The holidays aren't happy for everyone. In a season built around family, friends, peace and harmony, there's one man who knows none of the above.
Ashley J. Williams, S-Mart's finest chainsaw-handed employee, faces his least-favorite time of year in Dynamite Entertainment's "Army of Darkness: Ash's Christmas Horror One-Shot" due to hit shelves December 24.
Written by veteran "AoD" comic scribe James Kuhoric with art by Dave Simons, the one-shot takes a look at the darker side of the season with a downtrodden Ash forced by the Necronomicon to survive holiday scenes warped by evil.
"It follows Ash on a Christmas Eve in his life," said Kuhoric, "He has no friends, family, or lovers. He has a lousy job. And he has to work retail the day before Christmas. Simply put, Ash hates the holidays."
Kuhoric is quick to point out, that even though the book retains AoD's trademark balance of horror and humor, the overall tone of the book is the antithesis of holiday cheer.
"I’m not going to mislead you, this is a dark book," said Kuhoric, "It’s not all dancing Deadite elves and possessed chainsaw-wielding snowmen. This takes Ash on a parallel journey to one we all know and love. Let’s call Ash’s sojourn 'It’s a Blunderful Life.'”
As an unabashed fan of the AoD films, Kuhoric says the idea for the story evolved naturally from concept to printed page. Further aiding the process was he and Simons' mutual "old school" approach to comic book professionalism, which Kuhoric said was key for one of the book's more humorous moments.
"From the first cover sketch, it was obvious that he was channeling some of his excitement for horror into his work. Dave did a fantastic job of really capturing the dark nature of this tale and the uniquely 'AoD' sequences of Ash traveling through some familiar holiday themes," said Kuhoric. "There is a short sequence in this issue where Ash becomes a classic 'Rankin-Bass'-style claymation character. That is one of the lighter highlights of the book and one that will leave a lasting impression on you."
While there are currently no plans for another holiday-themed AoD comic, Kuhoric mused that he could see the model working for other annual events.
"The great thing about 'Army of Darkness' is that you could put Ash just about anywhere and it can be a lot of fun," said Kuhoric. "I could see Ash in just about every holiday setting, fighting Deadite bunnies or even facing undead presidents. He’s already taken on possessed trees, so Arbor Day is in the books."
Now check out a 5-page preview of "Army of Darkness: Ash's Christmas Horror One-Shot," featuring a story by James Kuhoric, interior art by Dave simons and covers by Simons and Nick Bradshaw, courtesy of Dynamite Entertainment.
Feel like it isn't Christmas without a little "Evil Dead?" Yeah, we feel the same way. What do you think about Ash's holiday adventure? Let us know in the comment section!