10 of the Most Memorable Stoners of All Time
1 | Dale Denton… from Pineapple Express
The inspiration for this 2008 comedy, according to producer Judd Apatow , was Floyd, the stoner played by Brad Pitt in True Romance: “I thought it would be funny to follow that character out of his apartment and watch him get chased by bad guys.” Seth Rogen plays Dale, James Franco is his dealer, Saul Silver, who has a rare new strain of marijuana, pineapple express. “It’s almost a shame to smoke it,” says Saul. “It’s like killing a unicorn. With, like, a bomb.” The movie was a massive hit, even inspiring the creation of a real variety of weed called pineapple express.
2 | Nancy Botwin… from Weeds
There’s a strange absence of great female stoners in culture, though that is being rectified now somewhat by Comedy Central’s Broad City , written by and starring Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson. But the matriarch of women who toke is Nancy Botwin (Mary-Louise Parker) in the long-running TV series Weeds . A soccer mom who starts dealing marijuana after her husband dies to sustain her upscale lifestyle, Nancy gets into various scrapes, including running drugs over the Mexican border and being shot. However, we only see her smoking pot three times in eight seasons, one being in the last-ever episode.
3 | Charles Baudelaire Poet
The 19th-century French poet is one of the great chroniclers of drug use and his memoir Artificial Paradises features a detailed analysis of hashish. He was a member, along with other influential Parisian authors Alexandre Dumas, Victor Hugo and HonorÃ© de Balzac , of Club des Hachichins (Hashish-Eaters’ Club), which met regularly between 1844 and 1849. “At first, a certain absurd, irresistible hilarity overcomes you,” he noted of their experiments. But, surprisingly, although far from strait-laced – he smoked opium and drank very heavily – Baudelaire was unconvinced by the appeal of hashish. It boosted creativity, he found, but artists risked becoming too dependent on it.
4 | David Wooderson… from Dazed and Confused
Set in suburban Texas in the summer of 1976, on the last day of school, Richard Linklater’s 1993 movie had the tagline: “A time they’d never forget (if only they could remember).” It had a ridiculous ensemble cast (Ben Affleck, Parker Posey, an uncredited RenÃ©e Zellweger, all unknowns) but the standout performance is from a young Matthew McConaughey as Wooderson, a twentysomething guru still hanging with high-school kids. Pink jeans, Ted Nugent T-shirt, always stoned, driving his beloved hot rod and chasing redheads – every small town has a Wooderson. As he says: “I get older, they stay the same age.”
5 | Snoop Dogg Rapper
Snoop Dogg could feature in this list as an individual or for his music, or even for his film roles. The 43-year-old rapper has had various run-ins with the police over his fondness for marijuana, most recently being briefly arrested in Uppsala, Sweden, last month , on suspicion of using illegal drugs. He has sung about pot on California Roll and That Tree, and contributed vocals with Nate Dogg to Dr Dre’s The Next Episode : “Hey-ay-ay-ay! Smoke weed every day!” And in movies, Snoop’s been happy to play to his stoner persona, both in the pro-weed documentary The Culture High and as Huggy Bear in 2004’s Starsky and Hutch, where he displays an encyclopedic knowledge of actual grass varieties on a golf course.
6 | Danny… from Withnail and I
Danny the drug dealer, said to be an amalgam of two hairdressers that Bruce Robinson, the writer and director of this 1987 classic, knew, is best known as creator of the Camberwell carrot. “ I invented it in Camberwell and it looks like a carrot ,” he explains to Withnail (Richard E Grant), as he rolls a joint so large it requires up to 12 papers. Danny, as played by shaggy-haired, dead-eyed Ralph Brown, is slow-talking and occasionally menacing. Mostly, he makes only partial sense, but he sums up the already-nostalgic mood of the film, set in the last days of 1969, when he complains: “They’re selling hippie wigs in Woolworths, man.”
7 | Carl Spackler … from Caddyshack
Bill Murray (deranged greenkeeper Carl Spackler) and Chevy Chase (Ty Webb, aristo golfer) share one scene in the 1980 comedy Caddyshack. It was written over lunch by Murray, Chase and director Harold Ramis , and has Webb hitting his ball into Spackler’s house and the pair sharing a joint. Spackler shows him a strain of grass he’s invented: a hybrid of bluegrass, Kentucky bluegrass, featherbed bent and northern California sensemilla. “The amazing stuff about this,” he says, “is that you can play 36 holes on it in the afternoon, take it home and just get stoned to the bejeezus-belt that night on this stuff.”
8 | Ulises Lima and Arturo BelanoThe Savage Detectives
The New York Times once claimed that Roberto BolaÃ±o, the Chilean poet and author who died in 2003, aged 50, was addicted to heroin. The accusation was strongly contested by his wife and his agent. Either way, his novel The Savage Detectives – typically considered his masterpiece – can be seen as a modest contribution to stoner literature. The main characters are Lima and Belano, two shambling poets in Mexico City who fund a literary magazine, Lee Harvey Oswald, by trafficking an expensivemarijuana called Acapulco gold; they seem to partake themselves, too, especially Belano, who is an alter ego of BolaÃ±o’s. “They weren’t writers,” one of the 50-odd narrators in The Savage Detectives notes. “Sometimes they wrote poetry, but I don’t think they were poets, either. They sold drugs.”
9 | Grace Trevethyn… from Saving Grace
In this sweet 2000 film, Grace ( renda Blethyn) is a respectable, green-fingered housewife in . But when her husband dies, she finds she is deep in debt and set to be evicted. One day – instead of payment – her gardener, Matthew (Craig Ferguson), asks her to look after some plants he’s struggling to cultivate. Before long, Grace is overseeing a hydroponic marijuana-growing operation in her greenhouse (and sampling some of her produce). The film-makers were given permission to use 150 marijuana plants, so long as they were constantly guarded.
No list of stoners would be complete without Richard “Cheech” Marin and Tommy Chong , a comedy duo whose oeuvre consists of nearly a dozen albums and a handful of movies. For the uninitiated, the place to start is their 1978 debut movie, Cheech & Chong’s Up in Smoke , which follows the potheads on a road trip through California that winds up with them being deported to Mexico. The jokes are lame – “How am I driving, man?” “I think we’re parked” – but there’s something endearing about the pair. Up in Smoke 2 is apparently in the works, but then they’ve been saying that since 2010.