Review: Ash vs Evil Dead – Books from Beyond (S01E03)

Nothing that says ‘whimpy’ specifically …

As you can tell by the title of this episode Ash and his gang finally reach the Books from Beyond bookstore. There they hope to gain a little more insight into what is going on and hopefully put the Evil genie back in the bottle. Ash comes up with a plan that in hindsight maybe wasn’t the best idea but it did result in a tense confrontation! Meanwhile Amanda the cop catches up with Ash and the scoobies, further complicating matters.

Books from Beyond did a bit of world building as the shopkeeper gave us a little exposition about the origins of the Necronomicon ex Mortis. The story of the ancient brotherhood was a little generic but it did the trick and the animation that accompanied this segment was nicely done. What we learned wasn’t that much of a surprise but it did expand the Evil Dead mythology, giving the show a little more to work with.

Still the biggest joy of this episode was watching Ash dive head first into a stupid plan. We all know Ash isn’t the brightest light in the room but his plan was a little reckless. He wants things over with and he’s taking risks to get what he wants. Surprisingly it worked too until Amanda came storming in, guns blasing. We’ve seen a couple of Deadites in the first two episodes but the thing they call forth here is something else, clearly this was a higher order baddie (and one that would even have the Winchesters think twice before attacking)!

Oh and Ruby (Lucy Lawless) sure makes a great entrance in this episode! She shows up at Kelly’s house (where last week’s action took place) and went full Buffy-style on some Deadite. Immediately two things become clear: a) she kicks ass and b) she’s also after Ash (by now it’s pretty clear Ash is the center of the storm and everyone is gravitating towards him). Her appearance at the beginning of Books from Beyond counts as a statement: She’s arrived and she’s gonna play a big part in the story now.

I’m glad this episode pushed the narrative of the series forward a little. Last week offered an interesting little detour that showed how cunning Deadites can be, but Books from Beyond showed us a little more of the big picture. Ash and co are involved with something that started a long time ago and have only a cryptic riddle to go on (“The annulment lies inside the origin of the man”)  to stop it.

It is still unclear whether Ash vs Evil Dead is going to stick to the monster-of-the-week formula or is going to build towards a bigger arc but I’m on board either way! This being Evil Dead, things are sure to get worse (and weirder) before they get better. So far Ash vs Evil Dead is off to an interesting start and I’m sure it’ll get more confident as the season progresses. It may not be as serious and intense as The Walking Dead but it sure is a lot more fun!

For this week I’ll leave you with this: Books from Beyond does raise some interesting questions: What is Ruby’s deal? What did that demon do to Ash’s brain? Why is Ash so special?

Ash vs Evil Dead Books from Beyond FI

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