By Jessica Dwyer
Dana DeLorenzo is part of the unlucky duo that has joined forces with Ash to fight deadites in the hit STARZ TV series “Ash vs Evil Dead.” She plays Kelly, the object of her friend Pablo’s affections and a girl who just lost her parents (her mother twice) due to supernatural forces.
Kelly’s been having a rough time of it and last week’s episode was a wild ride for her and Pablo as Kelly is possessed by a REALLY nasty demon and has to go through a painful exorcism in order to be freed. Not everyone gets out alive and Kelly goes through the ringer. But she’s a tough cookie and more than holds her own with the evil she’s fighting.
DeLorenzo is pretty fantastic herself. Coming from a heavily comedy filled background, she’s been part of “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson,” “Workaholics,” and was part of the “Mancow” morning show before joining the fight against the forces of darkness.
Her role as Kelly is an important one as she’s one of the few women (Sheila being an exception) that’s managed to stay alive that Ash has been around for any length of time. She’s smart, capable, and just as snarky as “The Chin” when it comes to one liners.
In fact Kelly is one of three women in the five lead roles of “Ash vs Evil Dead” and that’s pretty amazing for a show about a middle aged man who’s a demon killer. In the world of horror, it’s downright spooky to see, especially when all of those women are as strong and diverse as those in the series. Amanda, an African American cop, Ruby, a forty something year old badass chick, and Kelly who we know (as does Ash rather awkwardly) is Jewish.
I got the chance to talk with Dana DeLorenzo about her role in the series and how great it is to see women like this represented. It just goes to show, genres like sci-fi and horror are some of the best places to find strong women.
JD: In a cast of five people the strongest and probably smartest characters are women.
DD: How awesome is that?
JD: It’s amazing! Did that surprise you when you took the role and how important was it when you discovered it?
DD: I didn’t get the full script ahead of time but I loved Kelly from the get go. In the audition scenes she was even more of a ball buster and even funnier and more grinding. I love playing a strong character but one that also has flaws and vulnerability. It’s the perfect blend because that’s reality to play both ends of that spectrum. So when I got on board and I got to see what Lucy Lawless’s character was and what Jill Marie Jones character was we all sort of at the same time celebrated. Because in this genre which is sort of dominated by male characters as villains and heroes, here to have the women outnumber the men like you said. And to have them each individually have their own strength and to go toe to toe with this historic and beloved character of Ash, who doesn’t take anything from anyone….to have these women go toe to toe with him is pretty awesome.
And I have to give props to the writers and creators for that because we’re just having a blast.
JD: That’s great! To piggy back onto that, it looks like Pablo is going to be the magic guy; he’s going to be the sorcerer of the trio. What would you like to see Kelly become as she’s sort of a bad ass on her own? And as an aside to that, we know Ash’s iconic weapons are his chainsaw and his boom stick. What sort of weapon would you like to become Kelly’s signature?
DD: What I hope Kelly continues to be…we see these seedlings of Kelly becoming a badass. But we needed room to see her grow, going forward and developing into it. And that’s why she gets put through so much so early, physically and emotionally. So to see her transition and follow in Ash’s footsteps and learn from him how to fight and sort of act out in revenge for everything she’s been through…I hope she continues to show those skills. To continue to highlight one of her strengths which is being very adaptable and one of her strengths which is to be very quick on her feet.
And how that ties into the weapon…I think Kelly’s greatest weapon and I think you’ll see it in a few upcoming episodes if I might tease…is that she turns anything into a weapon.
I don’t know that she’s found her signature yet, her boom stick yet, but there will be a couple of options coming up that man…If she could carry these on her back for the next few seasons it would be remarkable.
And remember I said this because you’ll know what I’m talking about when you get it. A little teaser for ya.
Check out some of Dana’s skills at impressions below and check out STARZ awesome series “Ash Vs Evil Dead.”