Jill Marie Jones
We’ve reached the vaunted halfway point of the first season of Ash Vs. Evil Dead and it is still safe to say that the show hasn’t missed a step. When we last left our favorite Deadite-slayer Ashley J. Williams (Bruce Campbell), he had been restrained after nearly choking the life out of Kelly (Dana DeLorenzo) while in a dream state. When The Host kicks off, Kelly and Pablo (Ray Santiago) are discussing with Pablo’s uncle Brujo (guest star Hemky Madera) their next course of action. Of course, neither Pablo nor his uncle are aware that Kelly has been possessed by the demon Eligos (Ben Fransham) who they summoned back in Books From Beyond. The opening sequence ends up quite humorous with Ash responding outrageously to all of the things the group is suggesting but not being able to properly convey his reactions due to being gagged.
As for Detective Fisher (Jill Marie Jones) and her new “best friend” Ruby (Lucy Lawless), they are only visited briefly during this episode, where we see that Ruby is using Ash’s severed hand as a sort of demonic GPS to track down good ol’ Ash and the Necronomicon.
Meanwhile, Brujo begins his exorcism on Ash as Pablo and Kelly grow closer. After finding Ash’s hidden stash of weed, Kelly uses the shotgun as a pipe and tries to convince Pablo to do the same, planning to load a shotgun shell when he attempts to light the barrel. Thankfully, a moment’s hesitation leads to Eligos revealing himself, just as Ash and Brujo run into make the save. The rest of the episode focuses on exorcising the demon from Kelly’s body, including several nods to The Exorcist.
As things appear to grow more dire for any hope of Kelly regaining her own body Pablo and Brujo have a great moment of bonding, while Kelly pleads with Ash to take her life, only to reveal it as a mind game that calls back to a previous episode. Pablo is finally able to lure Eligos out of Kelly’s body, and Ash is able to kill the demon, but not before Brujo is impaled. Pablo decides to burn his uncle’s body and accept his destiny following in his footsteps. The episode ends with Pablo gifting the new hand he began working on in the previous episode.
Returning to direct is David Frazee who also helmed the previous episode, with writing credit going to Zoe Green, who has no credits outside of the show. Given that both Brujo and The Host all take place in the same location with the same director, they flow well together as one giant episode. The only real downside to this episode is really the one thing that has somewhat hampered the show from the beginning, that being the use of CGI. While a lot of the show still relies on practical effects, they do also lean on CGI from time to time, and never is it more apparent and horrible looking than the vomit scene during the exorcism. It’s just laughably bad. Beyond that however, The Host serves its purpose of establishing Pablo’s character further, as well as solidifying the relationship between the three leads.
Given that the episodes at Brujo’s home have been important in building the relationships of the characters, it’s hard to hold the stagnancy of much of the story against the show. Thankfully the group is back on the road, with Fisher and Ruby in hot pursuit, so the next episode will be an important one in regaining the footing the first half of the season featured. At the very least, things need to start moving forward at a quicker pace, as we only have 5 episodes left before the first season wraps up, and from what I understand the show had not been officially renewed at the time shooting wrapped, so the likelihood of a cliffhanger ending isn’t a strong one.
Keep an eye peeled for the next Small Screen Shivers covering episode six, the awesomely titled The Killer Of Killers!