The Evil Dead is an incredibly iconic name in horror, but the franchise’s title was almost completely different. Despite The Evil Dead being a long-running series that has enamored horror fans for decades, The Evil Dead actually wasn’t the first choice for the franchise’s title, with it going through several different ideas before landing on the final name. Luckily, though, the title ended up being changed, with the updated Evil Dead name probably saving the franchise.
The Evil Dead follows Ash Williams as he faces off against an army of demons known as Deadites, with the main series consisting of three movies and a TV series. However, Evil Dead has become so popular that it actually received a reboot series, which started with 2013’s Evil Dead and is continuing with a sequel called Evil Dead Rise. The prolific Evil Dead franchise has become a horror staple, but originally it was meant to be called something completely different. Had this name stuck, the outlook for the franchise would have been much worse.
The Evil Dead Was Originally ‘The Book Of The Dead’
As it turns out, The Evil Dead was originally called The Book of the Dead. This title clearly refers to the franchise’s Necronomicon, the demonic book that awakens the Deadites and makes appearances throughout the films and TV show. While the title makes sense due to its Necronomicon connection, it just doesn’t work nearly as well as the Evil Dead title.
The Evil Dead name instantly gives viewers an idea of malevolent forces that wish to do harm to the main characters, which perfectly summarizes the Deadites. The Book of the Dead, on the other hand, only references The Evil Dead‘s Necronomicon Ex-Mortis, which is just a MacGuffin that is designed to get the action of the film going. The Book of the Dead overall is just a pretty bland title, something that isn’t nearly as striking as the Evil Dead name.
The Book Of The Dead Wasn’t The Worst Evil Dead Title
While The Book of the Dead is the most well-known alternate title for the Evil Dead franchise, it is far from the only one. The franchise went through all kinds of terrible possible titles, ranging from generic to downright hilariously bad. One bizarre title was A Hundred and One Percent Dead, which is as wordy as it is campy. Another option was Blood Flood, which was apt for The Evil Dead‘s excessive gore, but it just isn’t that clever.
For some reason, a bunch of the alternate titles for The Evil Dead focused on gender. These include These B*tches Are Witches, Fe-Monsters, and the incredibly wordy The Evil Dead Men and the Evil Dead Women (via BookoftheDead). While some of the Deadites are women, it’s not so integral to the franchise that it needed to be in the title. Luckily, the series eventually landed on The Evil Dead name, with the marketable title contributing towards its massive success.
More: Evil Dead Rise Fixes One Of The Reboot’s Biggest Problems