Weediquette premiered last week on the newly-launched channel from badass media empire Vice, and blew us away with its thoughtful investigation of cannabis culture, going far beyond the stereotypes of late-night munchies and couch mossing and deep into world of medical weed. We chatted with series host Krishna Andavolu to find out what else we can expect from the inaugural season, airing now on Viceland—available free Canada-wide for the next three months.
1. He meets some pretty atypical users. Episode 1 follows Andavolu around Oregon and California as he visits families using hyper-potent weed oil to treat children who have cancer. He attends a BBQ that progresses from kids playing in a bouncy castle to eating insanely powerful weed brownies. “The optics of that are crazy,” he recalls. “Seeing parents ripping dabs in their living room, while kids are eating edibles in the backyard. At first you’re like… this can’t be cool!” Indeed, it’s a pretty heavy watch. “The kids that I met are really incredible. You want them to grow up healthy and happy, you just want them to be better,” says Andavolu.
2. Andavolu gets high AF. The first episode sees him super-stoned off one-tenth of a gram of weed oil. (To put that in perspective, many of the sick kids he visits take an entire gram at a time for its potential—but still unproven—cancer-fighting properties.)
3. The cannabis economy is complicated… Episode 3 is the best example: while people are making millions off medicinal marijuana in Colorado, Andavolu meets a New Orleans man who has been incarcerated for 13 years for possessing two joints. “It’s pure, unadulterated injustice. He’s a black American and a victim of the war on drugs,” he says. “His story reveals so much of what’s wrong with how marijuana has been treated as a social ill. When you see how different the world can be within the same country, it’s really shocking.”
4. …but it’s a dope opportunity for Canada. Medical marijuana is a low priority topic in American politics. Up north, with Justin Trudeau’s pro-legalization agenda, Canada may be one of the best hopes for medical marijuana testing.
5. Girl power is at the forefront of the green. Episode 7 explores women and weed: “There are a lot of really pumped-up female entrepreneurs trying to make this the first gender-balanced industry out there,” explains Andavolu. “Their argument is that there’s no old boys’ club for weed because it’s a new industry.”
6. Weediquette’s ultimate goal? To eliminate judginess. Revealing the intimate realities of cancer patients is incredibly affecting, and exposes people to a far greater scope of marijuana use. “It makes you appreciate that people are struggling with things,” says Andavolu, “and that being sensitive to that is a real vital part of being human.”