Tuesday, May 1, 2007
Music: Evil Dead -The Musical
Oh yeah. You read the title right. Sam Raimi’s first two Evil Dead films (and bits of the third) have been combined into a full-scale off-Broadway musical (now running in Toronto), and there is now a cast album to prove it. (And, of course, in this day and age there’s a website or two, as well.)
Just as the Evil Dead franchise is a spoof of the typical 1980’s horror film, Evil Dead: The Musical lampoons not only horror films, but also just about every convention of musical theatre in the last 40 years.
Foul-mouthed and irreverent, Evil Dead: The Musical is about as far from the Disney-inspired (and frequently sponsored) typical Broadway musical. (Although it does have a talking moose head.)
If you aren’t familiar with the Sam Raimi films that launched Bruce Campbell to legendary cult-hero status, then . . . (apologies to Rod Serling):
Picture, if you will, a group of pheromonally-motivated attractive young people off to a secluded cabin for a lively weekend of, well, you know.
Something evil in the woods turns the group one-by-one into zombie-like Candarian demons, save for Ash, the intrepid and wise-cracking S-Mart employee who dispatches the monstrous creatures with a chainsaw and a shotgun, which he affectionately calls his “boomstick.”
Pop-culture references abound, and no one, not even Henry Winkler, is safe from the clever and biting lyrics of songs like “Do the Necronomicon”, “Bit Part Demon”, “Housewares Employee”, and, my personal favorite, “What the F*** Was That?” (Censored here but not on the cast album.)
As I listen to the CD, I become increasingly envious of the audiences who got to see the show during its three-and-a-half month Off-Broadway run, and I am contemplating a trip to Toronto just to catch the production live . . . and, of course, to drop in on some relatives while I’m in town. (My mom reads this blog.)
One person who did get a chance to see the original production is Bruce Campbell himself, and here’s his endorsement directly from the CD jacket:
“Evil Dead: The Musical was everything I hoped it would be: outrageous, high-energy, and really f***in’ funny.”
The Shane Bernier birthday card campaign seems to be progressing well from what some of you who have e-mailed me and stopped me on the street have told me. The employees at the card shop where I bought my last batch of cards and the ladies behind the counter at the post office have all now asked me for the address, so, record or no record, it looks like the Mile High City will be well-represented on Shane’s wall and in his heart.
For those who have been moved to further action by Shane’s story, here is a link to The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, where you can learn more about the disease and what can be done to help Shane and kids like him.