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Army of Darkness: Ash for President
By Avi Weinryb
August 21, 2016 - 22:39

Dynamite Entertainment
Writer(s): Elliot Serrano
Penciller(s): Diego Allindo
Inker(s): Diego Allindo
Colourist(s): Pete Pantazis
Letterer(s): Tom Napolitano
Cover Artist(s): Elliot Fernandez & Pete Pantazis; Variant Cover by Anthony Marques, J-Bone and Wil Quintana

Ash Williams was a housewares clerk at S-Mart before he became a demon-fighting warrior. In this election-focused on-shot, he transforms again, becoming a U.S. presidential candidate. It all starts when the Necromicon (a leathery book with a visage -- the original face book) he has been lugging around since his first appearance begins spouting off about a force so threatening that it’s beyond evil. Now this power has embodied itself in a presidential candidate, putting the universe and reality as we know it in grave danger. Teaming up with a powerful psychic, along with his old nemesis, an unusually chatty Necromicon, Ash will need to get close to the candidates in order to suss out which one is the culprit. To do so, Ash needs to throw his hat into the ring and run for the highest office in the land.

This book suffers from a bit of an identity crisis, trying to be both strong political satire as well as a romp ‘em stomp ‘em demon crusher of a tale. Although the results are middling, it’s still a good time. The presidential candidates represent shades of Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, but with just enough grounding in reality to make the book relevant, while still leaving plenty of leeway for the characters to diverge from their real-life counterparts in unexpected ways without leading the reader to distraction. Ash is the Ash we’ve grown to love; an over-confident, smart-ass with a sense of justice and a rifle (excuse me, boomstick) at the ready, not to mention a trusty chainsaw. He is comically out of his element when he needs to put on a suit and fight using words, but as one can expect, political debates only last so long in this story before the exploding demon flesh and screeches of hell come into play.

Allindo and Pantazis make a great team, with crisp, well-defined scenes enhanced by a strong palette and dramatic use of shadows. The pages pop and action scenes are composed well, allowing Ash to do what he does best -- namely, kick demon ass. If you’re looking to see Ash Williams get on the campaign trail and defeat evil baddies, this book is worth a read. If you’re seeking out a traditional Ash Williams adventure or some strong political satire, you’ll have to look elsewhere.

Rating: 7/10

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