Especially in an opinion-rich environment like The University of Southern Mississippi, topics of interest are never in short supply around the proverbial water cooler or in Sorkin-esque walk-and-talks between classes or, dare I say it, while smoking a sweet, sweet full-filter ciga- rette on the back patio of the Liberal Arts Building. But here’s one more for you: “Ash vs Evil Dead,” now airing its first season on Starz.
For those already acquainted, Bruce Campbell is back in full form for the titular role. Armed with all the improvised weaponry you’d expect, the show’s well-suited supporting cast also shares a solid comedic foil to Ash, an intriguing dynamic and enough conveniently opportune skills and knowledge to keep the plot chugging along. Consequently, they’ll likely have a longer life expectancy than the handful of randy campers Ash has shared the screen with on three separate occasions.
Among those on the billing is Lucy Lawless, who proves she’s kept the moves and sultry ferocity of Xena, the warrior princess. Here’s hoping NBC has the good sense to cast her in the Xena re- boot. (Yes, NBC reportedly has a comeback in the works.)
For those unacquainted, “Ash vs Evil Dead” is the continuation of a cult phenomenon comprised of the 1981’s indie favorite “Evil Dead,” ‘87’s “Evil Dead II” and ‘92’s “Army of Darkness.” And, despite lacking creator Sam Raimi’s direction, the 2013
“Evil Dead” remake did feature a Campbell cameo, so we can generously call it canon as well. Together, Raimi and Campbell are magic, having perfected a signature combination of quirky camera action, horror tropes and campy gore. As a likely inspiration for the 2012 hit movie “The Cabin in the Woods,” the Evil Dead saga similarly fits the comedy/horror genre. The difference being Evil Dead goes all in, abandoning suspense for continuous fun.
So when “Ash vs Evil Dead” pulls you in and makes love to your eyeballs, seeing Ash’s boomstick will be like the first time all over again. This show is everything you want from an “Evil Dead” movie: more—which you’ll likely only get if it gets the numbers. So get off your lazy bum, turn on the television and tune into “Ash vs Evil Dead” on Saturday at 8 p.m. on Starz. And then get back on your lazy bum because you look weird just standing there.