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As if the name alone wasn’t an immediate draw, there are a bunch of reasons why Ash vs Evil Dead is one of the coolest shows of the year. And one of those ways is how much it fits in with the original film trilogy in terms of both the look and the character of Ash. That’s obviously an intentional draw, and here’s how showrunner Craig DiGregorio describes creator Sam Raimi’s approach for the show’s appearance.
Sam set up the aesthetics of the series, for sure, from the way he shot things to the way the cameras move to the angles he used. He definitely set up the look of the world, in general. When you look at the old films and the new show, it’s difficult to tell which is which, at some points, and that’s all on purpose. We wanted this to be a retro throwback show that’s still in the present. We were very aware, going into the show, that it should have that feel to it.
Obviously just having Bruce Campbell around immediately reminds people of the first Evil Dead film, which came out 24 years ago, and its sequels. And even he is presented to resemble how he looked as Ash in the past. His hair is colored jet black, his skin is bronzed, and though his body isn’t quite as svelte as it used to be, he still looks like he’s in great shape. That definitely helps when one is jumping around and blasting deadites with boomsticks.
The show itself also features lots of visual callbacks to the original films. There’s the signature “non-steady cam racing forward throughout the woods” shot, the “car facing the camera head-on so that it looks extremely wide” shot, and others. Though Raimi only directed the first episode of the TV series, he did so in such a way that offered up a blueprint for the filmmakers that followed him. As well, I’m sure he had more than a few conversations with other helmers about what details he would want the show to call back to.
DiGregorio also explained to Collider how great it was to see that the Ash character is basically still the same guy as the one from the movies.
One of the cool things about the show is that it doesn’t shy away from anything. Ash, as he progresses through the movies, has become this loudmouth, selfish, charming asshole that you can’t help but love. A lot of times on TV, you see the man-child character who’s like, ‘I’m never going to grow up! I’m never going to do it!’ They’re 25 when they say it, and then they’re 30 and they’re like, ‘I got married.’ And Ash never did it. He just stuck to it and really carried that whole life out.
Maybe Season 2 will be all about him getting married and having some kids, but probably not. Check out new episodes of Ash vs Evil Dead every Saturday night on Starz. If you’re somehow not already watching, you’re doing yourself a non-groovy disservice.