"Army of Darkness Vs. Xena Warrior Princess - Why Not?"
There have been many bizarre crossovers in the Army of Darkness comic book series, pitting Ash against foes that he couldn't face in movies because of rights or budgetary issues. The long-rumored Freddy Vs. Jason Vs. Ash story? Happened in comic form. Marvel Zombies Vs. Ash. Darkman Vs. Ash. Ash Vs. Reanimator. They even have a comic where Ash saves President Obama. But the Ashley J. Williams/Xena Warrior Princess crossover struck me as ridiculous and yet intriguing enough that I just had to check it out. They even called it "Army of Darkness Vs. Xena Warrior Princess - Why Not?" so they clearly realize it's a pretty goofy idea themselves.
Maybe it's because Bruce Campbell frequently appeared on Xena's show, or maybe it's the fact that Lucy Lawless is going to be a recurring character on the new Ash Vs. Evil Dead TV series, or maybe it's just the fact that the Evil Dead series has always involved interdimensional time travel, but there's something about this crossover that just kind of works. I mean, it's ridiculous, and cheesy as hell, but given the source material that's to be expected.
You can never have enough Bruce Campbell. Now they just need to involve Brisco County Jr. and Jack Stiles in the next one.
Our story picks up right in the middle of the Army of Darkness film, during the scene in the windmill where our favorite S-Mart-employee-turned-medieval-hero Ashley J. Williams is busy squashing all of his evil duplicates that came from the broken mirror. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, you definitely need to watch the film (though you should really watch Evil Dead 2 first).
It's like Whack-a-Mole, but way more satisfying.
Unbeknownst to Ash (and us, while watching the movie), one of Ash's evil mini duplicates was smart enough to actually hide from Ash long enough to discover that he had a tiny copy of the Necronomicon inside his backpack. A "Mininomicon", if you will.
"Why would I shell out $19.99 for this when I can pay $6.99 for the Kindle version?"
Desperate to escape before big-Ash discovers him and flattens him with a skillet, he opens up the Mininomicon, having no idea how to pronounce any of the ancient Sumerian Sanskrit words he sees, but that doesn't stop him from trying anyway. And since he was spawned from Ash, he naturally butchers the pronunciation and unintentionally opens a portal to god only knows where.
Even the most experienced time surfer can get caught in a temporal undertow current out of nowhere.
Oh, looks like he opened up a portal to ancient Greece, home of Xena Warrior Princess! He pops into a field just in time to witness her fighting an enraged purple cyclops, and that's not some kind of bizarre euphemism for an erect penis, you can see below that she is engaged in battle with a literal purple cyclops. He is frothing at the mouth, and boy is he angry. Again, actual cyclops and not any kind of penis.
You wouldn't like him when he's angry, but you wouldn't like him when he's not angry either. He's just a full-time asshole.
It would seem that Xena and Gabrielle's troublemaking sometimes-companion, Autolycus, has stolen a necklace that the cyclops would very much like to have back in his possession. Of course the King of Thieves protests and professes his innocence. After all, would he ever do such a thing?
Gabrielle reaches into Autolycus's bag and naturally finds the necklace inside. She attempts to give it back to the giant cyclops, but he is too enraged to realize what she is trying to do. He charges at her in a berserker fury.
I like that this cyclops defies the stereotype. He's not going after Gabrielle to rape and kill her, he just wants the pretty necklace.
That's what we call progress, folks.
Gabrielle manages to dodge the cyclops's giant club, as she probably has a dexterity score of 18, easy, but Autolycus is not so lucky, being more used to stealthing his way out of situations. He gets knocked back into a nearby tree, which would have killed a normal man. But this is Bruce Campbell!
Autolycus never quite got the hang of baseball. You're supposed to run up and catch the ball, not the bat.
As he sits there dazed, Little Evil Ash climbs up on top of him. Both are stunned by the uncanny resemblance they have to each other. Having just been hit on the head with a tree, Autolycus naturally assumes that he's seeing some kind of super handsome hallucination.
Autolycus suddenly realized he shouldn't have eaten those strange mushrooms he found in the woods.
He wiggles his finger in front of the little guy's face, which is a thing that people like to do for some reason, even though nobody, no person, no animal, no living creature throughout all of history likes having this done to them, and Little Evil Ash gives the only appropriate response to such an offense, which is to bite his finger. I absolutely love his insane expression as he's gnawing away on that giant finger.
Clearly Autolycus hasn't spent much time around cats, or he'd know you just don't do that.
Xena finally manages to knock out the giant cyclops and Gabrielle returns the necklace, which apparently was some kind of family heirloom. Autolycus had the right idea, you ask me. What the hell does a giant cyclops know about jewelry? Or money, for that matter? They just beat things with their club, eat the things they just beat with their club, and then poop out the things they eat after beating them with their club. He can't truly appreciate the value of such a fine thing. Anyway, while Autolycus was recoiling in pain from his nibbled-on finger, Little Evil Ash managed to slip away. Autolycus asks the others if they saw the handsome little guy, but both of them think it's just his concussion talking.
All those episodes he appeared in on the show and I never once noticed he has two faces.
After Xena and the others leave the area, a couple of fairies come out and watch them disappear. The younger fairy says that they should assemble their badass fairy army and stop these giant asshole humans from trampling all through their territory. The elder fairy says nay, Xena is cool, and they should totally let them pass through their lands unmolested. Little Evil Ash happens to overhear the conversation and can't help but fixate on the fact that they said they have a powerful army. And he conveniently happens to be the same size they are...
Little Evil Ash be pervin'.
We then jump ahead to "some time later", after the conclusion of the Army of Darkness story, when Ash is back working at S-Mart, and the old wizard guy from the movie shows up in the store, surprising the hell out of Ash. The old man tells Ash that he's traveled through time and space to find him because an aspect of the Book of the Dead has gone missing, and it's all Ash's fault (let's face it, it's always Ash's fault), so he's responsible for fixing it.
"I'm looking for a new bass player for my black metal band."
No doubt craving adventure after his time back at S-Mart, Ash (after mistaking an elderly shopper for a Deadite and pointing his shotgun in his face), eagerly agrees to go back to what he believes will be Medieval Times (not the restaurant) to fight more Deadites. So the old man creates a portal and sends him away.
When opening an unpredictable vortex through time and space, generally speaking your chest is not the ideal place to position it.
After sending Ash away, the wizard asks the cashier if S-Mart takes 14th century gold pieces, to which she shrugs and says "sure", so for some reason he decides to stock up on lots of high tech items that he would not be able to power or begin to understand how to use. Except for the liquor, of course.
"Ah, forget all this technological crap. Just bring me whores, all the whores you can find!"
After Ash lands in ancient Greece, we then cut to Little Evil Ash, who it would seem has invaded the fairy court, killed their king with his tiny boomstick, and installed himself as their new monarch. That bastard!! The first thing he does as monarch is have his fairy smiths make him copies of his tiny boomstick and chainsaw to arm his troops with. Then he has them attack nearby towns and villages, reducing them to flaming ruins.
"They all used to laugh at Jughead, call him names. Well, they won't be laughing at Jughead now."
Xena, Gabrielle, and Autolycus arrive in a small nondescript town and Autolycus immediately parts ways with them to head to the "little thieves room". Around the same time, Ash arrives in town and heads to the bar, firing his shotgun at the ceiling and then asking which of the sniveling peasants found within would like to buy a genuine time traveling hero a drink. With an entrance like that, how could anyone deny him?
When you have a smoking shotgun over your shoulder, entering a room and insulting everyone in it is one of many privileges you can enjoy.
Naturally Ash is immediately mistaken by the locals for Autolycus and a large barbarian man approaches him seeking revenge for the time Autolycus seduced his baby sister and swindled his family out of their dowry, and then the other time that he returned and attempted to seduce his sister's identical twin and swindle them out of yet another dowry.
"Santa the Barbarian knows you've been a bad little boy, Ashley."
Ash tries to explain that this is clearly just a simple misunderstanding and that he's not the swindling con artist he's looking for, but the barbarian decks him, knocking him to the ground. He pulls out his sword and gets ready to cleave ol' Ashley in twain, but Ash catches the sword in his metal hand and easily bends it to uselessness.
That's nothing. You should see him arm wrestle. "OVER THE TOP, ASH!! OVER THE TOP!!"
Taking advantage of this element of surprise, Ash leaps up and punches the barbarian in the face, easily knocking him out with his metal hand. As he is striking a victorious pose on his fallen attacker and asking if any of the other knuckledraggers in there would like to go toe-to-toe with the Ash-man, another patron comes up beside him and knocks him in the head with his mug of ale, knocking him unconscious.
What's so impressive about this is that the guy didn't spill any of his beer doing it.
The patrons (most of whom have some grievance or another with Autolycus) are just about to kill the defenseless Ash, when Xena and Gabrielle happen into the bar and, mistaking Ash for their "friend" Autolycus, announce that anyone who hurts him is going to have to tangle with them first.
The first guy in the bar who says "Hey, baby, give us a smile!" is going to have a bad evening.
One of the thuggish mouthbreathing patrons, apparently unfamiliar with Xena, scoffs at the very idea that a woman would ever challenge him to combat and asks if this is some kind of joke. Xena of course shows him that it is not in fact a joke by throwing her chakram at him, which saddles him with an embarrassing new haircut.
"Wow, Bob, I was wrong, your shitty hairstyle actually CAN look shittier!"
Deciding that they don't want similar haircuts, the rest of the patrons decide to let the warrior women retrieve their idiot friend, but Flattop declares that if Autolycus should ever show up in the tavern again, he's going to be in a world of hurt.
"Yeah, you BETTER get your drunk friend out of here. He kept pissing on everything while saying 'Hail to the King, baby'."
So naturally, no sooner than Xena and Gabrielle take the groggy Ash out of there and make way down the street, who should show up but Autolycus, the genuine article! But they think he's come back! Just after being dragged away!! Apparently these moronic simpletons can't piece together the fact that the guy they literally just saw dragged out of there, barely conscious, sans mustache, and wearing completely different clothes, is not in fact the same guy they all have a grievance with.
Imagine if instead of a couple of awkward teenagers in white shirts and ties,
the Mormons sent THIS around to your door while trying to recruit new people.
As they are hauling Ash away, Gabrielle comments that it's rather strange that Autolycus is now wearing different clothes and he shaved his mustache, but Xena just shrugs and says it must be his idea of some terrible disguise. After Ash regains consciousness, he decides to play along and travel with these fine ladies as "Autolycus", in the hopes that he might be able to get laid. After walking most of the day, they finally arrive at the reason why they've been traveling with Autolycus in the first place: the castle of Baron Rattricus, who is keeping the Flame Jewel of Boricua inside. If they can stealthily steal it from the castle and turn it over to the people of Minos, the neighboring country, they believe they can smooth over a border dispute between these two territories because...reasons. Ash is of course not at all interested in the local politics and hardly pays attention, but he happily agrees to break into the castle and steal the jewel, figuring that one he impresses them with his jewel-stealing prowess, he's absolutely sure to get some.
"So you're saying that for SURE my princess is in THAT castle?"
Xena and Gabrielle wait outside the castle as Ash takes care of business inside. They begin to worry when the job takes far longer than it should have and they begin hearing horrible noises from inside the castle. Some time later Ash confidently swaggers back, jewel in hand, the castle on fire behind him.
"Okay, sho my princesh WASN'T in that castle, but lemme tell ya about the rooms full of boozsh I found."
Xena tells him that he has now royally fucked things up by escalating a minor border dispute into an all-out war, but Ash is unconcerned about all that. He tells them they wanted the necklace, and he brought it to them, and that's that. They should be satisfied. Then he puckers his lips up and asks which of "you dolls" wants to see to his reward. Xena gladly volunteers, punching his ass on the ground.
Ash asks "what gives, sister?" at which point Xena finally gets clued into the fact that this is not Autolycus at all! She holds him at sword point and demands to know his true identity and what he's doing here. Ash whips out his shotgun and they're at a stand-off, though Xena doesn't know the true threat his weapon poses. Why, perhaps she merely thinks that he's holding some kind of telecscopic binoculars in her face! Oh, what a primitive simpleton!
Shotgun, Sword, Chakram is a much more exciting game than stupid ol' Rock, Paper, Scissors.
Gabrielle kicks Ash's shotgun away, which is probably not the wisest course of action. Important safety tip: if someone has a shotgun pointed right in the face of your friend and they have their finger on the trigger, running up and kicking said shotgun is typically not going to be your best bet. Ash quickly attaches his chainsaw and tells them that he's tired of being harassed by these two "estrogen-addled broads". He's trying to save the world, after all, and they're not helping.
"Howzabout you ladies come on back to my woodshed and I carve you up like a couple of pumpkins?"
Meanwhile, Little Evil Ash has discovered a new incantation in the Book of the Dead (which he can suddenly read, I guess he had time to learn that ancient Sumerian Sanskrit) which turns his army of blue fairy people into hideous tiny demons! Which I'm not really seeing as an increased threat, since their main offensive weapons were going to be tiny shotguns and chainsaws regardless of how big their claws or how bat-like their wings are.
Symptoms of your transformation into batwinged demonspawn may include nausea, cold sweats, stomach cramps, and the runny shits.
We then cut to Autolycus (no idea how he got out of that sticky tavern situation...that's just kind of how he rolls), who is examining a wanted poster depicting the dangerous criminal Ash (not identified by name), for such heinous crimes as dark sorcery, transmogrification, murder, genocide, robbery, unlicensed slavery, arson, blasphemy, destruction of private property, aggravated assault, and malicious mischief! It would seem that this poster is referring mostly to the actions of Evil Little Ash, but there's no mention of his size on the poster, just a picture of his face. Autolycus is just remarking to himself how this guy, while goofy looking, could possibly, in the right lighting conditions be mistaken for himself.
"It's like looking in a mirror. A sexy paper mirror."
No sooner does he make that observation than he overhears some bounty hunters looking at a poster just down the ways from him and saying how much this guy looks like Autolycus. They tell wild stories about how this wanted criminal is actually six inches tall and commands an army of fairies turned enslaved demons. Another claims that he's sixty feet tall and made of solid stone. Still another claims that he can change into whatever size he desires, and fights with weapons made from dark magic and diabolical science! They decide that this guy couldn't actually be Autolycus because he's way too badass, but it would be much easier for them to simply find Autolycus, shave his mustache, and turn him in as this fiendish criminal to collect the bounty. Autolycus realizes that until his doppelganger is found, he's in serious danger.
Thankfully ancient Greece was full of skeezy looking dudes in hoodies, so he can go undetected for quite some time.
Suddenly a group of centurions come into the square and push the people out of the way, saying they are coming through with dangerous prisoners: none other than the accomplices of the most wanted and dangerous criminal in all of the land, Xena and Gabrielle! At this point Autolycus realizes that his friends haven't ditched him like he had assumed, but that they must have been duped by his imposter into traveling with the wrong man!
Amazingly, this is exactly how my Sexy Adventures of Xena & Gabrielle fan fic starts. It only gets hotter from here.
We then cut back to earlier, as Xena and Gabrielle are fighting with Ash. They ask him what his purpose is and how and why he has to save the world, but he tells them he doesn't have time to play professor for "a pair of stone-age strumpets". He advises them to get out of his way so he can get on with saving the world, but Xena punches him in the face and says they're not going anywhere until he tells them what he did with Autolycus. Ash explains he has no idea who they're talking about, but Xena doesn't like that answer so she kicks him in the head. At this point Ash decides he's had quite enough, so he decides to give them a display of his power by chopping down a tree.
Felling a tree in one swipe, backhanded without even looking? Someone sure didn't read his Tree Removal Safety Guide.
While Ash is distracted though Gabrielle has grabbed his shotgun and points it right at him. She fires it at him, but isn't prepared for the recoil so gets knocked back into a tree and gets momentarily knocked out.
If Ash gets a 1 on his dodge roll, he's going to soon find out what it's like to have two metal hands.
Xena runs over to tend to her fallen comrade, momentarily forgetting Ash. Gabrielle quickly comes to, but then they find themselves surrounded by centurions with no sign of Ash anywhere. The centurions demand to know if they have seen the man on the wanted poster, and Xena tells them that he was there fighting with them just moments ago. "Aha! Just as I thought!" says the leader of the centurions, "I am stupid, so I'm assuming you were all in league together!" Then he has them arrested as accomplices of the dangerous criminal and has them brought back to town.
Surrounded by a bunch of primitives with spears. Where's C-3P0 when you need him?
Xena easily breaks free, because she's fucking Xena, and is kicking centurion ass all up and down the block, but unfortunately Gabrielle is still too dazed from hitting her head on the tree, so the centurions easily grab her and put their swords to her throat. Xena reluctantly surrenders, and Ash watches them get carted away from a nearby tree, hearing the centurion captain telling them they are to be executed when they get into town.
Ash had this Peeping Tom kink that specifically involved seeing women captured by
centurions that he was never able to satisfy until he found himself in ancient Greece.
After nightfall, we see both Ash and Autolycus separately heading towards the city dungeon, hoping to rescue Xena and Gabrielle, Autolycus because they are his friends, and Ash because he thinks that if he saves them, they'll show him proper gratitude and he can still get laid out of the deal (not a shred of guilt at all for his part in their predicament). Now why Ash didn't jump down from that tree and attack when there were only half a dozen of them, I have no idea, because he's made his job so much harder by having to deal with an entire city's worth of guards now. Ash and Autolycus round a corner and bump into each other, amazed at how they appear to be looking in a mirror.
In the next panel they immediately start making out. It's a little uncomfortable.
Recognizing that this is the man who has caused him so much trouble, Autolycus immediately punches Ash in the gut, doubling him over in pain. Ash grabs him by the throat with his metal hand and asks him for an explanation of what's going on around here. Then Autolycus notices that Ash has a crappily painted mustache on his face for a disguise, but that's when they hear someone call out Autolycus's name.
Ash's fake mustache makes it look like he passed out at a frat party, except for
the lack of cock and balls drawn on his cheek with an arrow pointing to his mouth.
They look up to see an entire mob of eager bounty hunters assembled and ready to kick some ass. Autolycus asks how they know which of them is the real deal, and they say they don't care as they throw an axe at his head. So our two bumbling heroes run for their lives from the bloodthirsty mob.
Not since last week had either of them been chased by an angry mob with torches and sharp implements.
They turn down an alley and Autolycus grabs Ash by the shoulder and directs him to follow. At which point he somehow unpacks his ropes and grappling hooks, they manage to get them thrown up and hooked to the side of a building, which they then climb high enough to go unnoticed as the utterly unobservant crowd passes by below. They don't even see the ropes dangling and wiggling back and forth as people are climbing on them from above. I mean, my god, how stupid are they?
"Sometimes late at night I like to climb up here and gaze down with derision upon the little people."
Conveniently this just happens to be the same tower that Xena and Gabrielle are being held in (at the very top). As they are climbing their ropes, Ash comments that there has to be an easier way to get up the building. So he begins punching holes in the wall with his metal hand, which he then uses to climb up the side of the tower. How that is easier than simply climbing a rope remains a mystery. And notice who got to the top first?
Wall done pissed Ash off, and now it gonna pay.
As they figure out their game plan for rescuing Xena and Gabs, Ash and Autolycus compare notes, with Ash explaining that he's been sent to save the world and recover a missing part of the Necronomicon, but he has no idea where to find it, or who has it. Autolycus says that he'd overheard people describing a six-inch version of Ash, who'd used dark magic to enslave a race of fairies and transform them into demons. Ash realizes that this must be one of his mini duplicates from the windmill, just as the army of shotgun-and-chainsaw armed mini-demons swoops down to attack the city!
That many fairy demons flying overhead, you just KNOW you're getting pooped on.
As the demon army attacks, Little Evil Ash tells his minions to leave Big Ash to him. But he flies a little to close to Ash on his bat steed, allowing Ash to grab him with his metal hand.
Ashley J. Williams action figure and rabid bat mount, complete with chainsaw and shotgun accessories, now available at S-Mart!
Little Evil Ash however wastes no time hopping off the bat and climbing up Ash's arm! Oh no! Ash is so powerless to stop it he even utters the word "Futterbuck".
Oh, if only Ash could do something to stop his little evil self like wiggle his arm.
He runs right up and puts his shotgun right in Ash's ear, which could be a problem even with how tiny it is.
Honestly I'm betting the most that thing would do is pierce his earlobe.
Fortunately for Ash, an arrow zips by and catches Little Ash by the shirt, taking him with it as it sails past!
"We used to call him Little Evil Ash, but now we call him Arrowhead. ARROWHEAD. Nyuk, nyuk!"
Ash calls down to the archers and thanks them for helping him out, but he quickly realizes that they give no shits, they are just firing at anything and everything up there, including himself and Autolycus.
Hey, to be fair, they ARE shooting at the little demon fairies. Ash and Autolycus just happen to be covered in them.
Ash and Autolycus bust into the room where Xena and Gabrielle are being held, but the swarms of fairy demons are right behind them.
If I had a chainsaw for a hand I'd probably just saw every door I wanted to go through in half.
So they barricade the door and then have to figure out how to get out of this small closed room before the demon fairies burst in. Ash tosses Gabrielle his boomstick so that she can guard the door while the rest of them think of a plan. Gabs really takes to the shotgun quite well.
"Shotgun? More like ShotFUN!! Amirite??"
Ash tells Gabrielle to take the shotgun and shoot at the floor. She does so, and after a few seconds of their standing on the weakened floor, it collapses under them and they all fall to the floor below.
Autolycus is the lucky one here. He'll get to land on the pile of soft fresh corpses when he hits the bottom.
So they fall to the ground and the Necronomicon falls out of Big Ash's bag. Autolycus sees it and reaches out for it, commenting that this ugly old book must be pretty special if it's caused all this ruckus. Just then, Little Evil Ash flies in on...oh god, I don't even know what's happening here. He's flying in on two fairy women who he's fitted with harnesses and bit gags. But I thought that all of the fairies had been turned into demons? And on top of that, every single time we see fairies before they were all changed, they were blue. So I don't know where he found these two. This really is just completely pulled out of someone's ass.
Yeah, I'm pretty sure there are websites about this very thing.
He tries to convince Autolycus to join forces with him and steal the book, but before he can do anything else, Xena hurls her chakram at him, pinning him to the wall. I know Little Evil Ash isn't having the best of days here, but he really should stop and consider the insane good luck he's got with flying sharp objects merely pinning him to walls instead of slicing him in half.
Some would say that Little Ash is evil. I would say he has the biggest halo of all.
Just then the centurions burst in and demand answers but Ash says he'll take care of everything. Xena plucks Little Evil Ash off the wall, Ash takes the miniature copy of the Necronomicon from him and then squashes him with his boot, thus ending his evil reign of terror. At this point the evil fairy demons apparently just give up and quit fighting. Either Little Evil Ash was controlling them with his dark magics, or these guys have some serious commitment issues.
"Damn, Ash! That's a stone cold way to kill a bitch."
The next day the victorious heroes are all leaving town (after Ash talked their way into a full pardon), and some children come running up to see Xena. She and Gabrielle turn her attention to them, while Autolycus distracts Ash and then knocks him out with a log.
"In my country, this is how we say hello! With greeting log!"
Once Ash is incapacitated, Autolycus grabs the Necronomicon and attempts to open a portal to the future, where he believes great wealth awaits him. But like any Bruce Campbell character, he fucks up the incantation and ends up creating a portal to somewhere he didn't plan on.
"Oh shit, did I just open a portal to a demonic hellscape? I was trying to cast a male enhancement spell."
Autolycus finds himself transported into some kind of prehistoric jungle, where a couple of Deadites grab him and he loses his grip on the Book of the Dead! Because you can't have an Ashley J. Williams story without Deadites! It's about time they showed up!
"Huh huh. Books are for nerds! Let's beat up that nerd and take his book!"
A more powerful looking Deadite grabs the book, telling Autolycus that he's not the one he summoned (he was naturally looking for Ash), but he brought the very book he was looking for, and now it belongs to him. Way to go, sucker!
This Deadite is wearing a red fur horn-nose skull ensemble, and knows how to accessorize with
pearl bracelets and heady reading material that makes him look professorial and fabulous.
But Ash still has the Mininomicon, which he uses to create a portal to the same place (quite remarkable that they would have fucked up the pronunciation the exact same way). He tells the Deadite puke bag to hand over the Book of the Dead.
"See them? They're my posse. Xena there will stick that sword right in your gullet, and Gabrielle and her stick?
You don't even want to know where the stick goes."
The Deadite just laughs and tells them that while he has the Necronomicon, they have the "makings of a perfect meal". They all turn around to see a T-Rex barrelling right at them. How they didn't see or hear it stomping through the trees as it approached I have no idea. I guess they were just very focused on getting the Necronomicon back that they didn't notice the tiny earthquake happening around them.
It's okay guys! Just don't move and it can't see you!
So now they have Deadites and dinosaurs to deal with. They run from the dinosaur and fight their way through the Deadites, determined to get their hands on the Necronomicon as quickly as possible.
"Boy, I sure am glad there's not a MUCH BIGGER threat around like a giant
carnivorous dinosaur so we can focus our full attention on these Deadites!"
The Deadite wizard runs into the woods with the Necronomicon, determined to escape with his prize, but Autolycus follows him. Ash has a close encounter with the T-Rex, but he only talks shit at it as it roars in his face and prepares to devour him.
Good thing Ash was already wearing his brown trousers today, because this is pretty much the definition of a Brown Trousers Moment.
Thankfully Xena is nearby to save his ass. She hurls her chakram, hitting the T-Rex right in the face. It cries out in pain and apparently that's all it takes to make it run away. Man, what luck they had to find the absolute wimpiest T-Rex that ever lived. One little bop on the nose and it goes crying back home to momma.
The chainsaw just wouldn't have been sufficient to take care of that T-Rex...good thing Xena was there with her frisbee!
Autolycus, realizing that his greed has tempted him into making an idiotic mistake, is determined to set things right. He catches up to the Deadite wizard in the woods and tackles him in a clearing, causing the Book of the Dead to go tumbling.
The sports of ancient Greece are so confusing to me.
Just as the others arrive, the Deadite wizard zaps Autolycus and grabs the Book, prepared to start making tracks again.
"Magic Missile! Pew Pew Pew!"
Xena chucks her chakram at the Deadite but he easily deflects it away. As Xena and Gabrielle charge at him, he zaps them with some magical energy. He doesn't see Autolycus pick up the chakram behind him and raise it over his head. I guess he's planning to ask the Deadite to stand still and saw his head off with it? Not really sure what the plan of attack would be here.
Oh man, you'd think they could give us at least one good panel after this where Xena has Bride of Frankenstein hair.
Just as he's getting ready to bring the chakram down on the Deadite wizard, Autolycus hears a loud boom and looks up to see a giant hole right in the middle of the Deadite.
How is it that Autolycus didn't get very very dead standing behind that Deadite?
He looks through the hole to see Ash smirking at him on the other side.
"Hey, it's James Bond!"
Somehow this kills the Deadite, even though there are no organs he really needs in the center of his body anymore, since he's dead. I thought zombie rules applied to Deadites as far as shooting them in the head, but apparently not in this case. They finally take the Mininomicon and place it on top of the Necronomicon, and the two books magically combine back together. It's an awfully convenient thing they didn't combine the books before Autolycus stole it and disappeared through the portal, or they'd have had no way to catch him.
Whatever you do, don't stack your library books on top of the Necronomicon. It will absorb them, and then you'll have to pay lost book fines.
Later, our heroes are celebrating and having some well earned victory brews in the tavern, at which point Gabrielle asks Ash if he can give them the tiniest little piece of the future to enjoy, since they'll never live long enough to experience it themselves. Ash then comes up with an insane "secret project", which turns out to be the construction of an S-Mart store in ancient Greece. This S-Mart only carries items appropriate to the time period, but offers plenty of furs, clothing, weapons, and tools. So he apparently spent extra months just hanging around and overseeing the construction of a huge building using ancient building techniques just for the hell of it. And evidently Xena, Gabrielle, and Autolycus have no problems hanging around for the months it would take to build such a thing, just waiting to find out what this "secret project" was. Because none of them have anything better to do.
And thus, Ash ushered in the era of big box stores that would eventually drive all
the little mom and pop shops of ancient Greece out of business. Way to go, Ash.
Autolycus is the manager of this new S-Mart, and Ash takes the ladies inside to the jewelry counter, to give them a token of his appreciation for their help in his quest: some nice necklaces. Of course, the cyclops working the counter has a hard time parting with the jewelry, wanting to hoard all the nice shinies for herself.
If you can throw the necklace around the cyclops's horn, your first purchase is free!
After Ash gives them their necklaces, Xena and Gabrielle give him a smooch on the cheek to show their appreciation. And with that, Ash goes back through the portal to his own time. Just as he's leaving, Xena asks how they're supposed to explain how this S-Mart just popped up in the middle of nowhere. He advises that they simply say it's magic and departs through the portal with a wave of his metal hand.
Oh, so all Ash wanted the whole time was a couple of kisses? Way to set the bar low there, Ash.
So there you have it, that's the time that Ashley J. Williams met Xena Warrior Princess. They actually have done a sequel to this story called "Xena: Warrior Princess vs. Army of Darkness: What, Again?" that I've not checked out yet. I can only imagine what crazy reason they come up with to have these characters cross paths again. If there's any interest perhaps I'll feature that one in a future Longbox column! Drop a comment below and let me know what you think!
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