Ash Vs. Blackbeard: The Army Of Darkness Halloween Special Reviewed
by Josh Davison
[*Mild Spoilers Ahead!]
A Charleston tour guide tells an audience the story of Blackbeard’s siege of Charles Town during the Golden Age of Pirates. Ash Williams is among the guide’s audience, and he isn’t impressed. He is there to meet up with a girl he met on a dating website, but she is nowhere to be seen. The tour guide set Ash up, and he uses his “sacrifice” to summon the resurrected crew of the Queen Anne’s Revenge, including Blackbeard himself.
In the back-up story, a crew of college students bring a talking board to commune with the dead in a cemetery. This doesn’t go well.
The Army of Darkness Halloween Special brings Ash into conflict with an army of ghost pirates. Fighting the undead is normal for Ash of course, but this specific flavor of evil brings something fresh to the table.
The story has a pleasingly quick pace, as it’s not long before Ash is staring down Blackbeard and his crew. That said, little is done with the premise of pirates in modern Charleston. They fire a cannon and menace Ash a bit. There’s not even a sword fight. You could have Ash dueling Blackbeard with his chainsaw.
Ash is in full form at least. He’s the same smug jackass who’s so lame that he’s actually cool that we’ve always known. His reason for being there alone is so distinctly Ash.
The backup story also shows Ash in his classic persona, and that makes it quite entertaining too.
Eoin Marron brings a nice touch with a somewhat classic comic book style. Ash has a traditional hero figure with a square jaw. The pirates look like the kind that fought Errol Flynn. The color of Chris O’Halloran is bright and pops off the page. Sam Lofti brings a nice tough to the second story, bringing character models almost reminiscent of Riverdale. Dee Cunniffe’s color art in this section is darker and fits the setting well.
Army of Darkness Halloween Special is a delightful return for Ash Williams to comics. It’s not perfect, but it delivers a lot of entertainment. Plus, Ash may very well be the best protagonist ever designed. This one earns a recommendation. Feel free to check it out.
Army of Darkness Halloween Special comes to us from writers Chad Bowers, Chris Sims, and Benito Cereno, artists Eoin Marron and Sam Lofti, color artists Chris O’Halloran and Dee Cunniffe, letterer Taylor Esposito, and cover artist Reilly Brown with Jim Charalimpidis.