Sometimes, I just get tired of fighting off those milk encrusted kitchen demons alone. (What I wouldn’t give for a good dagger infused mop or two, as well!) Luckily, I no longer have to attack these undead annoyances as a solo entity – for, at last, Ash is in town! Well, at least until October 12th!
Yes, Evil Dead – The Musical has finally landed with a huge body thudding splatter in Chicago and, for horror fans, Halloween has definitely come a bit early this year!
Lyricist and writer George Reinblatt’s immensely silly homage to the original Evil Dead series is full of winking nods to the Sam Raimi classics with plenty of goofy, fun hearted horror and sex comedy tropes of all varieties thrown in for good measure, as well. It’s definitely not a serious blast of terror, but it’s just about the most stress-free, joy inducing theatrical experience that lovers of fright are going to experience for awhile.
Plot-wise, as expected, Ash and crew head out to a mysterious cabin and after reading from a Book of the Dead, mayhem soon ensues. Everything is in place, here, from (sister) Cheryl’s rape by trees to her subsequent jailing in the rickety vacation home’s basement. Joined in the second act by characters from the similar Evil Dead 2, this production ends with blood flying in outrageous amounts across the front rows of the theater and the sticky, grinning audience members (from the premium rows) corralled out the side doors of the theater.
Obviously produced on a fairly modest budget, this production still delivers with plenty of stage magic. In particular, Ash’s severing of his hand is nicely effective and the emergence of (girlfriend) Linda’s talking head is creatively handled, as well.
Nicely, director Christopher Bond concentrates on characterization as well as hi-jinks with the talented performers. As Ash, David Sajewich charms with everyman bravado while Demi Zaino is an unrepentant delight as Cheryl. Callie Johnson, meanwhile, beams layers of personality into Shelly, a bouncy bimbo-type, and Annie, a take-charge, self important scholar.
Evil Dead – The Musical runs until October 12th, 2014 at the Broadway Playhouse in Chicago. Tickets can be purchased at http://www.theatreinchicago.com and http://www.broadwayinchicago.com.
Be sure to keep up with the production (and its various incarnations) at http://www.evildeadthemusical.com and https://www.facebook.com/pages/Evil-Dead-The-Musical.
Until the next time – SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!