According to the Detroit Free Press, Charlie Sheen’s tour got off to a clunker of a start at Detroit’s Fox Theater tonight. By show of hands, who’s surprised? Exactly. By all accounts Sheen was:
* Not funny
* Not interesting
* Not engaging
* Not worth the price of admission
* Not very warlock-esque
In fact, several people booed, heckled and walked out. The larger question for that audience remains: why did you walk in, in the first place?
I don’t dislike Charlie Sheen. I think his show, Two and a Half Men, is pretty funny. Sure, it’s a bit raunchy, but it’s still mindless, silly fun. But it sounds like Sheen wanted to leave the successful show for reasons only he knows. I can understand that. Many actors, musicians, artists have walked away from a fat payday to pursue other interests. I can respect that. But is this Charlie Sheen’s principled stand? A slew of Tweets followed by a bomb of a live show? This just in, Chuck: Conan O’Brien you ain’t.
On its surface, I think it’s great to see television performers step off the sound stage, out of the comfort of “recorded in front of a live audience” and onto theater stages across the country. But the reason Conan was so successful and Sheen is on a tenuous highwire comes down to one simple reality: Conan didn’t take his audience for granted.
Instead of scripting a tight live show with comedy, monologues and audience participation, Sheen winged it. Perhaps this is a condition of living with addiction (or living with “goddesses”), but Charlie Sheen miscalculated bigtime!
But it’s not too late to save it. He can continue his tour and even take pointed shots at his former (?) employers, but how about hiring a writer or two, Chuck? Script things out a bit or something. Instead of being your own ringleader, you need a comic on the road with you to help you work an audience. In other words, spend more time putting together an act than you do on Twitter.
If Sheen was looking only to get people talking about him, mission accomplished. If he was looking to leverage his notoriety into something more lucrative, I’m not seeing it. For the moment, it appears Charlie Sheen’s acting career is all but dead. He’s fallen down to Kardashian status: a camera whore with nothing to sell other than himself. And the prices are being slashed as we speak.