Comic-Con


I’d make a great bear …

Kevin Smith

Photo courtesy Tony Weidinger.

Once again, Kevin Smith hit Comic-Con and filled Hall H with fantastic stories; whether it was riffing on the day’s events (and that particular Saturday at the Con was filled with drama), talking about his use of a fleshlight (no, that’s not a misspelling), or presenting a clip from SModcast, a regular comedy pairing between Smith and producer Scott Mosier.

It’s clear Smith is completely at ease in front of an audience, especially one so devoted to him and his films. He began with a hypothetical reenactment of the stabbing incident, the details of which were sketchy at best by the time the “Clerks” creator took the stage (general consensus was a man stabbed another in the eye with a pen over a saved seat issue). However, Smith proposed the conversation when down like this:

“I want to be Thor.”
“No, I want to be Thor.”
*bang* “You’re fucking Odin.”

He then talked about the irony of having the cast of “The Avengers” nearby. “Someone got stabbed in the eye. A fucking crime went down. The Avengers were no help. I guess we’ll have to wait until 2012.”

After showing a clip from SModcast entitled “Avatarded”, wherein Smith and Mosier riffed on the hilarity of blue cats and Jake Sully showing off a giant bird like a substitute phallis, the Q & A session began.

First up was a young man asking about Smith’s self-admitted use of a fleshlight (“I use my fleshlight so much I bought three others to cheat on it with.”) and the possibility of ever making a 3D movie (“I don’t think I’ll ever shoot [in 3D]. My shit is barely 2D.”) Then the real reason for the fan’s use of a microphone came into play: he proposed to his girlfriend. They had been dating since last year’s Comic-Con and this brave soul figured what better place to pop the question than in front of 6,000 people. She said yes (what else do you say when it’s done in public like this) and Smith offered to ordain the proceedings at Comic-Con 2011 in Hall H, even suggesting Jason Mewes (the Jay of “Jay & Silent Bob”) run the bachelor party.

(As adorable a story that may be, the cynic in me thinks the cameras filming around him had a lot more to do with trying to make it into Morgan Spurlock’s Comic-Con documentary than an actual proposal … think what you will.)

After explaining his reasoning for not hob-nobbing with celebrities (“Ben Affleck has told them that I’ll just keep talking about them afterwards”), a sailor stepped up to the mic and asked if Smith would ever do a USO show. Flattered, he began joking about how the problem with it is that they always send people out to the foreign bases in order to entertain the troops: “Go to Iraq? Fuck you. Bring them [the troops] all back here and sure, I’ll give them a show”. Getting more serious, Smith said he would be honored to do so but no one from the organization had ever asked.

A question about longtime friend Malcolm Ingram brought about a lengthy discussion of Bears (a term for larger, generally hairy men in the gay community). The monologue consisted of a story about oral sex and how, within this sub-culture, fat is celebrated. Ingram has said to Smith that he could really do well for himself in these situations and tales of this sort always amuse the filmmaker.

Talking about casting ideas for Smith’s upcoming horror film, “Red State” (revealing that Michael Parks will have the lead role), led to a lengthy yarn about the cops arriving at his door having been called in regarding a hostage situation. As it turns out, the phone call to 911 came about after someone overheard the opening scenes of “From Dusk Till Dawn” blaring from Smith’s bedroom (via the gigantic 103 in. television given as a gift from the manufacturer; Panasonic, I have room for that if you have any extras).

Fans hoping for a Clerks animated feature will be disappointed to learn that the project is in a state of limbo. Disney’s inability to sell off Miramax has put all of those properties on the shelf, out of reach for anyone looking to adapt or continue them. Smith is still hopeful that the issue will be resolved eventually but isn’t holding his breath and is too busy right now, between “Red State” and what he considers his dream project, “Hit Somebody” – which is a hockey film he plans to make after his dip into the horror genre.

The night closed on a retelling of the Southwest Airlines debacle, which one fan wanted to hear first hand after only getting the story in news reports which seemed to conflict themselves. He cleared up the notion that the stewardess was at fault, as she removed him from the plane explaining the pilot told her Smith was too large to stay. As a result of the kerfuffel though, he now travels by bus whenever possible. And following an insane description of a road trip involving Ingram and a Prom bus decked out like a “gay harem” which frightened the drivers, Smith said that the end result of being removed from an airplane has made him appreciate touring the country in a bus so much that he bought one (the rock star kind) and uses it to get around to the many live speaking gigs he has: “Southwest took me out of the sky and now I roam the Earth in a bus.”

Although I had to wait outside in line for 4 hours and missed three panels because there isn’t enough room in Hall H to accommodate the number of people who want to see what happens in there (Can’t we use Petco Park for these ridiculously popular events?), the night – and the Con – was made completely worth it after being in on Smith’s talk. It was the best hour plus of the event and I can’t wait to see him again next year … though I don’t plan on buying any wedding presents unless an official invite from the newly engaged couple hits my mailbox.