Waiting for Kevin Smith in Red Bank
Hundreds of eager fans stood in line for hours outside of Secret Stash on Broad Street for a chance to meet their slacker hero, Kevin Smith.
They first arrived, some of them, as early as 4 a.m., taking up spaces on Broad Street and sleeping in their cars as they waited for dawn to break. It was the only way they could be sure they were going to get in.
Kevin Smith, they knew, would draw a crowd.
On Sunday, hundreds — possibly more than 1,000 — gathered in a line that stretched more than a block from Jay and Silent Bob's Secret Stash to meet the new media master and man behind Jersey-centric film classics such as Clerks and Chasing Amy.
The purpose of Smith's visit was to sign copies of his most recent book, Tough Sh#t: Life Advice from a Fat, Lazy Slob Who Did Good, and to film a segment for the second season of AMC's "Comic Book Men." Announced just earlier this week, news of Smith's public visit spread far and wide, attracting numerous people from out of state, including at least one couple from Buffalo, New York, who made the seven-hour drive to meet the man they said best captured the reality of their youth on film.
Those who didn't show up before the dawn found themselves waiting for hours near the back of the line that stretched down Broad, turned on Mechanic Street, and wound its way through several parking lots behind the Stash hoping Smith would stick around long enough. Crew members and PAs alike barked directions at the crowd, giving them periodic updates on how long the process would take and what to do when cameras rolled by.
For many, the wait was worth it.
John Smith — who informed us, regretfully, that he's of no relation — and Molly Steinbuch brought some merchandise for Smith to sign, including a small, stuffed Wookie, and said Smith, who most recently has focused his attention on podcasting, could not have been nicer or more accommodating.
Comic Book Men is entering its second season on AMC. The show, filmed at Secret Stash, focuses on Stash employees and regulars Walt Flanagan, Bryan Johnson, Mike Zapcic and Ming Chen. Billed as a Pawn Stars-style reality show, collectors bring in their rare comics and memorabilia to find out about its history and value.
The show debuted for six, one-hour episodes following AMC's beloved zombie, waiting in a barn series The Walking Dead. Comic Book Men returns this Oct. 14 for the first of 16 half-hour episodes.