Why Black Folks Love Charlie Sheen

The black Twitterverse has a new BFF. Call it a case of schadenfreude, but nothing's more entertaining than following the latest celebrity train wreck.

And now, inducted into this elite club straddling the blurry line between cult hero and train wreck is Charlie Sheen. There is a perverse thrill in watching a pale, $2 million-per-episode TV actor (until CBS halted production on Two and a Half Men, that is) win the deadbeat sweepstakes so definitively. And the defiant, swaggering way he’s going down — all Tony Montana “Say hello to my leetle friend” — is pure hip-hop.

Sheen refuses to allow others to have all the fun at his expense, so he parodied his own damn self on his Twitter feed (“Born Small … Now Huge … Winning … Bring it … ! (unemployed winner … )” reads his profile). Bravo, Charlie! That’s the kind of trickster move I’d expect from Kanye West.

My friend Richard O’Connor caught up with the Sheen meltdown after a long, hard day spent educating the youth. “From a man in his early 40s, today really was pretty bad,” He wrote on his Facebook status update.

“The only thing that made it bearable … Charlie Sheen!!! The voice of my generation.”

Natalie Hopkinson is a contributing editor to The Root. Follow her on Twitter.

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