Episode 02: A Company Of Men
The elegant and stately season 2 premiere was all about Elizabeth and how she was coping back at home while Philip was away on his royal tour. In fact, Philip barely appeared in the episode. Well, now it's time to shift the balance. "A Company of Men" is almost entirely about Philip and his royal tour. As you can imagine, there are quite a few scene set on a boat, and the show is about as subtle with its metaphors as Jay-Z having Frank Ocean guest-star on a song called "Oceans."
Episode 02: A Company of Men
As Britain is still reeling from the humiliating Suez Crisis, Philip is having the time of his life on his royal tour. Surrounded by his vulgar private secretary Mike and some Navy men, he travels to the farthest reaches of the world (Mombasa, Kenya; Ceylon; New Guinea) and plays makeshift Olympic games with the "natives," to borrow Mike's condescending word. He's having so much fun that he's barely spoken to Elizabeth, who is back home in the less colorful world of Britain. They tried calling once, but the connection was bad. Connection, or lack thereof, is an important part of the episode.
What's interesting is that the episode presents Philip as being relatively on his best behavior. Sure, he gets up to dance when one of the women pulls him from his seat, but it's Mike who goes home with one of them at the end of the night. However, Philip almost slips up when it comes time for him to head to Australia to open the Olympic Games. During a speech, he notices an attractive reporter in the crowd and tells Mike later on to arrange an interview with her because he believes she'll be friendly.
In April 2013, CBS renewed the series for an eleventh season after closing one-year deals with Kutcher and Cryer. Jones, who was attending college, was relegated to recurring status but did not make an appearance until the series finale. He was replaced by Jenny (Amber Tamblyn), Charlie's previously unknown daughter. In March 2014, CBS renewed the series for a twelfth season, which was later announced to be the series' last. The season began airing in October 2014 and concluded in February 2015 with the 40-minute series finale "Of Course He's Dead". The success of the series led to it being the third-highest revenue-generating program for 2012, earning $3.24 million an episode.
The series revolved initially around the lives of the Harper brothers, Charlie and Alan, and Alan's son Jake. Charlie is a bachelor who writes commercial jingles for a living, while leading a hedonistic lifestyle. When Alan's wife, Judith, 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 sardonic woman who initially resents the change to the household, but eventually accepts it. Charlie's one-night stand Rose (Melanie Lynskey) was first introduced as his stalker in the pilot episode.
Following a February 2010 announcement that Sheen was entering drug rehabilitation, filming of the show was put on hiatus, but resumed the following month. On April 1, 2010, People reported that after seven seasons, Sheen announced he was considering leaving the show. According to one source, Sheen quit the show after filming the final episode of season seven, purportedly due to his rejection of CBS's offer of $1 million per episode as too low. Sheen eventually stated that he would be back for two more seasons. 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.
The following month, after Sheen's verbal denunciations of Chuck Lorre in 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. This affected an estimated 200 employees, and caused Warner Bros., CBS, Lorre, Sheen and other profit participants an estimated $10 million loss from the unmade eight remaining episodes. 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. On March 7, CBS and Warner Bros. Television jointly announced that they had terminated Sheen's Two and a Half Men contract, citing "moral turpitude" as a main cause of separation. No further decisions about the show's future were released.
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. Warner Bros. 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." 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.
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). From September 6, 2010, to November 24, 2017, FX aired the series daily nationwide (Charlie Sheen most recently starred on Anger Management on the same network from 2012 to 2014). Syndicated shows are sold in multiyear cycles, with the first cycle the most expensive. Two and a Half Men's first cycle is nine years in length. If no ninth season had occurred 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. The series began airing on Viacom-owned networks Nick at Nite and Paramount Network (at the time still called Spike) in December 2017 and on IFC on January 1, 2018. As of July 2, 2018, the series has moved from Nick at Nite to TV Land, switching places with Mom. As of August 6, 2019, the series has started airing on AMC.
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. When Mendelsohn was giving a talk, she accidentally mentioned the crossover, that same day Variety 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."
"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." 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. 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. 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, in the same clothes their characters were wearing in "Fish in a Drawer".
Although the series was successful, Two and a Half Men received mostly mixed reviews from critics throughout its run. The New York Daily News has described the sitcom as "solid, well-acted and occasionally funny." Conversely Graeme Blundell, writing for The Australian, described it as a "sometimes creepy, misogynistic comedy". Ashton Kutcher's debut was met with mixed reviews, and reviews for season nine were also mixed.However, it has been labeled as "one of America's most successful comedy shows." Ellen Gray of Daily News praised the shows' legacy just before the premiere of the finale. The show is credited as being the reason The Big Bang Theory, Mike & Molly and Mom were all made. Men's success was what enabled these other Chuck Lorre shows to be made and be successful.Following the filming of the final episode, Stage 26 of the Warner Brothers lot was renamed the "Two and a Half Men stage".After the finale, Two and a Half Men fans launched a global petition under the name "Yes To The Harpers", to have Charlie Sheen reprise the role of Charlie Harper alongside his former co-star Jon Cryer. This idea surfaced after fans saw Chuck Lorre's vanity card about Charlie Sheen's idea of a spinoff show named The Harpers. 041b061a72