Ash vs Evil Dead Season 3

You know you’re about to see something crazy when Bruce Campbell comes out on stage wearing a Hugh Hefner-like pimp suit. That was just the first of many amazing surprises in store for us at the Ash vs Evil Dead panel Saturday afternoon at New York Comic-Con.

There was already an air of anticipation in the Hammerstein Ballroom in the moments leading up to the cast’s entrance on stage. But luckily we didn’t have to stare at a blank screen or listen to a hype man try to pump up the crowd. On the screen in an endless loop was a vintage clip of a bobcat mascot in a high school hallway staring menacingly at the camera from a distance. Then in the next moment, there’s a jump cut with the mascot much closer to the camera. This time it had blood streaming from its eye sockets. Just like that, the audience was hooked. And it wasn’t even time for the panel yet. This was idle time!

Find out what happened during the Ash vs Evil Dead season 3 NYCC panel below.

There was a bloodied cheerleader giving out free Ash vs. Evil Dead flags as we waited—as if we needed something else to get hyped about. Then the moderator came out and introduced a teaser clip for the next season—and it was glorious and bloody and gave you just enough of the humor and gore we’ve all grown to appreciate about the show. The audience was clearly into it too, as they thunderously clapped after it had ended.

By the time Campbell strolled out on the stage in his come hither-wear, the audience lost it. It was the perfect beginning to what instantly became my favorite Con panel so far. Campbell wasn’t even on the stage very long. But he was there long enough to give us some of his snide humor by saying “If there is one thing I know about Evil Dead fans, they are never satisfied. [Pause for effect] And that’s why we’re going to show you the entire first episode of the third season!” It was like (what I imagine) being at a ballgame is like; thrilling, loud, and bursting with enthusiasm. WE. COULD. NOT. WAIT.

Ash vs Evil Dead Season 3

Without spoiling anything, the 30-minute episode is epic. When we see the characters this time around, Ash (Campbell), and his partners in crime Pablo (Ray Santiago) and Kelly (Dana DeLorenzo) are somewhat in celebratory mode that they kinda vanquished the town of demons—and they’ve even opened up a hardware store (which also sells dildos and condoms, but that’s beside the point). Their festivities come to a screeching halt when Ash’s long-lost wife Candace Barr (get it, Candy Barr?) comes into the store and tells Ash they have a daughter (Brandy played by Arielle Carver-O’Neill). So sets the tone of the new season which, judging by the premiere episode is not without its surprises, sarcasm, and lots and lots o’ blood. I think it’s safe to safe that the crew isn’t entirely out of the dark yet.

Needless to say, the audience loved it. And yes, we weren’t satisfied because we wanted more. But we’ll take this, because it was so good. Campbell got back on stage after the episode was over, and was joined by Santiago, DeLorenzo, Carver-O’Neill, and Lindsay Farris (who plays an Ash superfan and new member of the crew). The attendees weren’t the only ones hyped about the new season. The cast was apparently still coming down from their high after watching the episode, which also showed the return of badass Kelly (my second favorite character on the show, after Ash). DeLorenzo fed into the audience’s hype by teasing the theme of the season, which was “Everyone fulfilling their destiny.”  She followed that up with “Kelly is going to get her revenge and it’s going to rival Kill Bill.”

Santiago also told us a little more about what to expect from Pablo this season, who you may recall has gone through a lot the last two seasons—picking up a particular set of dangerous skills under Ash’s tutelage. So he is back and finally gets a chance to kick some serious undead ass. “The illegal has powers now, so watch out. A lot of the things that you think aren’t going to happen, do.”

But of course the biggest elephant in the room, so to speak, was the fact that Ash, who’s not really proven himself to be the most responsible type, now has a daughter. Is that going to make him change some of his crazy antics? Not really. “He’s basically the worst father ever,” Campbell said. “The parenting skills need refining. But he never lies to his daughter. I think Ash having a daughter helps him be a more full-dimensional character.”

Ash vs Evil Dead Season 3

Even though she was the new girl on set, Carver-O’Neill (above) wasn’t treated with kid gloves. “I was pretty much constantly covered in blood the whole time.” Meanwhile, Farris, who like Carver-O’Neill, is from Australia, geeked out over the fact that he is now starring in one of his favorite shows. “I wish I could share the experience of being a fanboy to stepping onto the set.”

But no one was luckier than the several members of the audience who were given wads of cash by Campbell, who dispensed money out of his own pockets to fans. The first? A guy who said his character made him become the maniac he is today. Kudos to you, dude. He wanted to know what fans can expect from the season. To which Campbell responded, “I will allude to the ending of the upcoming season. Everything will be different.” Not much of a teaser, but still a pretty witty response from the legendary actor who was clearly hamming it up on stage. He gave out money—a $5 bill then a $20 bill, because he was out of $1s—until DeLorenzo said, “Okay, be honest. How many of you are just lining up for questions just to get some money?”

The wildly entertaining panel ended with all of us singing happy birthday to Santiago’s niece, who wanted to attend the panel but he mistakenly gave her the wrong location for it—and it was supposed to be his birthday present to her. So he brought her up on stage and we all sang to her. “Leave it up to the Puerto Rican to take over the mic, and make it cultural and emotional,” he said.

None of us minded. We’re still riding high from watching the premiere episode.

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