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First-Time Watch Review - Clerks II

by Dana Andersen. Published Sun 24 Jan 2021 15:57

A movie set and filmed in a convenience store was never supposed to work out, so Clerks II never stood a chance.

Slated and hated by much of the cast and fans alike, despite being a success, perhaps the bar is set so low for the sequel to 1994’s Clerks that it’s impossible to not be shocked by it upon the first viewing, and not just by the racial slurs.

Released in 2006, a full 12 years after the original indie comedy, we see Dante arrive at the Quick Stop just like we’re used to, only to open the shutter and find it on fire.

Fans are immediately ripped from the familiar and iconic location, along with the well-loved characters.

Anyone who watched a sequel between the years 2000 and 2010 will recognise the cliche of taking the characters we’re all familiar with, and dropping them somewhere new, but for audiences today it may have been just long enough that the cliche is familiar and funny again, rather than over used and expected.

From here we’re introduced to the lives of Dante and Randal one year after they began working at Mooby’s, another familiar landmark for fans of the Askewniverse, finding that little other than employment has changed for Randal, while Dante has managed to get engaged and will soon be moving to Florida.

That’s provided he doesn’t get too close to his boss, Becky, and that Randal doesn’t do anything ridiculous.

Of course, that’s never going to happen, instead it’s revealed he had a one-night stand with Becky a few weeks prior that led to him realising he’s in love with her, and she’s pregnant.

Becky storms off, and when Randal encourages Dante to go after her, it’s clear he has something up his sleeve.

In order to achieve full 2006 shock-comedy, Randal booked an ‘inter-species erotica’ act.

Even this goes wrong though, when it turns out late into the act there’s no woman involved, and everyone’s too invested to give up on the show.

Becky and Dante aren’t particularly impressed when they arrive back at Mooby’s to find a man getting intimate with a donkey, but it does at least lead to a satisfying reveal of their relationship to Dante’s finance.

After a quick run in with the police, Randal and Dante are able to buy the Quick Stop and attached video shop, with a little thanks to Jay and Silent Bob. Wrapping up, we see Dante stood back behind the counter as the colour fades away, a tear-jerking end for all fans of the original.

Although filled with many unexpected twists and eye roll worthy turns, Clerks II ends up comforting the audience, showing us that the most important thing is following your own path in life.

It’s not a perfect movie by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s an entertaining and worthy sequel to the much-loved original.


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