What this has to do with multi-core software I just don’t know. This came to me while brushing my teeth this morning. They were talking about it on the radio, so it must have seeped into my subconscious. Now I have to write it out or my brain will be stuck. Some friends know I rewrite sitcoms for fun, why I dunno. If you are not familiar with the changes in the show, they are explained here.
Obviously the writers of the CBS show Two and a Half Men have a problem. Lucky for them there are random people like me on the internet to help. I have come up with a plot that will work, and could be mined for comedy gold. The great fear of all fans is that Ashton will be a direct replacement for Charlie Sheen’s character. I have to agree. The problem is how to get him on the show, get Charlie (the actor and character out) and not jump the shark.
First let’s get Charlie off the show. This is actually simple. Do not do it soap opera style and kill him off, only to lamely resurrect him later. Instead use the now classic sitcom gimmickry, and make Charlie the character we only hear from and never actually see. The character Rose (played to perfection by Melanie Lanskey) is the key. Charlie realizes she is the only woman he has ever really had a long term relationship with, and they go off together to Europe. Now we, and Alan (Jon Cryer) sort of know that Rose probably has Charlie drugged and tied to a bed someplace, but Alan gets to move upstairs in the Malibu beach house, drive Charlie’s Jaguar, plus keep Berta and all expenses are paid. The setup episode involves Rose announcing all this, Alan going to save his brother, then picking up a beautiful woman in the Jag. He decides Charlie is probably happy with Rose.
Now Charlie can send in a weekly postcard from various spots around the globe. If Charlie Sheen decides he needs a paycheck signed by CBS, he just shows up. No need to revive the dead!
With just Alan in the house, things would get dull fast. CBS WRITERS DO NOT MOVE JAKE INTO THE BEACH HOUSE. Having Jake and Alan live together does not make for good comedy. The whole cast has to get involved for the most fun. But, Alan has to have a roommate, or things get dull. No, not Ashton either.
Jake has to stay in Judith’s house. We should put him into culinary school, so he is racking up bills for Alan, not leaving the house, having kitchen mishaps, and meeting girls from school. There is lots of material right there with his friend (Graham Patrick Martin) in tow it is all fun. It gives a reason for Alan and Herb to go places with the kids, interact with Judith, and sets up plot after plot.
I have always thought Ryan Styles as Judith’s (Marin Hinkle) second husband was, one hilarious, and two not used enough. He held up well on The Drew Carey show, so lets move him in with Alan. The plot is simple, Judith throws him out, he knows Alan is the happy Jaguar driving bachelor in the beach house, so he shows up on the door step. The whole tension over the paternity of Judith’s daughter is good for at least three episodes, plus a nice running joke. It may be fun to have Herb meet gorgeous women, while Alan still can not win.
Now, we never really see that daughter. This must be handled carefully. Yes, the cute kid is a sure sign of shark jumping, so casting is important. The kid should be cute, but has to be believable as Jake’s (Angus T. Jones) little sister. She should be cute, but not too cute. She can share his huge appetite, but be really sharp. A bit more Judith, less dense. Think a young Mayim Bialik, and it will play better than a super cute kid.
What about Grandma? Holland Taylor as Evelyn Harper is absolutely perfect. She shows up, worries about Charlie, but does not do anything about finding him. She eventually gets a clue about Judith’s daughter. Jake is her favorite, then everything flips and Jake can not figure out why. That is one episode I am giving away for free. She shows up, gives Alan a hard time, has a strange, uncomfortable relationship with Herb. Maybe have them wake up in the same bed after a wild night. All good stuff.
Now, where do we put Ashton into all this. (You thought I forgot him.) It is obvious. Ashton can not play a Charlie replacement. He can play himself, the sort of doofy, good looking, younger lover. Yes, he should be Judith’s new love interest. He plays the Ashton character that will feel familiar, but keep some twists so no one gets bored.
Jake and his little sister hate Ashton’s character, of course, as do Herb and Alan. Why wouldn’t they? While Judith is smitten, Ashton makes Charlie look like a choir boy. He chases anything in a skirt. The kids catch on, eventually after some close calls. Then they can plot to get him caught by Judith. Here is the twist, he acts dumb, but is really pretty smart. He is not going to let anything stop the good thing he has going. He is living with Judith for free, totally financed by Alan and Herb. Ashton can use the Malibu house for his hook ups, trying to weasel the use of the Jaguar, and to get the kids. He can find out the daughter is really Alan’s, and tries blackmail, but has to be careful. If Herb finds out, he can get out of alimony to Judith and the free ride ends.
It may even be fun to make Ashton’s character a teacher at Jake’s community college culinary school. That gives him some power to manipulate Jake, but he still has to be careful. Everyone is living a bit of a lie, Herb is paying to support Judith, and Ashton, plus his daughter (if she really is his). Anything to upset the balance and stop the funds will unite the enemies.
Add a bunch of beauties stopping by periodically looking for Charlie, and the fun flows free.
The key is to not dump all this in one season premier. There is a full season just to get through the setup, then a season to let plots play out. We really don’t need a cliff hanger ending until the end of Ashton season three.
So, what does this have to do with writing software for embedded systems. Let’s say if one part of the system starts acting crazy, you may have to rearrange the circuit to make it work. How’s that?
If I get some comments, I will reveal my super secret soap opera twist, and the cliff hanger for Ashton season three.