We sat down with Ash vs. Evil Dead stars Bruce Campbell, Lucy Lawless, Ray Santiago, Dana DeLorenzo, Lee Majors and producer Rob Tapert to get the lowdown – and the gore score – on the second season.
“It’s double the blood, double the gore, double the fun,” promises Dana DeLorenzo, who plays Kelly in the cult series. “We had to top ourselves from last year to make it interesting for the fans.”
Season two will also provide an insight into Ash’s past. Returning to his roots in Elk Grove, Michigan, he discovers the events of the first Evil Dead film have made for a bittersweet homecoming.
This season it gets very personal for Ash. He has to go home and save the town he left 30 years ago…
“This season it gets very personal for Ash,” explains the man himself, the great Bruce Campbell. “He has to go home and save the town he left 30 years ago under a cloud of suspicion as a serial killer – an urban myth called ‘Ashy Slashy’. The hero returns but he isn’t a hero when he gets back, nor is he welcome. So he’s gotta fight the Evil Dead and fight the stigma of his town, as well.”
“Ash going home was a nice way to inform his character,” adds producer Rob Tapert. “Where did he come from? And we needed somebody for him to bump up against, so who better than his father?”
Playing Ash’s dad is the legendary Lee Majors, star of The Six Million Dollar Man and The Fall Guy – the perfect foil for Campbell.
“They asked me if I’d like to be involved and I said maybe,” recalls Majors. “I looked at the first episode of the first season and ended up watching all ten in a row. I thought, ‘this is a really funny show and I can see why people like it.’ The cast is just wonderful and I melded with them and with Bruce – like father like son, you know?”
Although the Evil Dead experience was definitely left of field for the veteran actor, he admits he had a great time.
“I didn’t realise horror could be so much fun,” he says, adding that the most challenging thing about working on the show wasn’t being covered in blood, but rather getting to the
set. “That’s a long flight to New Zealand!”
Campbell agrees that Majors’ casting was a masterstroke. “Lee is iconic. Who else would I want as my father but The Six Million Dollar Man? Ash has a mechanical hand! We thought he was a good match, and he’s great in the show. You see where Ash got all his bad habits.”
Majors adds that their relationship is a fractious one. “They’re very estranged. When he first arrives I don’t want him there. He’s responsible for the death of my daughter… there’s a lot of animosity.”
Ash’s buddy Pablo will also have a bigger role this season, with an intense story arc transforming his character both figuratively and literally. “You’re going to see Pablo go from this wide-eyed sidekick to maybe becoming the hero he never knew he had within him,” explains Ray Santiago. “But he’ll definitely be tortured along the way.”
Then there is the mysterious Ruby, who may be friend or foe – or both. Lucy Lawless reveals that in this “high octane” season, her character will be forced into an alliance with Ash. “Now that she’s unleashed evil and it’s all gone wrong, she and Ash have to join up to put the evil back in the box. And there’s a bigger bad coming…”
Check out STACK‘s review of Ash vs. Evil Dead: Season 2, in-store on October 25
From The Big Valley (1965–68) and The Six Million Dollar Man (1973–78), to The Bionic Woman (1976) and The Fall Guy (1981–86), Lee Majors is a bona fide television legend and offers his thoughts on the state of TV today…
“The whole business has changed. It was much more competitive back then; there was only three networks and only so many parts. I’m at the point in my career where I do a lot more low budget films and more character stuff.
“It’s good for actors, but I’m not too fond of the reality part of it. You’ve got young kids who come in and do something like The Bachelor or whatever, and become stars overnight, and then where are they three years later? Those shows took a lot away from working actors. I still don’t get the Kardashian thing!”