Spark Something

The generations of stoners born in the ΄80s realize one thing from those nostalgic VH1 flashback specials: The THC content in Mary Jane might be stronger now, but man… cats in the ΄70s knew how to party! Any Cheech and Chong film from the era proves that. The two avowed potheads apparently didn’t suffer from amotivational syndrome in the slightest — between 1972 and 1985 Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong released nine comedy albums (one of which even won a Grammy Award). They also starred in eight feature films, all of which have basically the same plot — two stoners wind up in a jam, at some point there’s an unlikely escape from The Man, and our heroes make it out on top with a celebratory (and cloudy) grand finale. Who could imagine such a formula would ever get old?

Well, Cheech did. In 1985 Marin called it quits on the drug humor tip, leaving his old buddy Chong high and dry. Cheech pursued a career in legit films, making notable inroads in the world of animated voices, while Chong played a version of his old self on That ΄70s Show and produced a line of smoking paraphernalia (Chong’s Bongs, anyone?), for which he got arrested, went to prison, and wrote an awesome book, The I-Chong. And now, a little over a quarter century since their breakup, the weed fiends are back to blaze a new comedy trail. Yup, the Cheech & Chong Light Up America Tour is touching down tonight at the Fillmore Miami Beach (1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach). Will they still make you laugh till your sides ache and tears run down your face? That totally depends on how high you are, dude. Doors open at 6 p.m., show starts at 7. Tickets cost $40 to $60, and they’re selling out faster than dime bags from that dude on the corner. Hurry up and visit, or holla at your local scalper.
Sat., Sept. 27, 2008

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Patrice Elizabeth Grell Yursik