Here’s a first: a bunch of comedians smoke a joint on stage during a new episode of the don’t miss talk show on Showtime. The show is “The Green Room with Paul Provenza,” a tremendously funny and philosophical half hour series of conversations Provenza has with different panels. This is the show’s second season. And in the second episode of this season, someone from the audience– “The Green Room” almost looks like it’s shot in the round — hands a quite a sizable joint up onto the stage. Partaking immediately and passing it around are Provenza, guests Greg Proops, Dana Gould and Franklyn Ajaye. Kathy Griffin, also on the freewheeling panel, stays above the fray.
Provenza tells me that Showtime considered taking the scene out of the show, but in the end concurred that there was nothing illegal going on. “We’re really going for authenticity,” Provenza says. “And spontaneity. That would happen in a real green room. It’s about freedom and personal dignity. Our laws are not reflecting the will of the people.”
The joint smoking is likely a first for any talk show. Zach Galifinakis seemed to smoke one on Bill Maher‘s HBO talk show last year, then recanted by saying it wasn’t pot.
Meantime, there’s more to that second episode including Franklyn Ajaye’s very astute observation that “Snooki and Sarah Palin are the same person.”
And in the premiere episode Provenza is almost overwhelmed by an all star line up of Ray Romano, Judd Apatow, Marc Maron, and a surprisingly insightful Garry Shandling.