Ash's Severed Hand (sometimes referred to as the "Evil Hand" or "Ash's Hand") was once the right hand of Ash Williams, though following a fight with the severed head of the Deadite Linda, the hand became it's own independent entity, with Ash no longer in control of it. In an attempt to prevent the eventual "evil infection" from spreading further into his body, Ash cut the hand off at the wrist with a nearby chainsaw. As a result of losing his hand Ash has used a variety of tools and weapons that can be attached to his stump, the same chainsaw that removed the hand from his body in the first place being the most famous "attachment".
Prior to the events at the cabin, the hand was just another part of Ash's body, attached at the end of his right arm.
Events At The Cabin
During a weekend trip at what was believed to be an abandoned cabin in the woods, Ash Williams and a group of friends discovered the Necronomicon Ex-Mortis in the cabin's cellar, and accidentally awakened a malicious spirit called the Kandarian Demon. Over the course of two nights, the Demon turned Ash's friends into soul-hungry creatures called Deadites. Eventually Ash's girlfriend Linda was possessed by a Deadite spirit, and during an attempted attack on Ash, was decapitated. During Ash's second night at the cabin, Linda's severed head fell into the lap of a sleeping Ash, and bit her ex-boyfriend's right hand. While Ash struggled for a moment to get Linda's head to let go of his hand, the Deadite eventually let go when Ash put her head in a vice in a workshed next to the cabin.
After dealing with the undead Linda for good, Ash returned inside the cabin, where he noticed his hand becoming infected with evil from Linda's bite. Eventually, the hand gained sentience and independent control from Ash, attempting to kill it's owner with a variety of plates and bottles. Believing it had rendered Ash unconscious from it's barrage of kitchenware, the hand noticed a large butcher knife on the floor just a few feet away, planning to kill Williams. Ash surprised the hand (who had pulled itself and Ash's body just inches away from the knife) by stabbing it with a smaller knife, pinning it to the kitchen floor. Noticing a nearby chainsaw, Ash pulled the saw's start cable with his teeth, and proceeded to lop off his hand, screaming and laughing while doing it.
Unsure of what to do with the hand, Ash placed a bucket (along with several books for weight) over the hand to keep it trapped in one place. As Ash tended to his fresh amputation wound, the hand escaped it's makeshift prison, and began to taunt it's former owner by running around the cabin before disappearing for awhile.
The hand made it's presence known once more shortly after the arrival of four more visitors to the cabin. After witnessing the ghost of Raymond Knowby appear in one of the cabin's bedrooms, the hand grabbed the right hand of Bobby Joe, one of the new arrivals. Once Bobby Joe realized what it was that was holding her hand, she shook it loose and fled the cabin, and the hand once again went into hiding.
Eventually, only Ash Williams and Annie Knowby were the only survivors of the onslaughts of the Deadites, and the two devised a plan to open a rift in space and time that would pull the forces of evil into it using the "missing pages" of the Necronomicon. After Annie Knowby had opened the rift and turned the Kandarian Demon into a thing of the flesh, she needed to finish reciting the spell that would pull in the creature. As she began reading, the hand managed to sneak up on her and stabbed her in the back with the Kandarian Dagger. The hand then took off into hiding again, presumably not wanting to get sucked into the rift.
30 Years Later
Thirty years after it's "creation", Ruby noticed that the once lifeless rotting hand began to move, indicating to her that Ash Williams was still alive. Ruby then began a journey to find Williams and destroy him, as he is one of the only people that could stop her from trying to unleash all manner of evil upon the Earth. Eventually, the hand managed to escape from Ruby's sight, and made it's way back to the cabin. Over a short amount of time, the hand began to grow a new version of Evil Ash, which attempted to attack the real Ash Williams. The hand was then disconnected and diced from Evil Ash by Amanda Fisher, who believed that the evil clone was the real Ash, who had some how become possessed by the hand.
After altering history by going back in time to 1982, Ash Williams grew a new flesh and blood right hand after preventing his younger self from finding the Ex-Mortis. This new hand was lopped off with a chainsaw by the demon called Baal (while in the guise of Ash's friend Chet Kaminski), and like Ash's "original" right hand, came to life and ran around.
In Other Media
- The hand appears in the video game Evil Dead: Hail To The King. In the game's opening scene, the hand (which has remained at the cabin for several years) activates Professor Knowby's tape recorder containing recordings of the Kandarian Demon awaking spell. Later in the game, Ash is able to control the hand, assisting him to open a locked gate.
- In the mobile game Deploy And Destroy, the hand (called "Possessed Hand" in the game) is a powerful "Legendary" melee weapon that can be equipped exclusively for for Ash Williams.
- The Possessed Hand's in-game description reads as follows: "The return of an old friend. This possessed hand delivers a demonically devastating punch."
- The hand's first appearance in comics was a very brief cameo in the first issue of the Dark Horse Comics published adaptation of the Army of Darkness film.
- The hand makes frequent appearances in Dynamite Entertainment's Army of Darkness comics, specifically those set in the "Earth-818793" continuity. It's first appearance was in the Ashes 2 Ashes miniseres, where it managed to kill The Wise Man of 1300 AD and help create a new version of Evil Ash by bonding to a skeleton. The hand returns in the Old School storyline (part of Dynamite's first volume of an ongoing Army of Darkness series), where it re-activated Professor Knowby's tape recorder in the cabin and attacked Ash. At the end of Old School, it's seen attempting to rebuild the destroyed cabin.
- In Space Goat's Evil Dead 2: Beyond Dead By Dawn comic, the hand is used by Annie Knowby to create a simulacrum clone of Ash Williams to escape Hell. Due to the hand being infected with evil, the simulacrum is part Deadite.
- An early draft of the script for Evil Dead II featured a sequence where the hand returned after being absent for some time, knocking on the cabin's front door, only to reveal that the hand grew ten-times it's normal size.
- A filmed (but ultimately deleted) scene from Evil Dead II featured a third fight sequence between Ash and his hand, taking place during the fight with the Deadite Ed Getley. Another deleted "hand" scene was a brief appearance between Annie Knowby stabbing Jake with the Kandarian Dagger and Deadite Ash scaring Annie by the window.