The fall of the (somewhat) mighty: Two and a half men

A case study in how series can plummet out of glory

1 min read    15 Mar 2018    

Started off as adult humour hush hushed, because of kid.w

The show started off with people which were empty sketches really. Like Herb, who had an empty sketch. But as seasons progressed the characters became caricatures. Herb became comic relief,

Jake the kid went to become a really stupid teenager, a caricatures. They added another idiot Elridge to just make it look natural.

How TAHM had a falling out after Charlie left. The laugh track spoilt real humour. A striking difference was when the 2 male leads were together, if called gay, Charlie never clarifies. And Walden just defends himself, which seems less like what a person would do. (EVERYTIME ?)

Season 12 was even worse, because they acted gay, and tried to add a kid to just defend “half man” in their title. The 2-part finale was just pathetic. Too bad.

Jokes fall into patterns

  • Say something embarrasing -> Meet my parents

  • Do you know a good lawyer? No, but my ex-wife does. a=> b=> c. The implication is implied and never mentioned.

Plotting number of U.S viewers (in millions)

Graph1 Graph2

Plotting IMDB ratings

Graph1 Graph2

The dataset is available here for viewing.

The code for all sorts of analysis is kaustubhhiware/Rose.

Observations from data:

Charlie Sheen was one of the male lead for first 8 seasons, who was replaced by Ashton Kutcher. The script writing went horrible, and some correlation in the data was expected.

The data confers. Observing the number of views, S11 and S12 took a big hit. S09E01 saw a change in the lead thus the spike in views. It was expected to see a spike in views every season finale, but that was not necessarily true here. Seeing IMDB, which mostly confers to scriptwriting, Season 9 onwards became really bad, so Ashton wasn’t really to blame.


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