By Mandi Bierly
Updated August 25, 2011 at 05:51 AM EDT
Ashton Kutcher Letterman
Credit: Jeffrey R. Staab/CBS

Ashton Kutcher dropped by Late Show with David Letterman Wednesday night (clip embedded below) and did his best not to reveal anything about his Two and a Half Men character, Walden Schmidt, a billionaire Internet entrepreneur going through a nasty divorce who ends up moving in with Alan (Jon Cryer) and Jake (Angus T. Jones). But David Letterman wouldn’t let him off the hook. He badgered him to reveal how Charlie Sheen’s character dies, and when Kutcher finally pleaded the fifth saying he didn’t know because he wasn’t in the scene, Letterman called bull. I hate it when actors try to use that line, too. Even if the scene is so secretive it’s not in everyone’s script, that’s something you hear about — especially when it’s a character you’re replacing and you’re a movie star coming back to sitcoms and need to know the show is funny.

Of course that’s a spoiler Kutcher shouldn’t reveal, but then come prepared with jokes to deflect from the fact that you’re not saying anything real. Letterman’s face after Kutcher responded with a vague, “I show up when Jon Cryer’s character needs me the most” when asked to describe how Walden enters the picture was classic. “Here’s my fear, next week you’ll go on Leno and spill your guts,” Dave said. Guilt does sometimes work: “I’m very heartbroken over this breakup that’s taken place….I may, in some way, shape, or form, be tryin’ to kill myself,” he finally coughed up. “I’m no genius, but what better way to kick off a new season of a sitcom than with a suicide,” Letterman cracked. “You already killed Charlie. You got a murder-suicide.”

Letterman had a few other tough questions for Kutcher:

Dave, on Ashton’s self-described Jesus look: “They want you to look like that on the TV show?”

Ashton: “Yeah, believe it or not they requested this.”

Dave, on Ashton joining TV’s top-rated sitcom in season 9: “How do you come in? Because this is like jumpin’ off a truck running.”

Ashton: “No, that was Charlie’s character.” (There you go, Ashton!)

Dave: “Do you mind a couple of theoretical questions? Do you prefer strippers or porn stars?”

Ashton: (After long pause) “I have a foundation that fights human trafficking and neither of those qualifies as human trafficking… The live thing is nice. There’s nothing wrong with a live show. Who doesn’t love a live show?”

Dave: “By the way, that Chuck Lorre, what’s he like? Is he nuts?”

Ashton: (Gives some boring answer about how he’s perfectly sane and giving.)

Dave: “‘Cause through this all, you know, I’m always with labor. I don’t care anything about management. I’m always with labor. I’m a labor guy. I’m a blue-collar guy. So to me, Chuck Lorre is a commie pig.”

Ashton: (Puts back on the helmet he wore when he walked out in protective gear labeled “Not Dave” in light of the jihadist threat against Letterman)

Dave, about the cause of Charlie’s public meltdown: “You have been in show business quite awhile. You know your way around. What do you think happened? What piece of the puzzle fell out of the package there?”

Ashton: (Gives another boring answer about how he doesn’t know, but what he found fascinating was all the random pundits diagnosing a guy who got in an argument.)

Dave: “Who’s the half kid? What’s he do?”

Ashton: (Sounds humble saying maybe he’s the half, because Angus’ dry delivery is awesome.)

Kutcher also explained that even though there was a time when he was on That ’70s Show when all he wanted to do was films, he never forgot what Kurtwood Smith told him Robin Williams said when he dropped by the set to visit after winning his Oscar for Good Will Hunting: “I only wish I could go back and do a sitcom again.” Going to work everyday and making people laugh is a great job, which is why he thought Charlie Sheen had the perfect one. He told a friend if anyone offered him that job, he’d take it in a heartbeat. Two weeks later, he was fishing with his dad when that friend called him and said he’d heard producers were actually interested in him. The only thing that made him nervous? “I didn’t want to be a troll,” he told Letterman, calling Sheen a “lingual genius.” But since Sheen gave his blessing via Twitter, everything is good. Both Letterman and Kutcher predicted the show will “go through the roof” when it returns Sept. 19.

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