Archive for August 7th, 2004

Unintentional drug references in Rocky and Bullwinkle?

Aug 07, 2004 in Pop Culture

Tonight I ordered a pizza from Papa John’s (spinach alfredo, ate three pieces before I became unusually full) and got one of the free DVD’s they’ve been giving out for ordering a large. (Anyone looking to aquire or complete a Weekend at Bernie’s collection? Cuz they’ve got both!)

So I got the Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle first season DVD sampler. The sampler has three episodes, comprising half of the “counterfeit boxtops” storyline. (One thing that’s really interesting about Rocky and Bullwinkle is the way a storyline would stretch across multiple episodes, sometimes as many as 20 consecutive half-hour shows!)

Rocky and Bullwinkle has long been lauded as being clever, intelligent and sometimes subversive. During one of the episodes, I caught two unintentional references to drug/intoxicant use that never would have made it on TV today:

  • In the Rocky and Bullwinkle segment, Bullwinkle is hanging precariously on a giant outdoor tower clock. The time on the clock reads 4:20.
  • In the Mr. Peabody segment, a sleepy horse is repeatedly revived by inhaling glue.
  • Now, of course, the 4:20 reference to marijuana usage would not be coined for about ten more years, and I doubt few people at the time considered the possibility of inhaling glue to get high. But still, it’s funny to find modern references to drug use innocently inserted into old cartoons.

    Oddly enough, only a few good pages exist that are dedicated to Rocky and Bullwinkle. Hokey Smoke! is probably the most comprehensive and updated. Also, read about Jay Ward’s attempt to acheive statehood for a small island north of Minnesota he named Moosylvania.