Evil Dead: Is it time to kill Ash Williams for the franchise to continue?


The Evil Dead franchise is being resurrected by none other than its creator, Sam Raimi. With Bruce Campbell having retired Ash Williams, is it time to say goodbye onscreen?

Evil Dead, Yeah, Baby, Yeah!

Evil Dead is coming back in six months according to creator Sam Raimi. This news is all over the internet. Every time you turn around, another outlet has an article on it. Some are claiming Bruce Campbell is returning to the franchise that started his career.

When we sat down with him last month, he confirmed the fact that he, Sam and Rob Tapert were taking pitches for a new incarnation of Evil Dead and that his role would be that of producer. The actor also told us that he would be heavily involved in the casting process.

At present, there aren’t many details to discuss. No director has been assigned; we don’t know what the script will be although I suspect if Raimi is predicting an announcement in six months that something is definitely in the pipeline. As for the tone of the future production, Campbell would love to see more snark which was readily prevalent in Evil Dead II and Army of Darkness.

Yes, I am well aware that Sam said in a recent interview, that he would be “thrilled if Bruce changed his mind about retirement and come back for the original Evil Dead line.” The director also went on to say that he would be very happy to work with Fede Alvarez again if he wanted to make a sequel.

Evil Dead -Sam Raimi – 2000s

What do we know? Sam and company have three potential directions for the franchise to go in. One storyline involves Campbell returning. Another would be going back to the world of Mia (Jane Levy) and then an undisclosed idea for the third possibility.

There has been chatter on social media and remarks made from fans and journalists alike that since Sam and Bruce are friends they will come to some agreement and Bruce will strap on the chainsaw and pick up the boomstick again to portray Ash Williams. And all will be right in the world.

Hard to Say Goodbye

The reality is Bruce Campbell is a 61-year-old man. Even though he lollygags regularly and maintains his fitness, he isn’t 30 something anymore. When he was on Burn Notice he tore his hamstring. He repeated that same injury in Season 2 of Ash vs Evil Dead.

I can hear everyone saying, “Well, he can use a stunt person. He doesn’t have to do the work. Or they can use CGI.” Yeah, but he will still be mired in the mud and blood for close-ups and other shots so nothing will change for him.

What is it about Ash Williams that makes fans reluctant to let him go? I am asking this as someone who has loved that world since she was 17 years old and saw it at a midnight show in 1983. Sam Raimi and his band of merry filmmakers are the reason that I pursued the career that I did.

Yet, I am willing to say goodbye to this icon of the horror genre. It’s time. Look, Bruce gave us almost four decades of the King. Perhaps if things would have worked out with STARZ, he might have given us two more seasons. But it didn’t happen and now here we are.

Evil Dead – Bruce Campbell in Delusion – Courtesy of Lionsgate

Admittedly, I would rather see Bruce and Sam partner on a new venture something along the lines of A Simple Plan or a non-horror feature. It would be fun for them to revisit the Super-8 world of their past by doing a broad comedy. Or if fans are really craving a scary movie than why not a film like The Gift?

Well, that probably won’t happen so Evil Dead is looming on the imminent horizon. One thing is for certain, as much as I don’t want this to come to fruition, Bruce Campbell is going to have to reprise Ash in order for this universe to continue.

However, that being said, not for a full-length feature. I think Ash should be killed. Yes, I mean that sincerely. It is time to pass the torch. For the record, I know that I am not alone with this approach.

A New Beginning

Bruce should do a cameo appearance. While Ash vs Evil Dead picked up after Army of Darkness maybe this new film could re-start that timeline.

The way I envision it, we all know that Ash had liaisons with various women. He has a daughter from one of those unions, Brandy. That character could come back or a new offspring could appear.

Remember Sheila could have been with child after their tryst in Army of Darkness. It is a very real possibility that Ash’s lineage lives on. As a matter of fact, Lindsay Farris felt Dalton could have been a descendant of the Prophesied One.

What if these children find the Necronomicon? Not knowing what it was, what if they get curious and … you see where I am going with this, right? Ash could be retired, literally. Since his dad passed away and left him the house and the family business, he could have sold both of them. Living off that money and being a loner, he would probably go off the grid.

This would make him a local legend so to speak. Hence, “Ashy Slashy” for when children misbehave. When the Dark Ones show up because they have been summoned, his kids need help. Since no one understands what they are going through, they seek out “Old Man Ash.”

More from Horror on TV

Enter Bruce Campbell. He trains them and then finds out that they are his children but doesn’t tell them. He agrees to help them confront the evil. Before he can do this, he is “visited” by one of the most powerful demons.

Ash attempts to fight the entity but can’t because his body isn’t up to it from the effects of years of Deadite slaying. While he is wrestling with this demon, his kids show up only for him to die protecting them. The evil retreats but mortally wounded, Ash reveals who he is and tells them that it is up to them to save the world. He passes away surrounded by his family.

Filled with revenge at having their father taken away from them so soon, they embark on a Deadite hunting quest and thus the Evil Dead franchise can continue. Here’s the thing. Bruce could come back as a ghost remember Lee Majors did that in AVED. That would be entirely up to him.

Next. Bruce Campbell: Ripley’s panel at SDCC guest line-up and schedule. dark

In my mind, this is a respectful way for Bruce Campbell to make his official exit. The fans get to see him one last time as their beloved hero.

What do you want to see in the new Evil Dead world? Let us know in the comments.