Since his directorial debut with Clerks, Kevin Smith has slowly built up a good career in movies, especially in comedy. His best-known characters, Jay and Silent Bob, have their own shared universe dubbed the “View Askewniverse.” It includes several different stories, heroes, villains, and endless pop culture references. The adventure of the two characters has made for a popular and entertaining saga.
The characters of Jay and Silent Bob have all had their moment in the sun. The comedic duo has racked up an impressive amount of run time across cinema through numerous sequels, spinoffs, and even cameos. Kevin Smith – who plays Silent Bob – has cast several of his friends in roles, including several based on people he knows, including himself. With one of the longest-running comedy shared universes, it’s earned its fan base.
Jay & Silent Bob: The Reboot was true to its name as Kevin Smith used it as a meta-commentary on the growing trend of modern movie reboots. It picked up on the story of Jay and Justice, with the latter revealing that she had moved on from Jay – but that he had a daughter.
Jay & Silent Bob: The Reboot arguably marked the low point of the so-called “View Askewniverse” due to its over-reliance on self-reference and undoing potential left by earlier films. There were some funny moments along the way, but it was just too forgettable.
8 The Duo Got A Cameo In Scream 3
One of the great things about the Scream movies was how they successfully provided fun commentary on the horror genre while delivering a good story. Considering the fact Miramax made both Scream and the Jay & Silent Bob movies, the overlap was natural.
Not only did Scream make an appearance in Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back, but the comedic duo also got a cameo in Scream 3. They can be seen on the studio lot when Gale Weathers walks off set, and Jay’s yelling earns him a middle finger from Gale.
7 Chasing Amy Was A More Serious Movie
Chasing Amy was Smith’s third movie – after Clerks and Mallrats – and is something of a black sheep of the franchise. It takes much less of a laugh-out-loud tone and leans more heavily on drama. It follows two comic book creators, Holden and Banky, when their lives are disrupted.
Banky falls in love with a woman he later finds out is a lesbian, leaving him to figure out how best to proceed. Chasing Amy was not a bad film, but its minimalist attention to Jay and Silent Bob and more serious tone definitely make it stand out.
6 Clerks Started Kevin Smith’s Career
Clerks marked not just Kevin Smith’s directorial debut but also the first appearances of many of his core characters. Dante, Randall, Jay, and Silent Bob all owe their popularity to this film. Famously, Kevin Smith sold off his comic book collection to help finance the film.
Clerks was filmed in black and white due to budget restraints, but still manages to match Smith’s subsequent movies in comedy. Based on Smith’s life alongside his friend, Bryan Johnson, it follows the daily lives of two store clerks, Dante and Randall, the unique people they interact with, and their personal histories.
5 Clerks II Was By Far The Edgiest Of The View Askiewniverse
Clerks II was a follow-up to the story of Dante and Randall, this time moving from the Quick Stop to Mooby’s. It placed Dante in a romantic dilemma as he struggled to decide between his fiance and his co-worker, Becky, with whom he later discovered he’d gotten pregnant.
Clerks II was by far the most crude of the View Askewniverse, with several jokes and scenes that more than earned it an R rating. It included some of the franchise’s most iconic and quotable moments, and was full of good Jay and Silent Bob moments.
4 Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back Sent The Duo On A Cross-Country Adventure
Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back followed the comedic duo as they tried to move on from the Quick Stop when Dante and Randall slapped them with a restraining order. Thanks to Brody, they found out that Hollywood was adapting a superhero movie based on a Jay and Silent Bob comic book.
Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back was mostly centered around the characters’ journey across America with a group of attractive international jewel thieves. After Jay fell in love with one of them, it complicated things – especially when the women framed the two friends for their heist.
3 Dogma Put A Fun Spin On Catholic History
Dogma was a lot more fantastical than other Kevin Smith movies. It focused on the journey of two fallen angels, Loki and Bartleby, as they sought to exploit a loophole in the Catholic faith to return to Heaven. However, undoing their banishment against God’s decree would unmake the universe.
In response, the angel Metatron approached a woman, Bethany, and asked her to go on a journey to stop them. Along the way, she met two prophets of God – who turned out to be the oblivious Jay and Silent Bob. As their journey grew, they picked up new friends and took the fight to angels and demons alike.
2 Clerks III Was A Heartfelt Conclusion To Dante And Randall’s Story
Clerks III gave a long-awaited conclusion to the story of Dante and Randall. Smith had teased a return to the characters for years, and fans were excited when he finally announced the third entry. They weren’t disappointed. The film proved to be one of Smith’s most emotional works of his career.
Clerks III picked up the story of the two friends and the Quick Stop years after the second film ended, revealing Becky had died. It followed Randall after having a heart attack as he decided to make a movie – mirroring Kevin Smith’s start to filmmaking.
1 Mallrats Is Still One Of The Best ’90s Teen Movies
Mallrats isn’t just Kevin Smith’s most underrated movie; it’s also arguably his best. Although Clerks likely means the most to Smith, considering it started his career, Mallrats truly helped make the director a household name. It brought in more major talent, better humor, and more Jay & Silent Bob.
Mallrats follows two young men, TS and Brody, as they each deal with a break-up with their girlfriends by hanging around the local mall. However, when both men’s exes show up in different capacities, the friends set out to win them back.
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