Did you ever get a letter from a dead person? I mean, like someone mails you a letter, then dies and it turns up after the fact? No, me neither. But that must be a similar feeling to the one I got when my last wave of NECA’s Ash Vs Evil Dead figures arrived. I pre-ordered them back when the series was going strong and they sat in my Pile of Loot at the retailer for a while. Ultimately I shipped, not remembering everything that was in there, and when I opened the box this last weekend I was like… “Oooooh!” Yeah. It was kind of depressing to see these appear after the show ended. I’ll refrain from running on about how much this series meant to me. I did that a little bit back in this review, and if I do it again now I’ll just get all weepy, so let’s move on to the figures…
This second wave of AvED figures consists of a new version of Ash from the Asylum in Season 2, a grown up Demon Spawn (remember, we got the kiddie versions in this three pack), and Henrietta who made a return appearance at the end of Season 2 (and who I’ll be reviewing separately next week). The packaging consists of standard window boxes, which share the same cool deco as the packages from the first wave. They are collector friendly and look great all lined up on the shelf, but sadly I won’t be able to keep these figures boxed because of space limitations, so I’m just going to tear right into them. Let’s start with Ashy-Slashy.
The Kenward County Asylum was the setting for Episodes 7 and 8 of the second season, where Ash woke up as a patient and was made to believe that he was really crazy and that the last thirty years of his life had been a delusion. At first, I was a little disappointed they were going this route, it is a bit of a cliche, but they really sold it to me thanks in no part to some absolutely fantastic acting on behalf of Bruce Campbell and Dana DeLorenzo, not to mention the addition of an adorable possessed Ash puppet. Anyway, this version of Ash is from Episode 8, where he’s fashioned himself a new set of battle fatigues from the remains of a straight jacket. The sleeves are nearly ripped off, it’s loaded with cuts and tears, and he’s got a series of belts around his torso holding it together. It’s a great look for him and it makes him appear as if he’s been stalking the halls of the Asylum and fighting its inhabitants for years. It really fits with the confused and dream-like flavor of the episodes.
The detail here is every bit as good as I expect from NECA, even when they’re turning out another version of Ash and in a one-off outfit to boot. Their passion for the source material comes out in all the meticulous details. Besides all the little sculpted buckles, wrinkles and stitching, the paint her is pretty phenomenal. The jacket itself is yellowed and filthy, like it’s been drenched in piss and OH MY GOD, I JUST REMINDED MYSELF OF THE SCENE WITH KELLY AND THE BEDPAN. Also sculpted into the torso is the rig of black straps that Ash uses to secure the sheath for his boomstick that’s slung diagonally across his back.
Of course, Ash’s right arm terminates in his iconic chainsaw, which obviously allowed NECA to reuse the one they used for the original Ash… and the Bloody Ash… oh, and the Ultimate Ash. OK, so it’s been recycled a few times. It’s still great. I really dig all the detail in the attachment on his stump, and the chainsaw includes the grab bar and some great looking teeth on the belt. The only thing missing is a tiny Ashy Slashy puppet to attach to his right stump. Well, at least NECA did a full-sized version.
You also get two different head sculpts, which means not counting the bloody Ash variant, I have a total of six different Ash heads just from the TV series, as two came with Hero Ash and two came with Value Stop Ash. And yes, they’re all interchangeable between the three figures, which is really damn cool. In the case of Asylum Ash, you get a really nice portrait with Ash smirking and another with a more grim, downturned mouth. They also feature his miffed crazy hair.
The articulation here is the same as we’ve seen on previous Ash figures and that means lots of rotating hinges. You get them in the ankles, knees, hips, wrists, two sets in each elbow, and the shoulders. There’s a ball joint hidden in the chest under the straight jacket and the neck is ball jointed.
In addition to the chainsaw arm and extra head, Ash comes with his trusty Boomstick, and yup, it’s the same one that came with Hero Ash. It’s still a solid sculpt and his left hand is sculpted to hold it pretty well. It can also be carried in the sheath on his back. If I was going to limit myself to just a single Ash figure from the series, I’d say Hero Ash is still my favorite, but this one comes in at a close second. But hell, they’re all good and I consider them all essential for my collection. I can never have too many Ash figures, NECA, so keep them coming. And I’m really glad they snuck this version in before the end of the series, because it represents what I consider to be two really standout episodes. Let’s move on to the Demon Spawn…
I don’t have nearly as much to say about this guy, as he is a pretty simple figure, but that’s not to say he’s not good. One of my pet peeves for lines like this is sometimes you just get a bunch of versions of the hero and no one for them to fight. But NECA’s been good about doing the creatures in this one, as this is the third version of the Demon Spawn. Unlike the kiddies, this fella has an ashen colored skin, making him look a bit like he’s made out of stone. That effect is furthered by some of the subtle sculpted cracks and fissures in his skin. The only other detail sculpted into the body is the black patch that covers his demon spawn junk. And as much as it troubles me to have to admit this, it’s a thong. Ewwww.
To make up for the simple body design, Demon Spawn comes with not one, but TWO extra heads. These are all superbly detailed and consist of creepy smile, open mouth snarl, and wide open “I’m going to swallow your soul” mouth. The vacant black voids that make up his eye sockets look great and they have cracked fissures in the skin running all around them. The mouths are also all very well done and display some truly nasty teeth.
The Demon Spawn is also a surprisingly fun figure to play around with, thanks to a few extra points of articulation. The arms have rotating hinges in the shoulders and wrists, and double rotating hinges in the elbows. The legs have rotating hinges in the hips, double rotating hinges in the knees, and both hinges and lateral rockers in the ankles. The torso has both an ab crunch hinge and a ball joint under the chest and the neck is ball jointed at the base and where it attaches to the head. Not bad at all! I really expected this figure to just be a throwaway to pad out the wave, but I’m having a blast with him.
Once again, NECA has worked their magic and added a couple of excellent figures to this short-lived, but much appreciated, series. My only complaints are the obvious omissions of the other mainstay characters, Kelly, Pablo, and Ruby. I can’t say that I’m surprised we didn’t get them, but part of me was still holding out hope. With the series now dead and buried, I’d say it’s a safe bet that this line is done as well. But I’m thankful for what we got, and that I have one more figure to check out, so come on back next Friday and I’ll open up Henrietta the Deadite!