The first episode of Comic Book Men was a bit rough (check out my review here), but this second episode felt like it was getting into the swing of things. In this week's episode, a man with an authentic Adam West version of the Batmobile stops by, Kevin Smith comes in to play a game of hockey, and Jason Mewes tries to steal a bunch of things, makes Ming pay for it, and then just plays with action figures of himself in the back room.
Nothing has really changed this week about the show other than my outlook on it, overall. The first episode can always be tough, since you are unfamiliar with the format, the characters, and the story. This second week in, I feel like I have a better understanding and familiarity with everything in the Comic Book Men world, which helps, although it's still not without its faults.
The Batmobile shows up this week. The guys take a ride around in it, and Bryan wears a Batman cowl (see rating below for this week's Bryan rating). After that, Kevin Smith shows up and the gang plays a game of hockey, only to quickly realize they're not as young as they used to be. A customer walks into the Stash afterwords to sell an original page from Giant Sized Man-Thing, and Walt decides to sell his indy book "So Buttons" in the store.
Later, a man sells some of his comic book collection to fund his upcoming film project, which is a lot like how Kevin Smith funded Clerks originally. Jason Mewes shows up to the Stash and causes havok, then a man tries to sell his 3D comics which Mewes screws up Walt's negotiation skills. Lastly, a man comes in with a lightsaber hilt which he thinks comes from A New Hope. After inspection by an expert, it is determined that the hilt did not come from A New Hope but came from Empire Strikes Back instead.
Believe it or not, I liked this episode much more than last week's episode. I feel a lot more in tuned with what this show is trying to do, and as an employee of a comic book store, I feel like it does represent that working world a lot better than I originally thought and it does represent the world of nerd very well. Aside from that, I had a really good time watching it. I never "laughed out loud," but I had a smile on my face since I connected to it so well as a comic book fan and a comic store employee.
The conversations that happen at the store are all real types of conversations you'd hear at any LCS, and on top of that, they remain entertaining throughout the episode. What I really liked about this episode was that Walt was dead on with pricing the objects people brought in. When a customer brought in all the single issues of Crisis of Infinite Earths, I thought to myself "you could probably sell that set, at best, for $40, so he should probably buy it for $20." Walk ended up buying the set for $15, but it still felt fair based on the fact that the demand for the single issues, when trades exist is low.
Time for the downside of things. This show still comes off as mean-spirited. The guys behind the counter have a tendency to come off more like the Simpsons' Comic Book Guy and less like a helpful retailer. They are a bit rude to the people that come into the store and have a bit of the "holier than thou" attitude.
Once again, as much as I like the Smodcast network podcasts, the adding of the "Tell Em' Steve-Dave" podcast to this show, just doesn't work for me. It really breaks up the flow of the show and if I want to see the talking head portion of a reality show, I'd rather see the traditional version of it, and not the way they're doing it now. I think the show would work much better (with the podcast portion) if they opened up and closed with this element rather than scattering it throughout each episode.
Overall, the show is growing on me. Yes, it still feels like a nerdy version of Pawn Stars, but that's what I like about it, and these people are much coolers than the terrible employees of that pit of sorrow in Las Vegas where dreams die. I'm enjoying for what it is, a good representation of LCS and comic store customers. Sure, there's lots of people saying this show is the devil and grabbing their pitchforks, but those people will never be satisfied with anything nerd-related on television. This episode is much better than the first, so I say give it another chance. If you still don't like it, then oh well. I'll keep watching it to see what Bryan is up to, so I can make more funny rating systems for this show.