As many of you may know Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell are teaming up once again to resurrect the iconic horror character, Ash. Bruce Campbell will don the chainsaw to take on the hoards of darkness once more in a TV series on Starz. The trailer for this TV return was recently released.
I don't know about you, but as a fan of Evil Dead, after watching that trailer (many times) I am really excited for Ash vs Evil Dead. While we eagerly await the return of the king, I thought it would be fun to count down just some of the most absurd, horrifying and grotesquely humorous moments from the original movie trilogy.
1. Ash is terrorized by mini versions of himself
This sequence occurred in the more comedic third installment of the franchise. At the end of the second movie, Ash ends up falling into a portal that he created as he tried to get rid of the evil Deadite scourge. He ended up in medieval times amongst kings, queens and people of that nature (points if you know who I was referencing there). Even in this time period, the Deadites are up to their sinister tricks, in a particularly surreal scene, Ash is tormented by miniaturized versions of himself. The evil lilliputians attack Ash with forks and get up to other general mischief.
2. Ash educates some 'primitive screw-heads'
The ending of Evil Dead 2 set up the premise of the following movie in the franchise. The central concept of Army of Darkness is that Ash is taking on the forces of evil once again, this time however, he is doing it in medieval times. In the third act of Evil Dead 2, Ash tries to send the darkness back to where it came from by opening a portal using the Necromonicon. Unfortunately, he ends up falling into the vortex himself. The next thing he knows, he is in a desert and being surrounded by knights on horse back. The image of a modern day Ash with a chainsaw for a hand, holding a shotgun in the other, being circled by sword wielding knights is a bizarre way to end a movie. As well as an insane way to begin one, which is exactly what Sam Raimi did with Army of Darkness. This quirky story provides a number of funny scenes, including the one above, where Ash educates the locals on shopping smart.
3. Ash has a laugh with some furniture
This is actually quite a creepy scene when you think about the implications it has for the main character and his mental state. However, like much of the Evil Dead trilogy, the execution of the scene is comical. In this scene, Ash is being antagonized by the demonic entities of evil, along with his own hand (I will get to that later). He is using a cabin he finds in the forest as a sort of base to barricade himself in and hold off the forces of evil. It is almost as if the house itself is messing with Ash when the furniture in the cabin begin to laugh at him. Due to his fragile mental state, he begins to manically laugh with them. Seeing a trophy moose head on the wall laughing with Bruce Campbell is head scratchingly odd and hilarious in equal measure.
4. Ash is attacked by his own hand
In a strange sequence from Evil Dead 2, Ash's own hand is possessed. It proceeds to try and murder him, flipping him over by his hair and grabbing things to smash over his head. There is actually some fantastic physical acting and slapstick comedy by Bruce Campbell in these scenes as he brings to life the idea his hand is trying to kill him. Particularly during an insane moment in which Ash is knocked out and his hand crawls across the floor, it appears to walk across the floor on the tips of his fingers like a spider. It drags him across the floor as it reaches for a cleaver. What ensues is absolutely crazy.
5. "Dead by dawn! Dead by dawn!"
One of the creepiest moments of Evil Dead 2 is the scene in which one of the demonic entities, which is locked in the cellar, attempts to trick them into believing it isn't dangerous. It just so happens that the cabin in this one is the childhood home of one of the characters that discovers it. Unfortunately for her, her parents suffered the very same fate that our heroes are trying to avoid. Her body is being controlled by one of the demons. It looks exactly like how you would expect one of the Deadites to look...most of the time. For an instant it changes its appearance back to that of the character's mother, she begins singing the "Hush Little Baby" nursery rhyme, trying to lure the characters in. When our heroes don't fall for it, the evil takes a different approach, now taunting them. One of the team is already dead, but his body rises from the grave (as they all do in these movies) to give a speech. He chants with the cellar witch, the immortal line "Dead by dawn!". Ash proceeds to dismantle their former ally with an axe. Green blood everywhere. The cleaners have their work cut out.
6. The final confrontation with the cellar witch
It will come as no surprise that the worst eventually happens and old Henrietta escapes the cellar. By this point, Ash actually has some action hero credentials, he has replaced his missing hand with a chainsaw and is wielding a sawn off shotgun. An intense battle ensues, where the creature is shape shifting, the special effects as it changes shape are pretty hokey by today's standards, but let's go easy on them, it was a long time ago. There are plenty of instances of practical effects that work great in the trilogy.
7. "Hail to the king, baby"
Army of Darkness closes in fantastic fashion, Ash has settled back into normal life working at S-smart in present day. He tells stories of his time as a war leader, showing off to his co-workers. But Ash is of course never safe from the forces of evil, he demonstrates his action hero status to his dubious fellow employees when he dispatches a Deadite right there in the supermarket. He comes across as the ultimate badass, dispatching the monster with style and a couple of one-liners. The Ash we see at the end of this movie is a vast improvement upon the one we see in the first film. We see him transition from a terrified victim to an all round arse kicker.
Did I miss a truly horrifying or hilarious scene, that you think is up there with the best? Let me know in the comments section.