Friday, September 29, 2017

Ash vs Evil Dead Season 2

Ash returns in the second season of Ash vs. Evil Dead after he cowardly accepted Ruby's offer to live an idyllic life in Jacksonville while she takes over the world with her demonic, powerful children. Ruby and Pablo are pretty miserable while Ash enjoys no responsibility and many many drinks. For once, no one recognizes him at all, just a face in the crowd, until a deadite shows up. Ash returns to his home town in Elk Grove, Michigan with his friends to fight Ruby and face his metaphorical demons from the events in the first and second Evil Dead films where all his friends were killed.

Ash is arrogant as ever, but the only people who admire him are Kelly and Pablo. The rest of the townsfolk call him Ashy Slashy because they think he went crazy and killed his friends and his sister (which he kind of did). Would you believe someone claiming Kandarian demons possessed their friends and you had to kill them to save them? He's under a microscope now and every little thing that goes wrong is blamed on Ash. I especially enjoy that Ash has to face his past and faces people who have no idea about his heroic deeds. It grounds him a bit and shows a different side of him. A few people from his past confront him, namely his Deadite sister Cheryl (Ellen Sandweiss returning from the original Evil Dead), his best friend Chet, and his somehow even more racist, ill tempered, and lecherous dad who has nothing but contempt for him. Ash still has crackpot ideas that do more to amuse him than actually work, but he somehow successfully fights against evil.

This season sees old villains somehow changed and introduces new villains. Ruby's demon spawn are back, more numerous and fully grown. They have a slew of abilities at their disposal including elongating appendages, regeneration, and the ability to blend into shadows. They turn against Ruby, taking away her immortality. Ruby sees that her children are out of control and teams up with Ash and company to dispatch them. Through the season, Ruby becomes a solid part of the team even with their rocky past together. Baal is the big bad of the season, a demon more powerful than seen on the show. He can wear people's skin, manipulate emotions, and his only weakness is the Necronomicon. Baal really raised the stakes of the show and proved to be a formidable enemy. Meat puppets, the remains of those skinned by Baal, are Baal's minions like Deadites, but with no personality or humor. This season brings variation to the villains and of course regular Deadites are every present with their sick sense of humor.

If you thought this show couldn't get anymore ridiculous or over the top or gruesome, you thought wrong. The gore, blood, vomit, and other bodily fluids flow freely. One scene has blood filling an entire room from geysers. A corpse fights Ash and his head is inside its body cavity in a crazy, hilarious scene. Ash's car becomes possessed and starts brutally killing people like Christine. A puppet version of Ash attacks him when he goes to a psychiatric facility. This episode was on of my favorites because it's premise is so similar to the episode Normal Again from Buffy the Vampire Slayer that calls the entire concept of the show into question. This show surprises me in some way with every episode. It's a wild ride and I highly recommend it if you haven't seen it or have reservations.

Ash vs. Evil Dead is an incredible show led by Bruce Campbell's charisma and charm. I can't help but like him no matter how awful he can be. His sidekicks Pablo and Kelly get more badass with each passing season. Pablo gains powers and becomes the Necronomicon for a bit while Kelly doesn't put up with anyone's bullshit and becomes more capable fighting the forces of evil. The group truly cares for each other and it's the heart that drives the show. I can't wait for next season and I'm upset it's coming out so late supposedly because executives didn't want to compete with other horror shows during October. This is THE horror show and I'm sad I'll have to celebrate Halloween without it.

My rating: 5/5 fishmuffins

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