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CHUCK LORRE PRODUCTIONS, #172

This week, as a little bonus for all my loyal vanity card readers, I thought I'd give an inside look into the making of Two and a Half Men by telling you about a joke CBS insisted we cut from the final scene in tonight's show. The scene, as I'm sure you remember, involved Charlie finding Alan, post-coital, tied to his bed, and wearing nothing but a bustier and red nylons. The offending line in the scene was what we in the comedy biz refer to as a "callback" since it references a line that was said earlier in the episode (in this case two lines, the first being when Alan's date implies that she hopes to spend the night with him by coyly saying "I brought a toothbrush with me," and the second, when Alan tells Charlie that "that lady in there brought a toothbrush with her because I have a penis and a job!"). Now before I tell you the joke which was cut, it's important to point out that I'm not doing this to make a point about censorship. In this particular case we never felt unfairly edited. The excised joke was, without question, in terrible taste and we didn't even try to defend it. But we did think it was funny. In any case, here it is: In the original, uncensored final scene, Charlie nonchalantly exits the bedroom without untying his hapless brother. Alan reacts with astonishment and calls out, "Charlie?... Charlie?! This isn't funny! Come back!... At least take out the toothbrush!" When we shot this version our studio audience laughed loud and long. Our CBS censor's head exploded, injuring several writers standing nearby.

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1st Aired: 12 Feb 2007

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