After hearing chants of “Refund! Refund!” and being booed, even Charlie Sheen knew his Violent Torpedo of Truth had bombed on its debut in Detroit on Saturday night.
Sheen, until recently the highest paid actor on a TV sitcom for portraying a skirt-chasing bachelor on Two and a Half Men, staged a live variety show to prove to the TV producers who fired him that he was on the mend from more than a year of legal troubles and drug and alcohol abuse.
Sheen (45), became a media spectacle in recent weeks with a series of off-the-wall interviews in which he flaunted his lifestyle, amassed a Twitter following of more than 3 million, made “winning” his mantra and boasted of having “tiger blood” that gave him a superhero’s constitution.
Sheen’s My Violent Torpedo of Truth: Defeat is Not an Option show was meant to prove that he still had what it takes to please audiences but critics panned it and audiences thought it could use work, at best.
The comedy revue with rapper Dirt Nasty and comedian Kirk Fox, among others, brought catcalls from the audience and not even Sheen’s girlfriend “goddess” could win fans.
Twenty minutes after the show had ended, some 750 die-hard fans lingered in the theatre and Sheen returned to the stage flanked by his gals.
“This is an experiment. We’re working some hard stuff out,” he said.
Sheen and his troupe proved awkward at best. Fans had thought they might hear inside stories of the drug-and-drink-fuelled parties and wild nights that hospitalised him and sent him to rehabilitation.
But they never heard a single tale and nearly every one of Sheen’s monologues and comedy skits had to be aborted due to Sheen’s inability to handle the rowdy, unhappy audience.
“I think this show needs a lot of work,” Ron Ruff, (52), of Fenton, Michigan, said after the show.
“It was a bomb tonight. When you have people walking out and it’s only the first quarter of the show, well, that’s not a good sign.”
Early reviews from critics were just as bad. “Call it ‘tiger blood’ or ‘Adonis DNA’ if you will. Just don’t call it entertainment,” wrote The Hollywood Reporter’s David Rooney.
Sheen (45), has been a media sensation for more than a year following his arrest in December 2009 for assaulting his then-wife Brooke Mueller. He has since pleaded guilty to assaulting Mueller and spent time in rehabilitation.
But his troubles did not end and more recently, media reports have told of Sheen’s wild Hollywood lifestyle, parties and porn stars. Those reports and a recent rehabilitation led to his firing from Two and a Half Men by Warner Bros television and the CBS TV network.
Sheen has retaliated by suing the show’s producers for $100 million and he has openly ridiculed producer Chuck Lorre.
The parties remain in litigation and the live shows were meant to be something of a public comeback for Sheen.