Oh hell, you didn't know? That is right Sam Raimi, Ivan Raimi, and the one and only Bruce Campbell are coming to STARZ this year with one hell of a different show of the dead. You can read all about it in one of my previous article's where I go over a great interview with Bruce Campbell who spills the deadite guts about the up and coming show which started shooting in April of this year.
Now that it is freshly being shot I want to go over some of the points I believe they will and must hit if they want to bring the dark glory of the Necronom-iconic evil to the TV screen and stretch it out for the already written, five seasons! Hope you enjoy the list, and if there is anything you believe it could/should have please leave a comment below and tell me about it!
#1 Practical Effects
Fake blood. It is something you think would be pretty simple when it comes down to it. A little chocolate milk, a little corn syrup, and then a little red food dye and then BAM: fake blood. The thing is though, today in the cinema and TV we watch - fake blood has become... well, fake. In which I mean that the studios are opting for digital versions of fake blood. Which I guess can be one of those understandable things really, because who wants to clean corn syrup up after a failed take just to do it again - but damn it, that is where the magic happens!! Bruce Campbell’s whole Hollywood persona was born in a bath of fake blood damn it. They made the original Evil Dead for roughly $90k back in ‘81 and covered Bruce from head to toe in the stuff, and then when he came back for the second one, Sam did it again.
"The blood is a combination of Karo syrup, non-dairy creamer, and red food coloring. At one point, Bruce Campbell's shirt that he wears in the film was so saturated with the fake blood that after drying it by the fire, the shirt became solidified and broke when he tried to put it on." -IMDB Trivia
What I am trying to say is that all that extra stress the actors were experiencing, polished for a damn fine movie where they were supposed to be stressed anyhow. Combine that with the great shots that creative practical effects can give and you get one hell of a fine finished product. Hell, even the bloodfest Dead Alive was more interesting with practical effects (The movie? Shit. The Effects? Shittastic). There really is no substitute for them, especially when it comes to the distorted features of our beloved Deadites.
Take it back to the third installment in the Evil Dead series where an army of the dead attack a castle. All that shit was done with miniatures, stop motion, full hand made skeleton warriors, and weird camera angles - and damn it, it looked pretty freakin great! Goofy, yeah, but great.
Now take the undead army from Game of Thrones, specifically the bone men zombie "something something" soldiers. As awesome as they look, you can tell by some of their motions and body distortions that they are completely generated by a computer with motion captured humans. While of course they are spot fucking on, and I am sure I wouldn't be going too far as to say it was influenced by the Army of Darkness film - it looked awesome - but it would be cool to see a combo of the two. Where you have real hand made bone men, alongside CGI versions; or do the makeup and throw in green so as to animate only certain places.
Either way, I just really hope they keep it old school when it comes to effects - because the more hands-on creativity you have in the production, the better the finished product.
#2 Imperfect Heroes Outwitting Millennia Old Demons
The great pull that the evil dead has is putting normal people in extreme situations to either have them crumble into the fetal position and cry for mama, or cut off a body part if needed, strapon a chainsaw if needed, and give em hell without regard for their own life (always needed) - just to see the evil deadite enemy take a little of the pain they cause, back. It is all about Darwinism in the Evil Dead universe, and if you can't cut it you will have your soul eaten by it.
That is a great part of the Evil Dead, because out of that sort of formula you get people like Ash rising to the top. How is he still alive? He would tell you skill, and he might be right. Just the correct combination of skill and stupidity can equal some hella courage on the part of a mortal man or woman that has a large dose of "fuck it" in their system. I am not talking about some sort of personal arbitrary “fuck it” where the person is just apathetic to the situation and gives up. I am talking about the "fuck it" that come from all the people you care about dying or becoming monster, voices of ageless demons scattering your thoughts with madness and suicide, and the loss of a limb with no rational explanation to give to it. That is a dose of “fuck it” that it so high a person seemingly becomes a gladiator of hate and have the disregard for their own safety that makes a hell of a hero. So much so that you are pushed to invent something steampunk style out of necessity that didn't even exist before. How does he rev the engine on the chainsaw without a hand? it doesn't matter, because the truth is that the damn invention is so riddled with hate it probably runs on hate alone…. well hate and gasoline.
That is the kind of heroes I want to see. The ones despite their disability or idiocy they pull whatever they are doing off because they have had enough. They might be cheaters, assholes, nerds, midgets, who gives a shit - That is what I want to see. i don’t want there to be a badass ninja woman who comes out of nowhere and knows all the plot points, or a badass wizard who knows it all and how to do it. I want regular people figuring how to combat one of the most frightening evil forces ever to be dreamed up. Now that sounds like a hell of a show!
#3 Groovy Alternate Dimensions and/or Time Travel
There is a lot to know when it comes to Ash and his travels through alternate dimensions within the span of the comics. I for one have not read that many, but of course when Ash Williams hit the Marvel Universe and fought the zombie versions of earth’s mightiest heroes I jumped on board and loved every moment of it. I dig that idea, because it would only make sense seeing that the book (Necronomicon) can open up a portal to other points in time, why not throw him into an all werewolf universe, and see if he can make the best of it?
Now I know that this is going to be on STARZ, and while I am not asking them to spend millions and millions on this, I do believe that the least they could do would be to pull some sort of Sliders type of deal where his motivation is to get back home, and second on the list is stopping the book from effecting time and space with its evil. They could take Ash anywhere!
I speculate that this will be the case, because for one it adds continuity to the storyline, and for two they have written this out for 5 seasons already. Which is a lot to shoot for coming out of the gate, and well if they don't do it right off the bat I am sure Time and/or Interdimensional travel is coming. It was such a big part of the comic ideal, and even if it's not alternate dimensions it would be cool to see a bit of time travel in there if it is only for a few episodes. I for one am super excited to see where they go, and what they do, because if I am not mistaken it will be set after the last scene in the original cut of the classic Ash vs The Army of Darkness, where Ash is back working a menial job as a S-Mart stocker. So we are getting a grizzled WIC card carrying Ashley J. Williams who is down on his luck to start this puppy off and that alone should leave the canvas wide open for Raimi to paint one hell of a dark deadite comedy all over the thing!
#4 Sarcasm and Psychological Torture
It just is, and will always be the true staple of the Evil Dead - and good doses of playful wit between the living and the dead are what keeps The Evil Dead out of the category of a "Zombie" movie. Also, zombies are categorized as the already dead reanimated corpses of the once living. (Unless you count the 28 Days flicks, which I do not). Zombies are mindless folks, and they have no personality except for Bitey McBitingstine, but he doesn’t exist - unless I just prophicide some upcoming Walking Dead baddy and didn't know it.
With The Evil Dead though you get a clear distinction. Yeah, they look rough, but the deadites are just possessed humans (mostly) that are having their bodies forced into doing the bidding of the evil spirit. I mean, yeah sure, if you don’t dismember the corpses they will come back, but that is not even 100% accurate. If you watch the flick Ash cuts off the head of his girlfriend, and she clearly comes back. He also chops up an evil version of himself, and then it comes back. So who am I to say how to truly kill them without using the book. Also, it is the book that is the source of all of the turmoil that follows our hero and humanity. So shit, it might just be that Ash is so badass he tires em out, or sends them running. Either way, while they inhabit the skin of that loved one the evil spirits have all their memories, can adjust the tone of their voice into the creepiest version, and basically push the people who are still alive to the point of tortured madness. The Deadites are not after their brains, or their flesh, they want your scared shitless soul. With your will trampled, the easier it is for them to possess you; and that is a totally new element when you take into account the shows out now that try and bring horror just by showing a few gut’s here and there. Wait till we get to the Evil Dead, where not only has Granny lost a leg, but she is floating with a spinning head singing to you that nursery rhyme from childhood as she plays with the guts of your grandfather. Now that is some fucking horror right there. Her cursing and throwing quips at you Exorcist style as you try and dry crank a chainsaw…. fuck me, I cannot wait!!
I know it seems sadistic, but trust me it allows for a whole other layer of drama to be put on the show, as well as comedy. I mean yeah, in the Walking Dead - when someone’s loved one dies it is messed up to see them come back, but coming back and fucking with your head on a personal level - that my friends is truly messed up. It also gets us closer to the characters. Let us take Carl from the Walking Dead as an example: When his mom died, and he shot her after zombification, that was truly heartbreaking.
Now lets throw in a deadite talking to him about how he was a burden, and should have never been born - or used some callback dialogue from an earlier season.
He might be badass, but Carl would have buckled as soon as she started talking like his mom again, in no time flat. If he wasn't killed though, we the audience would be hit hard on that same personal level, and would have cheered Carl on just as much. It allows them to get hurt on a personal level and the audience be right there with them the whole time. Which is a lot of what these types of shows are missing, because I can’t remember a single characters name other than the main 4 on TWD, but if they died I wouldn’t flinch due to not having that emotional connection anymore. You could say the TWD show started off making me feel like Rick, but now that it's drawn out this long I am feeling more and more like the Governor - due to the blatant disconnection from their own personal development as they continue to do the same shit with the same somber emotions, and no fun for anyone. Hell, at least The Evil Dead would break it up with a joke or two - sort of like Z Nation tries to do every episode - but still it needs that Evil Dead “Zero Fucks Given” sort of mentality in order for it to be truly righteous.
HOPE YOU ENJOYED THE LIST!!!!!
**Other Articles of Mine You May Enjoy Also:
- Suicide Squad Contest (Entry One: Ultimate SS)
Suicide Squad Contest (Entry Two: Shadow SS)
News About Fight Club 2 from Chuck Palahniuk
8 of the Greatest Espionage Comedies of ALL TIME!
Batman 66' Video Game