Interview: Ray Santiago talks Ash vs Evil Dead Season 3

Ray Santiago gives Hidden Remote an exclusive look into the third season of Ash vs Evil Dead. His character, Pablo, has been alongside Ash since the series start but now he’s finding his own destiny.

We have talked to the newcomers, Arielle Carver-O’Neill and Lindsay Farris, regarding the upcoming third season of Ash Vs Evil Dead. Now it is time to chat with the original three about what’s to come for our favorite Ghost Beaters. First up, we have Ray Santiago.

Santiago, who plays Pablo in the series, has gone through a major evolution with his character. Easily considered trusty sidekick to Ash, Pablo has gone on to consistently prove himself as a key member to the group. After serious events threatened his life in Season 2, his life would be forever changed but it may mean that Pablo was always meant for a greater purpose within the Evil Dead universe. Santiago discusses Pablo’s destiny, his relationship with Kelly, and what comes with working on a show like Ash vs Evil Dead.

Hidden Remote: Pablo went through some pretty dark things in Season 2 – he was possessed by the Necronomicon, he was killed, brought back to life– will those events continue to affect him in Season 3?

Ray Santiago: Absolutely. I think Season 3 will definitely execute the evolution of who Pablo is in fulfilling the destiny he never knew he was meant to fulfill as his own hero. In following the footsteps of being mentored by Ash, Season 3 allows Pablo to become the hero he never knew he could be. He’s going to hone in on the gifts that have been given to him passed on by the lineage of his family and the brujos he comes from. The only thing we don’t know is if he is going to be able to control the gift that he has this season, for the good or for the evil of the team.

So is he going to be able to use what he has to help the team or is he going to fight against them? We don’t know. He definitely has a undeniable relationship with the Necronomicon and it lives within him so I think we get to see him teeter between good and evil this season and the struggle of what that finally means to him having that live within him. Can he control it, not control it? Pablo started out as this idealistic naive dreamer, and we’re going to see him become a man he never thought he was going to be.

Hidden Remote: Can you talk about some of Pablo’s shaman-level special abilities he will try to figure out this season?

Ray Santiago: I think this season Pablo will see things very differently and people will see him very differently. So perhaps, now that he is on the spectrum of good and evil, will he be able to read things? Will he speak with other people? Will he visit other dimensions? Will he us it for good or for a sense of evil? Could evil detect if he is good or bad? These are all things we may or may not play with this season.

Ray Santiago

Photo Credit: STARZ via STARZ Media Room

Hidden Remote: You said Pablo is on a path to become his own hero. Now that Pablo and Kelly are no longer just sidekicks, how fun has it been seeing Pablo evolve?

Ray Santiago: You know, it’s really been a beautiful thing. For the writers to allow us to go off on our own journey sort of diversified the franchise in a lot of ways and opened it up in a lot of ways where the story isn’t just affecting Ash but those around him. It’s been super fun. I’ve been able to go into the writer’s room and talk to them and say this is something I would really like to do and 90% of the things I brought to the table this season, we’re executing. There’s a lot of things people have been wondering. Like is Pablo ever going to get laid? *laughs* Is he ever going to learn how to use a weapon? Is he ever going to stop being such a sissy?

Definitely this season, Pablo will always be the heart, but this season, we finally get to see all the things that we didn’t get to see, get checked off. All the seeds that we planted will flourish into something really, really, really great. It’s been great because I feel such an honor to be a part of the franchise. I’m really enjoying having my own destiny and narrative with the character and show how it affects not just Ash, but everyone in this Evil Dead universe. It’s really funny how Pablo thinks he accidentally or coincidentally met Ash and he was proven to be this jefe but in reality we find out Pablo was supposed to be exactly where he was because the world is bringing him to where he is supposed to become.

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Hidden Remote: There’s a new character with Ash’s daughter, Brandy, and it adds this new complicated layer of family so the stakes are obviously higher. How is that going to affect the team?

Ray Santiago: It’s kind of like if Three’s Company got a new roommate. *laughs* Some people are going to like it, some people won’t like it. It will be a crowded household. To me, we’ve finally come full circle and created a sitcom environment. We crowned him a dad, put him in a household, and surrounded him with kooky characters. Then we throw monsters at you, blood and viscera. Not your typical sitcom, which separates our show from other shows. We don’t take ourselves too seriously and we wanted to evolve Ash in a way we haven’t seen him before. Outside of owning every hot girl he can find, we wanted to give him something more to lose. He has definitely been a father figure to Kelly and Pablo, but when it really is your daughter, you have to lose the idiot-ness and be responsible for a human being in a way he didn’t have to be with us really makes for fun TV.

Also, I didn’t mind as Pablo having another girl around to use to make Kelly jealous so we obviously play with that. We also have Dalton of the Knights of Sumeria who I don’t trust at all. I don’t believe anyone when they say who they are. So he shows up with the girl I’ve been pining for three seasons so not too happy about having him around. So you’ve got Ash being a dad, two other roommates being like who are these kids in our house and then you throw some deadites into the equation and it makes for a really fun season. Oh yeah, let’s not forget about ’80s Ruby and how she turns things crazy as well.

Ray Santiago, Arielle Carver-O'Neill, Bruce Campbell, Dana DeLorenzo

Photo Credit: STARZ via STARZ Media Room

Hidden Remote: I guess you answered the question if there will be some tension between Pablo and Dalton.

Ray Santiago: Oh for sure! Pablo doesn’t trust him and where the Knights of Sumeria have been all this time. Why did he happen to find and Kelly and not go straight to Ash? So there is all these different things that will come into play about why we don’t trust each other and you might actually get to see us battle it out.

Hidden Remote: Awesome! So as a fan of the show, what are your thoughts on Pablo and Kelly getting together? Do you think it would be a good idea or do you think it could potentially go on to ruin a special friendship? Give us your thoughts.

Ray Santiago: Come on, I think it would be amazing! Can you imagine if Pablo and Kelly had a baby? It would have my hair and her voice. It would basically be like Marge Simpson! *laughs*

Hidden Remote: I think I might be totally on board for that now!

Ray Santiago: Yeah some people say “they’re kind of an odd couple” but how odd would our baby be? Part deadite, part Italian, part Honduran, come on!

Hidden Remote: In the trailer we see a possessed mascot, a deadite toddler, and sort of giant deadite creature. Is it safe to say this will be the craziest season yet?

Ray Santiago: Yeah I think we’re going to see a lot of people who we haven’t seen in the past become deadites. This is definitely the season for one of the best deadites ever. We fight one of the biggest and baddest monsters that I’ve ever seen. In the past we’ve fought monsters and deadites, but this season we fight this huge, massive creature.

Hidden Remote: And with being on this show, you’re drenched in blood and guts on a regular basis, is that something you ever get used to?

Ray Santiago: Once you get used to it, they hit you with like “oh we’re going to take away your hands this episode.” You can’t use the bathroom after we put these things on your hands since it takes an hour each hand. You just deal with it. “Oh we have to take your face away for three episodes so you have to wear this crazy glue thing on your face, you can’t really eat.” And “oh we’re going to put tattoo things over your body for a whole season” and it’s just like cool, it is Halloween for me every day. I have to say, every year I’m like “yeah, Halloween!” but this is the first year where I was like “I think I’m good, guys” *laughs*, I don’t need to top it. It’s pretty fun, it’s a great job, some shows are very serious in the work that they do but ours is basically like flipping through a comic book.

Hidden Remote: I love that. I heard there is a petition and a #BringBackBoomstick movement on social media, what else can fans do to hopefully get Ash vs Evil Dead a Season 4?

Ray Santiago: I would say fans need to make videos, post them on Instagram. Write to people at STARZ and on social media. Tell them who they love, tell them what they like, why we need it. Just keep fighting for it. I know you guys love it, I just think the visibility has only just grown by having Season 1 and 2 on Netflix. Get the word out there, it’s what I do for a living when not shooting the show. There’s so much content and we need fans to stand up and fight for the Boomstick the way we fight evil every day and every season on Ash vs Evil Dead if they want to see us again. Otherwise we will never see that Marge Simpson-Kelly/Pablo baby!

Hidden Remote: Ah so true, you should put that out there as tease to get fans to demand a Season 4!

Ray Santiago: *Laughs* Will do!

Check out Ray Santiago and the next chapter of Pablo’s journey when Ash vs Evil Dead returns for its third season, February 25 on STARZ!