For this show, I'm going to provide two reviews.
The first one is meant for the people who already know Evil Dead, who most likely own a wall of campy horror movies and posters, and love to dress the part. The second review is for the rest of us.
Why are you looking for a review?! You know what to expect, and director Tad Kincade does his very best to provide it - gallons of blood, cheesy dialogue along with foul language and a constant sexual emphasis. WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?!?
Rating: A - Zero family friendliness, wear clothes you can burn later (but you knew that).
As noted for the previous Halloween production this season, I'm not a big horror fan. Splatter movies, in a similar vein (yeah, I went there) hold no interest for me, so I'm not afraid to admit that while Bruce Campbell is a vastly under-rated screen talent, and that the Evil Dead movie - which established Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell in the movie industry - has a fan following, I've never seen it. I know OF it, I know the plot in general, but have never seen it. Frankly, I wish I now had less knowledge of it.
I've never considered myself a prude; I like to think I'm fairly open-minded on things, but have definite opinions on a few things that, to my mind, really matter. However, having sat in this audience tonight, I feel like I've never been more straight-laced, normal, or boring.
The show is crass and rude just because it can be, gory for the sake of being gory, foul mouthed and filthy because it's perceived to be 'fun'. Not to me, but frankly I'm *not* the target audience for the show (which I find comforting at the end of the evening).
Director Ted Kincade opened the show in costume, after purposefully wiping his blood-covered hands across two audience member's chests - he apparently knew them both, since he made of point of saying that after making sure his hands were thoroughly wiped across the woman's chest. As they had paid extra to sit in the 'splatter-zone' seats (the first three rows), the assumption was they wanted the attention and blood anyway.
Kincade advised at show start - and illustrated his point by needlessly inserting a f-bomb into each sentence - that there was foul language in the show, and if any of you didn't like it, you could get the f*** out. Having set the proper tone, the show fulfills Kincade's promise. SuperSoakers of blood are shot across the audience, sex and violence galore (or gal-gore, if you prefer) and puns throughout.
I think we've established: this wasn't my cup of tea. But the intended audience laughed constantly, enjoyed the blood, the casual sex by the main characters, demonic rape, and general mayhem. That's why they were there, and for them this was a fun outing.
The cast was well chosen, the male singers not as strong as the women, but all acted well and seemed to be enjoying themselves tremendously. The set was well done if a bit rough, and the budget for fake blood must have been enormous. For the people this show is targeting, frankly the cheaper the better. The Evil Dead movie budget was a joke, and everything was cut-rate; this production is equally good if not better in same ways.
Evil Dead the Musical has an appeal to certain niche market, and I find myself thankful not to be part of the group.
Rating: B- (if you're not a schlock horror fan, there's nothing here for you; children under the age of 30 shouldn't see this).