The veteran CBS sitcom ‘Two and a Half Men’ endured a plethora of drama and controversies. The show was nearly killed by the network when Chuck Lorre brought in Ashton Kutcher to reroute. But did it actually help the stats? Let’s find out.
The boat of Chuck Lorre’s widely popular CBS sitcom ‘Two and a Half Men’ almost sank due to the controversies surrounding lead actor Charlie Sheen. His dangerous drug addiction, news about being HIV positive, and negative comments about show creator Lorre, ousted him from the show, resulting in dropping of the show for nearly a year.
- How Charlie Harper’s mysterious death nearly killed ‘Two and a Half Men’
- Ashton Kutcher brought ‘Two and a Half Men’ back to life: Ratings and viewership indicate otherwise
- Fans’ reaction about Ashton Kutcher and Charlie Sheen as the lead
However, the show finally returned with Ashton Kutcher as heartbroken Internet billionaire Walden Schmidt for season 9. But this cast change had a wide impact on the show’s viewership and ratings. Let’s decode whether Ashton Kutcher was a bad choice for Two and a half men? What do fans think? Scroll down to read.
Here’s how the demise of Charlie Harper nearly killed the show
‘Two and a Half Men’ has always been a rating juggernaut. According to the “Hollywood Reporter”, although the pilot episode of season 9 witnessed the highest viewership in the show’s history – nearly 28 million (27.7 million to be exact), the show also saw a 10.3 rating in the 18-49 age demographic, and a 12.2 rating among viewers of 25-54 years of age. That is a nearly 90% jump from season 8 viewership (14.6 million viewers and a 4.1 rating in the 18-49 demographic and a 6.1 rating in the 25-54 demographic). However, it was not a happy ending.
Fans didn’t take Charlie Sheen’s absence from the show well. It all went downhill from there.
Who’s your favorite Two and a Half Men (Quiz)
Charlie Sheen era vs Ashton Kutcher era
Charlie Sheen’s public meltdown didn’t stop after abusing and name-calling show creator Chuck Lorre. After the comeback of the show with Ashton Kutcher as the lead, Sheen went on Twitter and praised his former co-star Jon Cryer as a genius, and then asked him how his ‘lame side-kick’ was doing, referring to Kutcher. He didn’t stop there. In his next tweet, Sheen ‘apologized’ to Cryer for calling Kutcher his ‘lame’ sidekick, when he actually meant ‘really lame’.
Despite controversies, Charlie Sheen’s time in ‘Two and a Half Men’ as notorious playboy, jingle composer Charlie Harper saw on average nearly 8 to 9 ratings on IMDb and 15 million viewers.
According to Graph TV, here’s how IMDb ratings looked during Charlie Sheen and Ashton Kutcher.
On the other hand, “Business Insider” reported a distinctive drop in viewership as well. Take a look at it yourself.
Fans are divided when it comes to who they favour in ‘Two and a Half Men’
There is a certain section of fans that prefer Ashton Kutcher as the new lead. Here’s what fans think about Kutcher, as posted on Twitter. Aimee Phillips thinks, “Even though Charlie Sheen’s better, Ashton Kutcher does a pretty good job as his replacement”. Ghost Mutt and Rhys Cory Gould shared similar sentiments about Ashton Kutcher, “Two and a Half Men way better with Ashton Kutcher”.
But, on the other hand, some fans who commented on Dkoding think that Charlie Sheen is best suited for leading ‘Two and a Half Men’. Jo Ann Dowers wrote, “Please bring back Charlie [Sheen]! And Berta!!!!!” Juboogalie said, “I’d like to see how they’re going to write Charlie back into it. What will happen to Walden then? Are they going to make it work? There are so many possibilities”.
It might seem bringing in Ashton Kutcher did more harm to the already widely popular show than good. But despite what stats say, when it comes to fans, ‘Two and a Half Men’ has been, and will forever remain, one of the most loved American sitcoms ever. What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.