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ARMY OF DARKNESS Interview With Elliott R. Serrano

Ash returns and who is...Lady Ash?!?

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There's been some talk about The Evil Dead and Bruce Campbell's character, Ashley J. Williams. No stranger to comics, Ash is making his return to continue his fight against the Army of Darkness. With a new series debuting in February, it looks like he won't be fighting alone.

To find out who this lady is and what's coming up for Ash, we asked ARMY OF DARKNESS writer, Elliott R. Serrano, a few questions.

Comic Vine: Where does this story fit in with Ash? How long has it been since his last adventure?

Eliott R. Serrano: When we first see Ash in the new series, it's been about a year since the last series ended. Ash has continued his battle against the Deadite forces, but considering how things turned out with the League of Light he's decided to return to being a 'solo' act. He knows that every time he allows someone to get close to him, they end up as collateral damage in the war against the Necronomicon, so he's opted to isolate himself to protect others.

CV: Who came up with the idea for a female Ash?

ERS: If I remember correctly the idea of having a female Ash was pitched by [Dynamite Entertainment President and Publisher] Nick Barrucci who actually pitched two characters that figure into the opening arc of the new series. After discussing how to make the idea work, Joe Rybandt gave me the idea of using a concept that had been explored in previous Army of Darkness series, that there are multiple universes and multiple "Ashes" throughout. Going from there, the idea of a female Ash intrigued me because there are some great thematic elements you can explore, more so than the "real" Ash meeting yet another one of his male doppelgangers.

I will say that I've been getting a lot of positive feedback on the character, especially from female fans of the AoD series. I've even had one of my female followers on Twitter tell me that she's going to dress as "Lady Ash" for her next comic convention.

== TEASER ==

CV: How long will this arc last?

ERS: The opening story arc introducing "Lady Ash" will last 4 issues, after which we're going to put the focus squarely on "our" Ash and see how he's been faring. Don't get me wrong, "Lady Ash" does figure into what's to come, so hopefully we'll get a chance to bring her back. I have the story arc for the first year of AoD planned out in my head, it's just up to fans of the book to support it so that we can tell the whole story.

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CV: Is Ash still working as S-Mart?

ERS: I can't see Ash working anywhere but S-Mart, so the answer is definitely yes. I view Ash as a 'lifer' when it comes to working in retail. He's gotten quite comfortable doing what he does and he sees no point in changing that. That's not to say that he doesn't have problems at work. I like to view Ash's interactions with the other S-Mart employees as the banality he has to endure when not on his exotic and mystical adventures, quite like when Indiana Jones has to teach class as an Archeology professor. A part of him likes the routine and the 'grounded' nature of the job, but after a while, he starts itching to get away from it all.

CV: Does he have a lot of vacation days to go off on all these adventures?

ERS: Not nearly enough. In fact, his problems with absence from work does figure into the series.

CV: Will there be threats other than deadites?

ERS: Absolutely! Ash has fought more than just deadites over the years and the plot device of having a mystic force that can transport you across time and space - often times at random - gives us an opportunity to do things outside of the "Ash versus zombies" milieu. We'll be introducing new threats, revisiting some old ones, but hopefully mixing things up well enough to keep things fresh.

CV: How many chainsaws does Ash own? How often does he have maintenance done on them?

ERS: In my mind he owns the one that we see him with all the time. To make another Indiana Jones comparison, that chainsaw is like Indy's hat in that he can never lose it. I'll actually be playing with that idea throughout the series. As for maintenance, Ash cares for "Buzz" (that's what he named his chainsaw) and his boomstick pretty regularly. Keeping that baby gassed up and oiled is a priority because you never know when the Deadites are gonna come knocking on your door!

ARMY OF DARKNESS returns on February 22, 2012 from Dynamite Entertainment. Be sure to let your comic shop know you need a copy so you can find out all about Lady Ash.

For now, check out this exclusive first look at some of the interior pages.

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