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Actor Charlie Sheen has truly become a pop culture phenomenon. No matter what you think of his lifestyle, the man has captured the imagination and attention of the media in a way few others have.

The cameras are waiting for a media trainwreck a la Britney Spears circa 2007, but it remains to be seen whether Sheen’s eccentric behavior will have him headed for rehab or to the Hollywood Walk of Fame. While some believe his behavior is the result of a drug relapse, many have speculated that it’s all an act designed to keep him relevant in the aftermath of his firing from the hit CBS sitcom “Two and a Half Men.” Whatever the case may be, he’s successfully grabbed the nation’s attention and is cashing in on it as well with the “Violent Torpedo of Truth” Tour.

The anticipation of an epic meltdown have people packing venues all over the country just to see what the middle aged sitcom actor has to say. From being booed off the stage in Detroit to getting standing ovations in Chicago, the tour has been a rollercoaster ride that’s as turbulent as his personal life.

When we realized Charlie Sheen was taking his bi-winning talents to Radio City Music Hall in NYC, GlobalGrind had to check it out for ourselves. We scored tickets to the first New York City show of the tour on April 8 and what we witnessed was unlike anything we’d ever seen.

 

The Radio City Music Hall lobby was packed minutes before the start of Charlie Sheen’s “Violent Torpedo of Truth.”

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The scene outside Radio City Music Hall was ridiculous, as hundreds packed the beautiful and historic venue to see the veteran actor share tales of wild sex, copious drug use and Hollywood stardom. The beer and wine flowed as scantily clad ladies strolled the aisles doing their best goddess impressions. Near-fights were squashed with quickness by security and in the lobby “Charlie Sheen: Winning” baseball jerseys were on sale for $100. Truth Tour t-shirts with colorful pictures, slogans and famous Sheen-isms like “WARLOCK,” “FUCKING BRILLIANT!” and “Sheenius” flew off the shelves at $30 a pop.

“To observe this is like seeing a moment in history,” said a guy who’d bought a second-hand ticket to the show just hours before. “Like Jane Mansfield getting decapitated on the highway somewhere in the Midwest, Elvis dying… this is part of [Charlie Sheen’s] journey. He’s an icon. Tonight if he scores then Sunday night’s gonna be huge. If it fizzles then he can find himself in obscurity in about a week.”

“The guy’s a trainwreck and I think he’s a genius,” said another. “This is the biggest publicity stunt I’ve ever seen. He’s got more publicity now then he’s ever had.” 

Above: Two Charlie Sheen fans pose for the camera. (Photo Credit: Jeff Grossman/WENN.com)

T-shirts on display at Charlie Sheen’s “Violent Torpedo of Truth” at Radio City Music Hall. (Photo Credit: Jeff Grossman/WENN.com)

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After a 30-minute delay the lights suddenly shut off and music pumped from the speakers. A video montage of clips from classic movies played and then Radio City Music Hall began to rock, as the Warlock himself hit the stage to greet the New York crowd. Donning a Yankees hat and t-shirt, Sheen raised his hands above his head to bask in the spotlight and at that moment, fans, haters and everyone in between cheered wildly in anticipation of something special.

The show itself was like a cross between “Inside the Actor’s Studio” and “The Howard Stern Show.” There were some memorable moments like when Sheen revealed the story behind his use of the term “goddess” to describe his porn star frends (it involves Nicolas Cage and a crazy coke smuggling incident), described pranking actor John Cusack by flooding the floor of an Indianapolis hotel where he was staying with 3,000 angry bees and musings on the Capri Anderson incident from last year (apparently Ambien caused him to fight cops while naked).

Above: Charlie Sheen smoking onstage during the “Violent Torpedo of Truth” show in NYC. (Photo Credit: Jeff Grossman/WENN.com)

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Some members of the audience never fully bought into it and began booing and heckling Sheen when it became clear that this wasn’t the crazy, manic Charlie from his post-rehab interviews. At one point Sheen’s sidekick, who drew a taunts from the crowd such as “Who are you!?” and “Shut up!” for his awkward stage presence, switched to a spoof video of the Andrea Canning “20/20” interview (below) in a move that was clearly designed to prevent him from getting booed offstage like he did in Detroit. Some were mildly entertained by it while others complained and wanted more Charlie. Other interesting moments included when the “goddesses” appeared briefly to greet the crowd and Sheen as he recounted memories of his playboy father in his prime.

Sheen closed the show with a rundown of some things on his bucket list:

“I want the pilot of every plan I fly on to be [Captain “Sully”] Sullenberger… because when needed he can land in my Jacuzzi. I want to adopt Nick Nolte as my son. He’s my hero and I must be his father. And lastly, lastly, I want to play Radio City Music Hall on a Friday night. Oh wait, I just did! You’re the best audience in the world. Most of you. I love you New York. Good night, thank you.”

Above: Charlie Sheen in deep thought onstage. (Photo Credit: Jeff Grossman/WENN.com)

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Sheen left the stage to about a 70/30 ratio of cheers to boos. In the lobby, some said it was the worst thing they’d ever seen. However, New York is notorious for its tough crowds, which are quick to bring performers of all kinds down a peg even if they’d enjoyed the show.

“That was the truth… good stuff,” said one man who stayed to witness the media frenzy just outside Radio City Music Hall when it was all over. “It was great are you kidding me? He’s the white Bobby Brown!” When asked if the heckling bothered him he said, “I was the biggest heckler in the room!”

Outside people rushed to the Extra and FoxNews cameras outside hoping to get on television including the Howard Stern Show’s High Pitch Erik. A woman yelled “winning!” at the top of their lungs when AJ Calloway asked New York if Charlie had won. When asked if she would date Charlie her response was an emphatic “Hell no!” After spending time on the street outside Radio City Music Hall that night it was clear that while the content may not have been all that, the people got what they’d wanted ― something to talk about. Many thought he’d “won,” others felt he’d stolen their hard-earned money. Regardless, it was a night nobody in attendance will ever forget.

Above: Charlie Sheen with “the goddesses.” (Photo Credit: Jeff Grossman/WENN.com)

Charlie Sheen emerges from Radio City Music Hall after the show. (Photo Credit C. Smith/WENN.com)

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Disappointed fans after the April 8, 2011 “Violent Torpedo of Truth” show in NYC. (Photo Credit: Jeff Grossman/WENN.com)

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A fan holds up a Charlie Sheen t-shirt after the show. (Photo Credit: Jeff Grossman/WENN.com)

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The “Charlie Sheen: Winning” baseball jersey on sale for $100. (Photo Credit: Jeff Grossman/WENN.com)