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ARMY OF DARKNESS: ASH IN SPACE TPB (review)

Review by Clay N Ferno
Writer: Cullen Bunn

Artist: Larry Watts

Cover: Gabriel Hardman
Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment
Pub. Date: August 26, 2015
UPC: 978160690691051999
$19.99

The recent Ashley Madison hack has exposed information that has global and interstellar consequences.  

Ash in Space has revealed that Sheila (his bride from Army of Darkness) is long dead and there may have had some hanky-panky between The Chosen One, the eternally cool Ash Williams, and a female astronaut on the International Space Station.

What are we talking about, here?

Come on, baby! We’re just using the latest click bait headlines to get you into the world of the Deadites once again as we review Dynamite’s Army of Darkness: Ash in Space!

Cullen Bunn (The Sixth Gun, Harrow County, Magneto) brings Ash, his new hand and a chainsaw all the way past the stratosphere to fight Deadites and an evil satellite. Larry Watts (Robyn Hood, Grimm Fairy Tales) slays it on the art. 



I wonder if Ash’s boss at S-Mart ever wondered where he went. He’s been gone awhile in the time stream, thanks to the spells in the Necronomicon.

If he times his return right, maybe he’ll be able to cash in some sick days.

My comic reading habits have changed over the years, I’m waiting on more trades than ever these days, and this book is no exception.

Granted, I am also a Wednesday Warrior, trudging in to the store at the crack of 11am every week like your Grannie on Black Friday at S-Mart. I saw Issue #1 of this series on the shelves, sighed a gave a collective “NAHHHH”. Perhaps I remembered when Tex & Tieri sent Punisher to space and thought better of making a huge commitment.

To say I was skeptical at first is an understatement.

But after re-watching Evil Dead recently and looking forward to Ash vs. The Evil Dead on Starz, my Raimi-meter was getting running low. I needed more.

Cullen Bunn is one of my favorite writers (and his version of Venom is now in space too, I guess, or was…hard to keep track). I’m so familiar with Ash and his swagger that I’m surprised when people don’t recognize me quoting from Evil Dead 2. Bunn gets those Ash quotes spot on, not only with his dialogue but his body language and super confidence that he is the one that is here to fight the Deadites as The Chosen One.

Earlier this summer I reviewed the Big Trouble in Little China TPB. The correlation is that I love these movies more than your average Kandarian. Both Army of Darkness and Big Trouble formed my sense of humor with my group of geeks and outcasts. And yeah, these movies made me kind of a wise ass and a punk in situations I would have normally have had sand kicked in my face.

Sure, it’s not PC, in fact we hope that any sexism (easily four different panels in this trade off the top of my head) is being dealt out by Ash in a tongue in cheek way. Bruce Campbell brings a lot of himself to his acting, and even recognizes by playing an aging King in Bubba Ho-Tep that his own Elvis schtick is just that, an act with all the exaggeration of a Vegas impersonator.

Ash’s quotes from the movie appear here, certainly “Klaatu! Barada! Nikto!” as well as “Groovy!”

Things get all timey-wimey when Ash wakes up to head after Artemus Vrill and the Necronomicon in the Middle Ages. As you can imagine, Arty and his army of Deadites are no match for our hero but what happens next will surprise you! There we are with the clickbait again. It’s not surprise, he travels to the future to stop Vrill from taking the most evil book to space in the Space Shuttle!


Looks like going through an extra dimensional portal isn’t that far off from launching into space or seems weird to Ash. I mean, his world has been pretty weird since deciding to go off to the woods for a weekend with his pals.

In space Ash faces Deadites, reclaims the Necronomicon and stares down multiple threats including a robot (think T-800) version of Evil Ash, Vrill and a god-forsaken juiced up satellite!

He does have some help though from a crew of three female astronauts, ‘80s heavy metal lyrics, his Boomstick and the spells of the Necronomicon on his side. Not to mention a sweet [spoilers!] exosuit that would make Ripley jealous.

Long story short, this comic was made for me and my jerk friends that spent countless afternoons watching not only Army of Darkness but also Aliens, Lethal Weapon and playing Street Fighter.

Though Mr. Bunn grew up in North Carolina, I strongly feel as though he could have been living a parallel life to mine just one town over. Maybe that vortex connects more things together than bringing Ash to the Middle Ages, and now into space.

What do you think can happen if I scream “Klaatu! Barada! Nikto!”? Nothing could possibly go wrong!

Before I blow this popsicle stand, we can’t forget about the art in this book!

Larry Watts is a great choice for this one. Great action, sci-fi and horror in an easy to follow storytelling style. Other artists might have gone the lazy route, but on every page is something different. For example we go from castles and trees to space stations and evil robots. Also his facial expressions on Ash are so true to form!

Gabriel Hardman with Jordan Boyd (Invisible Republic) provide the new trade cover as well as each of the individual issues.

This collection includes a short prelude story as well as some cool backup material including the prelude script as well as Arthur Adams and Tim Seeley variants among others. Be sure to grab the trade especially if you missed the prelude!

For more details visit Dynamite.com

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