Sometimes horror movies evolve into franchises so popular that they get continued as (or spun-off into) horror TV shows, such as USA and Syfy’s new Chucky series, to name a more recent example. One of the most popular and acclaimed horror franchises, the Evil Dead movies, would continue (following the 2013 soft reboot) in the form of a TV show that saw Bruce Campbell’s iconic chainsaw-handed Deadite killer take on more life-threatening paranormal activity, but with a little more help this time, for three seasons. Heroes, villains, and some mixes of both make up the Ash vs. Evil Dead cast, whose careers since Starz cancelled the bloody hilarious series in 2018 we will break down for you now. Let’s go space truckin’!
Bruce Campbell (Ashley J. “Ash” Williams)
Playing the world’s unlikely savior against demons in 1981’s The Evil Dead and its sequels secured Bruce Campbell as a B-movie legend years before appearing in other cult classics like Intruder, Maniac Cop, Bubba Ho-Tep, and in his buddy Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man movies. He also has a much celebrated TV presence on shows like The Adventures of Brisco County Jr. in the title role, both Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and Xena: Warrior Princess as Autolycus, and Burn Notice as Sam Axe, who got his own prequel movie. Despite retiring the character after Ash vs. Evil Dead ended (which is why he is only executive producing the upcoming Evil Dead Rise), Campbell will return as Ash Williams in 2022’s Evil Dead video game, after starring in the horror comedy Black Friday and voicing Richard Nixon in the political docudrama, 18-1/2, in 2021.
Ray Santiago (Pablo Bolivar)
When Ray Santiago first appeared as Ash’s co-worker-turned-friend-turned-“Ghost Beater” Pablo Bolivar, I (like many others, I am sure) initially recognized him from Meet the Fockers as a young man Jack Byrnes (Robert DeNiro) incorrectly suspects to be Greg’s (Ben Stiller) love child. Some also may have previously spotted him from the Fox sitcom Raising Hope, the Fox drama, Touch, opposite Kiefer Sutherland, 2011’s Justin Timberlake-led sci-fi thriller In Time, and the comedy Sex Ed, starring Haley Joel Osment, in 2014. Santiago followed Ash vs. Evil Dead with more horror - including the first installment of Hulu and Blumhouse’s Into the Dark, called The Body, in 2018, the 2019 black comedy Tone Deaf, and his upcoming reprisal of Pablo alongside Bruce Campbell in the Evil Dead video game.
Dana DeLorenzo (Kelly Maxwell)
Also returning for the Evil Dead game as the badass Kelly Maxwell is Dana DeLorenzo, whose biggest claim to fame before Ash vs. Evil Dead was playing a fake CBS executive named Beth on The Late Late Show when Craig Ferguson was still host. Her first big TV role following the cancellation was in a flashback on a 2018 Will & Grace episode as Karen Walker’s mother, followed by a darkly funny Epix original Neo-Western TV show called Perpetual Grace, LTD, and a role in the ensemble comedy, Friendsgiving, in 2020. The comedian has also lent her voice to a puppet on AMC+’s Ultra City Smiths, and will star in an episode of Apple TV+’s female-driven anthology series, Roar.
Lucy Lawless (Ruby Knowby)
Playing Ruby Knowby - the immortal author of the Necronomicon Ex Mortis who has been both an enemy and ally to Ash - we have Lucy Lawless, made a legend by playing the title character of Xena: Warrior Princess, which was executive produced by her husband, Rob Tapert, along with his Evil Dead co-producer and creator Sam Raimi. Before becoming an Ash vs. Evil Dead cast regular, the New Zealander would go to space as a recurring Battlestar Galactica cast member, don medieval garb as Lucretia on Starz’s Spartacus and its prequel series, and join the Parks and Recreation cast as Ron Swanson’s new wife, Diane Lewis. Lawless now leads the Australian crime procedural My Life is Murder, and is lending her voice to Minions: The Rise of Gru in 2022.
Jill Marie Jones (Amanda Fisher)
Another enemy turned ally (and love interest) to Ash in Season 1 is police officer Amanda Fisher, played by Jill Marie Jones, who was previously best-known as Antoinette 'Toni' Marie Childress Garrett on the hit UPN sitcom Girlfriends. However, she was also no stranger to horror beforehand, with the 2007 macabre rom-com Redrum, an episode of American Horror Story: Asylum, and a recurring spot on Sleepy Hollow on Fox. Jones followed Ash vs. Evil Dead by starring on the Urban Movie Channel original series Monogamy since 2018 and, in 2021, appeared in the fact-based drama Charming the Hearts of Men, and the Oprah Winfrey-produced drama Delilah.
Ted Raimi (Chet Kaminski/Possessed Henrietta)
Another Xena: Warrior Princess star was Ted Raimi, who acts in pretty much everything directed by his older brother, Sam, including Evil Dead 2 (the gold standard for horror-comedy movies) as one of the most iconic Deadites, Henrietta. The actor reprised the gross and physically demanding role on Ash vs. Evil Dead Season 2, along with new character Chet Kaminski - a local bartender and old friend of Ash's. Unsurprisingly, the star of countless scary flicks, like 1992’s Candyman and 2004’s The Grudge, followed his Ash vs. Evil Dead role with more horror, including appearances on two Shudder TV shows (the 2018 limited series Deadwax, and a 2021 episodes of Creepshow), but is also joining his longtime friend and collaborator Bruce Campbell in 18-1/2 as the voice Gen. Al Haig.
Lee Majors (Brock Williams)
Also joining the Ash vs. Evil Dead cast in Season 2 as Ash’s father was Lee Majors, whose most legendary role was the half-man, half-machine Col. Steve Austin on the iconic TV series, The Six Million Dollar Man, in the 1970s. After returning as Brock Williams in Season 3 from beyond the grave, the now 82-year-old actor would continue to make fun cameos on TV shows like Netflix’s Fuller House, the new reboot of Magnum P.I., and Amazon Prime’s animated, puppet-free reboot of the Thunderbirds series. Majors will next appear in the rom-com Spring Break ’83 and the 2022 action thriller, Renegades, opposite Danny Trejo.
Arielle Carver-O’Neill (Brandy Barr)
Joining the Ash vs. Evil Dead cast in Season 3 as the daughter Ash never knew he had, Brandy, is Arielle Carver-O’Neill. Like many other Australian actors before her, she landed her first big break on the long-running soap opera, Neighbours, for a 2011 episode before making her feature-length film debut in the 2015 sci-fi thriller, Predestination, opposite Academy Award nominee Ethan Hawke. The 29-year-old has not appeared in anything since the Ash vs. Evil Dead finale, but will return to acting with the short film Hookers & Blow, and a comedy called It Only Takes a Night, which was filmed in her home country and is currently in post-production.
Lindsay Farris (Dalton)
Also joining the Ash vs. Evil Dead cast in Season 3 as an ancestor of the Deadite-hunting Knights of Sumeria named Dalton is Lindsay Farris, who (like many other Australian actors before him) previously appeared on the long-running soap opera Home and Away in 2016 - the same year lent his voice to the fantasy film Gods of Egypt as an older version of Brenton Thwaites’ character, Bek. Also in 2018, he played real-life Manson Family victim Jay Sebring in Charlie Says, and appeared on a Season 3 episode of Fox’s Lethal Weapon reboot series. He would later collaborate with Lucy Lawless again on a My Life is Murder episode, and his most recent role was a 2020 crime thriller called We’re Not Here to Fuck Spiders.
Joel Tobeck (Baal)
When Lucy Lawless’ Ruby takes on a more heroic personality in Season 2, filling in the role of the main antagonist was the tricky demon Baal - played in human form by Joel Tobeck. Also known for playing an Orc in the Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring and a recurring role as Donny in the Sons of Anarchy cast, the New Zealander had previously worked with some of the Ash vs. Evil Dead cast and producers on Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, Xena: Warrior Princess, and 30 Days of Night from 2007. Tobeck had three big TV roles in 2020 (including limited series The Luminaries and Black Hands) and plays a priest in the new series, Alibi, in 2021.
Michelle Hurd (Linda B. Emery)
Season 2 also introduced us to one of Ash’s former lovers (and one of several named Linda) played by Michelle Hurd, whose most notable earlier credits include soap opera Another World, Law & Order: SVU, and 1997’s Justice League of America - one of the most infamous made-for-TV DC movies of all time. More horror would follow for the actress after her Ash vs. Evil Dead tenure, including the Hulu original movie Bad Hair in 2020 - the same year she joined the Star Trek: Picard cast as Raffi Musiker and reprised her role as Shepherd on Blindspot. Hurd’s most recent credit is playing Ebony Jackson on Pose’s third season on FX.
Samara Weaving (Heather)
Thanks to films like the 2017 Shudder exclusive Mayhem, the Netflix original The Babysitter and its sequel, and the sleeper hit Ready or Not from 2019, Samara Weaving has cemented herself as one of her generation’s most powerful Scream Queens. However, what some do not realize is that her royal transition began when she appeared as an ill-fated backpacker named Heather in three episodes from Season 1 of Ash vs. Evil Dead. Outside of joining Hulu’s Nine Perfect Strangers cast, the Australian actress has since branched out well beyond horror, such as roles in films like Bill & Ted Face the Music, or in the Netflix limited series Hollywood, as well as upcoming movies like Babylon, and limited series like Down the Rabbit Hole, in which she portrays Playboy model Holly Madison.
I think that Ash vs. Evil Dead, which I believe is also the most perfect combination of gore and comedy in the whole franchise, is a testament to just how far prestigious horror TV shows have come, having landed such a “groovy” cast.
Jason has been writing since he was able to pick up a washable marker, with which he wrote his debut illustrated children's story, later transitioning to a short-lived comic book series and (very) amateur filmmaking before finally settling on pursuing a career in writing about movies in lieu of making them. Look for his name in just about any article related to Batman.
Your Daily Blend of Entertainment News
Thank you for signing up to CinemaBlend. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.