Jon Cryer gets the last laugh

By Tom Comi

There’s an old expression that if you can’t beat somebody then you should join them, and Jon Cryer did just that on Conan O’Brien’s show last night in a hilarious self-effacing monologue in which he admitted that he is indeed a troll.

For those living under a rock, Cryer’s appearance was in response to comments made by his former Two and a Half Men co-star Charlies Sheen, who earlier this week said he is a troll for not coming to Sheen’s defense after getting fired. Conan introduced Cryer, who walked out and addressed the audience.

“Those words were very painful to me for many reasons, not the least of which — I’m sorry, I can’t believe I’m saying this — the fact is, I am a troll. It’s not something I like to talk about. My parents don’t even know I’m a troll; of course, I guess they do now.”

Cryer delivered the comedic bit with deft timing, never so much as cracking a smile. It was as if he was really making a confession to a national TV audience. And while nobody has ever mistaken Two and a Half Men as anything but Sheen’s show, it is Cryer who has garnered four consecutive Emmy nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series (he finally won in 2009).

He went on to explain the steps he has taken to avoid looking like a troll, even showing pictures of what his appearance would be otherwise. After saying he is not the only troll in Hollywood, he outted fellow actors Paul Giamatti and Helen Miren, and he said there was even a troll on Conan’s staff. A camera then zoomed in on Conan sidekick Any Richter, who glared at Cryer and said, “You son of a b-tch!”

Cryer then wrapped up by thanking Sheen for allowing him to get this giant secret off his chest.

“I guess I should be grateful for being outed like this. I’m finally free. And to all you other trolls still living under the bridge — especially you younger trolls — I’m here to tell you it gets better.”

If there is any justice in the Hollywood (I realize that’s a big “if”), somebody as talented as Cryer will land on his feet. Last night’s brilliant performance was the first step toward doing just that.

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