Kevin Smith has had a tough first half of 2018. After a massive heart attack sent him into recovery, the Clerks director revealed this weekend that his unscripted pop culture revelry Comic Book Men will not be returning for an eighth season on AMC.
The announcement, which takes AMC’s unscripted content down to zero with Chris Hardwick’s Talking being held from air while AMC assesses claims of abuse against the host, came from an episode of SModcast that serves as the show’s “Viking funeral.”
Smith, Walt Flanagan, Bryan Johnson, Mike Zapcic, and Ming Chen give a feature-length farewell to the 96-episode show set at Smith’s Jersey comic book store, Jay and Silent Bob's Secret Stash. While Smith said that AMC reached out to him, informing him of the decision to cancel the show, there were no specific reasons given for it getting the axe.
Some of it is due to corporate strategy: AMC is leaning heavily on its fiction, scrubbing its lineup of reality content and unscripted fare. And some is due to old-fashioned ratings. Smith has always been a cult figure, but that cult is fraying a bit thin, at least with AMC as its home.
Those wanting to relive the magic of Comic Book Men’s seven seasons can find back episodes on AMC’s website if they have a cable subscription, but, with a new lease on life and the creative freedom that is the silver lining of any cancellation, Smith could bring his fans a new, exciting venture sooner than ever.