Check Your History: A Cultural Flashback

Helen Hunt: Dope Pusher

An Oscar Winner learns the facts of life.

By Steve Wiecking January 14, 2009

Most parents have a difficult time talking to their children about drugs. How can a concerned adult address the topic of certain pernicious plants but still smoke out on hilarity? The answer: Check your history.

Many years ago, back when television overflowed with writing and acting talent, a thoughtful sitcom called The Facts of Life had big things to say about little prep school girls and the challenges facing them. Your little girl (or boy) will take much away from the following condensed episode, which in under 5 minutes hands you everything you need to know about the horrors of marijuana.

This episode features future Oscar and Emmy winner Helen Hunt in her finest performance—"Pot," pusher Helen says, "makes you so creative."—and was broadcast during the show’s first season, when the powers that be somehow allowed den mother Charlotte Rae to sing part of the theme song and there were more girls under her care (some of whom miraculously managed not to balloon in later years—like that effervescent Molly Ringwald who, thankfully, makes only a mute appearance during the end credits):

Ah, for the days when Tootie was on roller skates. Maybe a few of you big kids could learn to be high on yourselves, hmmm?

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