If you listen to The Canon, the Wolfpop Network podcast I co-host with Amy Nicholson, you'll have heard me give my theories about nerds, Kevin Smith and Mallrats. I believe that Smith, specifically in that film, changed the perception of what a nerd is, bringing in a kind of bro mentality that infected the entire subculture and has led, inexorably, to today, where nerds are basically just dumb jocks who, instead of sports teams, root for DC or Marvel. I don't think Smith is the only responsible party here - the culture itself shifted over the last twenty years in profound ways, bringing nerd stuff to the mainstream - but the current vision of the fanboy, aesthetically and emotionally, can be traced to Mallrats. Jason Lee's Brodie is a kind of nerd we had never seen onscreen before, and back in 1995 I thought was incredibly refreshing. I was sick of seeing nerds represented only as Revenge of the Nerds-esque dorks. I got excited when Brodie said that a guy who reads comics can still throw down.
God, I was stupid.
Anyway, I have more on this theory because I identify as a nerd and I have spent way too many hours thinking about the sociohistory of our subculture and its portrayal in the media (like, I'm talking about trying to trace the idea of nerds all the way back to monks who copied illuminated texts), but suffice it to say that the warmth with which I once held Mallrats has turned to a #GamerGate-flavored disdain. Every time I hear someone claim that Mallrats was the first place someone talked about how Superman would kill Lois Lane with his spem I want to shove a copy of Man of Steel, Woman of Tissue down their throats. But that's how it works - even as a flop, Mallrats made some sort of weird impact on the culture.
And now Kevin Smith hints there could be a Mallrats 2. Why? Beats me. There are not many characters I would want to revisit less than Brodie and TS. I guess you could get some mileage out of their kids being the next generation mallrats, but who wants to see a movie where Kevin Smith tries to write dialogue for Millennials?
Anyway, here's what he said:
We shoot CLERKS III in May. HIT SOMEBODY shoots September to Christmas. Then in Feb 2016, we do MOOSE JAWS. But after that? I smell a rat...— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) March 12, 2015
Thanks to Slashfilm for actually bothering to follow this guy's feed.
And yeah, in case you weren't keeping up, Clerks III is happening. He's shooting in Philly, so we'll send Phil Nobile Jr to haunt the set.
The good news is that this Mallrats hint makes it seem like he won't even get to this film until next year or later. How he ended up being so prolific is beyond me - he's actually going to have a "Bad Movies Set In Canada" trilogy completed by next year (Tusk, Yoga Hosers and Moose Jaws). It's taken him decades to wrap up Clerks: The Saga of Dante and Randall, so this newfound speed is impressive. Not that shooting fast and often is making him any better as a filmmaker...