Fall TV Preview

Could Two and a Half Men's Ashton Kutcher Be Playing... Charlie Harper?

I may be about to waste 534 words here — and/or maybe I simply watched too many soaps back in the day — but I’m beginning to wonder if Two and a Half Men boss Chuck Lorre is planning to cheese off Charlie Sheen the most pointed way possible by having series newcomer Ashton Kutcher simply take over the role of unapologetic cad Charlie Harper. Crazy like a warlock? Hear me out.

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There’s been some jibber-jabber about how Lorre is (supposedly…) determined to ensure that Sheen can never set foot on the show again, that he might go so far as to involve (the fictional) Charlie in a grisly accident.

But what if the accident is not designed to kill Charlie H. but instead necessitate some tongue-in-cheek, soap opera-style plastic surgery that results in him looking like Demi Moore’s rakish boy toy? Can’t you just see hapless Alan rolling his eyes at the dumb luck his brother has in undergoing facial reconstruction that only makes him look better, younger… and a foot taller? It’d be like Roseanne‘s Becky switch, but with facial hair.

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What sent me on this potentially ridiculous riff? Three things.

1) The new key art replicates the “microphone” three-shot from days of yore. Right when Two and a Half Men is on the cusp of a rebirth, poised to put some rather dreary days behind it, why evoke the past so squarely?

2) No one is revealing the name of Kutcher’s character. Yes, IMDb has him listed as “Raymond,” but neither CBS nor Warner Bros. TV is confirming that as accurate. Why would there be any top-secrecy? Are we at a point in spoiler safeguarding where the name of a sitcom character is being held under lock and key? It all seems just a bit… conspicuous. Unless, that is, because his name is Charlie.

Now you are rolling your eyes. But as I pored over this preposterous twist, it more and more paved the way for comedy. Yes, there’s the refreshed look and the wholly inexplicable height spurt. Now think about it from Charlie Harper’s point of view: With a new face, he’d feel free — obligated, even — to revisit scorched-earth conquests from his past, with impunity.

Or, take it in a whole different direction and give the accident victim amnesia. What if Charlie couldn’t recall his carousing, skirt-chasing days? Would Alan labor to keep him from heading back down that reprehensible path? And what if, despite everyone’s efforts, NuCharlie nonetheless kept falling into the beds of gorgeous women?

3) Perhaps most importantly, let’s look at the pragmatic side of things: By having Kutcher play Charlie, Two and a Half Men can have its cake and eat it too by essentially continuing with the exact same premise and dynamics that made it TV’s most-watched sitcom for years, but without lugging around the baggage that is Sheen. (After all, the speculation that Kutcher will play some “long-lost uncle” or, even more far-fetched, a “stranger who buys the house and lets Alan and Jake live there” don’t come prepackaged with as much zing.)

What do you think? Do you entertain the possibility that Kutcher is literally taking over Sheen’s role?

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Ana says:

    It seems to me that Ashton Kutcher’s character will probably be some deviant who wins the house from Charlie in Vegas. It’s the simplest solution.

  2. shiker says:

    REMEMBER Sheen’s final show…
    Alan was freaking out seeing a female verison of himself in the last few seconds of video…so maybe Alan has cracked and AK will be his invisible friend (at first) that he can only see (imagine Berta’s reactions to this nut case)then as #7 comes along Raymond (AK) will be introduced as a new character that freaks out Alan even more.
    As for Charlie, he will simply perish in a plane crash to Paris.

  3. geni hays says:

    I think charlie should run off and get married..and leave everything to his long lost dad {Robin Williams}

  4. Tara says:

    If Charlie had a son at 15, then Ashton would be 30 – more than plausible! (if my math is right). I think that due to Charlie’s personality the “long-lost son” angle would be the most practical. The brother gets the money and house, but being the nice guy that he is, takes in “Ashton’s” character. He could then try to moderate his womanizer genes and encourage the money making genes!!

  5. BoredInColorado says:

    Interesting topic. My theory is that Charlie has run off to Paris with Rose. He’s not coming back so he gets Alan or his mother, the real estate agent, to find someone to sub-let the house and be a roomie to Alan and Jake. AK does not know that his rent is actually the full mortgage, thus Alan continues to sponge along and live rent-free.

    I don’t think he is a child that Evelyn gave up because the boys would have been old enough to know their mom was pregnant. And their father would have already been long dead before he could have fathered a “child” this age.

    Just my .02 …………

  6. Dayna says:

    I think Dean off supernatuaral could play the roll of charlie harper fairly well as he has a similiar behaviour and charm with woman.

  7. Taze says:

    Oh, come on! Get a life all of yoo’s!

  8. Margherita says:

    I think that the fact that the main characters are related is an important part of the show. I also believe that it will be a shame to set Kutcher for failure. If he has to replace Charlie he will have to imitate him & that is just not fair. Public will be comparing them all the time to be finally dissapointed. It will be a great way to build a new character to introduce him as Charlie’s son (I can wait for the details in how). Shows where characters have been replaced for a different actor have survived but being supporting characters I hardly believe that this could be the case with a main one specially that being Charlie’s.

  9. Jon says:

    Killing Charlie off would be a mistake. Sending him to prison for getting cought with hookers and blow would be hillarious. He would still be on the show but never seen and you could make endless prison jokes. Alan: I’m going to see Charlie today. Berta – In a sarcarstic tone: Hey sport, did you pack some vasoline. Alan – dead serious: Already in the basket. Think of the possibilties. Phone calls from prison, prison visit scenarios, Charlies lawyers coming to the house to discuss his prison situation. I am afraid that this is the beginning of the end for 2 and a half men.

  10. Bridget says:

    I don’t care who takes Charlie’s place just as long as someone does. Sheen is a sick SOB and needs to be put in this place, a sanitarium would be best. I’ve stopped watching until they get a replacement.

  11. budd says:

    if you take charlie out of the show you might as well shut it down while your ahead be it will never work no matter what is tried. ill give it 4 weeks tops it will be over with. but as for me ill watch the first but thats about it.you had a good run shame you cant solve your differances

  12. Emily says:

    How about Charlie gets in an accident, leaving him brain dead (writers revenge!) and Alan chooses to pull the plug – and Ashton’s character receives some organ. But it turns out he’s Berta’s son? Berta is scary enough to intimidate Alan into letting someone guest in the house ‘just until he gets back on his feet’…

  13. Hannah says:

    Well, the plastic surgery thing is playing out on the soap “One Life to Live” right now. When the replacement actor entered the show eight years ago the character had massive plastic surgery. Now the original actor is returning with the storyline that the replacement actor is an impostor. Sooooo, giving Charlie Harper plastic surgery is by no means preventing Charlie Sheen from returning. Don’t refer to soaps when writing off actors, soaps know how to bring anyone back from the dead.

  14. Kai says:

    It doesn’t matter what Kutcher’s character is named or how lame a plot they come up with to introduce him because Kutcher is not talented and there is no way he can replace Charlie Sheen.

    Chuck Lorre is biting the hand that feeds him and I am shocked that WB is allowing it. Sheen is “Men” and he has made a lot of money for everyone over the years. So, he doesn’t like his boss? Who does? And Lorre is hardly the innocent victim here…remember all those nasty cracks he made about Sheen via his vanity cards? And he made those comments well before Sheen went public with any comments of his own!

    Lorre needs to check his ego at the door, grow up and get over it! Without Sheen “Men” will crash in burn…does Lorre want to feel right or make money?

  15. James says:

    For years IMDb had Bernadette Peters listed as the singer in the theme song of “Two and a Half Men” and only recently corrected it to Elizabeth (EG) Daily. So yeah, they DO make mistakes!

    I’m also in favour of him playing the Charlie character, it’s less-complicated, and keeps the flow of the show going w/o wasting episodes on a plot twist of some sort.

  16. ruthasaffold says:

    As the premier of the new and highly anticipated Two and a Half Men nears closer, we can’t help but to seek details of the upcoming season.

  17. John B says:

    As far as I am concerned, the last season with Charlie Sheen was the last season of the show. The show is about his character with support from his sponge of a brother and dim witted nephew. Without Charlie Sheen it is like a dinner without the main course. The idiot producers of the show are people no one will ever remember. They should have just swallowed their pride and paid him the money he asked for and took his feud with them as their 15 min. of fame. I will not watch the new show and I suspect is will be a flop with the majority of the fans of the show. Good bye 2 1/2 Men.

  18. Andy says:

    Here’s my take on the upcoming season of Two and a half men:
    This is all a ploy between Chuck Lorre and Charlie Sheen to raise the buzz about the series between TV seasons. Charlie will return this Fall in his roll as Charlie Harper. Ashton Kutcher is in on the joke. Who better to “punk” the viewing public than Mr. “Punked” himself? This will go down in TV history as another “Who Shot J.R.?”

  19. who? says:

    bring charlie back because this kutcher guy sucks
    by the way the show will suck widout CHARLIE SHEEN

  20. Chunkylefunga says:

    Ashton’s character will be called Walden Schmidt and he will play a billionaire who buys Charlie’s house. I hope that clears up this article. :-)