Ashton Kutcher Becomes a 'Forbes' Shockingly Overpaid TV Actor

Ashton KutcherDoesn't it seem like Forbes was once known for something other than tallying and comparing the various salaries of people in the entertainment industry? Well, whatever, the point is that the latest Forbes list of highest-paid actors on television is in, and the results may surprise you. Uh ... unless you were guessing that Ashton Kutcher is at the very top of the list. In which case you probably won't be surprised at all.

Okay, fine, so maybe you were already up to speed on Ashton Kutcher's painfully engorged yearly payments for starring in that pile of televised feces, Two and a Half Men, but wait until you hear who's next on the list. I can almost guarantee you could guess all day long and never land on these two actors.


Kutcher raked in a tidy $24 million over the last 12 months, which seems like a comically high salary for starring in a dumb sitcom -- like, almost to the point of sounding fake. You get eleventy kabillion moneybux! But what's really mind-boggling is that before he went all crazy and started ranting about tiger blood and winning and all, Charlie Sheen was pulling down $40 million for the exact same gig.

Anyway, the second highest-paid actor is ... *drumroll* Hugh Laurie, at $18 million. He must have finagled quite the deal for that final season of House, and if you ask me, he earned every penny. Laurie consistently earned rave reviews for his brilliant performance on the show, and even when House seemed to drag on too long and rely on the same stale plot elements, Laurie's character remained on-point -- driven, expressive, furious, and inexplicably sexy.

Still, despite his worthiness, it's still kind of surprising to hear that he's second on the list, don't you think? And wait until you hear who ties with him. Can you guess? No, go ahead, try. Is it ... Bryan Cranston or Aaron Paul, both of whom turned in jaw-dropping performances on Breaking Bad? Any of the comedic geniuses from Modern Family? Peter Dinklage from Game of Thrones? Walter Goggins -- aka the always-delightful Boyd Crowder -- from Justified?

Nope. Tying with with Laurie at the number two position is Ray Romano. RAY ROMANO, YOU GUYS. Apparently he's still getting major cash from reruns of Everybody Loves Raymond, as well as the the Ice Age franchise. (RAY ROMANO.)

Aaaaaand this concludes your regularly-scheduled Forbes salary freakout. Tune in next time, when I declare my shock over Jennifer Aniston topping the female film actor list for the trillionth year in a row.

Are you surprised by any of the names on this list?

Image via CBS

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