Photo Credit: Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic
When Today viewers tuned in this morning, they may have thought they were experiencing a flashback to a year ago. There, sitting opposite Matt Lauer, was a manic, fidgety Charlie Sheen. Between compulsive sips of coffee, he answered questions with jokes and big smiles. He seemed over-caffeinated. Watch the clip here
But no, this was no flashback. It's been a year since the days when you couldn't buy groceries without Sheen's crazed eyes staring at you from the supermarket checkout counter. This tete-a-tete with Lauer was to promote Sheen's new show, FX's Anger Management, (premiering Thursday, June 28, at 9 p.m. ET on FX). And he has some reputation rebuilding to do in the time leading up to that premiere.
Sheen has gotten back to work, making a couple of high-budget commercials (click here and here to see them) that capitalize on his party-boy image, and signing on for a movie with Jason Schwartzman. And then, of course, there's Anger Management, in which he plays a baseball-player-turned-psychotherapist with an obsessive-compulsive, tween daughter.
"I couldn't have the Two and a Half thing be my television legacy ... I couldn't have it end on that note. So if this is going to be the swan song, then it's got to be a beautiful experience. And so far, eight days (on Anger) was more fun than eight years (at Men)."
Despite his jokes and bravura, -- and a few jabs at his former employer -- Sheen seems hopeful for the future. When Lauer asked what their story would be a year from now, Sheen replied with a smirk, "It'll be the same, only better."
He seems eager to please, and clearly longs to make people laugh again -- no doubt he has the skills to do it (as Men's extremely successful run proved). We just can't help but notice that there's a sadness about Sheen, who still looks like someone who's abused his body with drugs and alcohol. Let's hope he can outrun his demons long enough to deliver laughs to his fans once again.