Do you believe in the existence of evil? If you’re here and you’re reading this then I know you do. Thirty years ago our old buddy Ash Williams found the Book of the Dead, read from it . . . then read from it again, and now EVIL has found us! Again!
With only three episodes left in season 3, episode 7 of Ash vs Evil Dead, “Twist and Shout” reaches a fever pitch of bloodshed and bitchcraft as the creators and cast attempt to deliver what fans desire – nay, deserve in what might be the swan song season of the Williams family saga. Brandy and Ash have started to form a real father / daughter bond and Ash gets (sort of) sentimental this episode as he tries to protect his daughter from the Deadites.
As per horror movie standard, teenage priorities outweigh a common sense approach to fighting evil as Brandy becomes bait for Ruby in order to go to the big dance. Pablo figures out that Kelly isn’t who she says she is and makes dreamlike, scary slow progress towards the school where Ruby pushes Brandy over the edge with a tribute to her dead mom and best friend. The whole back and forth of Brandy loving Ash and fearing him is starting to be tiresome since we’ve had three seasons to learn that he’s got a good heart as long as there’s beer in the fridge, but here we are.
The high school halls see some Ash-on-Ash action and a bunch of kids get chopped up and the splatter-level is turned to high. Though I know it’s not our Ashy doing the slashy, it’s a fun moment for Evil Dead’s longtime cult followers and we’ll take it, thank you very much. When Ruby throws herself on her sword (Ash’s chainsaw) things get predictable, but there is a measure of catharsis when she reveals to Brandy and the rest of the school that she’s a demon and we can all get on with that part of our lives.
Like “Tales from the Rift,” the episode “Twist and Shout” contains another gut-punch to the Ghost Beaters and fans alike, although I’m feeling a little less traumatized than last week when I had to stop imagining Pablo and Kelly’s ass-kicking babies. Though two members of the team are gone comic book rules seem to apply because they haven’t been written out of the action and something is already hunting them inside the rift so they’re probably fine. Pablo’s El Brujo Especial ability to access the Deadlands seems especially relevant right now, doesn’t it. . .
Though every episode this season has been strong I’m glad the dance between Brandy and Ruby is over. Ms. Privett was a pain and now we can get down to the business of getting Kelly – I mean, Kelly and Brandy back in order to steal back the book and banish evil forever. The episode closes with Blue Oyster Cult’s “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper” and my inner Patrick Bateman is satisfied once more.
As the season creeps to a close I know we’re all hoping that this isn’t the end of the line for Ash, but if Jefe is going to hang up his chainsaw I hope it’s a hell of a bloody ride. Come back next week for a recap and review of season 3, episode 8 “Rifting Apart” and until then count your blessings that Bruce Campbell is still down to mess around.