When I got offered the chance to attend the first show on the Trailer Park Boys’ new tour (starting in our own little weed-smoking mecca, naturally), I practically jumped at the chance. Then the deal got sweetened further with a private dispensary-organized cannabis tasting — and my head figuratively exploded. Being a fan of the show for the better part of 10 years, I have probably had at least 10 rambling dreams that ended roughly the way this night did, but the real experience was better than I had hoped.
“Trailer Park Boys” the TV show is a relatively hard thing to describe as it is: In a nutshell, it’s a mostly-improvised comedy mockumentary following the illegal exploits of recently-paroled trailer-dwelling Nova Scotians who love committing crimes almost as much as they love smoking weed and drinking liquor.
The stage show Dec. 2, “Dear Santa Claus, Go F#ck Yourself,” was a loosely Christmas-based story similar to the plot of the “Live at the North Pole” special about Bubbles (Mike Smith) and Julian (John Paul Tremblay) trying to convince Ricky (Robb Wells) that Santa Claus is real in order to prevent the childlike Ricky from having an existential crisis. (Ricky refers to St. Nick as “SantaJesusGod” because he of course believes they are the same thing.)
Naturally, the drunken cop-turned-trailer park supervisor, Jim Lahey (John Dunsworth) sets out to ruin the Boys’ holiday by doing the exact opposite. Randy (played by Pat Roach), Mr. Lahey’s former male prostitute off-and-on lover with the epic gut, was a constant feature of the show, collecting money from the audience (yes, real money and lots of weed) as part of Julian’s “60/40” Christmas money-making scheme, which, by the end of the show had predictably turned into a Julian-favored “80/20.” The simple, if stereotypical, Charlie Brown-like plot may have been a turnoff to some, but it is basically just a loose structure that allows these incredible comedic actors to improvise relentlessly and interact with the uh, “rambunctious” audience at the Bellco Theatre in the Colorado Convention Center.
On that point, the audience at this show was basically what I expected; lots of uber-stoned people yelling things at the stage (to which the Boys seemingly always responded with a quickdraw quip — “The dope is way too good here, you guys are fucked!”). They were also running onto the stage at every opportunity offered (“OK, everyone get the fuck off the stage, I’m in charge here,” Julian commanded at one point), and doing their best Donnie impressions (TPB nerd break: that’s the invisible guy who’s always yelling things at the top of his lungs at the trailer park).
While there were times that 10 people were crowding the stage and taking selfies with Bubs, I thought that watching the guys try to herd this group of very stoned cats was hilarious, as was the literal shower of weed that was flying at them from the crowd throughout the night. Late in the show, a very inebriated guy rushed the stage randomly and delivered an unwrapped piece of pepperoni to Ricky, which only fans of the show will understand (I wonder if that guy still reeks of pepperoni after stashing that greasy meat log in his coat to sneak it past security).
The general theme of the performance: Christmas isn’t the time for greasy moneymaking schemes or being a “liquor grinch,” it’s a time to get drunk and high with your family and friends, which is what this show felt like, especially after the midway point.
The crowd grew more raucous as the show climaxed with Bubbles performing his epic singalong Christmas anthem “Liquor and Whores” and finally the Boys ended the show with a heartfelt “Thank you” and a standing ovation. As they left the stage, the realization that I was about to meet them set in and I practically shot out of the theater to go do some more dabs and stuff a sandwich down my own greasy cheeseburger locker at Interstate before heading to a small office space in the Santa Fe Arts District that would soon host my dream come true.