Evil Dead 2: Dead by Dawn (1987): 10 Things You Didn’t Know

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Photo via De Laurentiis Entertainment Group

2. Ash’s evil, severed hand was inspired by Hamburger Helper’s mascot

One obvious difference between this movie and the original is that Dead by Dawn lays on the dark comedy. The Evil Dead was much more serious in tone, a “straight horror”, if you will. For the sequel, many slapstick moments are included in a way that would make the Three Stooges proud.

One of the film’s most humorous moments comes from Ash’s fight with his own severed hand. Say what you will about the scene, but watching Campbell wrestle with his own hand is funny. What exactly was the inspiration for this craziness?

Well, the idea was based on co-writer Scott Spiegel’s short film he made as a teenager, Attack of the Helping Hand. The parody short was about the Hamburger Helper mascot, the “Helping Hand,” attacking a woman making Hamburger Helper for dinner. Raimi himself appeared in the same short as a milk man, and Bruce Campbell himself played the Pillsbury Dough Boy.

Greatest short film ever? I think so!

Anyway, including Ash’s fight with the severed hand was a direct homage to this bizarre short film from Spiegel.