With cable TV now proving to be the stomping ground for directors with ambitious stories to tell, Kevin Smith is preferring to play things safe, and stick to the well worn route he has traveled all these years. So if you’re expecting Smith to visit AMC — the home of “Mad Men,” “Breaking Bad,” “The Walking Dead” — with a project as daring as “Red State” (for example) you’re shit out of luck.
Instead, he’s using the opportunity to play with comic books. As first revealed earlier this summer Smith was developing a show about “the comic book lifestyle” centered around his very own New Jersey comic store Jay And Bob’s Secret Stash. Well AMC likes what they have seen have ordered up six episodes of the show that will air in the first quarter of 2012.
So let’s just break this down: a niche reality show on an already niche network about a niche subject? Have fun marketing that one, folks. Admittedly, it’s an easy way for AMC to see if the geeks will flock to the network and if they do, it suddenly opens up a whole demographic. If they won’t, it’s probably not a big deal. It essentially plays like a slightly more expensive version of market research, but reality shows are cheap to produce, so six episodes can’t be costing the network too much money and won’t need much in the way of viewership to stay on the good side of profitable.
So what exactly will we see in the show? Well, it will focus on “the daily banter of The Secret Stash and its employees and devoted customers; and it will capture the fun and emotion of buying and selling collectibles and comic memorabilia” which sounds teeth grindingly banal. But if you get off on minimalist posters or superfan artwork of superheroes you’ll probably love this show. The rest of us are going to reach for the remote. But hey, Kevin Smith knows where his bread is buttered so we suppose we can’t fault the guy for sticking to his strengths. We just can’t say we’re all that interested, either. [THR]