You know, I’ve tolerated this Charlie Sheen nonsense for the last couple of weeks with what I consider a fair amount of patience. I find him to be obnoxious, his show was awful, and the “winning” thing became tired way faster than anything Borat or Austin Powers ever said. But hey, none of it really affected my life or the TV shows I enjoy. But Rob Lowe potentially ditching Parks and Rec to replace him on Two and a Half Men? That’s some bullshit.
Look, business-wise it makes a lot of sense. Two and a Half Men is a money-printing machine; Lowe would probably multiply his paycheck many times over. Furthermore, the producers of that show are gonna be looking for a likable, uncontroversial guy to replace the volatile and batshit-crazy Sheen, and there are few actors out there more likable than Rob Lowe. I’m sure he would make the show much better!
But man, what a kick in the balls to Parks and Rec if this happens. Lowe is an amazing addition to the show, and he’s quickly becoming a fan-favorite character. This season also finds the show really hitting its stride, upping the quality from the already-great second season. To lose Lowe after writing him in as a permanent character would certainly take some of the wind out of the sails of a potential fourth season. What I’m saying is: poor Ann Perkins.
Sure, the show would survive. They have a stellar ensemble cast that can clearly survive without him, as they did before they got there, and one of the best writing staffs around. It wouldn’t be the end of the world. These things happen! But Lowe jumping ship for a paycheck and a plum role on the most watched, if not most liked, sitcom on TV just feels like a kick in the pants for fans of “smart” comedy. We’re used to the shows we love getting cancelled prematurely, succumbing to meddling network interference or having their timeslots constantly messed with. We gotta hold on to the gems we love as tightly as we can, and Parks and Rec is one of those gems. To see it fucked with for the benefit of a show so terrible as Two and a Half Men, well, it just feels sort of personal.
So come on, Rob. I know making the move would make sense financially and it would certainly be a bump from ensemble member to lead, but think of the nerds, won’t you? Nerds literally never forget.