A bushel of gut-busting stoner comedies have come out over the last 40 years — Friday, How High, Pineapple Express, Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle, The Big Lebowski, and the list goes on — but this cinematic genre probably wouldn’t have grown at all if not for the half-baked precedent set by Richard “Cheech” Marin and Tommy Chong. To show appreciation for the groundbreaking work of this ingenious red-eyed duo, we hand-picked the best tattoos of them (that our hopelessly stoned asses could find) for you to enjoy while enjoying a spliff or a bong rip of your own. Happy 4/20, everybody!
The first Cheech and Chong flick, Up in Smoke, came out in 1978, following the pair’s success in stand-up with routines like “Santa Claus and His Old Lady,” “Sister Mary Elephant,” and their notorious bit “Dave’s Not Here.” Their debut film garnered enough popularity (especially among habitual marijuana users) that it almost instantly became a cult classic and spawned two sequels, Cheech and Chong’s New Movie (1980) and Nice Dreams (1981). These films are so beloved that numerous fans threw it all down, got lifted, and decided to memorialize their love of the duo’s ganja-fueled antics on their bodies.
What makes Cheech and Chong so worthy of a tattoo tribute is the joy that their movies have brought fellow potheads over the years. Whether they’re hot-boxing a car with a joint the size of your forearm, driving a van made completely of weed across the U.S.-Mexico border, writing silly songs about the Chicano experience, or stealing gas in a trashcan, their rapport will give you more giggles than sucking down a fat dab or puffing on a blunt packed with the most potent dank around town.
All cheese aside, their comedy was a driving force in transforming the pot-smoking community from counter to mainstream culture by showing all the old fogies and conservative haters out there that getting high is downright fun. So the next time you spark up a fatty in a state where cannabis is legal, remember to cross your heart and blow a couple rings in the honor of those who helped make it possible — Cheech and Chong.
To see more body art inspired by weed and the people who smoke it, wander your stoned ass over to these artists’ Instagrams. If you love Cheech and Chong as much as theses tattooed herb enthusiasts, go get a portrait of the comedic duo of your own. Also, when you’re lighting up on this very special and inexplicably unofficial holiday, put on Up in Smoke for a few laughs while you’re at it.