'Two and a Half Men': Dumb or smart? 'Family Guy' says 'dumb'

Last night on Family Guy, Peter tried to induce labor for Joe’s wife Bonnie, saying, “I’m gonna turn on the TV to Two and a Half Men, and if your baby isn’t totally brain-dead, it’ll come rushing out to change the channel.” You can see the moment less than two minutes in, here:

It’s not the first time Guy has ripped the Charlie Sheen-Jon Cryer sitcom, but even its mighty power cannot stop Two and a Half–tonight’s episode is a rerun, but it’s such a ratings powerhouse, it stands a good chance of beating a new episode of 24.

What is it about Two and a Half Men? I think Cryer and Sheen are pretty charming guys… when they’re not on this show, which usually strikes me as merely smutty and not-funny: kinda dumb humor, unlike the gags on producer Chuck Lorre’s other show, the superior Big Bang Theory. But there was Two and a Half Men in last week’s Nielsen ratings, the fifth most-watched show in America. (And it’s not as though Family Guy doesn’t traffick in its own, very different brand of dumb smut… )

So, where do you stand: Two and a Half Men, dumb or smart? Funny or not-funny?


Comments (186 total) Add your comment
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  • Julie

    I started watching the show for Jon Cryer (how can you not root for “Duckie”?!). Almost in spite of myself, I like Two & A Half Men. Yes, the humor is “smutty”, juvenile, and frequently ridiculous . . . But I just can’t help myself — I laugh harder with this show than just about any other (only Big Bang Theory and The Office top it). I can’t put my finger on it, but there’s just something about the show that appeals to me.

  • Lynny

    I don’t love the show, but I think it is kind of the whipping boy a lot. It is funny some of the time, crass or not. I do agree that Big Bang Theory is a MUCH better use of Chuck Lorre’s time.

  • Kate

    Dumb (especially when compared to shows like Mad Men and BSG) and really, really not funny.

  • hannah

    i hate to say this b/c i usually watch all the “right” shows but i do love this show. it’s pretty groundbreaking in pushing the envelope and the cast is good, especially holland taylor and concheta ferrell. not all tv has to be mad men or lost, sometimes you need to just zone and not look for themes, symbolism, clues, etc. people need to give this show a break and quit breaking its balls.

  • Horatio

    Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. Scratch the surface of either show, and you will find nothing there. The only people I know who enjoy these shows are married with kids. They don’t want to have think when it comes to what they watch in the evening, and both programs provide just that level of entertainment.

  • shels

    It amazes me every week that Two and a Half Men is in the Nielsen top ten when smart, consistently funny shows with better writing and acting are not. Shows such as 30 Rock, The Office, New Adventures of Old Christine and How I Met Your Mother all trump Two and a Half Men!

  • mary

    I can’t stand Two and a Half Men, and I go out of my way to avoid it. If by some chance I catch a bit of it and, God forbid, laugh – I think I die a little inside. It just panders to the least common denominator. It uses potty humor, and it is incredibly smutty and juvenile. How anyone thinks it’s a “family show” is beyond me. I personally don’t want to explain to my kids why Charlie Sheen is bringing home a different woman every night. EWWW.
    To each their own, though. I understand people wanting to watch a show where they don’t have to think too much!

  • Domino

    Yeah not a big fan but I think people should give it a break. Sitcoms are so hard to come by these days any way with all the reality garbage around. I’d rather watch this than The Bachelor any day.

  • Matt

    I generally like the other shows mentioned here that are considered more “intelligently funny” shows, but Two and a Half men is still one of my favorites. Mainly because it is one of the only network shows (no HBO here) that pushes the enevelope and is genuinely funny at what it does.
    I used to dismiss it until i watched it. Great cast, excellent timing and writing. Quit being TV snobs and give it a chance

  • Domino

    I’m not crazy about the show but I like to give all sitcoms a break since they are the last of a dying breed. These reality shows are the real problem. I’d rather watch an entire season of T and a HM than one episode of The Bachelor(ette).

  • Domino

    Lol Darn double post.

  • Megan

    I don’t like Two and a Half Men at all, but I also think Family Guy is one of the worst, most overrated shows ever. Seriously that show is NOT FUNNY, so it has no room to criticize others.

  • To Horatio

    So once you’re married and have kids you lose any taste you had before? Ass.

  • Leah

    Why does it need to be “smart”? It’s TV, it just needs to be entertaining. I don’t watch Two and a Half Men religiously, but when I do catch it I laugh (a lot more than I laughed during last night’s incredibly-not-funny Family Guy, BTW).

  • nykolus

    i can’t understand for the life of me how that show is STILL on the air.

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