Banned Buds Week: Dr. Who

Banned Buds Dr. Who Cannabis Now Magazine

Oregon puts kibosh on Girl Scout Cookies, Charlotte’s Web, 18 other strain names that “appeal to children” – but only the names. We’re highlighting these strains during Banned Buds Week.

Debuting on the BBC in 1963, “Doctor Who” is a cult-classic of science fiction – and it’s older than the U.S. federal government’s War on Drugs. Twelve different actors have played the titular character, a “Time Lord” who travels through space and time in an iconic blue British police box called the TARDIS (“It’s bigger on the inside”) to defend human civilization from the Daleks, a race of cyborg aliens with one directive: “Exterminate!”

The series’ production values stayed consistent with the times. Classic episodes from the 1970s featured bizarre alien costumes and the menacing slow roll of the trashcan-shaped Daleks – dealt with, always with panache, by rainbow-scarved Tom Baker, our favorite doctor – while today’s current Doctors fly through a time and space populated with CGI enemies. Central to the series are the heady notions that time and space are pliable and can be bent – we imagine Carl Sagan curling up in front of his wood-grained TV set, soaking in an evening of cosmic entertainment – but there’s always a moral message, which is why Common Sense Media believes the series is age-appropriate for anyone over 10. Then again, there are people now in their sixties who have been watching this show since the age of 10, so to say “Doctor Who” appeals to kids is like saying that food appeals to kids. Of course it does – it appeals to people.

As for the kind of people to whom Dr. Who the cannabis strain would appeal? Being an indica-dominant hybrid that promises relief from pain and neurological ailments without lethargy, Dr. Who is a “Swiss Army-knife” of a strain with broad application. The creation of Homegrown Natural Wonders, an Oregon-based cannabis genetics company, Dr. Who is a combination of TGA Subcool’s sativa-dominant Timewreck and Sannie Seeds’ indica-prevalent Mad Scientist. The finished plant has a healthy splash of purple throughout, and the almost-balanced blend of indica and sativa allows you to relax without losing your mind.

Dr. Who was one of the strain names forbidden in Oregon dispensaries by the state Liquor Control Commission, which regulates cannabis in the state, for its appeal to children. It’s uncertain how much longer a cannabis strain will be allowed to carry the name of a well-known trademark like Doctor Who regardless of what the OLCC decides to do – and Homegrown Natural Wonders also offers a sativa called TARDIS, which is high in lesser-known cannabinoids including CBC and CBG – in a fully legal marketplace, but it’s also uncertain how this strain specifically appeals to kids.

It also appears the OLCC may have been hoodwinked.

In its decision to ban the strain name, the OLCC referenced a “Doctor Who” cartoon specifically made for children. The problem is that there is no such cartoon – not really, anyway. There have been several animated serials broadcast on British television, but a scan of videos available to kids on, say, YouTube, reveals mostly fan fiction, if fan fiction with high production values. To say there’s a “Doctor Who” cartoon marketed directly to children appears to be untrue.

In any event, even an cartoon “Doctor Who” is an acquired taste. It’s weird. On top of that, it has themes and situations that children simply won’t be able to fully comprehend – sorry, kids. Not to say that kids won’t find climbing into TARDIS cool – in the same way that adults find string theory and the bending of space and time cool. But just because they may be able to grok some of the message doesn’t mean it’s tailored for children’s benefit. By the same logic, OLCC would have issue with a strain referencing the very adult Cylons of “Battlestar Galactica.” Which is to say, it’s loony.

Are you a Whovian? Have you tried this banned bud?

Chris Roberts has written about medical cannabis, drug policy, and legalization ever since spending a few months in Humboldt County in 2009, with bylines for the San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco Examiner, and SF Weekly. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @cbloggy.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *