It’s hard to believe that horror fans met Ash Williams forty years ago. That’s right, the first Evil Dead film came out way back in 1981, introducing us to one of the great horror protagonists. Since then, the franchise has several movies, including an upcoming film in 2022, a TV show, and comics, among other things. Evil Dead fans are a dedicated bunch who have made this saga what it is today. Hail to the Deadites honors the fandom by taking a look at why they love the films (and Ash) so much.
The documentary is now available through Apple TV and features a few famous faces from the franchise, including Bruce Campbell a.k.a. Ash Williams himself. Scream Factory’s YouTube page includes a brief clip from the doc with Campbell discussing fan love for his character. He says people love Ash so much because he’s an everyday man. In the first film, he is not at all ready to survive this weird, twisted, and horrific situation.
“He’s one of the good guys of all the horror franchises,” says Campbell. “There are not many good guys.” He admits that some of his fans are “socially uncomfortable” but says he completely understands why. According to him, they probably find their voice that way.
Ash is certainly the type of character that some people can see themselves in or want to be like. It’s hard to imagine being some super badass tough person or someone who has a specialized skill set to help them survive. Sure, they are fun to watch but you just can’t relate. Ash is a lot incompetent at times, kinda jerky, often silly, egocentric, and just all around fun to watch. For someone who feels like they fold under pressure, Ash is indeed a hero to live vicariously through.
Hail to the Deadites will also include a variety of fans talking about what Evil Dead means to them. Fan videos, recreations, songs, and more are also a part of the documentary. There’s no better way to truly express fandom love than from their own creative minds. Hail to the king, baby!