Because of various reasons, including differing schedules and red tape, an Evil Dead crossover that would see Ash Williams (Bruce Campbell) from the original The Evil Dead join Mia (Jane Levy) to fight Deadites has seemed unlikely to happen for some time now.
However, when a fan recently asked Campbell about the crossover's likelihood on Twitter, he had these hopeful words to say:
For fans, it's good to know that the #EvilDead crossover has not been scrapped altogether. With that being said, here's why an Evil Dead crossover could be a good and bad idea.
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Hail To The King(s), Baby
Thanks to the post-credits scene in the remake that featured Ash shroud in shadows, fans have been hoping for the promised Evil Dead crossover (check out the cameo below). Fueling this hope is the fact that the remake's creators have stated their desire to converge the stories of the original and the remake.
The problem is that right now, the two incarnations of Evil Dead are distinct and separated - not unlike the movies of the DC Expanded Universe (#DCEU) and the TV shows based on DC properties such as #Arrow, #TheFlash and #Supergirl. While the separate shared universes between the TV shows and films are generally accepted, there are still some fans who would prefer if they existed in the same narrative timeline. DC fans just want to see the heroes they love fight alongside each other, just as they did in the comics, and the same goes for Evil Dead.
Through a crossover event, fans would get the best of both Evil Dead worlds in one place. Where Ash brings in the laughs and one-liners that have become the stuff of pop culture legend, Mia brings the horror that defined both the very first Evil Dead movie and the remake. This would not only be a fan's dream come true, but it would also allow a unified Evil Dead story to venture into new places instead of splitting ideas between two distinct versions of the same narrative, or sticking to one formula.
The mere idea of an Evil Dead crossover could be dismissed by some as fan-service, but there are times when giving the audience exactly what they want could pay off in a big way - similar to how the R-Rated Deadpool became a reality thanks to fans' clamor.
Hell To The No
The biggest hurdle currently blocking the Evil Dead crossover from happening has nothing to do with Deadites, the alternate ending of Army Of Darkness or legal issues about copyright. On the contrary, the problem lies in the polarizing tones of the different Evil Dead stories.
Even if Ash started his Deadite-slaying adventures in a straightforward horror gorefest, he has since evolved into a tongue-in-cheek homage to macho action-movie heroes. With each passing sequel to The Evil Dead, the story's tone became looser and gradually shifted from a horror movie to a splatter comedy. All of these changes culminated in the TV show Ash Vs Evil Dead, where dark humor in the vein of Army Of Darkness overtook grisly fightss for survival.
Meanwhile, the Evil Dead remake went back to the slasher-movie roots of the franchise with Mia being the lone survivor of the Necronomicon's return to power and the ascension of the demonic Abomination. The new Evil Dead movie prioritized the demonic terrors and had little room for humor. Seeing this gory, but otherwise serious, horror story connect to the self-aware nature of Ash's exploits would be jarring, to say the least.
Of course, this can be remedied with a bit of writing ingenuity, as seen in the many comic crossovers Ash had over the years. But the fact remains that both stories have a different approach to surviving a demonic onslaught. One makes light of it through a wry sense of humor and experience, while the other is still dealing with the trauma of a horrifying night that was finally ended by jamming a chainsaw into the face of hell's emissary.
Do We Still Need An Evil Dead Crossover?
An Evil Dead crossover would be more of a consolation prize than a necessity at this time. This is because Ash Vs Evil Dead is doing a good job of continuing Ash's crazy adventures, while the Evil Dead remake stands on its own as a modern-day slasher movie. In fact, Ash Vs Evil Dead was so successful that its second season scored a perfect 100% on Rotten Tomatoes, and it was just renewed for a third one.
But that's not to say that the crossover should be taken off the drawing board for good.
On the off chance that the fabled Evil Dead crossover makes its way to the viewing public, fans of both the original movies and the remake will be sure to watch it on opening day. The Evil Dead series has become popular for a good reason, and if there is any series of horror movies that deserves to have more stories told it's Evil Dead.