“You got your comedy in my horror!”
“You got your horror in my comedy!”
It’s two great tastes that go great together. It’s Ash vs Evil Dead!
I may have just found my favorite new horror movie in years, and – surprise! – it’s not a horror movie. It’s a new TV series.
Yeah, Ash vs Evil Dead is just that good.
Or at least the first episode is. We’ll see if they can maintain the momentum that was built up in the premiere over the course of the series, but if so, as an audience we’re in for one heck of a ride.
There’s a part of me that says I shouldn’t be surprised – after all, it is Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell returning to their film making roots, but considering the oft-times disastrous results of reboots/remakes of horror franchise icons (and yes, I include 2013’s disappointing Evil Dead in that category), it’s obvious that returning to the well can all to often turn out badly.
Fortunately that’s not the case here.
Full disclosure: I’ve listed the original Evil Dead movies among my top horror faves ever since I first saw them back in the day, so though I was hopeful for this series, I was also quite wary, as it had a lot to live up to.
And it does. If anything, it’s all I could have asked for in this kind of sequel/adaptation and more.
First things first: You should know right away that this is not the kind of bland created-and-toned-down-for-TV-audiences that you might have expected. If this were being shown in theaters it would be what is known as a “Hard R” and might have had to be cut down even to get that. There are a number of “F-Bombs”, there’s plenty of blood and gore and bodies being thrown around, making good use of both CGI and practical effects.
There are also both chills and jump scares, some of which are predictable, but many of which work very effectively. There is also a lot of atmosphere-building, which adds to the tension that can be felt during the show. One thing that I feared the most was that the show would be too much self-parody, but make no mistake about it, Ash vs Evil Dead is definitely out to deliver the scares.
At the same time, there’s just the right level of comedy built into the show – especially in the form of Campbell’s Ash, as expected – which shows that Raimi knows exactly what his audience is looking for in this show and that Bruce can still mug with the best of them. This is especially true in a scene involving a possessed doll which immediately evokes memories of the Ash vs Little Ashes scene in Army of Darkness.
So whether you’re a fan of the original movies or have never seen one but are looking for a great horror/comedy combo, I highly recommend Ash vs Evil Dead. Yeah, it’s a Starz production, so it may not be the easiest show to find, but it is out there in other places, and I feel sure it won’t be long before it hits Netflix and that it will get a pretty quick DVD/Blu=ray release since a second season has already been announced.
Okay, I just heard some pretty unsettling noises coming from the next room, so I’m gonna leave you with the trailer while I go grab my boomstick.