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'Two and a Half Men' Star Jon Cryer Cracks Wise

For some people Jon Cryer will always be Duckie, the dorky guy who had a crush on Molly Ringwald in 'Pretty in Pink.' Cryer said goodbye to Duckie a long time ago and has worked steadily in Hollywood since. But another iconic role has eluded him until now.

Say hello to Alan Harper, Cryer's tightly wound character on the hit sitcom 'Two and a Half Men.’ The role has been good to Cryer, who was nominated for an Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy in 2006.

Jon Cryer chatted with AOL Television editor Sean Doorly about the new season of 'Two and Half Men', ‘Speed Racer’ and the surprising link between his flicks and gay porn.



What is in store for the new season?
Besides hilarity? Obviously at the end of last season, things were left with a bit of a cliffhanger with Alan getting married and moving out of the house. And you can tell with that marriage that it’s bound to go well. (Laughs) I can’t imagine that marriage possibly falling apart quickly, being that he’s 40-plus and she’s 24 and dumb as a door. So as you can probably guess, things don’t go well in Alan’s marriage, and basically the first few episodes of this season are all about the fallout from that. If you think Alan’s going to be out of the house, you’re wrong.

Anything else?
My first ex-wife is probably getting married, and of course, I feel the need to stick my nose in it, which also does not end well. But what’s interesting is that I don’t know exactly where the show is going long-term, because the producers don’t tell us. Literally, they give us the script on Friday night and we do the read-thru on Sunday. We have a weekend to digest it. That’s as far in advance as we know about these things.

That must be a little tough.
Yes. The interesting thing is that to Chuck (Lorre) and Lee (Aronsohn), who created the show, the amount of time people have the script before we read through it lowers the number of complaints about the script exponentially, because we just don’t have time to complain. It allows them to have a clean shot at it on Monday. If it doesn’t work on Monday, they’re the first ones to say "we have to fix this."

Why do you think the show is so successful?
I think people don’t realize it’s as naughty as it is. People think, “Oh, it’s just a family show, it’s got a kid.” Then they watch it and it’s like, “Oh my God, did they just say that?” And they think because we’re on CBS that we’re bound to be tame. And I think for better or worse we’ve shown them that’s not what we’re doing. In the first two seasons, demographically, our show was hugely popular among older people.

Yeah, I was surprised that my mom watches the show.
Exactly! We had this weird migration all of a sudden in season three, when all the parents told their kids, “Hey, you know what’s a good show?”

What do you like about your character?
I like him because he tries his best to be a good dad. He fails almost more often than he succeeds, and sometimes his need to be the perfect dad is the last thing his son wants. I think I like that about him. And he’ll take everything to a ridiculous extreme. He’s so repressed. One minute he can be a funny, interesting guy and then he’ll just disappear up his own butt. And it’s like, “Hey, nice knowing you for that one moment.”

Would you change anything about your character?
I’d make him a better dresser. That’s not our costume designers fault -- she could dress me fantastically. But that’s not Alan. But that’s fine. I think my natural model good looks carry me.

Do you and Charlie ever get together after the show?
We see each other socially occasionally. When he was going through the first parts of his divorce we’d commiserate a lot, but we don’t really hang out much. We love working together, but you kind of go home to get away from that.

If you could magically play another character on TV, who would that be?
Wow. Probably Speed Racer, because let’s face it, the Mach 5 was awesome.

I hear they’re making a ‘Speed Racer’ movie.
Yeah, I’ve heard that. But I’ll believe it when I see it. You know I’ll be first on the list for that role. (Laughs)

How did you spend your summer vacation?
My girlfriend and I moved in together, which was incredibly stressful. Not because of anything she did, but because I hate moving with a passion, even though I did very little actual physical labor. We bought a house together. It’s not fun. But it’s done. I unpacked the last boxes a week and a half ago and I was euphoric for two days. People were like, “What’s up with him?” But it’s so nice. I know where everything is now.

Here’s another hypothetical question. If you could go back in time and give yourself advice, what would it be?
I probably would have gone back right after ‘Pretty in Pink’ came out and said “OK, just a thought. Don’t do anymore movies that sound like they could be titles of gay porn.”

Like what?
I did a movie called ‘Dudes.’ Also ‘Hot Shots’ and ‘Morgan Stewart’s Coming Home.’ I did a bunch of them. I checked my IMDB page, and it’s an alarming number.

Have you ever searched for your name on the Internet?
I haven’t in a long time. But I’ve been known to. It’s nice to know what’s going on out there.

Do you have a favorite moment from the show?
My nervous breakdown last season, when I was bemoaning the fact that I’ll never have time to read all the great books I wanted to read. I was having a freak out. And Charlie said “Well, if you put a few by the toilet and read one every couple of weeks you’ll knock a bunch off.” And I said, “There’s not enough bowel movements left.”