There has always been some confusion about the ending of director Sam Raimi's Army of Darkness. The third movie in the Evil Dead series has two endings. And while both of these endings are readily available on Blu-ray and DVD, some fans are only familiar with one of the two. And because of this, there has been some confusion as to why and how the events of Ash Vs. Evil Dead don't seem to match up with what happened in that trilogy ending fantasy thriller. It was producer Rob Tapert who assured everyone this past July at Comic-Con that Ash Vs Evil Dead Season 2 would finally acknowledge the events of Army of Darkness. But in a recent interview to promote the release of Season 1 on DVD, star Bruce Campbell says that's not true, and won't be happening at all.
The original theatrical ending for Army of Darkness actually matches up with Ash Vs Evil Dead Season 1 quite nicely, as it put Ashley Williams back in the S-Mart. Though he now longer was working for that establishment at the beginning of the Starz series, he was still an aging lothario and stock boy at another retailer, before the Deadites returned. Where it gets confusing is the alternate ending that was released on DVD and Blu-ray, which is the much more widely seen ending. It has Ash oversleeping his hibernation in Medieval times, only to wake up in the Apocalyptic future. Perhaps we can all write that off as a dream?
The problem with reintroducing Army of Darkness back into the timeline of Ash Vs Evil Dead isn't story related. Army of Darkness is a Universal Pictures movie, and there still seem to be some rights issues with the title. And it was rumored early on that Universal wanted to reboot Army of Darkness as its own franchise as Sam Raimi and company moved forward with the sequel series. According to Bruce Campbell, this is what is keeping Army of Darkness and its events out of Ash Vs Evil Dead. About Rob Tapert's earlier comments, the iconic cult actor had this to say to Arrow in the Head.
"I've been sort of putting that to bed. It was a random thing that Rob [Tapert] said, and you know how the internet is, if you see one sentence written, it's real. I think Rob was more alluding to the fact that we've already taken stuff that would have been in Army of Darkness. He still time-travels before Army of Darkness. People have always asked, "Where is Army of Darkness?" Like, we don't really need Army of Darkness. That was sort of our take on the whole thing. You've got to be careful referencing certain movies, because then you have to make deals with certain partners that might own those certain movies.
Perhaps this will change in upcoming seasons? Rob Tapert seemed pretty adamant that the events of Army of Darkness would somehow be brought up in the show. Some how. Some way. Here's what the producer had to say at Comic-Con.
"We actually can reference [Army of Darkness], and we reference it in this coming season. We just don't pull upon that universe, but this coming season Ash is able to talk about events that happened in Army of Darkness, although people are not likely to believe him, of course."
Ash vs Evil Dead returns to Starz for season 2 on October 2, 2016. Lee Majors will be making his series debut as Ashley Williams' dad, with Ash making his way back to his hometown. There will be plenty of new ghouls and monsters for Ash and his friends to fight. And this next season promises to be even better than the last. We have a newly released poster that shows the whole gang saluting America in case you missed it from early in the month.