’ll never go broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.