Evil Dead: The Musical Review

Evil Dead: The Musical Review

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Evil Dead: The Musical has invaded Oklahoma and you won’t find a better night out than at this hilarious cult musical. Lucky for Oklahoma’s Evil Dead fans, the sold-out show has added even more dates in November!

The musical, based on the classic Sam Raimi horror trilogy, borrows elements from all three movies and adds in more Rated-R humor, buckets of blood and one of the most ridiculous headless corpses you will ever see.

Evil Dead: The Musical doesn’t require the audience to be familiar with the source material in order to enjoy themselves, the sign of a truly great adaptation. However, those who have not seen The Evil Dead, Evil Dead II: Dead by Dawn or Army of Darkness will miss out on some great in-jokes from the series.

Ash delivers his best lines (including the “This is my Boomstick” dialogue with the entire monologue over the gun’s specs). There are props like The Evil Dead – Book Of The Dead Limited Edition used as the actual Necronomican in the musical. One of the characters is even seen reading Bruce Campbell’s autobiography, If Chins Could Kill: Confessions of a B Movie Actor, in the background at one point.

And if you hold the “tree rape” scene as a fond memory, you ain’t seen nothing yet (“This is so inappropriate!”).

The musical starts with the kids from Michigan driving out to the old cabin in the woods. The sets include the road leading to the cabin, the inside of the cabin itself and the woods outside the cabin. The only thing missing from the first two films is the cellar.

The cast at the Oklahoma showing was fantastic. All local Oklahoma actors, the performers took on the characteristics made popular in the original Broadway show and made it their own. Standouts include the actors portraying Ash, Cheryl, Scotty and Jake.

I am not sure if it was done on purpose, but when Scotty is dying, and his wig falls off his head, the actors playing Ash and Scotty play along with it like nothing happened. If it was part of the play, then that is one thing. If it happened by accident and the two just played it off, adding dialogue along during the song, it was brilliant. The actor who played Ash seemed perfect in this aspect, playing to the audience and even saying “bless you” when someone sneezed during the show without missing a beat.

When the kids got to the cabin, everyone had a chance to shine. However, one of the highlights of the show has to be Cheryl. At first, her character was pretty lame and annoying. I wasn’t a fan of her singing at the start either. But soon, the nonsense became apparent. Her character grew in the annoyance factor until almost everything she said was laugh-out-loud brilliant. When she finally cut loose, she became one of the most entertaining members of the cast.

And that was even before she raced into the audience and dumped an entire bucket of “blood” into my lap.

But, then again, that is what happens when you sit in the “Splatter Zone.”

The Splatter Zone is basically an area where you will end up being sprayed from head-to-toe in blood throughout the show. This area is the exact same price as the rest of the theater and is well worth every penny. Make sure you bring a sheet or blanket for your car because you will end up drenched.

And, as a side note, if you plan on bringing a tarp or pancho to wear during the show, sit somewhere else. There are a lot of people behind you that would love to get drenched. If you don’t want to get wet, don’t sit in the Splatter Zone.

The songs range from slightly lame (“Housewares Employee”) to hilarious (“What the F*ck Was That?) to brilliant (“Do the Necronomican”) and the cast are great singing them. There is even a fun little song called “Bit Part Demon” that left me disappointed because I really wish Evil Ed were named Fake Shemp.

What are you gonna do?

The play ended with the final fight in the S-Mart from Army of Darkness, and only gave mention of travelling back to the middle ages, but that is ok because by that time, the entire show had won me over. I figured it would be something a fan of the movie might love but I never expected it to be so absurdly brilliant.

If you only see one horror-splatter-cult musical this year, see Evil Dead: The Musical when it comes to your town. If you see two of them, see Evil Dead again. You will not be disappointed. If you live in Oklahoma, see it in November while there are still tickets available. There is only one word to describe this musical.

Groovy.

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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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