ground control to Charlie Sheen
Joan Jedell, Hugh Jackman at the Winter Antiques Show

As the old saying goes, “What goes up must come down.” Well, for many meteoric celebs, going up seems to mean space travel to another galaxy. And the comedown means crash and burn. But in the case of walking extraterrestrial Charlie Sheen, the real shocker is that this ticking time bomb has turned a meltdown into galactic superstardom. America can't get enough of its No. 1 train-wreck hero.

Charlie's Mission Out of Control exploded with rambling TV and radio rants, reported 911 calls from his estranged wife over domestic abuse (like holding a knife to her throat), drug and alcohol-fueled benders with his so-called “goddesses” (plus trashing a Manhattan hotel suite), and police snatching Sheen's twin sons out of his Malibu digs. Finally Warner Bros. gave the $2 mil-an-episode self-proclaimed “Messiah of Malibu” the boot from the hit TV show Two and a Half Men, and now Sheen's suing them for some $100 mil! Hel-lo? His manic blather included calling producer Chuck Lorre a “maggot” and an alleged anti-Semitic jab. But hey, maybe the network oughta rethink and park him in a new series, Two and a Half Heads. Charlie, what is going on in those heads of yours?

Whatever it is, America the Enabler is lapping up ET Sheen as the Greatest Show on Earth. In his own sci-fi wisdom: “Charlie Sheen is a drug that isn't available, because if you try it once, you will die. Your face will melt off, and your children will weep over your exploded body.” And, “I'm tired of pretending like I'm not a total bitchin' rock star from Mars.” Well, at least we now know what planet you're on - talk about Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus! You, Charlie, have surpassed Mars! “People can't figure me out ... You can't process me with a normal brain.' Guess not, Charlie, since most of us are simply human. ET says he's filled with “tiger's blood” - “blood that flows through me and I can feel” ... uh, Charlie, sure you don't mean alien blood?

Dad Martin Sheen calls Charlie's drug and booze addiction a “cancer” ... but if so, Charlie's illness is America's illness. He's launching a one-man tour in April, “My Violent Torpedo of Truth/Defeat Is Not an Option” - and show tickets in Chicago and Detroit sold out in 18 minutes! His Twitter page now has three million followers. On his new official website, which also has exploded, he writes, “The global inferno that is me is now as molten and focused as my afterburners.” Why Charlie, you could be the next Dale Carnegie - and pen a mega-seller: How to Be Insane and Influence the Planet.

Trouble is, beneath the “global inferno” lies a sadder meltdown. Is Charlie really a warlock, or is his bizarre bravado the result of the “seven-gram rocks” of coke he admits he banged not long ago (though he also claims he's since cleaned up his act)? In a recent interview he admitted, “I'm really starting to lose my mind ... I'm really trying to contain myself.” And an insider confides that Charlie is losing it. He's furious about being ditched from his TV series and desperate to regain custody of twin sons Bob and Max from ex-wife Brooke Mueller.

Says his close pal: “We all fear he could do something drastic like commit suicide or fall back on hard drugs.” So what's the point, Charlie? Is it all about “winning”? Sounds like defeat is an option.

The question is, why does a celeb at the top need to self-destruct, then put himself through public rehab and humiliation? Success, megalomania, meteor crash - why is it the new “fame game”? Guess it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out lots of celebs feel they don't deserve the fame, megabucks, and stellar status. Not to mention their troubled childhoods, stardom too soon, and the grueling career and media pressure. They just don't feel too good about being in their own skin. After all, they're always playing someone else. Sheen says he got sick of being a compulsive people pleaser - well, you don't have to worry about that one anymore, Charlie ...

Ground control to Charlie Sheen: Come back to Earth and sober up. You say you're ready to call anyone for help, but you call AA a “bootleg cult” with a 5 percent success rate. You influence millions of fans, and like it or not, you have a social responsibility about what you put out there. And some of your disciples who do need help are thinking, “Hey, I can do it the Charlie Sheen way.” Great, so schizos, manic-depressives, and sociopaths can throw away their meds and give up shrinks and alcohol and drug programs - just what civilized society needs.

No, they can't do it themselves ... and neither can you, Charlie. Maybe losing your series and your kids will be a first rude awakening. Hope you get the help you need and make it - or else it's “Beam you up, Charlie” ... and life in a galaxy far, far away.

As for Charlie getting his show back? What ever happened to sticks and stones will break my bones, but names will never hurt me? Um, is anyone looking at the bottom line here? A little humility is welcome on both sides!

Enjoy The Sheet!

Joan Jedell appears on national and local TV.
Her photographs are syndicated worldwide.