Tommy Chong

Nine months in the joint gave this counterculture comedian a new stash of material

Getting sent to prison may have been the best thing to happen to Tommy Chong in years, careerwise at least. Before his “water pipe” company Chong Glass/Nice Dreams was charged in a federal sting against drug paraphernalia sellers, Chong was one half of a broken-up comedy duo whose stoned-humor shtick had become cliché. As likable as your cool uncle, Chong found work playing hippie stereotypes on That ‘70s Show and Dharma & Greg before his arrest in 2003. After nine months in prison (underreported fact: he went to jail in a plea bargain so his wife and son, also part of the company, wouldn’t be prosecuted), Chong became not only a newly minted cause célèbre in the crazed war against drugs, he also had a wealth of new material about joining a (literal) circle of Native American prisoners, the guards’ reaction to a famous inmate and, of course, cavity searches. Forget the reefer jokes — Tommy has a whole new stash. 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. today and tomorrow, 7:30 p.m. Sunday. 7620 Katy Freeway. For tickets and information, call 713-333-8800 or visit www.improv2.com/houston. $25
Fri., Jan. 11, 8 & 10:30 p.m.; Sat., Jan. 12, 8 & 10:30 p.m.; Sun., Jan. 13, 7:30 p.m., 2008

 
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