'Ash vs. Evil Dead - The Complete Third Season'
(Bruce Campbell, Ray Santiago, Dana Delorenzo, Lucy Lawless, Arielle Carver-O'Neill, et al / 2-Disc Blu-ray+Digital / TV-MA / 2018 / STARZ - LGF)
Overview: Ash has spent the last 30 years avoiding responsibility, maturity and the terrors of the 'Evil Dead' until a Deadite plague threatens to destroy all of mankind and Ash becomes mankind's only hope.
In the third and final season of the STARZ hit series, chainsaw-wielding Ash fights to save the world from evil with Pablo and Kelly, and unexpectedly makes a shocking discovery.
Blu-ray Verdict: For those not in the horror know, 'Evil Dead' is a film series that moved from low-budget horror to crazed slapstick comedy!
Following in the footsteps of 'Army of Darkness', 'Ash vs. Evil Dead' offers the always entertaining Bruce Campbell as an aging and utterly obnoxious anti-hero whose unique ability to kill "deadites" is only matched by the utter stupidity that causes him to release supernatural evil into the world in the first place - and that was, of course, to impress a girl!
OK, sure, for the uninitiated this might seem like a bit of a silly story but you'd have to go back to 'Evil Dead II' and 'Army of Darkness' to really understand what's going on.
Long story short, there's an evil book out there called the Necronomicon Ex Mortis or the "Book of the Dead". It contains strange incantations and funerary rites and when spoken aloud it brings back the "Deadites".
Those that were dead and those that can be possessed find themselves host to these evil spirits. Luckily one good shot from Ash's shotgun or a messy cut from his chainsaw hand can destroy them!
Joining him, once again for this wickedly fun third season are Pablo, his sidekick, Kelly, a girl that was dragged into their fight, and Ruby, a mysterious woman who seems to know a lot more about the Necronomicon than she's letting on.
It's corny, it's campy, it's bloody awesome! Ash is the ultimate fuck-up, but still an amazing bad ass, a character that we can all see a bit of ourselves in, while simultaneously a bit embarrassed, much like your man-child dad.
Every episode is like the best drug trip ever, and explosion of awesome action and amazing humor, with no time wasted before the end. The show holds no punches being outrageous, witty, and ultimately a fun time to be had. It's the kind of show I thought I would hate, but found myself being unable to walk away from because of the sheer charm.
There's plenty of gut-wrenching horror, vomit, guts, savagery, human parts and people being taken apart, piece-by-piece, alive and screaming, splattered, smashed, squished, ripped, ground, slashed, disemboweled - human bodies are treated in such a depraved way - and there's a completely absurd plot tying it all together!
Ergo, 'Ash vs. Evil Dead' is very entertaining, although not for the squeamish, which makes all the morally-bankrupt, vile and utterly disgusting content even more disturbing!
As aforementioned, the cast is also just a wonderful blast of pure cheesy fun. Campbell is a B-movie god, and he continues his winning streak as Ash with an amusing sense of gravitas. He keeps the quips, screams and laughs coming at a mile a minute, and I also appreciate that he's willing to make himself look like a giant scumbag for the role when the story calls for it.
Ray Santiago is a ton of fun as Ash's much younger co-worker Pablo, who is both meek yet also aspires to be something more. He's a really good foil for Ash. And Dana DeLorenza is just perfect in her role, with a dry delivery and a rough attitude, but also a soft side deep beneath.
She's by far my favorite sub-character in the series with Lucy Lawless and newcomer Arielle Carver-O'Neill nicely rounding out the supporting cast in a duo of fun. Yep, well-played roles that add a lot to the proceedings, one and al, that's for sure.
Add to that the beautiful music of returning composer Joseph LoDuca, the expert gore and creature effects that litter every episode, some superb cinematography and a great variety of inside jokes and broad physical comedy and you have a winning recipe for the ideal way to continue 'Evil Dead' for years to come (even though those numb nts at STARZ have actually cancelled this wondrous TV series!).
Anyway, now out on Blu-ray+Digital, this brilliant third season is a right royal bloody dream come true for this fan of the original movie franchise, and I can't help but imagine everyone else who grew up watching those insane-o films feels very much the same!
I mean, and in closing, the story is better written and more interesting than in movies as there's more scope to play with here over 10 episodes. Perfectly orchestrated action, a furious pace with no idling and unnecessary dialogue and cheesy humor guarantee a crazy ride of uninterrupted fun.
Again, the acting of the main and the most of the side actors is very good, and characterization is excellent and unexpectedly complex for the 'Evil Dead' franchise. Camera, colors, effects, editing, sound, music, everything is superbly done and provides a hypnotizing atmosphere that makes this series a masterpiece of the genre.
As for the special features, the one that stands out a mile for me is obviously Inside the World of "Ash vs. Evil Dead," where from the off, Executive Producer Rob Tapert takes you behind the scenes of the "Ash vs. Evil Dead" universe; but also is kind enough to post a warning that they would hate to give away spoilers to those who have not watched the entire episode/season yet!
For what we get are multiple vignettes of around 3 minutes each where Tapert not only shows us behind the scenes things, but shows us the "human sides" to certain, well, we'll call them characters, I guess!
In the very first one, entitled 'Family,' Tapert reveals that his biggest issue was to always challenge Bruce Campbell on set with regard scripts, settings, foes and, of course, his always-impressive one-liner's!
We get to see the behind the scenes work done to being the "scary mascot" to life, and learn how, come the end of the shoot, there had been five different people inside it, all acting their hearts out each time!
And, of course, the only way to ensure that someone stays dead in the Ash vs. Evil Dead' universe is to decapitate them (much like 'The Walking Dead' scenario). So, as Tapert reveals, one actress in particular was totally freaked out by seeming her own decapitated prosthetic head just lazying around on set on day!
All these fun facts and so, so many more are brought forth by Tapert through these fun inside look segments and are well worth your time investigating ... once you've seen season three in completion, of course! This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
Inside the World of "Ash vs. Evil Dead"
'Ash vs Evil Dead - Season 3' Official Trailer
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