They say time freezes during a traumatic moment, but the same can be said about a moment of disbelief.
Even though “Ash vs Evil Dead” doesn’t premiere on Starz until October 31st, I was lucky enough to check out the first two episodes of the new series that spins off of Sam Raimi’s legendary The Evil Dead franchise.
I have been waiting more than 20 years to see Bruce Campbell return as Ashley J. Williams. It’s been so long that my first viewing of the episode didn’t seem real. Technically, “Ash vs Evil Dead” is the extension of Raimi’s idea for Evil Dead 4, which meant that it lived in the same universe as the first two Evil Dead films and Army of Darkness. While there’s off-the-cuff references to the latter, Raimi takes a second of pause and give viewers a recap of the first two movies (through a projection on boxes in the back of Value Stop, Ash’s new place of employment).
Raimi directs the premiere episode, which focuses solely on an older and wiser(?) Ash. We learn that Ash exhumes the same air of confidence that he’s always had, so much so that he brings along Magnum condoms for his night in the bar bathroom. He’s still as witty as ever, with none of his jokes feeling schlocky or hammy. Even though he lives in a trailer and is a stock-boy, Ash’s chin is always up in quite an inspiring way. He’s still the anti-hero we’ve all grown to love.
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