Ash vs. Evil Dead ‘Books from Beyond’ Recap: Episode 01.03

Ash vs. Evil Dead
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Yes, what you might have heard is true. Everything about Ash vs. Evil Dead is awesome. Ok, maybe that is hyperbole and the stuff with the cop, Amanda Fisher, has been pretty boring and lame up until now, but everything with Ash, the Deadites and his two companions has been completely off-the-balls awesome.

This week, things got even better.

The first thing that happened in this episode was the arrival of Lucy Lawless’ Ruby Knowby. She had a small appearance on the first episode when she told Amanda that sometimes things are exactly what they seem to be. But, you haven’t seen anything until you see her pull a Deadite out of the ground (Kelly’s dad), slam him onto the cross stake on his wife’s grave and then ask if Ash was there with the book. When the Deadite made threats to her, she pulled out a sword with a wooden handle, the Deadite freaked out, and she then used it to carve around his face.

Yes, Ruby Knowby is a badass.

Moving on to the focus of the episode, the mysterious Books from Beyond bookstore and possibly the secret to the Necronomicon. We then get the awesome chatter between Ash, Pablo, and Kelly. Ash said that they should be able to get the book translated to send the Deadites back to hell and Pablo is disappointed because their group was so awesome that he came up with a name – the Ghost Beaters, to which Kelly and Ash agreed that it was the worst name ever. These three are the MVPs of this show – unless you are also counting Lucy Lawless, because she is a badass.

Ok, so for anyone who only knows Sam Raimi for his blockbuster work on stuff like Spider-Man and Oz, you don’t know Sam Raimi. The guy is the master filmmaker when it comes to zany and crazy moments. Ash takes the book into the book store to get it looked at. The man there opens it and the lights flicker, we get a close up of Ruby who then shifts into a faster gear and flies off, the essence flies through the woods, and then we are back to the bookstore. This is the Sam Raimi that made me fall in love with filmmaking.

After this, Amanda comes in with a gun and tells Ash to get on his knees and Pablo comes in and knocks her out. That was great, considering how bland Amanda has been so far. After this, the dude in the bookstore explains to them what the Necronomicon is. It is a book that calls forward evil spirits that are neither human nor demons, made out of the flesh of the damned with their blood used to write it. However, the book is harmless unless it is wielded by someone who is either very evil or very stupid.

Yep, that’s Ash.

He then has trouble deciphering the undo spell. It says that the way to send them back lies in the origin of The Man, which Ash assumes is him. Ash then decides that he should summon the weakest demon from the book to undo the evil. Ash then tries to convince Pablo that this is ok because they have already read from the book, so it can’t hurt to read from it again. It is like spilling paint on paint, because it can’t hurt anything. Pablo knows this is wrong, but he looks up to Ash so he goes along with it.

Meanwhile, Amanda is going all psycho on Kelly, trying to turn her against Ash. When that doesn’t work, she tries to convince Kelly that they are on the same side.

They decide to call on a demon that preys on the minds of the weak but has great knowledge. As long as the demon stays in the circle, they are safe so no one can break the circle. A really awesomely designed demon (think Guillermo Del Toro) comes out in the circle and asks what Ashley wants. He asks how to send the demons back, but it wants released to tell him. Just as Ash is about to send the demon back to hell, Amanda comes out with her gun leveled on Ash and tells him to stop.

She then shoots at Ash, which causes Ash to break the circle and all hell breaks loose. This demon has some awesome powers, including teleporting himself all over the room to avoid getting hit and then touching someone and – from the looks of it – screwing up them from the inside, messing up blood cells, veins, brains, and more. It takes out Amanda, kills the book store guy who was helping them, and then starts to kill Ash and Pablo. Finally, Kelly hits the demon with the book, which interestingly sucks the demon back in.

Amanda, being the black hole on this show that she really is, decides to thank them by handcuffing Ash. Of course, it is Ash’s wooden hand, and he handcuffs her and the three heroes leave the store. As Ash said, they learned a valuable lesson – police can’t help them. Pablo said that his uncle is a shaman and might help Ash look inside himself to find the answers. At this point, Ash realizes that he needs is two new friends as much as they needed him.

Back inside the bookstore, the guy who was helping them comes back as a Deadite and heads towards Amanda. Sadly, I doubt he kills her.

This week just kept throwing things at the audience and it was a bloody, glorious time. Ash vs. Evil Dead is one of the best new shows on television. Nothing else even compares to it.

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About the Author

Shawn S. Lealos
Shawn is a film critic with over 25 years of experience in print and online media. He is a member of the Oklahoma Film Critics Circle and loves everything from critically acclaimed movies to B-level action flicks.
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