After last week’s critically acclaimed season premiere, directed by Sam Raimi himself, it may be hard to imagine that anything will be able to reach the same level of confident humor and gut-bucket gore. Good news is, the second episode is just as funny and cheesy as the first one, and the blood flows as thick and red as ever. Once your get over the fact that the post-pilot episodes are about 12 minutes shorter in length, there are still plenty of things to sink your horror teeth into here.
Picking up right where we left off, Ash and Kelly are still arguing about whether or not they should go investigate the mysterious return of her mother, who was previously presumed dead. Ash doesn’t want to go, but Pablo tricks him by saying that Kelly brought the Necronomicon back home to her parents’ place. This whole set-up is perfect for awkward family jokes, and that is exactly what we get. I love how Ash doesn’t doubt for a second that Kelly’s mom’s homecoming is nothing but a scheme of evil, which makes for some rather hysterical moments of flat-out laughter.
Just take the dinner scene, which is filled with deliciously dark comedy that slams every notion of a traditional family meal. Ash carries a gun on his back, has a chainsaw in place of his right hand, and Kelly’s mom carefully slips that into the conversation by saying she doesn’t like to have guns at dinner. It’s funny, especially because we all know that something is totally off. Ash then continues starring at her with suspicious eyes, expecting the evil inside to reveal itself. When it doesn’t, he coldly asks her: “what are you waiting for? You know you want a piece of this”. I don’t know about you, but I was laughing my ass off throughout the entire scene. It gets even better when he basically starts interrogating her, as if she was a stranger in his house, not the other way around.
I do feel like there were some missed opportunities to create real drama here. They mostly played it all for laughs, which I suppose is the point of it all. My only fear with this show is that eventually it might become so silly that we simply stop caring about what’s going on. The female police detective is still running around, looking all sad, and I hope she gets more to do in upcoming episodes. I think we need something to balance out Campbell’s wacky attitude. A more serious character, so to speak. Neither Pablo or Kelly seem to provide much of that, so someone else has to step in and fill those shoes. Bait is not quite as exciting and thrilling as what we got on Halloween, but the writing is still wonderfully bizarre and pitch-black. Campbell really is the driving force of the show (surprise!), and as long as he keeps spitting out razor-sharp one-liners and insults, the premise will certainly never become boring. Just be careful not to turn this vehicle into a monster-of-the-week routine, that’s all I’m asking. I still feel groovy, though. Give me some more!