Well, that was… different.
Ash vs Evil Dead went super-weird with an American Horror Story-style “twist” that still has me scratching my head.
Ash was knocked out at the end of last week’s episode and wakes up in a rather dingy-looking asylum. When he comes to, he’s in the room with a doctor (Joel Tobeck) who just happens to look like Baal and just happens to want Ash to “destroy” his illusions – namely the Necronomicon.
And Ash takes this pretty well. When the doctor tells him that they’ve been working together since Ash’s psychotic break when he killed all of his friends and sister in a cabin. The doctor keeps insisting that Ash has invented the entire narrative, but the Jefe merely brushes it off.
That brings us to Ashy Slashy, the filthy-mouthed hand puppet that Ash spends much of the episode talking to. Along the way Ash spots the rest of the Ghost Beaters. Ruby is a nurse, who seems to be a lot more aware of what’s going on than everyone else. Kelly is a patient hell bent on counting on those fingers. And Pablo is a worker.
We even get to see Chet again as he makes an appearance during Ash’s electrotherapy, during which the “doctor” leaves not-so-subtle subliminal messages like “you’re no the Jefe” and “be my henchman”.
Occasionally the faces of his familiars change into unknown ones. It could be Ash’s reality coming through or the delusions setting in, but Ash thinks he can break Ball and befriends “Kelly”. The two destroy the common room, and Ash manages to steal a key card.
While the two are roaming the halls, they come across Pablo, who is killed off by Kelly. The two get into an argument when Kelly explains she killed “Pablo” because he was a dragon demon – perhaps another hole in Baal’s illusion. But as Ash attempts to use the card on the exit gate, the alarm goes off. When he turns around, he sees Kelly (or whoever she is) dead on the ground with her jaw missing.
Ashy Slashy tells Ash that he’s the murderer. Seemingly resigned, Ash sits in front of the television where he is forced to watch himself kill Pablo and Kelly over and over again.
When Ash finally tells Baal he’s willing to destroy the Necronomicon for him, Baal allows him to have one visitor. Linda appears and despite Ash trying to wish her away, is still there when he opens his eyes. She tells him that she’s been visiting him for the last thirty years.
Ash says his good-byes and prepares to set off to the new facility. He admits to the murders of his friends, but not before spying Pablo, Ruby and Kelly digging through the trunk of the Delta.
So is Ash that dumb? Did he really succumb to Baal’s powers? Probably not, but Baal is a pretty damn powerful demon. “Delusion” was certainly a curve ball in the season – a season that is finally picking up on the greatness that was season one. Season two is quickly coming to it’s end, I think it’s just getting to the high notes.
And it really needs to be said that the music was completely on point this week. Great job, LoDuca.