The title says it all.

Why did Venkman have sedatives on his date with Dana?

A syringe full of Thorazine is not a normal thing to carry, especially on a date.

  • I thought it was in her apartment? Am I misremembering that?
    – Nerrolken
    Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 21:45
  • @Nerrolken It was her apartment, but I don't think Venkman found the Thorazine there.
    – numaroth
    Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 21:48
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    So we're not even going to mention that he gave her enough thorazine to literally kill a herd of elephants?
    – Valorum
    Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 22:20
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    @numaroth - 300CC would be enough to lethally dose around 6000 people. Even if we're generous and assume that he meant miligrams, that would still be 6-7 times a lethal dose.
    – Valorum
    Commented Oct 30, 2014 at 22:25
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    "A syringe full of Thorazine is not a normal thing to carry" Being a Ghostbuster is not a normal job either, to be fair. Not entirely sure it's reasonable to subject them to standard ideas about what is and isn't normal to carry. Commented Oct 31, 2014 at 10:56

1 Answer 1


The official Richard Mueller novelisation describes him hunting around in her apartment for medical supplies. Quite why she has powerful sedatives on hand isn't explained in any detail although someone who lives in "spook central" could feasibly be suffering from insomnia, hearing voices, mild paranoia or migraines, all of which are treatable with Thorazine:

Dana Barrett still floated above the bed while Peter Venkman rummaged through the drawers of her dresser. "She’s an artist", he thought. "She’s got to have some Valium somewhere."

It's worth noting that Louis was buying painkillers by the bucketload to deal with his headaches.

“I have acetylsalicylic acid but I get the generic from Walgreen’s cause I can get six hundred tablets for thirty-five percent less than the cost of three hundred of the name brand. Do you have a headache?”

In Ghostbusters Year One #3, it was revealed that she had them for persistent hiccups.

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  • 2
    Now I think of it, this makes much more sense than Venkman somehow having Thorazine on him. It's a prescription-only drug so he would have to be an MD to get any through legitimate channels, having "PhDs in parapsychology and psychology" is unlikely to be enough. Commented Oct 31, 2014 at 10:55
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    @RoyalCanadianBandit Legal channels? This is Venkman we're talking about.
    – Zibbobz
    Commented Oct 31, 2014 at 13:30
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    @Hack-R - Reading the screenplay again, I'm thinking that the implication was that both Dana and Louis were suffering from mental state changes brought on by psychic trauma, his characterised by mania and headaches, hers by migraines, tiredness and mild hallucinations. Somewhere between the screenplay and the screen, that got lost.
    – Valorum
    Commented Nov 9, 2016 at 23:28
  • I recall reading a novelisation in 1980's, about when the film came out by Larry Milne that made no reference to finding medication in Dana's apartment. When did the richard mueller novelisation appear? Is this a retcon?
    – skyjack
    Commented Aug 8, 2021 at 6:48
  • @skyjack - Not a retcon per se. The first novelisation was quite slim and didn't get great reviews (or great sales) so they did a second one which had a fair amount more back-story and info.
    – Valorum
    Commented Aug 8, 2021 at 7:25

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