Ash vs Evil Dead, “Ashes to Ashes,” (1.8) - TV Review


Ash Ashes

December 19th, 2015, 9PM, Starz

Fridging (adj) – Short for the descriptive term “women in refrigerators”; a colloquial term for a female character who exists and whose death is only a motivator for a male character.

Has there ever been such a clear example of a fridging than the existence of poor, beleaguered Amanda Fisher? Introduced as a police officer sent on her own path, determined to untangle the problems spawned by Ash Williams, falling in with the mysterious Ruby…and then all in one fell swoop managing to forget her mission, falling for Ash’s line and falling IN line, becoming a trusted member of his team in less than an episode. Once we got a POV shot of her chest you knew the girl was a goner, and so this episode proved out

Bruce Campbell and Jill Marie Jones deserve all of the credit in the world for their acting here; Campbell, in fact, manages to break through to an entirely different kind of acting, coming off as credibly gross and chilling as Evil Ash. The two of them go through an absolutely brutal fight scene that goes beyond horror into visceral revulsion. You can see all of the hard work they’ve gone through, but the moment is for naught – Amanda is barely a character, her presence barely a footnote in the series. It’s hard to buy Ash’s grief when he’s standing on the same hallowed ground where his beloved Linda is buried.

Speaking of Linda, we get to see her for a second here, and she does a great (read: terrible) job of shocking the hell out of Ash, who holds on to his sanity and survives the workshed once more. Kudos to the actress; the part could not have been more difficult and she aced it.

The nadir of the entire experience centers around Kelly and Pablo and their little encounter with a group of hikers lost in the woods. We all know where this is leading (to three dead hikers) and why it’s happening (because we need a shorthand way to communicate that Kelly and Pablo like each other a lot and they need some outsider to point it out to them), but it’s so unnecessary, a total drag on a plot that was bouncing along just fine without such intervention.

There needs to be some credit given to the level of brutal horror on display here. Whoever choreographed the fight scene deserves a raise; it’s harrowing, frightening and altogether scary. And yet the stink of fulfilled and wasted potential alike sort of linger over the production. We should have known Amanda far, far better and cared far, far more when she passes away. Instead, we’re left with the hollow feeling of what might have been what ought to have been, and what, tragically, will never be.

This is the show’s best episode due to the lighting, cinematography, fight choreography and the simple fact that they managed to make any of this credible. But in the end how high is the deck stacked against the show finishing spectacularly.
The Roundup

  • This episode was also directed by Tony Tilse.
  • The episode was written by previous episode director Michael J. Bassett.
  • Big plothole of the week: Half of Linda’s head was lying on the floor in Evil Dead 2 – how did it get back in the vise grip?
  • Your jukebox soundtrack: “The Two of Us Together” by Don Gibson and Sue Thompson.
  • No, the infamous Freddy claw hand does not appear in the workshed. Likely a rights issue.
  • Special kudos to the stunt choreographer of this episode. That was some smart, solid work.
  • Kelly’s rings say “Lost” in this episode.
  • Next Week: Kelly and Pablo try to figure out which Ash is which in “Bound in Flesh!”
6.0 OKAY

Campbell and Jones try their damndest but I just. Don’t care. About Fisher.

  • OKAY 6.0

About Author

Staff Television Critic: Lisa Fernandes, formerly of, has been watching television for all of her thirty-plus years, and critiquing it for the past seven. When she's not writing, she can be found in the wilds of the Northeastern United States.