When 11-year-old Jack Davis of Little Silver was invited to stop by Jay and Silent Bob's Secret Stash in Red Bank in September, he was just excited about the possibility of being on TV.
The Markham Place sixth-grader says he's been going to the Broad Street comic shop regularly since his dad introduced him to it when he was 6, and it's become sort of like a home-away-from home for him over the years.
"They're almost kind of like my family because I've known them for so long," he says of the guys who work in the shop where he stops by about three times a week to hang out.
Those guys — Mike Zapcic, Bryan Johnson, Ming Chen and Walt Flannagan — also happened to be featured on AMC's "Comic Book Men," which is airing its second season that is shot in the shop.
What Davis didn't know when he agreed to come in to sell one of his own comic books as part of an episode, was that the show's producers had a KERPOW! of a plot twist in mind.
His mom, Michele, says that she got a call that her son would be showing his creations to his comic book hero, Marvel Comic great Stan Lee, who was appearing in the episode appropriately dubbed "Stan the Man."
Davis says he walked in and "almost fell over" when he saw Lee in the shop. "I'd know his face anywhere," he said of the man who helped create Spiderman and The Hulk. "I could pick him out in a crowd."
He wound up having a 40-minute conversation with Lee, who turns 90 this month, which was ultimately cut from the episode that aired Dec. 2. Even the New York Times wrote about the meeting when a reporter came to cover Lee's appearance at the shop.
"He asked me who my favorite superhero was," says Davis, an aspiring DC Comics artist who politely told Lee about all the rival Marvel superheroes he admired. "I'm not asking who your favorite Marvel character is," Lee tells him. "I want to know who your favorite superhero is."
Lee looked over Davis's comic, called "Jack's Comics Presents," and called him a "triple threat" for his writing, artistry and creative talent and signed the front page with his trademark "Excelsior!"
Davis says that he even forgot that they were being filmed and was awed just being in Lee's presence.
"This is going to sound corny," he says of the experience, "but it was almost like a dream sequence in a comic."