In my very first This Week in Geek column, I wrote, “You’re the reason why Kevin Smith is a god among men.” Little did I know that Silent Bob himself would be visiting our campus a mere six months later.
Am I the biggest View Askewniverse fan out there?
Probably not, but I am a huge fan of Smith’s work, and since I am also a fan of lists, here are five reasons why Smith is incredibly awesome.
Lots of “Star Wars” references
Whether it’s independent contractors on the second Death Star, Lando Calrissian as the token black character of the Star Wars universe, or bong sabers, Smith’s films are littered with “Star Wars” references.
Smith’s view of the “Star Wars” trilogy is very down to earth, but as a self-proclaimed geek, I can attest to getting into many such discussions with my fellow geeks.
Lots of comic book references
Yes, there’s obviously Bluntman and Chronic, Jay and Silent Bob’s superhero alter egos.
But there’s also an appearance by Stan Lee, the man who is basically responsible for all comics we have today, in “Mallrats.”
The convention scenes in “Chasing Amy” also hit a little too close to home.
And if that isn’t enough, Kevin Smith opened his own comic book store, Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash, in Red Bank.
“Jersey Girl” was filmed in Paulsboro, which is about a fifteen-minute drive from where I live in South Jersey.
There are plenty of references to towns scattered in Central and North Jersey. Brodie wears a Henry Hudson Regional T-shirt in “Mallrats.”
Jersey has remained very close to Smith’s heart, and that isn’t going to resonate anywhere quite as much as at the College.
“Clerks” was shot for $26,800. It took in over $3 million at the box office during its run, which, by all accounts is a huge success (not to mention all the critical praise it received).
The film was shot at the convenience store that Smith actually worked at during the time of shooting. Smith’s success is an inspiration for many other aspiring filmmakers.
The kind of fandom that comes along with things like “Star Wars” and comic books has crossed over, and thus there are many rabid Smith fans who are more than ready to quote his movies at length and fill you in on all sorts of production trivia.
But Smith is a fan himself, and he is great at including his fans in everything that he does.
You can visit viewaskew.com and be treated to a wealth of resources.
“My Boring Ass Life,” Smith’s online diary, is a great way to get many behind-the-scenes stories (was Smith really planning to make a sequel to “Fletch?”).
There’s the “Clerks II” production diary to get you excited about his next film. There’s “The Movie Poop Shoot” which is a great resource for all things geeky.
In other words, Smith knows much of his audience and he respects it.
While there are many other reasons to like Smith, I can only fit so many into one column.
But getting to see Smith in person is, quite frankly, a dream come true for me.