Damien on… Chuck Lorre’s Golden Opportunity
I have always had a soft spot for Chuck Lorre.
We are both men – both writers – and were born just six weeks apart. But there, our similarities end.
Chuck has a star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame – I once won first prize in a road safety competition.
Chuck has written and produced six highly successful American sitcoms – I write this.
He is rich and I am poor.
But I have a foreskin – so there.
Anyhoo – Chuck has had a rough time of late – thanks to Charlie Sheen’s hyper rants and subsequent abandonment of his most popular current show, “Two And A Half Men”.
But C.B.S. was not about to give up on one of their most highly-rated shows and so has plonked Ashton Kutcher into its vacant starring role.
And THERE is Chuck’s Golden Opportunity – because “Two And A Half Men” has just ended its (slightly truncated) eighth season – and even the greatest American sitcoms of ALL TIME have rarely seen a twelfth.
Of course, an unimaginitive dolt would simply carry on the same format with the new actor – rather like “Bewitched” when Dick York busted his back and Dick Sargent became the new Darrin. No-one noticed the difference after a couple of weeks.
Ironically, Charlie Sheen got HIS sitcom break when Parkinson’s forced Michael J Fox to give up HIS starring role in THAT.
However, I cannot believe Chuck will take that option. There were plenty of other actors in the frame for Charlie’s role – but instead of going with a guy like him, they went with his antithesis – someone Arnie would call “a girlie-man.”
Therefore, while most will be expecting Season Nine to open in Charlie’s beach-house – I expect it to open with a car interior. And in that car will be Alan and Jake.
I will leave the dialogue to Chuck, but I imagine it will centre on the altercation that has just taken place between Charlie and Alan, resulting in the latter being finally ejected – with offspring – from the former’s domicile.
A few in-jokes at Mr Sheen’s expense later – and the vehicle will roll up outside a house that has been established, during the course of the conversation, as belonging to ANOTHER of Alan’s relatives.
A NEW lead character – and a new SET.
Thus in one bound we will have… A SPINOFF!!
Oh yes. Make no mistake. Historically (hysterically, even) a spinoff can last as long as the series off from which it span (I think that’s right).
And while “The Big Bang Theory” is now well established and “Mike And Molly” is doing okay – I am sure Chuck will not mind a third string to his bow. Particularly one which is already tried and tested.
Indeed, Charlie’s meltdown may have given Chuck MAJOR aggro – but it could just be the best thing that ever happened to him.
Footnote: sometimes a thing that SEEMS bad at the time can be a blessing in disguise. I am reminded of a Disney cartoon where this guy (actually, it was a duck) got a blowout. No big deal for most – except THIS guy was SUPER-LUCKY. He was MORTIFIED – until a cop turned up and warned him about the bridge that had collapsed, just around the corner he would have been driving round, had his tyre not given out. So cheer up, Chuck. Charlie may have been YOUR flat tyre (sorry, tire).