Evil Dead

Ash vs Evil Dead Season 2 Episode 10 “Second Coming”


Boy what a season.

It was a fairly inconsistent season of Ash vs Evil Dead. Trying to think back on the season’s ten episodes (just barely five hours) absolutely exhausts me. Remember the possessed car? The Pink Fuck? The asylum/dream bit? Oh and that awful Sheriff Emery? For such a relatively short show, the crew behind this show really packs everything it can into the suitcase, then tries to sit on it and hope it closes.

To say seasons two was big is understating things quite a bit.

But “Second Coming” was a fairly solid ending to a rather hectic season. The episode tirelessly tries to keep its viewer on its feet, and pretty much achieves just that. Though it did feel like there was a whole lot that was needed to fit into the small thirty-minute time slot (this was a longer episode than previous weeks), and I sort of wish the show took a breath while filling us in.

Last week left Ash alone in the cellar at the cabin with a student and a rather enlarged Mrs Knowby. Right before Ash attempts to shoot her, she tells him “No one escapes their destiny.” Then she, er, eats the student and finishes off her husband.

When Ash escapes from the pits of history, he comes face-to-face with a blonde Ruby. This is 80’s Ruby. 80’s Ruby is a total, immortal bitch who still has ideas of ruling with the Necronomicon in one hand and patting the heads of her babies with the other. Unfortunately, Ruby (the regular one) shows up with Kelly.

And it’s Ruby vs. Ruby while Ash gets sent off to deal with the Deadite in the cellar. The effects are a notably entertaining mix of CGI and practical. Mrs Knowby’s head gets all stretched and long like one fat deadite worm…neck beast. Oh and breast milk. Eeeergh.

Being mortal, Ruby tries to talk 80’s Ruby out of her Master Plan. After it slips that Ruby killed off her babies, 80’s Ruby is pretty unwilling to like her future self. Since she’s the sort of all-knowing scholar of the show, Ruby keeps insisting that 80’s Ruby can take a different path (sound familiar?), then she’s killed.

Yep. Present day Ruby bites the dust. So that makes the Ghost Beaters, what, 40% off?

As Kelly and Ash take their opportunity to run for the hills, Ash’s hand grows back – proving that the team have successfully changed the present. They open up the trunk and find Pablo whole again. The reunited team hop into the Delta, seemingly heading back home to sunnier days in Jacksonville.

Though – twist again – Pablo is Baal, which is one of the cruelest thing you can do to a fan base that has been mourning the loss of their favourite Honduran demon fighter. Kelly and Ash are attacked and dragged back to the cabin yet again – it’s always that damn cabin.

When Ash wakes up from being knocked out, he witness the book “giving birth” to Baal and Ruby’s children. If you’re a clever view, you’d have sensed that something wasn’t right in the previous episode when Pablo told Ash to go back in time. And well, that’s because Baal had attached himself to Pablo’s body during the original attempt to get rid of him. Going back in time allowed Baal to posses a body that would eventually become alive again… or something.

Then there’s a fairly lengthy bit of Ash asking Baal to a one-on-one fight using no demon powers. Of course Baal agrees to it, but bends the rules to his own will. Ash fends off Chet (and loses a hand), runs from Cheryl, then drowns Brock – who yet again attempts to tell Ash something important – in a bathtub.

Thanks to 80’s Ruby being a total self-serving demon, she changes the rules of the “battles of egos” herself. This works to Ash’s advantage, and he finally finished off Baal with his own weird overgrown nail.

The cabin begins to split in half, seemingly to open up to the pits of hell and eat up Baal and the cabin with it. Ash and Kelly get the fuck out and watch the final destruction of the cabin as it burns (incidentally, the original cabin in the first film burned down as well). From the ashes emerges a rather phoenix-like Pablo.

In the present day (I think, since the show skips over any scene of travelling), Ash is hailed as a hero of Elk Grove. Pablo and Kelly share a long hug. Linda beams on lovingly in a white outfit. It all feels too good to be true. And it most likely is. As 80’s Ruby turns on her heel and marches away out of the crowd, it’s pretty certain that season 3 isn’t going to be easy going for the Ghost Beaters. 80’s Ruby seems a whole lot angry than the present day option.

So that’s it for the Necronomicon, right? In a rare post-credits scene, an unseen girl grabs the book from the ashes. “Look what I found!” Oh big trouble is on the horizon for the team. Then again, with Ash in tow, when is it not?

The finale left me with notes filled with words in all caps, and plenty of ???? every other line. It moved so fast, and constantly changed direction at every opportunity. So where does Ash vs Evil Dead go from here?

Hopefully, it regroups and slides things back to a smaller scale. The best part of this show for me is the three core characters. I can do without Ruby (even though Lucy Lawless is a true queen). There’s magic that happens between Pablo, Kelly and Ash. Seeing them together and group-hugging-it-out just felt really right.

Ash vs Evil Dead spent ten episodes showing off what it can do: genre hopping, slapstick comedy, great acting and even better effects. But maybe, just maybe the show can tackle something a bit more manageable. It certainly wouldn’t bore me. At this point, there’s too much good stuff built into this franchise for it to be anything but entertaining.


Ash vs Evil Dead Season 2 Episode 9 “Home Again”


Leave it up to Ash to really know how to make shit worse.

The last episode of Ash vs Evil Dead left us to try and cope with the death of the much-loved Pablo. Turns out Ash is coping as about as well as I did. He is spending most of his time spinning around in the Delta with Pablo’s duct taped corpse in the front seat.

While Kelly is upset, Ruby reminds her that at least Pablo made his short life count for something. Many of Ruby’s mantra’s seem to hit home for Kelly, which will be interesting to see where she plans to take that advice.

While Ash is in the Delta, he wishes he could go back in time. He then has a vision of Pablo’s corpse telling him that he should – to fix the biggest mistake ever made. Ash agrees that he needs to go back in time and grab the Necronomicon before young Ash can ever find it. Hopefully it’s one way to make sure that Pablo never dies.

Ash calls the two women into the Delta and forces Ruby to read out the spell still tattooed onto Pablo’s body. To force into his plan, Ash begins to drive recklessly. Despite knowing that this is probably yet another stupid idea, Ruby panics and agrees, and the three head back into time and into 1980’s Elk Grove.

The three remaining Ghost Beaters head to the cabin, where they are almost immediately split up by that “evil wind” that’s often prowling through the woods. Ash is a bit confused as the evil shouldn’t be released as he and his friends still have yet to return to the cabin.

Ash dodges the evil and heads straight into the cabin, though the cabin doesn’t seem to be in the same order as he remembers it. Namely, he can’t find the Necronomicon.

Meanwhile, Ruby and Kelly wander the woods alone. They can tell they’re being following. Unfortunately, it’s not Pablo. It is, of course, the evil trees. Thankfully it appears to be the non-raping variety, and more of the “I’m going to eat you kind.” But team power beats out evil trees and the two women remain safe… for now.

In the cabin, Ash does his best to make sure everything goes wrong. He steps on a nail that begins to infect his leg with some bad evil. Instead of sawing off his leg like he did his hand, Ash cuts open his leg and sucks out the “poison” – like a snake bite! The leg appears to be okay, but Ash accidentally swallows a bit of the green goop.

The scene of Ash fighting the demon in his own stomach is pretty great. It’s a slapstick scene purely written to show of Bruce Campbell’s great comedic timing. Thankfully he vomits up the little creature in his stomach, and flattens it with a frying pan.

Inevitably, Ash has to go into “the cellar.” There he finds the wife of Professor Knowby (you know, the idiot that brought the Necronomicon over) chain up in the basement. He doesn’t believe her when she says that it’s her husband that’s turned. Which is all good, until the professor arrives with one of his students. The poor girl steps into a bear trap and is caught.

While the professor tells his student that he hopes to posses her with the spirit in his wife, Ash unchains the woman. The wife immediately goes missing, which is bound to only be bad news.

Ash is forced to fight her off while the professor scampers away. And while he tries his best to finish her off, it’s pretty clear that Ash isn’t going to get out of this situation easily.

“Home Again” was easily one of the episodes more darker in tone (yes, including the slapstick scenes). Going back to the cabin is done in a careful way. While the whole time-travelling thing can be a bit over-done, it’s handled really well. Some how, it managed to bring out the best in the series. The over-the-top antics of the show is played to be that way.

Ash is certainly a flawed character, but when Kelly seems to be increasingly aware of it (thanks to Ruby’s mantras), it doesn’t seem like things going forward are going to go well. What these changes in the past will do remains to be seen, but I can only bet that it’s not going to be good.

Bonus for the Easter Egg in the episode. When Ash, Ruby and Kelly arrive in Elk Grove, one of the movie posters visible outside the cinema is for The Hills Have Eyes, a poster that can be seen in the original Evil Dead. This was Raimi’s nod to Craven using a ripped up poster of Jaws in his 1977 film.

Ash vs Evil Dead Season 2 Episode 8 “Ashy Slashy”


Okay. No. I am NOT happy.

It’s rare that a show like Ash vs Evil Dead goes and breaks my heart, but they did it. They absolutely went there.

Season two has been full of surprising deaths. Arguably, killing off Amanda Fisher was some shade of shocking, but she was a flat, colourless character in a world full of vibrant blood. I knew she never stood a chance. But losing Pablo? That’s a damn step too far.

The Ghost Beaters arrive at the asylum to rescue Ash. Pablo tries to garner some spirit with a team chant, but is ignored by the ladies. You have to give to the team player, he always has the best outlook on life, even when he knows that the book inside him is likely to kill him off.

As the team marches into the asylum, Sheriff Emery and Linda are begging Baal for Lacey back. The idiot pair did a deal with Baal, including having Linda lie to Ash to convince him to destroy the Necronomicon.

Of course when the Sheriff comes face-to-face with Lacey, she’s not daddy’s sweet little girl anymore, but a deadite. Kelly arrives to eliminate the threat, but she’s warded off by the sheriff. It almost makes you feel sorry for the poor bastard (almost) when he gets killed off by his own daughter, who in turn is killed off by Kelly.

Kelly, who seems to have stolen this entire episode, says her good-byes to Lacey. The show seems to have remembered that Kelly has been through some traumatic business with the deaths of her parents. It was nice to see her act so human throughout the episode. But it was even better fending off the hand puppet Ashy Slashy. Massive props to Dana DeLorenzo, who made fighting off a puppet extremely convincing.

When Kelly and Linda run into each other, Kelly lies to Linda and tells her that while her idiot husband is definitely dead, Lacey is still somewhere. She vows to help Linda find her daughter after Baal is taken care of. But Linda eventually sees through Kelly’s lies, and the girl is forced into telling the truth. They each take their turns giving speeches, and it really turns out as a fine moment for female characters in the show.

And remember, you can sink lower or ignite the fire.

Meanwhile, Ruby and Pablo are trying to hide away from Ash, who seems to be under Baal’s control. Ruby reminds Pablo that he is going to die after the spell that will rid the world of Baal. The increasingly human-like Ruby has an almost touching moment with Pablo when he tells her that he still has a lot of his life to live. And in one of the most shining Pablo moments tells her about the food stand/electronics repair show called Pablito’s Fish and Chips.

In a rather bleak political climate, I massively needed that dream to hold onto.

Eventually the gang are all back together again in one room. Ash has grabbed Pablo, and has dangled him above the ground like a pinata (well, Ash would appreciate the joke). Baal seems rather pleased with the work he has done and orders Ash to get rid of the book all together. But of course Ash isn’t really under anyone’s control. You sort of need a brain to do that.

The group all band together to rid the world of Baal. Pablo uses the magic within him to pop Baal like a black-sludgy bubble. Though, with one swift jerk of the nail, Pablo is sliced in half, and so are all of my dreams.

So is it likely that Pablo is really dead for good? I doubt it. Especially with all this “merging with the Necronomicon” business. Plus with Baal gone, there doesn’t see be any point to the last two episodes otherwise. Unless it’s just an hours of slideshows of pictures of Pablo to “In the Arms of an Angel.”

“Ashy Slashy” has certainly continued the strong second-half to the season. It will just take me a bit of time to get over this tragedy. And I’m still not even over Chet or Brock yet… which by the way, what was Brock trying to tell Ash before he died? Hmmm. Perhaps we’ll find out next week in the second season’s penultimate episode.

Ash vs Evil Dead Season 2 Episode 4 “DUI”


Last week’s episode of Ash vs Evil Dead ended with a bit of a stunner – the death of Ash’s father Brock. There was an open-endedness to what Brock was trying to tell Ash right before his death, but somehow Ash seems to have quickly forgotten that. Guess he’s not into mysteries, and more into catchphrases; “Think of life as a good time, not a long time.”

There isn’t much time for mourning either. The race is still on to get the Necronimicon back from the Delta before Ruby’s “children” can get a hold of it to raise ol’ pops.

Poor Pablo is immediately gets roped into the Delta with Lacey (a couple I can root for – though is it too soon since the tragic car-murder of her bland boyfriend?). The Delta speeds off into the night, leaving Ash in its wake. Some nice Tracey-Pablo moments. It works.

Who else to go to but to Chet and his awful car? Ash, seemingly fully recovered from all the Pink Fuck he drank, takes control of the driving. Chet, being brilliantly dim, is curious about Ash’s chainsaw and shotgun (one for ice sculptures, the other for keeping people away from them until they pay) and pleasantly goes along with Ash’s explanations until the two friends are attacked by the Delta. Ash finally gives a 10-second overview about Baal and the demons, which Chet easily accepts.

You go Chet.

Both Chet and Ash know where to go: the Smash ‘Em Up Derby.

The Kelly-Ruby power couple actually ends up a lot more positively than expected. The two go back to the crematorium to take down Ruby’s “children” before the little demons can raise their father. While initially Kelly gets grabbed by one of the eyeless-demons, she ends up being able to show off some funky moves. It’s pretty cool to see a lady-team taking care of business. Even if it’s a pointless victory, thanks to the men in their lives.

I would like to ask for a bit more for personality for poor Ruby, please. There are glimmers of it as she tells Kelly about how awful Baal is, how he manipulates people and she feels powerless to it. It’s the bad relationship that pretty much everyone can relate to.

Meanwhile at the derby, Ash is busy bull fighting with his car. Still in the Delta, Pablo is still feeling the hold the Necronomicon has over him after last season when he had to wear the jacket of the book as a face mask. The book tells him that all he needs to do is put the book in the trunk of the Delta to let the book go back to its own realm.

This is obviously a horrible idea, but once Pablo is ejected from the car, he is fairly taken with the idea. With only Ash and Pablo around and no one there to pull the reigns on them, the two agree it’s a fabulous idea to listen to what the demon book tells them. When Pablo hesitates,  Ash simply asks Pablo, “could it get any worse?” Which of course it can. Please.

Disappointingly, “DUI” ends on a lame jump scare. Nothing says lazy writing like another unimaginative jump scare. I guess we’re supposed to know that Baal has been released, but why such an unexciting reveal?

“DUI” was definitely the weakest episode of the season thus far. It didn’t really add to any of the plotlines while mostly filling the time with constant action.  There was, of course, plenty of fun in the episode, but it sometimes goes a bit too far. And what’s the point when the viewer will have problems focusing on what exactly is happening?

While Ash vs Evil Dead is all about that slapstick and ridiculous scenes of gore, there’s more too it than that. This show has such a great cast of characters, and the actors have done really well with them, particularly Ray Santiago as Pablo. He has be on point all season, with whatever has been thrown at him.

Ash vs Evil Dead Season 2 Episode 2 “The Morgue”

Ash vs Evil Dead Season 2 2016

This week’s theme is powerful vaginas. Oh, and shit.

“Home” took Ash vs Evil Dead to places it’s never been before. So much disgusting. So much. But before we get down to the gritty bits…

Ash and the crew plus Ruby head back to Ash’s childhood home. Ignoring the rants from Brock (just for the record, Lee Majors is totally killing this role), the foursome head upstairs to Ash’s old bedroom, but not before he sees Cheryl’s bedroom door and is brought back to the night in the Tennessee cabin.

After shaking off the traumatic memories – the one moment that we are reminded Ash is human – the Ghost Beaters head into Ash’s room, which is still firmly planted in the day Ash last left it over three decades ago. Ruby and Pablo get into an argument over the parentage of “the children”, which was rather amusing. Pablo, according to Ruby, only acted as a vessel to produce the new demons. Like a vagina, says Kelly.

Ruby tells the group that the children are stronger and smarter than anything they were up against before, but they need the Necronomicon. To get the book away from their clutches, Ruby hid it from them. And the Necronomicon? Just happens to be in a corpse, of course. Because the dead flesh helped to mask the smell of the book (which is good to know if you ever need to hide a book of demons).

The group splits off into pairs, Ash and Kelly to the morgue while Pablo and Ruby continue their conversation over what happened to Pablo that night back in the cabin. The boy tries to get answers from the Demon Mama, but she seems to know less than he does. Though he seems to think that he’s having premonitions, as shown by the strange visions he’s having.

At the morgue, Ash gets off to chat with the pathologist while Kelly keeps guard at the door. Through those doors is possibly one of the nastiest scenes to be filmed for television (at least to my sweet eyes). The CliffNotes version goes as such: a large intestine demon straight out of Tremors, chainsaw to corpse fun, wearing a corpse as a hat, and lots and lots of shit. It’s a familiar style of slapstick that’s always on the show (and a Raimi constant), but you know, a little more Troma a la Citizen Toxie vibe to it.

But after fending off the innards demon, Ash notices the label of a body for someone he knew – namely the same woman he saw heading into his house for a date with his father.

While Ash continues his apparently quiet battle, Kelly comes face to face with the sheriff, who’s after Ash to take him down. But luckily Kelly is a straight-up badass who takes him down all by herself. Ash heads out of the morgue with the Necro and sees the sheriff passed out on the floor. The two shrug it off and head out to the Delta to save Brock of getting torn in half by his deadite date.

Pablo and Ruby are still arguing about Pablo’s new powers when Lillian (the deadite date) storms the room in her full deadite glory. Ruby knocks her off easily enough just as Ash and Kelly re-appear. Finally, Pablo reveals his premonition: that Ruby will slit his throat with a long, black fingernail. Gross, but Ruby instantly understands what his vision means: her little kiddos are trying to raise their father.

And if that wasn’t bad enough for the Ghost Beaters, Ruby thinks that Ash was unsuccessful in retrieving the Necronomicon. Ash boasts about saving it, but tells her he has it in a safe place, locked up and away from any deadites in the house. And where else is it but the Delta. Ash’s triumphant smirk is immediately erased as he hears the tires of his car getting jacked by the two asshole teenagers he and Kelly harassed in the streets.

I’m starting to think everyone in this group is really shit at hiding things.

Needless to say, “Home” was an excellent episode and a return to form. It had all the right elements: it furthered the plot, developed a few characters, built on the mythos and totally grossed the shit out of me (though considering the episode, I just want to say I don’t mean that literally).

Ash vs Evil Dead Season 2 Episode 1 “Home”


Season one of Ash vs Evil Dead was great (thank God), which means that season two definitely has a lot to live up to. This week’s premier sets up more of Ash’s world that may have been a little more subdued than the pilot from last year, but there was plenty of groundwork laid that points to a season that may rely a little more on a plot than than last season.

“Home” picks up a year after Ash (Bruce Campbell) left Ruby (Lucy Lawless) in the cabin where he first came across the Necronomicon years earlier after the two agreed to their deal: Ruby got the book and Ash got to be left alone in Jacksonville, Florida.

But a year on and things really aren’t looking so hot for the woman who created the book of evil. The episode opens up with Ruby trying to fight off her “children” – a sort of metallic band of demons without eyes. In a last-ditch attempt to control the demons, Ruby calls on the only many who can help her: Ash Williams.

Ash is living his Spring Break dream in Jacksonville. His chainsaw hand makes him popular with the ladies, and he seems to have endless amounts of alcohol that is probably provided by his fellow Ghost Beaters, Pablo (Ray Santiago) and Kelly (Dana DeLorenzo) who are both working crap jobs at a bar in Florida.

But Ash’s good times come to a quick end when the mother-daughter duo he was chatting up turn into Deadites. With his truce with Ruby over, Ash kicks into action to find the ladies off. And of course, Ash vs Evil Dead gets straight into the gore. Arms everywhere, and fantastic blood-soaked bits from Pablo and Kelly. Right before Ash finishes off mummy deadite, she begins to sing “Ashy slashy” to him.

This little clue is what leads Ash to dragging Kelly and Pablo back to his hometown in Michigan with him. The Ghost Beaters head north in the Delta, ready to take on Ruby.

When the trio arrive in Michigan, it’s to a cold reception. Plus Pablo is obviously messed up after wearing the Necronomicon on his face and Kelly keeps seeing freaky kids looming around. So nothing seems to be going quite right for anyone – exactly as things should be.

Ash takes the kids to his parents’ old house where they get to meet Mr Brock Williams (Lee Majors), a man who is clearly the inspiration to all of Ash’s rather crude nature. But after getting shot at, Ash heads to the local bar. Here he is reunited with Linda. Though Linda (Michelle Hurd), of course, is no longer available and married to the town sheriff.

On a strangely cute note, Ash keeps showing everyone Pablo’s horrible drawing of Ruby in attempts that someone will recognise her. Pablo’s drawing looks like Big Foot (according to Brock, anyway and he’s pretty accurate on that description). But it’s not any local that helps Ash out, but rather one of Pablo’s visions, in which he sees two chimney stacks.

Ash immediately knows that Pablo’s vision is of the crematorium. Because where else would a group of demons and their mother hang out?

The Ghost Beaters go straight to the crematorium, where they are separated. Each of them have to fend for themselves while they battle one of Ruby’s weird metallic demon-children. Kelly fights her own double while attempting to not drown in what looks like bloody water. Pablo is saved by grabbing the medallion he got from his Brujo uncle. And Ash attempts to fight off his own shadow.

When the group finally meet with Ruby, it’s not to fight her. Instead, she begs for their help. Of course Ash stupidly agrees to it, thinking that he’ll be back to Jacksonville by Friday with Kelly and Pablo. This will most definitely not be the case, but you can’t help but feel for the guy anyway.

Our most reluctant hero is back in form (again, thank God). But the episode felt a little restrained in comparison to last year’s season. In a way, it’s welcome as it shows that there will probably be a bit of room for a plot. Shows like Ash vs Evil Dead could easily fall into a trap of being only gratuitous death scenes with little substance.

Though it is a bit disappointing that the show has stuck to the 30-minute format instead of expanding to a full hour, the pacing worked rather well. I’ll gladly take a restrained first episode if viewers are in store for a big pay-off. Here’s hoping there’s lots of Deadites, blood and a whole lot of groovy-ness ahead.

Ash vs Evil dead airs on Starz on Sunday nights and is on Virgin on-demand in the UK.

Ash vs Evil Dead finale Ep. 10 “The Dark One”

Ash vs Evil Dead

There was a lot riding on Ash vs Evil Dead. Rarely can films make the jump to the small screen and make a successful attempt. But this show repeatedly allowed me to breathe a sigh of relief. With such a great first season, there was plenty riding on the shoulders of the finale, but “The Dark One” delivered everything an Evil Dead fan could hope for.

Last week’s episode left off with a major reveal: Ruby is the writer of the Necronomicon and thus a big name in the world of Evil. She’s set the face of the book to suck on Pablo’s face like some sort of flesh version of Man in the Iron Mask. Ruby grabs her new pet and drags him with her into the dreaded cellar.

Ash makes up his mind to follow them, but he falls down the stairs and back to where we began: Ash about to read his “poetry” from a book of evil to a girl. The wiser Ash declines, but he soon spots Ruby sitting in the trailer with him. She offers him a deal that he can have his life back if she can have control over the demons. The truce is extended, but Ash declines.

Meanwhile, Kelly and Heather (that random hiker chick, if you don’t remember) are left to fend for themselves. Jelly being the more obvious threat is literally kicked out of the house by the house. Needless to say, Heather is pretty crap at being a hero and spends more time getting stabbed by things and getting attacked by couches than doing anything else.

While Heather is busy getting killed (to be fair, she lasted longer than I thought she would), Kelly has the sense to try and burn down the house, which incidentally is what happened to the real cabin from the original film. But the house finally has enough and lets Kelly back in.

Back in the cellar, Ash has his hands full. He spies Ruby chanting from her book and forcing poor Pablo to vomit up her demon babies for her. He tries to get Pablo back, but it soon becomes Ash vs Pablo then Kelly runs in to save the day to make it Kelly vs Pablo but then it’s really all about Ash vs Ruby.

Being the utter idiot he is, Ash finally succumbs to temptation and agrees to Ruby’s offer. She frees Pablo from his flesh-face prison and allows the Ghost Beaters to go on their way, despite Pablo and Kelly’s pleas to Ash.

The reports of the giant sinkholes are a clear signal that Ash fucked things up. Again. But where would we be if Ash actually learned a lesson for once? The closing scenes are interesting as it’s the only scene where both kids are in the back seat, away from Ash. If anything causes a strain on a relationship, it’s probably when one of your friends allows The Dark One to have control over all demons and evil.

So where does that leave things for season two? Will Ash become the new Buffy? Ash the Demon Slayer. It’s not too clear, but no one can out run their past and absolutely no one can out run evil. Even in Jacksonville.

The season finale of Ash vs Evil Dead left me feeling excited for season two – the same type of excitement I felt from episode one. The show sometimes became confused throughout the season when it couldn’t decide on a tone, but these can all be improvements to be made in episodes to follow. As far as film to TV adaptions go, Ash vs Evil Dead proves that good things can happen. The finale delivered such a strong final note, you can’t help but feel groovy.

Ash vs Evil Dead Ep. 9 “Bound in Flesh”


Nine weeks ago Ash started his new journey with co-workers Pablo and Kelly. In those early days, it was obvious that Ash’s next chapters were going to be interesting and brutal, and as the finale looms near, “Bound in Flesh” delivers on that promise.

First, remember Evil Ash? He’s back to stir up trouble for Ash and the Ghost Beaters. Though, Pablo and Kelly seem to have gotten to know Ash well enough to eliminate the Evil Ash themselves by detecting Evil Ash’s racism against Asians and Real Ash’s desire to lay his life down for himself – the only person important enough for the honour.

After Pablo and Kelly take out Evil Ash, Ash tells them that his hand has the ability to grow new a Ash. And before the group are able to take care of the Amanda situation, the campers from the last episode reappears outside of the cabin looking for a place to crash. On their walk, Pablo uses his time to flirt a bit with one of the blonde little ladies. Shame she’ll most definitely die.

Ash continues to be an idiot. At least that’s a very strong continuity. While he’s cutting apart Evil Ash’s body, the bloody soaks into the Necronomicon, which allows it to speak to Ash. There’s a pretty cute bit where the book asks what Ash thinks he’s even capable of, “Have a family? Be President? Get rich?” (Campbell has two kids, played Ronald Reagan in Fargo and probably makes a fair amount of cash). This must be why Ash seems to be able to brush off it’s words well enough. But while he’s busy getting belittled by a book, he loses Amanda’s corpse.

She’s too busy terrorising Pablo, Kelly and the hikers. Can I just say that while Amanda was a pretty damn boring character, she makes a BAD ASS Deadite? Holy crap. While Amanda killing the hikers was pretty predictable, it was still super, super enjoyable to watch. And just when things couldn’t get more exciting, BOOM – Lucy Lawless it back and more badass than before. But before Ruby can kill off Amanda, Pablo’s hiker babe distracts her when she screams.

Ruby forces Pablo and Kelly to take her to Ash, where finally Ash and Ruby get a scene together. The two are arguing over the contents of the book and who is indeed the rightful owner (which I assume is no one because that book belongs in Hell), and what they need to do to finally get rid of the Necronomicon for good. Ruby provides her Deadite-killing blade and tells Ash that the book needs to be defaced.

Nothing in Ash’s world is ever simple. And Ruby is certainly not bringing good news with her. She drops a rather big bomb that only certainly guarantees a whole lot more of shit that lies ahead for the Ghost Beaters, and certainly sets up the sorts of trouble awaiting them for the next season.

“Bound in Flesh” certainly sets up some goodness for the finale. Though it’s almost certain that it’s going to be giving more questions than answering them. I enjoyed watching some more of the chemistry between Ash and the kids. They’ve gotten pretty good together over the course of the season. Ash rightfully turns the kids away, but makes Pablo and Kelly take them down the path to civilization. Plus there was some more of that ridiculous homour thanks to the use of a certain Bill Withers song.

Ash vs Evil Dead Ep. 8 “Ashes to Ashes”


“We’re back, back in the cabin groooove.”

This episode of Ash vs Evil Dead can be summed up as “brutal.” Just that one word captures what happened and what you know is about to happen from Ash’s arrival at the old cabin in the woods.

One of my constant complaints for this show is that the episodes are way too short. There was something very tempting, but not all together satisfying about “Ashes to Ashes.” While it certainly whet my appetite, the story itself didn’t fit in a 30-minute episode. I would have loved for something more. I’m not even sure if this is a criticism or a compliment. But I do know I really liked what I saw this week.

At the end of the last episode, Ash had left his followers behind. The opening scene is of his arrival back at the familiar site of the cabin from the Evil Dead movies, you know, the one where he had to kill his friends and poor Linda? His memories of that night quickly flash in his head, and it’s clear that everything will go wrong. But really, would we expect anything else?

He’s not alone for long as Amanda quickly spots Ash. She informs him that the group has split up to look for Ash because everyone knows that’s a fantastic idea. But more importantly, I don’t think we were very far out of Michigan when it came to the militia episode, so how did Pablo and crew know where to find Ash? This is a cabin in Middle of Nowhere, Tennessee, but alas…

Ash obviously isn’t too keen on having Amanda around and even lets this sentence of doom out: “Everybody dies here – it’s a rule.” And thus a whole series . There’s so much foreshadowing in this episode, you’d think the sun was out (but it’s not, it’s foggy and dark – obviously).

In the cabin, Amanda gets flashes of her former partner when she sees the mounted deer head on the wall. She remembers his gory death and seems distracted enough to allow Ash to leave her while he goes into the shed to face his former girlfriend, Linda.

Meanwhile, Pablo and Kelly are wandering the woods – lost. They realise they are going in circles when they spot three young travellers in the woods. They find their way to the cabin thanks to the hikers. As they watch them depart, Pablo and Kelly are reassured that they will be fine. They do have pepper spray, after all.


Back in the shack, Ash is not having a great time with his ex. Linda is still very much a Deadite bitch. She locks Ash inside with her so she can scold him about his new love interest, Amanda.

Well, Amanda certainly isn’t having fun in the cabin either as she comes face-to-face with an old foe: Evil Ash. Now the return of this character is fantastic as it’s both heartbreaking to watch him betray Amanda while it’s great fun to watch Bruce Campbell have a lot of fun torturing others.


It was pretty obvious that Amanda wasn’t going to last on the show. She lacked the strength of the other Ghost Beaters. Her character offered some grounding in the real world, but ultimately she served her purpose. It was both brutal and slightly exciting to watch her die (which is rather disgusting to admit, actually). Evil Ash is one sick man.

Watching Ash vs Ash was definitely a highlight of the series. But ultimately, there’s some even more nasty bits that await in the next two episodes. It’s certainly nice to be back to the naughtiness of the Army of Darkness film, which actually shares the most with Ash vs Evil Dead more than any other movie in the trilogy, if mostly with the embracing of full-on action and humour.

I saw someone moaning that Army of Darkness wasn’t cannon with the show. I have no idea what made him say that (unless he was going with the original ending of the film, but if that’s the case – you’re an obnoxious, whiny pain-in-the-ass), but “Ashes to Ashes” proved him wrong. The second coming of Evil Ash was hilarious. He was a fantastic antagonist in Army of Darkness, so I really hope he’s here to stir up a lot of trouble again.

The set up in “Ashes to Ashes” is pretty damn great. The last two episodes of this first season certainly seem to be filled with lots and lots of gory promise. And I really can’t fucking wait.

Ash vs Evil Dead Ep. 7 “Fire in the Hole”


Picking up from last week, Ash and the gang (which now includes Michigan state police officer) are heading to Ash’s “friend” Lem’s militia hang out. But if you were around at all for last week’s episode, you’d remember Lem getting Dead-ified. When they arrive, there are already a handful of dismembered bodies around and thus begins “Fire in the Hole,” an episode that takes a while to get going, but ultimately gets it shit together. Just like the group dynamics in this episode, actually.

It doesn’t take long for the four of them to get found by the head of the militia. They’re dragged in as prisoners, and all of the militia members think that Ash and co. are members of “the government.” While I’m sure some people will find the redneck stereotype to be a bit lame, I certainly got a kick out of it. The militia inform the group that Lem arrived earlier. They all believed him to be drunk, but when he started tearing people in half they suspected something else was in play: a government conspiracy.

While the militia are busy giving their speech, Lem takes another one of their numbers before fleeing into a bunker. Through some of the action, Amanda and Ash get separated from Pablo and Kelly. The A-Team are handcuffed and thrown into the bunker where Lem is lurking, while Pablo and Kelly run off to hide in a ditch.

Here there’ some nice moments between Pablo and Kelly. This relationship has easily been getting the most attention these last few episodes. Pablo says he really admires how Kelly really knows who she is. Pablo has come to this conclusion because of Kelly expressing the desire for a flame thrower. Poor Pablo has been trying to find his ideal weapon, which he think might be a rusty chain or even just a plain axe.

Poor Pablo.

But the two get caught after they try to take down one of the militia. There’s a hilarious scene where the two have to fight off some Deadites together and Kelly tries shooting a machine gun for the first time.

While the two try to fight off evil, Ash and Amanda have Lem to face off against. The two spend most of their time flirting in between scampering away from Deadite Lem. I found this vaguely lame and boring, but I suppose this was suppose to show Ash’s character development? (Bleh). But there is a pay-off when the two fight Lem together while being handcuffed! 

There’s a pretty sweet ending where Amanada, Pablo and Kelly take out a Deadite together. It’s also pretty badass to see the three of them standing together in an epic pose. But after their brief success, they start to head out before noticing that Ash isn’t with them. If he’s made the decision to go on without them, it only further illustrates how much Ash was really affected by what happened to him in that cabin in the woods all those years ago.

Oh! And the show even gives us a taste of Ruby’s fate. She’s alive, as we see her pulling herself out of the ashes of the Brujo’s grave. She seems to be perfectly normal, if just a little shaken. Though it’s difficult to surmise anything else from the couple brief scenes she’s in. We still don’t know much about her character. But hopefully we get to see a lot more of her before episode 10 rolls around and please bring her back for season 2.

So we’re supposed to be buying into this Ash and Amanda relationship, but I don’t think anyone is (well, I know I wasn’t particularly interested in watching any of this unfold). Ash is a character that hops from woman to woman, so I don’t think that this is something that we can  count on being around. But the worst side-effect of this sort of flirting going on is that the core trio have been separated a little too much in these last few episodes. What I loved about the first episode of Ash vs Evil Dead was the relationship between Pablo and Ash. That’s much more interesting that some silly romantic flirting, and it’s a heck of a lot more in the spirit of Evil Dead.