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Ash, Pablo and Kelly make up the team

Ash vs. Evil Dead, Season 1, Episode 4 - It's Your Trip

HaydnSpurrell HaydnSpurrell Pacing hasn't seemed like a problem so far in the opening three stellar episodes, but episode 4 feels off in many respects even if its trademarks continue to maintain the show's center of gravity.

The thirty minute length could not have been more frustrating than it was here, after half an hour of up and down storytelling that felt awkward and with little to no payoff. First and foremost, the fact that Kelly (Dana DeLorenzo) is possessed at all is kind of confusing.

Ash and Pablo (Ray Santiago) were clearly the two characters most affected by the 'nerd' monster last week, and yet here it's Kelly who is under its control (which was pretty predictable from the beginning). She again plays the victim in a series that's using her for that purpose more often than not, so it'll be for the show's benefit that they give her a firmer role soon.

Last week's cliffhanger is dealt with immediately, and treats us to Ruby (Lucy Lawless) showing us just how capable she is. This time, she reveals her history with Ash, clearly shaping up to be the antagonist, for this season's climax perhaps.

The trio though was last seen heading to Pablo's uncle's home, a shaman whose home repels dark forces (demanding a little leap for us to believe Kelly had no trouble being within its confines). This next destination leads to Ash searching inside of himself, leading to a hilarious trip. It's a trip that doesn't relinquish the first apparent signs that Bruce Campbell's character can be a bit too much.

Where in previous episodes his loose tongue was funny for its crass demeanor, here it was a more a case of "please shut up Ash". When the two stories converge, Kelly and Pablo's meeting Ash and the Shaman's, its a welcome jolt in an otherwise dreary episode, pace-wise. Only, it ends right when it needs to keep going.

It's almost as though we got the first two acts (or four, in TV world) and missed out on the final conflict. Kelly stays possessed for the foreseeable future, hopefully a plot that's resolved next week. Where I stated in last week's review that we may get two-parters to break up the solo ventures, it seems the team will reconvene at the Shaman's for a second episode.

With a deadite at the gates and one within the walls, it's no stretch to imagine next week's episode might be one complete half hour payoff, and hopefully it is. Pulling back the lense to look at the characters is one thing, but that's not what happens here. Instead, Ash talks pointlessly while spinning around in his own head, and Kelly sports an illness that finally comes out from its shell. It certainly drags through its midsection.

With an episodic structure the series quickly got a little too comfortable with, Ash vs. Evil Dead is going to have to find a driving force behind its plot, conflict, and characters. It all came to a standstill this episode, and we might just learn that it doesn't really have an endgame, or a long-term plan. Let's hope that isn't the case, and it's certainly not time yet to worry about its longevity.


Posted in Ash vs Evil Dead,

HaydnSpurrell HaydnSpurrell

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