Their first movie was great… the sequel, eh, not as much, but it had its moments. Regardless, Harold and Kumar are getting a third crack at it with their Christmas movie, due out Friday. With that in mind, I thought we could take a stroll down memory lane and take a look at the most prolific stoners in media history.
Cheech & Chong – Numerous movies and albums
These two famous overachieving potheads took their stand-up comedy routine and turned it into numerous movies and albums, working together off and on for over 30 years. They are responsible for a number of famous catchphrases, most notably “Dave’s not here, man.” Not only are these two fictional stoners, but one of them also plays the role in real life. Tommy Chong was sent to prison in Ocotber 2003 for selling bongs and other paraphernalia over the internet. This incarceration occurred while he was a cast member of That 70’s Show, playing, you guessed it: a hippie burnout named Leo Chingwake. More on the That 70’s Show gang to follow.
Dale Denton & Saul Silver – Pineapple Express
First off, let me say that the pants James Franco wears for the duration of this film are, quite possibly, the greatest wardrobe choice in the history of film. If someone were to ever bequeath these to me, I would honour them with the regular wearing of said garment. Dale (Seth Rogen) and Saul (Franco) get stuck in a hilarious set of circumstances thanks to their enjoyment of Pineapple Express, an extremely potent brand of marijuana. Their dealer, Red, (Danny McBride) also joins in on the fun and the three have to triumph over a suppressive drug kingpin.
Jeff Spicoli – Fast Times at Ridgemont High
It’s so hard to believe that this character was played by Sean Penn, given all the serious roles he’s gone on to play. Spicoli, a laid back pot smoking surfer dude, became so popular that he’s feature on the cover of the movie, despite being a tertiary character. One of the subplots of the movie is teacher Mr. Hand trying to get the best he can out of Spicoli. When he thinks he’s achieved this he releases Spicoli, but he concludes that everyone at the school is “on dope”. Spicoli meanwhile goes on to save a drowning Brooke Shields, but wastes the reward money hiring Van Halen to perform at his birthday party… sounds about right.
Harold & Kumar – Go to White Castle, Escape from Guantanamo Bay and A Very 3D Christmas
While not the biggest stoners per se, these two gentlemen enjoy their weed. Their zany adventures to White Castle and from Guantanamo Bay were often fuelled by the drug in some way. A highlight of both movies is the performance of Neil Patrick Harris (playing himself), which practically revived his career. In the films, NPH is an even bigger drug user than Rolly and Kumar and there have been rumours of a spinoff movie for the character. The boy’s Christmas film will surely include more inebriated hijinks to help you get into the holiday spirit.
The Gang – That 70’s Show
One of the most enjoyable running gags on That 70’s Show was ‘The Circle’, where any number of the group’s members – Eric, Hyde, Kelso, Fez, Donna, Jackie and any number of their friends – would wax philosophically after enjoying some marijuana, as the camera would rotate around the table. Some of the shows funniest lines came out of these scenes. One memorable segment included the kids’ parents sitting in the circle, high from “special” brownies and mimicking their children’s actions.
Thurgood Jenkins et al – Half Baked
While Dave Chappelle himself, was disappointed with how the movie turned out – he wrote the script and starred, but said the movie was dumbed down from being adult-oriented to more of a kids movie – there are still a number of funny moments in this film. Some favourites are when Thurgood describes the different types of pot users, particularly the Scavenger Smoker (Snoop Dogg), who comes into the scene at the first sniff of marijuana and proceeds to smoke the guy’s entire joint before moving on. The scene where Scarface quits his job at the fast food restaurant is also a highlight.
Jay & Silent Bob – Almost every movie by Kevin Smith
It’s hard not to notice that these stoners often come in pairs or trios. I guess nobody likes to drink alone and similarly, no one really likes to smoke alone. Jay and Silent Bob seem to always pop up in Kevin Smith’s View Askewniverse and why not… Silent Bob is played by Smith. The duo’s notorious appearances in movies they weren’t the star in, led to their own title adventure where they’re on a mission to shutdown a movie based on their personas. The pair offer a great example that if you have one loud mouth who never shuts up, then his buddy better be silent to help restore the balance.
Shaggy – Scooby-Doo
Although they never come out and say it, let’s look at the evidence: 1) He’s constantly searching for munchies 2) his attention span is minimal at best 3) his nerves are always shot and he appears strung out 4) he has conversations and hangs out with a dog… conclusion: Shaggy is your typical drug addict. Still, Shaggy is one of the most beloved characters in the history of media, especially when paired with his pal Scooby. The two have teamed together for countless adventures, highlighted by my personal favourite, Scooby-Doo Meets the Boo Brothers.
Kenny – South Park
I had to include this one, even though I wouldn’t say that Kenny is your classic kind of stoner. In one episode, however, Kenny dealt with the pains of addiction, as the boys discovered they could get high off the ammonia in cat spray. This act was called cheesing and Kenny, by far, was the poster boy for it. His hallucinations brought him to a world very similar to that of the classic 70’s cartoon Heavy Metal and in search of seeing naked women, Kenny continued to cheese until he’d lost everything.
Jim Ignitowski – Taxi
Bill and Ted – Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventures
Doug and Andy – Weeds
The Dude – The Big Lebowski
Raoul Duke & Dr. Gonzo – Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
Towelie – South Park
Smokey – Friday
Carl Spackler – Caddyshack