The sly trick of ‘Grow Op’ is your honest assumption this show will be about weed. As other creators attempting to cash in on the swelling interest in cannabis content, this show will revolve around weed puns and stoners; a green flash without the earth substance.
Grow Op, however, is not a weed show. Instead it is a weed-adjacent show where cannabis fills the background and center stage are the characters and their stories. The city of Seattle with its entrepreneurial gusto and embrace of all things tech is as much a driving force and player in the show as cannabis itself. In fact, Grow Op creator Matt Skerritt tells me the show “isn’t about cannabis at all, it’s about people.”
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“A lot of the stuff that’s happening in broadcast and elsewhere that has this cannabis component is about the cannabis. It’s about that lifestyle,” Skerritt says. “That isn’t this. This is about these human beings whose lives are going on and it just so happens that they’re stoners. It just so happens that they’re trying to be professional stoners.”
The mockumentary web series that follows the once-illicit drug dealer Kevin as he tries to enter the professional cannabis space. Throughout the show we encounter his friends and family, who all react with tired expressions of putting up with Kevin. When we first meet him, Kevin is the very definition of a man-child. He often seems out of touch with the realities of the adult world and the responsibilities inherent with being a father and running a professional company.
When trying to recruit investors to support his cannabis grow operation, they sound more dubious of supporting Kevin than fear of being associated with weed, though the latter is the excuse they use. A recurrent theme is Kevin finally owning up to his shit. His aversion to that, however, leads to some great comedy, like when God himself texts Kevin after he smokes too much weed. If that absurd and hilarious image interest you, this show is for you.
“Watch it because you enjoy watching people discover themselves and laugh at themselves and laugh at our culture and laugh at our society,” Skerritt says. He later adds, “The cannabis really represents where we are at a society. It’s about economics, and politics, and how we interact with that.”
The web series is available on YouTube and Indieflix, and will continue releasing a few more episodes. But Skerritt told me they have plans to release a feature-length film of Grow Op. While the Grow Op movie will touch on and possibly include some material of the web series, it will be a deeper experience into the life of Kevin as he tries to grow up alongside his Grow Op.
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Though Skerritt and his team are still in the writing stage of the film, he says, “You might call it a cross between Citizen Kane and This Is Spinal Tap. The Citizen Kane is the way we’re telling that story, not to be too mysterious about it.”
The Grow Op team hopes the movie will be released early 2018, though they intend to drop a few web episodes for fans while they’re filming. If you’re looking for a grown-up show involving weed that isn’t just stoner jokes and marijuana stereotypes, then Grow Op is for you.
“Finding out who you are and being the best person you can be,” Skerritt says .”Really that’s what the show is about.”