‘CSI’ Once Had a Crossover With a Popular Sitcom

by Lauren Boisvert

Once upon a time, “CSI” did a crossover with one unusual sitcom. That’s right, in 2008, “CSI” crossed over with “Two and a Half Men.” Chuck Lorre, showrunner of “Two and a Half Men,” approached “CSI” executive producer Carol Mendelsohn about a crossover. Both shows were on CBS, so the two went to the network and convinced the execs to let them do the crossover. The episodes “Two and a Half Deaths” and “Fish in a Drawer” were born.

“CSI” did “Two and a Half Deaths”; “Two and a Half Men” writers Chuck Lorre and Lee Aronsohn wrote the episode, and it features a “Roseanne”-esque show-within-a-show. TV sitcom star Annabelle is found dead, and the CSIs are called to the scene. It turns out her co-star planned her death, as Annabelle was slowly being poisoned with blood thinners. But they don’t have any proof, and can’t arrest her.

While it wasn’t a full-blown crossover event, the episode has a few links to “Two and a Half Men.” When Grissom and Brass arrive in Los Angeles, they are driven through the backlot. In the background are Charlie Sheen, John Cryer, and Angus T. Jones, the stars of “Two and a Half Men” at the time. They are all wearing the same clothes from their episode, “Fish in a Drawer.”

Additionally, there’s one character, named Don, who writes for the Annabelle show. Kevin Sussman plays Don, who frequently plays the comic book store owner on Chuck Lorre’s show “The Big Bang Theory.” When Don asks the other writers if they’ve contacted “Two and a Half Men,” one replies, “I’d rather sleep with Annabelle than write that crap!” Just a little scene that reiterates that “Two and a Half Men” exists in the “CSI” universe, and vice versa.

‘CSI’ and ‘Two and a Half Men’ Crossover: Unusual, Yet Fun

“Fish in a Drawer” was written by Evan Dunsky, Sarah Goldfinger, Carol Mendelsohn and Naren Shankar, the “CSI” writers. The episode begins at Teddy and Evelyn’s wedding. Charlie takes an interest in his new step-sister, Courtney, and they go upstairs. When they get there, they find Teddy on the bed, dead. This leads to an investigation where no one is really helpful at all.

Evelyn is the primary suspect, as almost all of her former husbands died. Her first husband died from food poisoning, because Evelyn didn’t know you “couldn’t keep fish in a drawer.” Hence, the title of the episode.

It turns out, though, that Teddy and Courtney were not related, and their names were Nathan Krunk and Sylvia Fishman. They were con artists, and Teddy just had a heart attack while trying to have sex with Sylvia, and was not, in fact, murdered. Charlie is furious with Courtney, and tries to chide her for deceiving him. Although, he can only say, “I’ll wait for you.”