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RED BANK: HOLY DOUBLETAKE! IT’S BATMAN!

rb batman 081414 6rb batman 081414 2Spoiler alert for fans of the cable show ‘Comic Book Men,’ shot in and around Kevin Smith’s Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash on Broad Street in Red Bank: a future episode will feature a race between the Batmobile and the Green Hornet’s Black Beauty, shot Thursday afternoon on Bridge Avenue in Gotham Red Bank.

And who was riding shotgun for a faux Batman? None other than onetime Batman portrayer Adam West himself, now 85 years old. Andres Verde of Red Bank, above, got a selfie with West, following one take of the low-speed race. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: INTIMATE AND UN-IRONIC ALANIS

alanis.jpg.size.xxlarge.letterboxSerial Grammy winner Alanis Morisette returns to the greater Green this Sunday, for an unplugged concert at the Count’s place.

To music fans that have helped her move more than 60 million units of sales worldwide — at least half of them via her 1995 blockbuster Jagged Little PillAlanis Morissette is the multiple Grammy winner (and onetime Canadian teen-pop star) who exploded onto the alt-rock landscape with “You Oughta Know;” who duetted in short order with everyone from Ringo Starr to Tricky, and who more or less taught us a new meaning of the word “Ironic.”

To Red Bankers — or at least those borough-based viewers of the Kevin Smith askewniverse — Alanis Morisette is nothing less than God, the supreme being that she portrayed for the last act of Smith’s controversial 1999 epic Dogma. On the evening of Sunday, July 27, God herself returns to  Red Bank for an “intimate and acoustic” sermonette on the stage of the greater Green’s most glittering cathedral of entertainment, the Count Basie Theatre.

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RED BANK: TWO GO THE DISTANCE FOR CHARITY

MingNicoleCOMIC BOOK MEN’s Ming Chen and fellow marathon runner Nicole Corre kick off their charity run of the San Francisco Marathon with an event at Jamian’s Food and Drink on Thursday, June 26.

Longtime habitues of Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash know Ming Chen as “weekend man” at Kevin Smith’s Lourdes-like grotto of pop pilgrimage — and the burgeoning fanbase of the Smith-produced AMC series know Ming as one of the Comic Book Men who’ve helped put Red Bank on the map of the multiverse for comix culture. But if you haven’t known Chen as a Marathon Man, then an upcoming event on Thursday, June 26 is designed to make the public aware that, when it comes to philanthropy, Chen is in it for the duration.

Hosted at Jamian’s Food and Drink on Monmouth Street, the “Not So Ordinary Fundraiser” party serves as the official kick-off to Ming and Nicole Run San Francisco, an endeavor in which Chen and fellow endurance runner Nicole Corre will take part in the upcoming San Francisco Marathon, scheduled for July 27.

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RED BANK: STASH YIELDS MORE BUDS

rob bruce 101511Robert Bruce at a Glen Goldbaum fashion event in Red Bank in 2011. A regular on “Comic Book Men,” set at the Broad Street store below, he’s about to get his own show on AMC. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

comic book men 072712The Red Bank comic book juggernaut Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash continues to add to its amazing superpowers.

Comic Book Men,” an unscripted TV show about buying and selling comic books that’s based in the Broad Street store, has been picked up for a fourth season by the AMC network, according an entertainment industry report.

It’s also spawned a new show starring borough resident Robert Bruce, a regular on “Comic Book Men.” And it looks like progenitor-of-all-things-Stashian Kevin Smith will get one, too.

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RED BANK: SUPERMOM TO ‘COMIC BOOK MEN’

Kimberlee Thornton, self-styled “production mom” for the reality show “Comic Book Men,” rocks a superhero cape on Broad Street in Red Bank Monday to mark the start of taping for the show’s third season. “Comic Book Men,” set in film director Kevin Smith‘s Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash, will again run on the AMC cable channel in the fall, having moved last season from Sunday nights to Thursdays. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

IN ASBURY AND IN PRINT: RATS AND BARFLIES

Cliff Galbraith with his two recent comic books, above, and talking with fan John Hanley on Broad Street, below. (Click to enlarge)

This Saturday, a pair of Red Bank comic book aficionados – dealer and Comic Book Men star Robert Bruce, and author/illustrator Cliff Galbraith – are putting on Asbury Park Comic Con 2, reprising an event they debuted in May. redbankgreen spoke with Galbraith recently about his own relationship with the printed form of his work.

By JOHN T. WARD

It took a kind of SMACK! to the head, but Red Bank’s Cliff Galbraith learned his lesson:

When it comes to comic books, the web isn’t nirvana.

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SMITH FANS UNITE, INCHING TOWARD STASH

Fans waited in line as long as 10 hours with Kevin Smith books, films and artwork to be signed by their hero. Below, actor Jason Mewes, trailed by a video crew.  (Photos by Stacie Fanelli. Click to enlarge.)

By STACIE FANELLI

North on Broad Street, around the bend at Mechanic, sharp right into an alley, past the “end of line” sign and back around again. That’s the route hundreds of fans took Sunday, inches at a time, as they waited in line to meet director Kevin Smith.

Some came from down the block, others from up to five hours away – all to spend maybe 60 seconds with the Highlands native and owner of Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash in downtown Red Bank. The store is such a haven for comic book fans that it is the focal point of AMC’s reality show “Comic Book Men,” for which Smith’s appearance was a part.

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CHURN: COMICS, FURNITURE, BURGERS & MORE

The reality show about comic book aficionados is being taped once again at Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash as well as at 28 Broad Street, above. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Production of the second, full season of ‘Comic Book Men’ got underway Monday, giving a prominent vacancy in downtown Red Bank something to do for the next 10 weeks while its owners continue trying to attract a more permanent tenant.

The reality show, which had a limited run earlier this year on AMC, is set in Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash, owned by filmmaker Kevin Smith, and follows the jostlings of the shop’s employees and customers.

Additional footage, featuring Smith and an Algonquin Rectangular Table of comic book aficionads shooting the breeze, is to be recorded on a sound stage built across the street from the store, at 28 Broad.

That’s the former home of Prima’s Home Café, a furnishings store that vacated back in January, when the building changed hands for $1.175 million, according to property records.

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STASHERS AMPED FOR REALITY TV DEBUT

Michael Zapcic with Thomas Mumme, left, during Thursday’s live ‘SModcast’ at Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash. Below: Kevin Smith on the center monitor during a taping earlier this week in Red Bank. (Photo below courtesy of Robert Bruce. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Michael Zapcic had the “really surreal” experience earlier this week of walking past Madison Square Garden, glancing up at the massive Jumbotron and seeing a commercial for ‘Comic Book Men,’ a new cable show in which he appears as himself: a self-described comic book geek.

“I’m like holy crap! It’s them! It’s us!” he recalled Thursday, in the tone of an average, fedora-wearing citizen spotting a caped man flying overhead.

Life in the mini-Gotham that is Red Bank may never be the same.

Only, yeah, it will be exactly the same, because ‘Comic Book Men’ is a reality show, one focused on the daily interplay of three employees of  “possibly the world’s most famous comic book store” – Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash on Broad Street, where the show is set.

Over six episodes, four opinionated, superabsorbent sponges of superheroism – Zapcic, Ming Chen and Walt Flanagan, plus original store manager Bryan Johnson – spend a lot of time  “just arguing about stupid movie plot points, which happens every day without cameras anyway,” says Chen.

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TWO CHARGED IN QUICK STOP ROBBERY

Recent activity reports, unedited, as provided by the Middletown Township Police Department.

call-in-the-authoritiesOn January 31, 2012 Detectives Laurence Schachtel, Adam Finck and William Strohkirch arrested Christopher Martin, age 26, from West Washington Avenue in Atlantic Highlands, NJ, and Trevor Pituk, age 23, from Center Avenue in Leonardo, NJ, for committing an armed robbery that took place on January 12, 2012 at the Quick Stop Convenience Store located on Leonard Avenue in Leonardo, NJ.

Police say Martin entered the store with a butcher knife and demanded money from the clerk while Pituk acted as a look out.  The pair then fled the scene. Police credit Corporal Ronald Chesek and Patrolman Donald Coates with developing the information that led to the arrests.

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MIDDLETOWN CONVENIENCE STORE ROBBED

Recent activity reports, unedited, as provided by the Middletown Township Police Department.

call-in-the-authorities• On January 12, 2012 at approximately 10:00pm police responded to an armed robbery at the Quick Stop Convenience Store located at #58 Leonard Avenue in the Leonardo section of Middletown. Police say a male subject approximately 6’00 tall, 175 pounds, wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, blue jeans, a black mask and blue surgical gloves entered the store and approached the cashier.

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BATMOBILE VISITS RED BANK

batmobileCrew members from the reality TV pilot being produced at Kevin Smith’s Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash prepare a replica Batmobile for filming on Mechanic Street in Red Bank Friday morning. The vehicle was expected to be downtown for a few hours. (Click to enlarge)

ALL QUIET IN GOTHAM CITY

batman-broadNot that we condone defacing of other people’s property, of course… but this guy looking down on Broad Street in downtown Red Bank gives us a chuckle.

Is he looking for criminals in Gotham? Checking to see if his parking meter is still in the green? Or is just keeping a jealous eye on the cable-TV reality show being shot across the street? (Click to enlarge)

RED BANK SHOP GETS ‘FANBOY’ REALITY SHOW

secret-stashThe Broad Street store will serve as the setting for an unscripted series. (Click to enlarge)

From ‘Jersey Shore‘ to ‘Jersey Store,’ the reality TV juggernaut continues…

Kevin Smith‘s Red Bank emporium, Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash, a magnet for comic book fans and camera-toting devotees of the filmmaker himself, has been greenlighted as the locus of an unscripted series.

Six one-hour episodes of the show, with working title “Secret Stash,” have been ordered by AMC, home of ‘Mad Men,’ ‘Breaking Bad‘ and ‘The Walking Dead,’ according to a post on Smith’s Silent Bob Speaks website.

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STASH PLANS AUDITIONS FOR REALITY SHOW

secret-stashFilmmaker Kevin Smith is casting a pilot show about comic-book fandom this week at his Broad Street comics and memorabilia store. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)\

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Kevin Smith seems to have a Brett Favre-y way of retiring — sans allegations of creepy text messages.smith2006

The cult hero/director/producer/author/schmoozer and SModcaster, who announced earlier this year he’s bowing out of the film scene, isn’t completely leaving the entertainment world.

Smith’s next venture is reality TV  and he’s looking “for real people who live and breath (sic) the comic book lifestyle. Must be funny outgoing and have a knowledge and passion for comics, superheroes, movie memorabilia and everything that goes with it.”

In other words, he’s looking for people a lot like himself.

Smith is set to produce a pilot show billed as a sort of “Pawn Stars for fanboys” at his Red Bank comic and memorabilia Mecca, Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash.

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