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"You must be at least this high to watch."

There are works that some of the fandom will insist are more entertaining, or make more sense, if you're watching/reading/listening to/playing it while under the influence of a mind altering substance; be it alcohol, pot, acid, mushrooms, ecstasy, or whatever, man. While some people may say every work is better, but in general, there seems to be a select group of works that are claimed to be this way.

This usually happens with works supposedly made when the creators were under the influence of the same substances regardless of their actual sobriety. Most often it's Stoner Flicks that get this or if it just has a stoner character, especially an erudite one. Works that use Faux Symbolism also receive this. It also happens with works that involve swirls of bright colors, strobe lights, laser lights, mushroom sambas, or Disney Acid Sequences. Frequently, the work just has to involve something strange or out of the ordinary, so this is very common with fantasy and science fiction as well as works involving a Mind Screw. Also possible with works that are supposedly aimed at kids but the content calls this into question.

Whether or not the creators intentionally make it this way varies, as will whether or not they admit to it for several reasons. Doing so can lead to backlash from Moral Guardians and can cause problems for people under Contractual Purity because Drugs Are Bad. However, this can be affected by Values Dissonance which can lead to a Flip-Flop of God. It can also lead to a Misaimed Fandom, which can lead to the aforementioned problems but can also help how successful the work is leading to a Shrug of God.

Often leads to an Alternate Aesop Interpretation, Everyone Is Jesus in Purgatory, or What Do You Mean It's Not Didactic?

Generally not recommended with Horror films.

Oddly enough, this only occasionally overlaps with This Is Your Premise on Drugs. However, it almost always overlaps with What Do You Mean It Wasn't Made on Drugs?


In-Universe Examples Only:

Film

  Enhancement Smoker: You ever see the back of a twenty dollar bill... on weed? Oh, there's some crazy shit, man. There's a dude in the bushes. Has he got a gun? I dunno! RED TEAM GO, RED TEAM GO.

  • Used in-story in Knocked Up -- when the guys go to Las Vegas, Pete brings along some psychedelic mushrooms and they deliberately save them for when they go to see Cirque Du Soleil's Mystere. The experience is awesome at first, but by the end the drugs turn on Ben and he freaks out. (The commentary on the DVD notes that Cirque Du Soleil had no problem with their work being used in the context of this trope!)
  • Woody Allen displays a dim view of this in Annie Hall when a California party guest says "You ever see Renoir's Grand Illusion? It's hilarious when you're stoned!"
  • Invoked in Super Troopers when the guys use some confiscated pot to help them look for "evidence" in tapes of the Afghani-produced Johnny Chimpo cartoon.
  • Ironically averted by Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Never make the mistake of thinking otherwise.
  • All four Beatles have admitted that they were stoned throughout the entire filming of Help. Well, that explains it.
  • Beaten to a bloody pulp in Requiem for a Dream. At the end of the film, the main character is imprisoned with an amputated arm, whilst his Black Best Friend is locked in a Southern prison without a trial, his girlfriend is a mere street whore, and his mom is locked up in the loony bin. Remember kids, Drugs Are Bad.


Literature

  • In The Count of Monte Cristo, Everything's Better On Hashish, according to protagonist Edmond Dantes, the eponymous Count, who delivers a flowery speech to Franz extolling its virtues with much hyperbole. Among the things that are Better On Hashish is, apparently, suicide, or so he convinces a depressed Maximilien Morrel towards the end of the book.
  • The Lord of the Rings annoyed author JRR Tolkien in the 1960's and 70's when it became extremely popular with the hippie counter culture for this reason.
  • In his non-fiction book Danse Macabre, Stephen King mentions that he made a grave mistake by getting stoned before watching Robot Monster, because he almost laughed himself into a hernia.


Live Action TV


Music

  • Genesis used to get annoyed in the early 1970s when people thought that you had to be on drugs to appreciate their music, because they had to be perfectly sober to play it. Except for Phil Collins, their then-drummer, who was happily high on marijuana during almost all of the depressing "Lamb" tour[1]
  • Queens of the Stone Age are frequently categorized as "stoner rock," although the band members have stated in interviews that they gave up weed in junior high. They go on to make the point that Britney Spears probably sounds good if you're high. It doesn't mean she has any 'hidden depths'."


Web Original


Western Animation

  • According to Kevin Smith, Dora the Explorer is pretty bland kids' entertainment...unless you're high on pot, in which case you're right there in it with your kid. "Say 'map'!" "MAP!"
  • In-universe example: in an episode of The Simpsons Homer starts smoking pot. He soon finds everything to be better on pot - including Mr. Burns' jokes and The Bible.
    • When Cheech and Chong had a cameo, the room filled up with smoke and everybody laughed. The tall guy above the smoke said, "I don't find this funny at all."
  • Alice in Wonderland - the Disney version. Many theatres (possibly Disney itself) showed the movie during the 60's solely to capitalize on its popularity with drug users. One poster for the '60s re-release actually used the phrase "Go Ask Alice" in its tagline.
    • The Disney book Mouse Under Glass actually reprints some instructions from a distributor to theater owners, advising them that the primary ticket purchasers are going to be "pot-smoking teenagers and college kids" who look outlandish and are prone to lying down in the aisles while they watch, but should be tolerated because they behave themselves and are likely to buy tickets for multiple showings.
    • This was also true for Fantasia.

Notes

  1. Ironically, the guy everybody thought was on drugs was Peter Gabriel as the frontman/flutist, who says he only tried pot once and didn't like it. Easy enough mistake to make, since he was kind of odd
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