When Snoop Dogg offers to “teach you how to really smoke the fine Persian weed,” in his enticingly blunt, lyrical, animated ad campaign, it’s hard not to take him seriously — and perhaps a little bit scandalously. As news of his new cannabis brand, Leafs by Snoop, broke, headlines bore headlines like “Snoop Dogg is Making Another Porn Video” and “Snoop Dogg’s New Yr Adult Video to Be Called ‘Smoked in the Park’ (Inappropriately)” — and OK, yeah, that last one is probably exaggerated.
Snoop’s video for “Lavender,” a duet with Tekashi 6ix9ine (a rapper who shares half his name), is also interesting. On YouTube, it recently became an unauthorized teaser for the upcoming release of his Toronto, Canada-based new album with Ted Lucas. The video, done by cartoonist David Levine, uses the greatest hits of his longtime cartoon strip, A Charlie Brown Christmas. Unlike Snoop’s involvement in other artistic endeavours, these two points of note — Snoop’s skill in print and Levine’s chance at his first major animated project — are unique to this campaign.
The setup is meant to be simple: The Roomba, Snoop’s pet dish-sized vacuuming machine, comes up with a toy for Charlie Brown: This latest Snoopy edition uses pot as its gooey, sweet, fuzzy substance of choice. The strip has Charlie’s real dog refusing to use it, in part because he can’t get his size-8 feet into a bag of weed called “Tootsie Rolls.” But with Snoop’s help, he and Snoopy form a music group and perform a Motown-inspired musical number that combines Charlie Brown’s acrobatics with Snoop’s Fender Telecaster, with the added bonus of Snoop’s unmistakable bass playing. It’s definitely for “slim and shifty” viewers only.