This article will contain spoilers.
“Disjointed” is a fairly new Netflix sitcom in which Kathy Bates, her son, and a ragtag crew of Budtenders run a marijuana dispensary in L.A.
The dispensary “promotes” alternative care and is seemingly supposed to campaign the medicinal aspects of marijuana.
The show lives up to its title. It’s disjointed and all over the place. And it doesn’t seem to completely know what it wants to be.
It’s a hard R rated sitcom with a lot of fucking “F-bombs”, but a family friendly (and annoying) laugh track.
It seems to try and mock and subvert the decades of propaganda that speak against marijuana, but then it also embraces aspects of said propaganda.
And it tries to show that marijuana is medicine and that their customers are patients, but then it leans HEAVILY into every stoner stereotype, there is.
One storyline involves their security guard, who is a war vet suffering from PTSD.
The entire staff spends the first few episodes trying to convince him (a non-smoker) that pot can really help him with his issues (and it actually can). Eventually, he partakes, and it does seem to initially have a positive effect on him. And then in subsequent episodes, he constantly hallucinates surrealistic animated sequences whenever he vapes. The sequences are creative and entertaining, but they seem to be increasing his PTSD because he’s losing his mind. But stoners who watch the show will love the cartoons…
Two major characters are named Dank and Dabby. They are every single pothead trope rolled up and smoked into oblivion.
They’re YouTube stars that are sponsored by the dispensary (free weed). So by trying to promote “alternative care”, they decide to fully embrace the biggest and most harmful cliches. Near the end, these 2 characters are handing out free weed to people live on their channel. They end up giving weed to some underagers, which gets the Feds involved.
This is at least a nice little twist because these 2 characters are played extremely well and they ARE funny. So they become audience favorites (especially stoners that see themselves in the characters). So showing such a major fuck-up with actual consequences is a responsible narrative direction.
The end of season 1 has the dispensary raided of all its product and money by the Feds. Once again, a nice narrative twist that shows what these people have to deal with – even when they’re trying to act within the laws of their respective State.
Like I said, it’s all over the place. It seems to want to tell a story about some good people trying to get worthwhile medicine into the hands of people that need it while fearing & dealing with the Feds that are always in the shadows.
But because they seemingly want to cater to the masses, they decide to make the majority of their characters burnt out, confused, jokey, hallucinatory stoners.
And even when they lean towards a medicinal related storyline, they burn it up and drown it in dirty bong water so that any responsible point dissipates into the air like recently exhaled vape…
It is an entertaining show. But it’s not the show it could or should be. Stoner movies and shows are a dime a dozen. There’s nothing new or revolutionary about them.
But a show about a dispensary that is truly trying to change the world and help people WOULD be fresh and unique.
Maybe that’s not the show they ever wanted to make.
But it’s irresponsible to even partly pretend that you or your characters care about medicinal marijuana when they’re all basically variations of what Cheech & Chong did decades earlier (they cameo at the end of the season finale).
Like marijuana, the show will probably make you laugh. But unlike marijuana, it won’t actually benefit you in any way…