Two and a Half Men

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Two and a Half Men
Two and a Half Men-title.png
Genre Sitcom
Created by
Starring
Theme music composer
Composer(s)
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 11
No. of episodes 246 (List of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)
  • Chuck Lorre
  • Lee Aronsohn (2003–2012)
  • Eric Tannenbaum
  • Kim Tannenbaum
  • Eddie Gorodetsky
  • Susan Beavers
  • Jim Patterson
  • Don Reo

Cinematography
  • Steven V. Silver
  • Alan K. Walker (first pilot)
  • Tony Askins (second pilot)
Camera setup Film; Multi-camera
Running time 21 minutes
Production company(s)
Distributor Warner Bros. Television Distribution
Broadcast
Original channel CBS
Picture format 1080i (16:9 HDTV)
Original run September 22, 2003 (2003-09-22)  – present
External links
Website

Two and a Half Men is an American television sitcom that began broadcast on CBS on September 22, 2003. Starring Charlie Sheen, Jon Cryer, and Angus T. Jones, the show was about a hedonistic jingle writer, Charlie Harper; his uptight brother, Alan; and Alan's growing son, Jake. After Alan divorces, he moves with his son to share Charlie's beach-front Malibu house and complicate Charlie's free-wheeling life.

In 2010, CBS and Warner Bros. Television reached a multi-year broadcast agreement for the series, renewing it through at least the 2011–12 season.[1][2] But, on February 24, 2011, CBS and Warner Bros. decided to end production for the rest of the eighth season after Sheen entered drug rehabilitation and made "disparaging comments" about the show's creator and executive producer Chuck Lorre.[3] Sheen's contract was terminated on March 7.[4]

The ninth-season premiere, "Nice to Meet You, Walden Schmidt", killed off Sheen's character and introduced Ashton Kutcher as Walden Schmidt, his replacement.[5] Alan is shown moving on with his life after the death of Charlie. He has a new best friend and housemate, Schmidt, who is dealing with his own troubles following a bad divorce. Schmidt, Alan, and Jake eventually bond, becoming close friends and forming a surrogate family unit. Jake, who joins the army at the end of season nine, leaves for Japan at the end of season ten.

On April 26, 2013, CBS renewed the series for an 11th season after closing one-year deals with Kutcher and Cryer. Jones, who is attending college,[6] was relegated to recurring status for Season 11, but eventually departed from the show without making a single appearance in Season 11.[7][8] He was replaced by Jenny (portrayed by Amber Tamblyn), Charlie's previously unknown daughter.[9] Season 11 premiered on September 26, 2013. On March 13, 2014, CBS renewed the series for a 12th season,[10] which CBS subsequently announced would be the final season.[11] The season is scheduled to premiere on October 30, 2014.[12]

Overview[edit]

The series revolved initially around the life of the Harper brothers: Charlie (Charlie Sheen) and Alan (Jon Cryer) and Alan's son, Jake (Angus T. Jones). Charlie is a bachelor who writes commercial jingles for a living while leading a hedonistic lifestyle. When Alan's wife Judith (Marin Hinkle) decides to divorce him, he moves into Charlie's Malibu beach house, with Jake coming to stay over the weekends. Charlie's housekeeper is Berta (Conchata Ferrell), a sharp-tongued woman who initially resists the change to the household but grudgingly accepts it. Charlie's one-night stand Rose (Melanie Lynskey) was first introduced as his stalker in the pilot episode.

The first five seasons find Charlie in casual sexual relationships with numerous women until the sixth season, when he becomes engaged to Chelsea (Jennifer Bini Taylor). However, the relationship does not last as Chelsea breaks off their engagement. Afterwards, Charlie flies to Paris in the eighth season finale with his stalker Rose. In the ninth season premiere, introducing a revamped show, it is revealed that Charlie died when he fell in front of a subway train in Paris. There are suggestions that Rose pushed him in the train's path after learning Charlie had cheated on her.

Alan's experiences are somewhat different. Throughout the series, Alan continues to deal with his son Jake's growing up, and the aftermath of his divorce, when he has little success with women. His marriage to Kandi (April Bowlby) at the end of the third season was short-lived. In the fourth season, Alan is back at the beach house paying alimony to two women out of his meager earnings as a chiropractor. In the seventh season, he begins a relationship with Lyndsey McElroy (Courtney Thorne-Smith), the mother of one of Jake's friends. Their relationship is temporarily suspended when Alan cheats on her and accidentally burns down her house, but the relationship eventually resumes.

In the ninth season premiere (after Charlie's death), the beach house is sold to Walden Schmidt (Ashton Kutcher), an Internet billionaire going through a divorce from Bridget (Judy Greer). Alan leaves to live with his mother Evelyn (Holland Taylor) when the house is sold, but Walden invites both Alan and Jake back to live in the beach house. He needs friends and the three form a tightknit surrogate family.

At the end of the ninth season, Jake joins the army; he appears occasionally during season ten. In the tenth season, Walden proposes to his English girlfriend Zoey (Sophie Winkleman) only to be turned down, and discovers she has another man. He becomes depressed. Meanwhile, Alan gets engaged to his girlfriend Lyndsey, while Judith leaves her second husband Herb Melnick (Ryan Stiles) (to whom she had been married since the fourth season) after he cheats on her with his receptionist (they later reconcile). Alan and Lyndsey's relationship of 3 years ends as she wants to move on. Alan, distraught, creates a new image for himself. Rose returns and begins to date Walden; however when they break up, she becomes obsessed with him and begins to stalk him. Jake begins to date Tammy (Jaime Pressly), who is 17 years his senior and has three kids; Jake cheats on her with her daughter Ashley, resulting in their breakup, and Ashley is wooed back by her much-older ex-lover, Jerry (Scott Bakula). Walden begins to date a poor woman named Kate (Brooke D'Orsay) and changes his name to "Sam Wilson" and pretends to be poor to find someone who wants him for him, not for his money. They later break up when he reveals who he really is. Jake announces he is being shipped to Japan for a year, and so he and Alan go on a father-son bonding trip.

In the eleventh season, a young woman arrives at the beach house, announcing that she is Charlie Harper's biological daughter, Jenny (Amber Tamblyn)[13] and moves in with Walden and Alan.

Production[edit]

Sheen's dismissal and replacement[edit]

Following a February 2010 announcement that Sheen was entering drug rehabilitation, filming of the show was put on hiatus,[14] but resumed the following month.[15] On April 1, 2010, People reported that after seven seasons, Sheen announced he was considering leaving the show.[16] According to one source, Sheen quit the show after filming the final episode of season 7, purportedly due to his rejection of CBS's offer of $1 million per episode as too low.[17] Sheen eventually stated that he would be back for two more seasons.[18] On May 18, 2010, the New Zealand website Stuff.co.nz reported that a press release issued by Sheen's publicist confirmed that Sheen had signed a new contract for two years at $1.78 million per episode. "To put a fitting end on the two and one-half months of whirlwind speculation, I'm looking forward to returning to my CBS home on Monday nights," Sheen was quoted as saying.[19]

On January 28, 2011, Sheen entered a rehabilitation center voluntarily for the third time in 12 months. According to Warner Bros. Television and CBS, the show was put on hiatus for an unknown amount of time.[20]

The following month, after Sheen's verbal denunciations against Chuck Lorre during a radio interview with Alex Jones and an online interview with TMZ.com, CBS announced that Two and a Half Men would cease production for the rest of its eighth season.[21] This affected an estimated 200 employees,[22] and caused Warner Bros., CBS, Lorre, Sheen, and other profit participants a loss of an estimated $10 million due to expected revenue from the unmade eight remaining episodes.[23] Afterward, Sheen was interviewed on ABC's 20/20, NBC's Today, and CNN's Piers Morgan Tonight, where he continued to criticize Lorre and CBS.[24] On March 7, CBS and Warner Bros. Television jointly announced that they have terminated Sheen's Two and a Half Men contract, citing "moral turpitude" as a main cause of separation.[5] No decision about the future of the show was announced at that time.

Cast members Marin Hinkle and Holland Taylor expressed sadness at Sheen's departure and personal problems.[25] Jon Cryer did not publicly comment on the matter and in response, Sheen called him "a turncoat, a traitor, [and] a troll" in an E! Online interview,[26] although he later issued a "half-apology" to Cryer for the remarks.[27] Sheen sued Lorre and Warner Bros. Television for $100 million, saying that he had filed the lawsuit on behalf of himself and Two and a Half Men's cast and crew; however, only Sheen was named as a plaintiff in court documents.[28]

In April 2011, Sheen mentioned during a radio interview after his tour's stop in Boston that he and CBS were talking about a possible return to the show.[29] Lorre announced that same month that he had developed an idea for Two and a Half Men to be re-done that would exclude Sheen and have Cryer in a key role alongside a new character.[30] On May 13, CBS announced that Ashton Kutcher would join the cast. Kutcher was quoted as saying, "I can't replace Charlie Sheen but I'm going to work my ass off to entertain the hell out of people!"[31]

On August 2, 2011 it was reported that the season nine premiere would begin with Sheen's character having been killed off and his ex-girlfriends attending his funeral. Afterward, Charlie's Malibu home would be put up for sale and interested buyers would include celebrities from Lorre's other sitcoms and John Stamos, as well as Kutcher's character, Walden Schmidt, "an Internet billionaire with a broken heart." Critics compared this situation to what happened in 1987 to Valerie Harper, who was fired from the sitcom, Valerie (later titled Valerie's Family: The Hogans and then The Hogan Family). Her character was killed off-screen, and she was replaced the following season.[32][33][34][35]

Sheen said he would watch his "fake funeral attended by [his] fake ex-girlfriends, from [his] very, very real movie theater, with [his] very real hotties in tow."[36][37] Sheen's response to the season 9 premiere was very positive.[38] He reportedly felt Charlie Harper's funeral was "eerie but fun". Sheen also felt that the introduction of Kutcher's character in a cloud of his own character's ashes was particularly enjoyable.[39]

Ashton Kutcher (left) replaced Charlie Sheen on Two and a Half Men

The attention Two and a Half Men received due to the change in characters gave the series a boost. Average total viewers during the 2011–2012 season rose 13% to 15 million, and the 5.2 rating in the 18–49 demographic rose by 27%.[40] Kutcher's debut as the character Walden Schmidt, in the episode entitled "Nice to Meet You, Walden Schmidt", was seen by 28.7 million people on September 19, 2011. The Nielsen ratings company reported that figure was higher than for any episode in the show's first eight seasons, when the series starred Sheen. At the 2012 Emmys, Two and a Half Men was nominated for four awards and won three of them, the most Emmys the show has won in a single year since it began. In 2012 Kutcher replaced Sheen as the highest-paid U.S. actor, receiving $700,000 per episode. For Kutcher's second season, the show moved to the 8:30pm Thursday time slot, replacing Rules of Engagement. Two and a Half Men improved ratings for this time slot, which were up from the previous year. Jennifer Graham Kizer of IVillage thought that the series changed tone in the Kutcher era of the show, saying it felt "less evil".[41]

Angus T. Jones conversion[edit]

In a November 2012 interview with a Christian website, Angus T. Jones (Jake) said he had recently converted to Christianity and joined a Seventh-day Adventist church. He attacked the show as "filth that contradicts his moral values" and said that he was sick of being a part of it.[42] He also begged fans to stop watching the show.[42] Producers explained that Jones was not expected back on the set until 2013, as his character was not scheduled to appear in the final two episodes before the winter hiatus.[43] In response to the controversy, Charlie Sheen issued a public statement claiming that "Jones' outburst isn’t an isolated incident but rather a symptom of the toxic environment surrounding the show" and blamed Chuck Lorre for the outburst.[44] The following day, Jones issued a public apology for his remarks, and explained that he "cannot address everything that has been said or right every misstatement or misunderstanding."[45] Jones left the series at the end of the 2012–2013 season and did not appear in season 11 despite initial reports that he would continue in a recurring, rather than a starring, role.[46] The role of youngest family member was filled by Amber Tamblyn, who plays Jenny, the long-lost daughter of Charlie Harper.[13] On March 18, 2014, Angus T. Jones officially announced his departure from the show, stating he had been "a paid hypocrite".[8]

Cast and characters[edit]

The original cast of Two and a Half Men, from left to right: Melanie Lynskey as Rose, Conchata Ferrell as Berta, Charlie Sheen as Charlie Harper, Holland Taylor as Evelyn Harper, Angus T. Jones as Jake Harper, Jon Cryer as Alan Harper, and Marin Hinkle as Judith Melnick

Main[edit]

  • Charlie Sheen as Charlie Harper (starring seasons 1–8), a hedonistic bachelor, alcoholic, jingle/children's songwriter, Alan's brother, Jake's uncle, and Jenny's father. Despite his selfish and mean demeanor, he does possess a kind heart though he very rarely shows it. He is written out of the series at the beginning of season 9, after being struck and killed offscreen by a moving train, due to Charlie Sheen being fired from the show. In the episode "Why We Gave Up Women", Charlie's character, portrayed by Kathy Bates, is forced to spend eternity in Hell as a woman with a pair of testicles. He has a daughter named Jenny, whose existence he never disclosed to his family. In Season 11, she resurfaced as an adult but had no idea he had died.
  • Jon Cryer as Dr. Alan Harper, Charlie's younger brother. A struggling chiropractor, Jake's twice-divorced father, Walden's best friend, and Jenny's uncle who is conscientious but continually stricken with bad judgment. Due to a lack of income, Alan is forced to sponge off the people in his life, but he genuinely cares about others despite this. His poverty ultimately led to the demise of his business.
  • Angus T. Jones (starring seasons 1–10) as Jake Harper, the underachieving son of Alan and Judith, and older half-brother of Millie. As he grows older, he changes from a rather bright child to a dimwitted buffoon. He eventually enlists in the U.S. Army working as a chef. At the end of season 10, he announces that he's going to Japan for a year.
  • Ashton Kutcher as Walden Schmidt (starring season 9–present), Alan's best friend and housemate. A kind, hopelessly romantic internet tycoon, he is a billionaire despite being somewhat naive and immature. He purchases the Harper beach house after Charlie's death. During his time in the household, he has formed close friendships with Jake, Herb, Berta, Judith, Evelyn and Jenny.[47]
  • Conchata Ferrell (recurring season 1; starring seasons 2-present) as Berta, the family's sharp-tongued housekeeper and good friend. During the Kutcher years, her role was increased on the show, appearing in more episodes. Season 11 was the first season where she appeared in every episode.
  • Holland Taylor as Evelyn Harper, Charlie and Alan's conceited mother and the grandmother of Jake and Jenny. A high-powered Los Angeles broker/realtor, who sleeps with both men and women.
  • Marin Hinkle (starring seasons 1–8; recurring season 9-present) as Judith Harper-Melnick, Alan's vindictive, self-absorbed ex-wife and Jake and Millie's mother. She was prominently featured in the first 8 seasons, but was quietly phased out of the series beginning with the ninth season.
  • Melanie Lynskey (starring seasons 1–2; recurring seasons 3-present) as Rose, the Harpers' strange neighbor and Charlie's stalker and friend. Initially, Charlie despised Rose and wanted nothing to do with her but eventually they became friends and he later fell in love with her. In the ninth season premiere, Rose claimed that Charlie "slipped" in front of a Paris Métro train after she had caught him cheating on her. She was later seen taking Bridget Schmidt under her wing as an apprentice stalker but this storyline has since been aborted. After formally meeting Walden at the local tavern, Rose rushed into a relationship with him, and caused her ferrets to attack Walden and Alan when Walden broke up with her. Naturally, she continues to stalk Walden as well as the Harpers, despite Charlie's death.
  • Jennifer Bini Taylor (recurring season 6; starring season 7; season 9 guest) as Chelsea,[note 1] Charlie's girlfriend for most of season six, who has moved into his house by the end of the season. She then becomes Charlie's fiancée in season seven. They later end the relationship, which deeply hurt Charlie for a while. She is absent throughout season eight but makes a brief, speaking cameo at Charlie's funeral in season nine. (While credited on-screen among the main cast during the seventh season, CBS press releases billed her as a recurring character.)
  • April Bowlby (recurring season 3; starring season 4; season 10 guest) as Kandi,[note 2] Charlie's girlfriend, then later as Alan's girlfriend and second wife, and also Judith's best friend (for one episode).
  • Amber Tamblyn (starring season 11) as Jenny, Charlie's long-lost illegitimate daughter who shares many personality traits with her father, including indulging in booze and women.[48] On October 2, 2013, after the season 11 premiere had aired, Tamblyn was promoted to series regular.[49] She and Walden have a very good relationship and flirts with him to see him embarrassed.

Guest stars[edit]

Guest stars have included:

  • Jason Alexander as Dr. Goodman, Alan's doctor (season 9, episode 23)
  • John Amos as Ed, boyfriend of Chelsea's father Tom (season 7)
  • Odette Annable as Nicole, brief love interest of Walden and majority owner of a garage-based tech start up Walden joins. (season 11)
  • Diedrich Bader as Dirk, a Denver pawn-shop owner (season 11, episode 21)
  • Diora Baird as Wanda, a girl who chases after Charlie when he is engaged to Chelsea (season 6, episode 16)
  • Orson Bean as Norman, an old man who is married to a woman with whom Charlie had sex (season 2)
  • Nadia Bjorlin as Jill, A young woman who sleeps with Russell, and Evelyn's one-time lover (season 8)
  • Susan Blakely as Angie, an author Charlie met at a bookstore (season 5, episodes 18 and 19)
  • Michael Bolton as himself, a friend of Walden's (season 10, episode 1)
  • Paget Brewster as Jamie Eckleberry, Charlie and Alan's high school classmate (season 2, episode 12)
  • Gary Busey as himself, Alan's roommate in a sanitarium (season 9)
  • Julia Campbell as Francine, Jake's teacher (season 3)
  • Taylor Cole as Melanie Laughlin (season 9)
  • Jessica Collins as Gloria, one of Charlie's one night stands, who may be his and Alan's sister (season 4, episode 11)
  • Elvis Costello as himself, Charlie's poker and cigar buddy (season 2, episode 1)
  • Miley Cyrus as Missi, an old family friend of Walden's, who becomes Jake's brief love interest (season 10)
  • Josie Davis as Sandy, a girlfriend of Alan's (season 3)
  • Brooke D'Orsay as Robin, Charlie's sex partner (season 4, episode 16) and Season 10 as Kate, Walden's love interest.
  • Hilary Duff as Stacy, a ditzy one-night stand of Walden's (season 10, episode 23)
  • Michael Clarke Duncan as Jerome Burnette, Charlie and Alan's neighbor, and the father of Celeste Burnette (season 6)
  • Steven Eckholdt as Brad, Alan's lawyer, and Chelsea's replacement for Charlie (season 7)
  • Jenna Elfman as Frankie (season 1, episode 15 and 16) and as Dharma (season 9, episode 1)
  • Georgia Engel as Jean, Lyndsey's mother (season 9, episodes 19, 20)
  • Sara Erikson as Jennifer, Jake's one-time, older girlfriend (season 9, episode 17)
  • Emilio Estevez as Andy, Charlie's long-time friend who dies before him (season 6, episode 11) [real-life brother of Charlie Sheen.]
  • Morgan Fairchild as Donna (Charlie's ego) (season 4, episode 16)
  • Meagen Fay as Martha Melini, Chelsea's mother (seasons 6 and 7)
  • Frances Fisher as Priscilla Honeycutt, Alan's patient (season 7, episode 19)
  • Megan Fox as Prudence, Berta's granddaughter (season 1, episode 12)
  • Willie Garson as Lyndsey's gynecologist, who takes her out on a date. (season 10 episode 14)
  • Thomas Gibson as Greg (season 9, episode 1)
  • Judy Greer as Myra Melnick, Herb Melnick's sister and Charlie's one-night fling (season 4); as Bridget, Waldon's ex-wife (season 9, 10, 11)
  • Teri Hatcher as Liz, Judith's sister (season 1, episode 19)
  • Erinn Hayes as Gretchen, a one night stand of Alan's (season 8, episode 5)
  • Tricia Helfer as Gail, Chelsea's friend (season 7 and 9)
  • Marilu Henner as Linda, Walden's older, more mature love interest (season 10, episode 23)
  • Amy Hill as Mrs. Wiggins, Alan's receptionist after Melissa leaves him (season 7)
  • Enrique Iglesias as Fernando, Charlie's carpenter/handyman (season 4, episode 23)
  • Kris Iyer as Dr. Prajneep (season 1, episode 17; season 4, episode 16; season 5, episode 1)[50]
  • Stephanie Jacobsen as Penelope, Charlie's former lover who visits the house after Walden moves in (Season 9, Episode 2)
  • Allison Janney as Alan's online dating partner (season 4)
  • James Earl Jones as himself (season 6, episode 11)
  • Tinashe Kachingwe as Celeste Burnette, Jake's ex-girlfriend (seasons 6 and 7)
  • Carol Kane as Shelly, Melissa's mother (season 6)
  • Stacy Keach as Tom Melini, Chelsea's father (season 7)
  • Richard Kind as Artie, Charlie's manager (season 5, episode 8)
  • Eric Allan Kramer as Bill (season 1)
  • Mila Kunis as Vivian, a free spirit hiker (season 11, episode 19)
  • Katherine LaNasa as Lydia, Charlie's Oedipal girlfriend and Evelyn's doppelgänger (season 4, episodes 6 and 10)
  • Kate Miner as Nadine Hore (season 11, episode 9)
  • Lucy Lawless as Pamela the ex-wife of the gay ad executive. (season 2, episode 18. "It was Mame, Mom")
  • Cloris Leachman as Norma, Charlie and Alan's neighbor, Alan's "sugar momma", and Charlie's former "sugar momma" (season 3)
  • Richard Lewis as Stan, Charlie's accountant (season 1, episode 14)
  • Heather Locklear as Laura Lang, Esq., Alan's divorce attorney (season 1, episode 21)
  • Jon Lovitz as Archie Baldwin, Charlie's nemesis to win the advertising jingle award (season 3, episode 17)
  • Camryn Manheim as Daisy, Berta's sister (season 2)
  • Jenny McCarthy as Sylvia Fishman (alias "Courtney Leopold"), alleged daughter of Nathan Krunk (alias "Teddy Leopold") (seasons 5, 8, 9)
  • Aly Michalka as Brooke, Jenny's girlfriend (season 11)
  • Katy Mixon as Betsy, a married woman whom Charlie purports to marry after his break-up with Chelsea (season 7, episodes 7 and 16)
  • Christina Moore as Cynthia Sullivan, Judith's best friend (season 5)
  • Brit Morgan as a girl Walden picks up at a bar (season 10 episode 1)
  • Martin Mull as Russell, Charlie's self-medicating pharmacist (season 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10)
  • Ming-Na as the Hon. Linda Harris, Superior Court judge, adjunct law professor, and Charlie's girlfriend (season 5, episodes 3, 4, 5, and 6)
  • Judd Nelson (season 8) as Chris McElroy, ex-husband of Alan's love interest, Lyndsey, and Eldridge's father.
  • Chris O'Donnell as Jill/Bill, Charlie's ex-girlfriend who since became a man (season 1, episode 18)
  • Gail O'Grady as Mandi, mother of Kandi, ex-wife of Andy, and brief love interest of Charlie (season 3)
  • Jodi Lyn O'Keefe as Isabella (season 3, episode 6)
  • Emily Osment as Ashley, as Jake's girlfriend (season 10, episode 20)
  • Sean Penn as himself, Charlie's poker and cigar buddy (season 2, episode 1)
  • Jack Plotnick as Mike (season 5)
  • Annie Potts as Lenore, mother of Judith & Liz (season 7)
  • Jaime Pressly as Tammy, Jake's cougar girlfriend (Season 10)
  • Jeff Probst as himself, Walden and Alan's love rival (season 11)
  • Missi Pyle as Delores Pasternak, Jake's teacher (season 2, 7, and 9)
  • Carl Reiner as Marty Pepper (season 7 and 11)
  • Denise Richards as Lisa, Charlie's former girlfriend (season 1, episode 10, and season 2, episode 9) [ex-wife of Charlie Sheen]
  • Emily Rose as Janine (season 6, episode 12)
  • Sara Rue as Naomi, Berta's daughter (season 4)
  • Jeri Ryan as Sherri, Charlie's girlfriend (season 2, episodes 5 and 19, season 9, episode 1)
  • Martin Sheen as Harvey, father of Rose, and Evelyn's fling (season 3) [real-life father of Charlie Sheen]
  • Brooke Shields as Danielle, Charlie and Alan's neighbor (season 4)
  • Rena Sofer as Chrissy, the "mother" of Charlie's "son" (season 6, episode 1)
  • Kevin Sorbo as Andy, father of Kandi, ex-husband of Mandi, and brief love interest of Judith (season 3)
  • John Stamos as himself (season 9, episode 1)
  • Harry Dean Stanton as himself, Charlie's poker and cigar buddy (season 2, episode 1)
  • D.B. Sweeney as Larry, Lyndsey's boyfriend after Alan (season 11, episode 5)
  • Tony Tripoli as Phillip, Evelyn's hairdresser (season 4)
  • Steven Tyler as himself, Charlie and Alan's neighbor and Berta's one-time employer (season 1, episode 4, and season 4, episode 2)
  • Eddie Van Halen as himself (season 7, episode 1)
  • Emmanuelle Vaugier as Mia, Charlie's ex-fiancée (seasons 3, 5, 6, 7, and 9)
  • Robert Wagner as Nathan Krunk (alias "Teddy Leopold"), Evelyn's fifth husband (later revealed to be a con artist), who died late in season 5 (seasons 4 and 5)
  • Wayne Wilderson as Roger, Evelyn's co-worker (season 4)
  • Alicia Witt as Delores Pasternak, Jake's teacher who became a stripper (season 6)
  • ZZ Top as themselves

As part of a crossover from the writers and executive producer of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, George Eads made a brief cameo appearance on the May 5, 2008 episode.[51]

Charlie Sheen's real-life brother Emilio Estevez has guest-starred as an old friend of Charlie's;[52] his father Martin Sheen has appeared as Rose's father. Sam Sheen, the real-life daughter of Denise Richards and Charlie Sheen, appeared as Lisa's daughter on November 22, 2004.[53] Mila Kunis, Ashton Kutcher's fiancée, appeared on the show as his love interest in season 11.

Broadcast[edit]

Episodes[edit]

Season Episodes Originally aired
Season premiere Season finale
1 24 September 22, 2003 (2003-09-22) May 24, 2004 (2004-05-24)
2 24 September 20, 2004 (2004-09-20) May 23, 2005 (2005-05-23)
3 24 September 19, 2005 (2005-09-19) May 22, 2006 (2006-05-22)
4 24 September 18, 2006 (2006-09-18) May 14, 2007 (2007-05-14)
5 19 September 24, 2007 (2007-09-24) May 19, 2008 (2008-05-19)
6 24 September 22, 2008 (2008-09-22) May 18, 2009 (2009-05-18)
7 22 September 21, 2009 (2009-09-21) May 24, 2010 (2010-05-24)
8 16 September 20, 2010 (2010-09-20) February 14, 2011 (2011-02-14)
9 24 September 19, 2011 (2011-09-19) May 14, 2012 (2012-05-14)
10 23 September 27, 2012 (2012-09-27) May 9, 2013 (2013-05-09)
11 22 September 26, 2013 (2013-09-26) May 8, 2014 (2014-05-08)
12 TBA October 30, 2014 (2014-10-30)[54][55] TBA

Each episode's title is a dialogue fragment from the episode itself, usually offering no clue to the episode's actual plotline. The show's 100th episode ("City of Great Racks") aired on October 15, 2007. To celebrate this, a casino-inspired party was held at West Hollywood's Pacific Design Center.[56] Warner Brothers Television also distributed blue Micargi Rover bicycles adorned with the Two and a Half Men logo along with the words "100 Episodes." Each bicycle came with a note saying, "You've made us very proud. Here's to a long ride together."[56] The cast also gave the crew sterling silver key rings from Tiffany & Co. The key rings were attached to small pendants with "100" inscribed on one side and Two and a Half Men on the other.

All seasons except 5, 7, 8, 10 and 11 consist of 24 episodes. Season 5 was narrowed down to 19 episodes due to the 2007–2008 Writers Guild of America strike. Due to Sheen's personal life problems, Season 7 was narrowed down to 22 episodes. Season 8 premiered on September 20, 2010, at 9:00 p.m. ET. CBS initially ordered 24 episodes for the season, but due to Sheen's personal life, the show was put on hiatus after 16 episodes were produced, with production scheduled to resume on February 28. After a series of comments made by Sheen on February 24, 2011, CBS and Warner Bros. cancelled the remainder of the season (episodes 17–24).

On May 13, 2011, it was widely reported that actor Ashton Kutcher would be replacing Charlie Sheen as the lead on the show.[57] The show's ninth season premiered on September 19, 2011. The first episode, "Nice to Meet You, Walden Schmidt", begins with Charlie Harper's funeral, and introduces Kutcher as billionaire Walden Schmidt, who buys Harper's house. On May 12, 2012, CBS renewed Two and a Half Men for a tenth season, moving it to Thursday nights at 8:30pm, following The Big Bang Theory.[58][59] For the 2013–14 season, the show was moved to the Thursday 9:30-10 PM Eastern slot. As of February 27, 2014, the series' time slot was moved to a half-hour earlier at the 9-9:30PM Eastern slot.

Syndication[edit]

Two and a Half Men entered local United States broadcast syndication in 2007, with the first four seasons available to local stations (largely CW affiliates in the major U.S. television markets through major deals with Tribune Broadcasting and the Sinclair Broadcast Group).[60] On September 6, 2010, FX began airing the series daily nationwide. Syndicated shows are sold in multi-year cycles, with the first cycle the most expensive. Two and a Half Men's first cycle is nine years in length. If there had been no ninth season because of Sheen's departure, due to the first cycle's premature end Warner Bros. would not have received about $80 million in license fees. While local stations would prefer to have as many episodes as possible available to them, an early start to the second cycle would lower the cost of the show for them.[23]

International[edit]

The series airs in over 50 countries. In Australia it airs on Nine Network, GO!, and Fox8.[61][62][63][64] In Canada it airs on CTV, CTV Two, and City.[65][66] It airs on ATV World in Hong Kong.[67] In India, Singapore, the Philippines, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Malaysia the series airs on Star World and on the WB Channel.[68][69] In Israel it airs on yes Comedy. In Ireland it airs on Comedy Central and RTÉ Two.[70][71] It airs on TVNZ and TV 2 in New Zealand.[72] In the Philippines it airs on Studio 23[73] and in South Africa it airs on SABC3 and M-net.[74][75] It airs on Comedy Central, Comedy Central Extra, Viva, and ITV2 in the United Kingdom.[70][76][77]

Crossovers and other appearances[edit]

Further information: Two and a Half Deaths and Fish in a Drawer

"When Chuck pitched the idea to me ... I thought it was an intriguing idea and walked into Naren's office and he said, 'What a nut.'"

– Carol Mendelsohn[78]

CSI: Crime Scene Investigation[edit]

In 2007, Two and a Half Men creator Chuck Lorre contacted CSI: Crime Scene Investigation executive producer Carol Mendelsohn about a crossover. At first, the idea seemed unlikely to receive approval; however, it resurfaced when Mendelsohn and Lorre were at the World Television Festival in Canada and they decided to get approval and run with it.[78] When Mendelsohn was giving a talk, she accidentally mentioned the crossover, that same day Variety Magazine was already inquiring about the crossover episodes. Mendelsohn later stated: "We're all used to being in control and in charge of our own shows and even though this was a freelance-type situation ... there was an expectation and also a desire on all of our parts to really have a true collaboration. You have to give a little. It was sort of a life lesson, I think."[78]

"The biggest challenge for us was doing a comedy with a murder in it. Generally our stories are a little lighter," stated Lorre in an interview. "Would our audience go with a dead body in it? There was a moment where it could have gone either way. I think the results were spectacular. It turned out to be a really funny episode."[78] The Two and a Half Men episode "Fish in a Drawer" was the first part of the crossover to air, on May 5, 2008, written by CSI writers Sarah Goldfinger, Evan Dunsky, Carol Mendelsohn and Naren Shankar.[79] George Eads is the only CSI: Crime Scene Investigation cast member to make a cameo in this episode.

Three days later the second part of the crossover aired, the CSI episode "Two and a Half Deaths". Gil Grissom (William Petersen) investigated the murder of a sitcom diva named Annabelle (Katey Sagal), who was found murdered while she was filming her show in Las Vegas.[79] The episode was written by Two and a Half Men creators Lorre and Aronsohn; Sheen, Cryer, and Jones all make uncredited cameos in this episode as themselves, in the same clothes their characters were wearing in "Fish in a Drawer".

Due Date[edit]

At the end of 2010 film Due Date, a scene from Two and a Half Men is shown, in which Charlie Sheen, Jon Cryer, and Angus T. Jones appear as their characters, while Ethan Chase (played by Zach Galifianakis in the movie) plays Stu, Jake's tutor.[80]

Reception[edit]

The New York Daily News has described the sitcom as "solid, well-acted and occasionally funny."[81] Conversely Graeme Blundell, writing for The Australian, described it as a "sometimes creepy, misogynistic comedy".[82] Ashton Kutcher's debut was met with mixed reviews,[83] and reviews for season 9 were also mixed.[84] However reviews of the tenth season were much more positive. Cartermatt thought that the summer away gave the writers time to figure out Kutcher's character, come up with some interesting storylines, and that overall the show was getting better.[85] The show has received multiple award nominations. It was nominated for 30 Primetime Emmy Awards (winning four technical awards and two for Jon Cryer as Alan Harper), and has also received two Golden Globe nominations. The show won the "Favorite TV Comedy" award at the 35th People's Choice Awards.

Ratings[edit]

American television ratings[edit]

Seasonal rankings (based on average total viewers per episode) of Two and a Half Men on CBS.

Note: Each U.S. network television season starts in late September and ends in late May, which coincides with the completion of May sweeps.

Season Timeslot (ET/CT) Season premiere Season finale TV season Ranking Viewers
(in millions)
1 Mondays 9:30 pm/8:30 pm September 22, 2003 May 24, 2004 2003–04 15[86] 15.31[86]
2 September 20, 2004 May 23, 2005 2004–05 11[87] 16.45[87]
3 Mondays 9:00 pm/8:00 pm September 19, 2005 May 22, 2006 2005–06 17[88] 15.14[88]
4 September 18, 2006 May 14, 2007 2006–07 21[89] 14.43[89]
5 September 24, 2007 May 19, 2008 2007–08 17[90] 13.68[90]
6 September 22, 2008 May 18, 2009 2008–09 10[91] 15.06[91]
7 September 21, 2009 May 24, 2010 2009–10 11[92] 14.95[92]
8 September 20, 2010 February 14, 2011 2010–11 17[93] 12.73[93]
9 September 19, 2011 May 14, 2012 2011–12 11[94] 14.64[94]
10 Thursdays 8:30 pm/7:30 pm[95] September 27, 2012 May 9, 2013 2012–13 11[96] 13.78[96]
11 Thursdays 9:30 pm/8:30 pm (Episodes 1-14)[97]
Thursdays 9:00 pm/8:00 pm (Episodes 15-22)
September 26, 2013 May 8, 2014 2013–14 27[98] 10.66[98]
12 Thursdays 9:00 pm/8:00 pm October 30, 2014[99] 2014–15 TBA TBA

Awards and nominations[edit]

Primetime Emmy Awards[edit]

Year Category Nominee Result
2004 Outstanding Main Title Theme Music Lee Aronsohn, Grant Geissman, Chuck Lorre Nominated
Outstanding Cinematography for a Multi-Camera Series Steven V. Silver
for "Camel Filters and Pheremones"
Nominated
Outstanding Art Direction for a Multi-Camera Series John Shaffner, Ann Shea
for "Alan Harper, Frontier Chiropractor"
Nominated
2005 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Holland Taylor
as "Evelyn Harper"
Nominated
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Conchata Ferrell
as "Berta"
Nominated
Outstanding Multi-camera Sound Mixing for a Series or Special Robert LaMasney, Charlie McDaniel, Kathy Oldham, Bruce Peters
for "Can You Eat Human Flesh with Wooden Teeth?"
Won
Outstanding Multi-camera Picture Editing for a Series Joe Bella
for "It Was Mame, Mom"
Nominated
Outstanding Cinematography for a Multi-camera Series Steven Silver
for "Back Off, Mary Poppins"
Nominated
Outstanding Art Direction for a Multi-camera Series John Shaffner, Ann Shea
for "It Was 'Mame', Mom"/"A Low, Guttural Tongue Flapping Noise"
Nominated
2006 Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Jon Cryer
as "Alan Harper"
Nominated
Outstanding Multi-camera Sound Mixing for a Series or Special Bob La Masney, Charlie McDaniel, Kathy Oldham, Bruce Peters
for "The Unfortunate Little Schnauzer"
Nominated
Outstanding Multi-camera Picture Editing for a Series Joe Bella
for "That Special Tug"
Won
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series Charlie Sheen
as "Charlie Harper"
Nominated
Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series Martin Sheen
as "Harvey"
Nominated
Outstanding Comedy Series Nominated
Outstanding Cinematography for a Multi-camera Series Steven V. Silver
for "Carpet Burns and a Bite Mark"
Nominated
2007 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Holland Taylor
as "Evelyn Harper"
Nominated
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Conchata Ferrell
as "Berta"
Nominated
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Jon Cryer
as "Alan Harper"
Nominated
Outstanding Multi-camera Picture Editing for a Series Joe Bella
for "Release the Dogs"
Won
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series Charlie Sheen
as "Charlie Harper"
Nominated
Outstanding Comedy Series Nominated
Outstanding Cinematography for a Multi-camera Series Steven Silver
for "Release the Dogs"
Won
2008 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Holland Taylor
as "Evelyn Harper"
Nominated
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Jon Cryer
as "Alan Harper"
Nominated
Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Comedy or Drama Series (half-hour) and Animation Bruce Peters, Kathy Oldham, Charlie McDaniel, Bob La Masney
for "Is There a Mrs. Waffles?"
Nominated
Outstanding Makeup for a Multi-camera Series or a Special (non-prosthetic) Janice Berridge, Peggy Nichols, Shelly Woodhouse-Collins, Gabriel Solana
for "City of Great Racks"
Nominated
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series Charlie Sheen
as "Charlie Harper"
Nominated
Outstanding Hairstyling for a Multi-camera Series or a Special Pixie Schwartz, Krista Borrelli, Ralph M. Abalos, Janice Zoladz
for "City of Great Racks"
Nominated
Outstanding Comedy Series Nominated
2009 Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Jon Cryer
as "Alan Harper"
Won
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series Charlie Sheen
as "Charlie Harper"
Nominated
2010 Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Jon Cryer
as "Alan Harper"
Nominated
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Holland Taylor
as "Evelyn Harper"
Nominated
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series Jane Lynch
as Dr. Linda Freeman, for "818-jklpuzo"
Nominated
Outstanding Cinematography for a Half-Hour Series Steven V. Silver
for "Crude and Uncalled For"
Nominated
Outstanding Hairstyling for a Multi-Camera Series or Special Pixie Schwartz, Krista Borrelli, Ralph Abalos, Janice Allison
for "That's Why They Call It Ballroom"
Nominated
Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Comedy or Drama Series (Half-Hour) and Animation Bruce Peters, Bob LaMasney, Kathy Oldham
for "Fart Jokes, Pie and Celeste"
Nominated
2011 Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Jon Cryer
as "Alan Harper"
Nominated
Outstanding Cinematography for a Multi-camera Series Steven V. Silver
for "Hookers, Hookers, Hookers"
Won
2012 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series Jon Cryer
as "Alan Harper"
Won
Outstanding Cinematography for a Multi-camera Series Steven V. Silver
for "Sips, Sonnets, And Sodomy"
Won
Outstanding Multi-Camera Picture Editing for a Comedy Series Joseph Bella
for "Why We Gave Up Women"
Nominated
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series Kathy Bates
as "Charlie Harper"
Won
2013 Outstanding Cinematography for a Multi-camera Series Steven V. Silver
for "Grab a Feather and Get in Line"
Nominated
Outstanding Art Direction for a Multi-Camera Series John Schaffner, Ann Shea, Francoise Cherry-Cohen
for "Avoid the Chinese Mustard"
Nominated

Golden Globe Awards[edit]

Year Category Nominee Result
2004 Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy Charlie Sheen
as "Charlie Harper"
Nominated
2005 Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy Charlie Sheen
as "Charlie Harper"
Nominated

Screen Actors Guild Awards[edit]

Year Category Nominee Result
2005 Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series Charlie Sheen
as "Charlie Harper"
Nominated
2010 Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series Charlie Sheen
as "Charlie Harper"
Nominated
2012 Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series Jon Cryer
as "Alan Harper"
Nominated

Teen Choice Awards[edit]

Year Category Nominee Result
2007 Choice TV: Actor Comedy Charlie Sheen as "Charlie Harper" Nominated
2008 Choice TV: Comedy Series Two and a Half Men Nominated
2008 Choice TV: Actor Comedy Charlie Sheen as "Charlie Harper" Nominated
2009 Choice TV: Actor Comedy Charlie Sheen as "Charlie Harper" Nominated
2012 Choice TV: Actor Comedy Ashton Kutcher as "Walden Schmidt" Nominated
2013 Choice TV: Actor Comedy Ashton Kutcher as "Walden Schmidt" Nominated
2013 Choice TV: Scene Stealer Female Miley Cyrus Won
2014 Choice TV: Actor Comedy Ashton Kutcher as "Walden Schmidt" Nominated

People's Choice Awards[edit]

Year Category Nominee Result
2004 Favorite New TV Comedy Two and a Half Men Won
2007 Favorite TV Comedy Two and a Half Men Won
2008 Favorite TV Comedy Two and a Half Men Won
2009 Favorite TV Comedy Two and a Half Men Won
2011 Favorite TV Comedy Two and a Half Men Nominated
2012 Favorite Network TV Comedy Two and a Half Men Nominated

ALMA Awards[edit]

Year Category Nominee Result
2008 Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series Charlie Sheen as "Charlie Harper" Won
2009 Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series Charlie Sheen as "Charlie Harper" Nominated

Home media[edit]

DVD name Ep # Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
The Complete First Season 24 September 11, 2007 September 12, 2005 February 15, 2006
The Complete Second Season 24 January 8, 2008 August 28, 2006 September 6, 2006
The Complete Third Season 24 May 13, 2008 May 19, 2008 July 23, 2008
The Complete Fourth Season 24 September 23, 2008 October 6, 2008 October 8, 2008
The Complete Fifth Season 19 May 12, 2009 April 13, 2009 July 1, 2009[100]
The Complete Sixth Season 24 September 1, 2009 October 19, 2009[101] March 3, 2010[102]
The Complete Seventh Season 22 September 21, 2010 October 11, 2010 October 13, 2010[103]
The Complete Eighth Season 16 September 6, 2011 August 8, 2011 August 24, 2011
The Complete Ninth Season 24 August 28, 2012 October 8, 2012 October 31, 2012
The Complete Tenth Season 23 September 24, 2013[104] September 30, 2013 October 23, 2013
The Complete Eleventh Season 22 October 14, 2014 October 20, 2014 October 14, 2014
Season 1 extras
  • Four disc set
  • Two Adults, One Kid, No Grown-Ups – behind the scenes with the cast and crew.
  • Backstage tour with Angus T. Jones.
  • Dolby Stereo 2.0 sound format
  • Gag reel.
Season 2 extras
  • Four disc set
  • 212 Days in the Life of 212 – viewers are invited for a behind-the-scenes look at a typical day in the life of cast members Charlie Sheen, Jon Cryer, and Angus T. Jones.
  • The Serious Business of Writing Comedy – a hilarious look at what it really takes to write a comedy show.
  • Dolby Stereo 2.0 sound format
  • Gag reel.
Season 3 extras
  • Four disc set
  • Dolby Stereo 2.0 sound format
  • Gag reel.
Season 4 extras
  • Four disc set
  • Two men talking about Two and a Half Men – Creators Chuck Lorre and Lee Aronsohn talk about the show.
  • "Tucked, Taped and Gorgeous" commentary with Chuck Lorre and Lee Aronsohn.
  • "Mr. McGlue's Feedbag" commentary with Charlie Sheen, Jon Cryer, and Angus T. Jones.
  • Dolby Stereo 2.0 sound format
  • Gag reel.
Season 5 extras[105]
  • Three disc set
  • Two and a Half Men at 100 – featurette on the show's 100th episode.
  • The Lore of Chuck Lorre: Must Pause TV – the genesis and evolution of his vanity cards at the end of each episode.
  • Dying Is Easy, Comedy Is Hard – chronicling the crossover episodes between writing teams of Two and a Half Men and CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.
  • Bonus episode: CSI: Crime Scene Investigation – "Two and a Half Deaths."
  • Dolby Stereo 2.0 sound format
Season 6 extras
  • Four disc set
  • Growing Up Harper – The evolution of Jake Harper and the actor who portrays him, Angus T. Jones
  • The Women of "Two and a Half Men" – Interviews with the women
  • Dolby Stereo 2.0 sound format
  • Gag reel
Season 7 extras[106]
  • Three disc set
  • Ghosts of Charlie's Girlfriends Past Featurette
  • Dolby Stereo 2.0 sound format
  • Gag Reel
Season 8 extras
Season 9 Extras[107]
  • Three disc set
  • 2.5 Men, Version 2.0: Experience the excitement of the first night Ashton Kutcher took the stage, through backstage footage, crew, audience and talent interviews.
  • The Billionaire Upgrade – Walden Schmidt’s Malibu House Redesign: The Harper House is due for a makeover when Walden Schmidt snaps it up, and it’s up to the crack production design team at "Two and a Half Men" to express Walden’s personality in a big overhaul of the show’s signature set.
  • Dolby Surround 5.1 sound format
  • Gag reel
Season 10 Extras[108]
  • Three disc set
  • Two Manly Men Singing and Dancing – Ashton Kutcher and Jon Cryer take us behind the scenes in the production of their first-ever musical number.
  • Dolby Surround 5.1 sound format
  • Gag Reel
Season 11 Extras
  • Three disc set
  • Dolby Surround 5.1 sound format
  • Gag Reel

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Prior to appearing as the main character Chelsea from season 6 onwards, Taylor had appeared briefly in four previous episodes as three different minor characters: as Suzanne in the series' pilot (season 1), as Tina in "Last Chance to See Those Tattoos" (season 2), and as Nina in "Our Leather Gear Is in the Guest Room" (season 5).
  2. ^ a b Prior to appearing as the main character Kandi in season 4, April Bowlby had appeared briefly as Kimber in the season 3 episode "Madame and Her Special Friend".

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