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TV Review: Stan Against Evil 1.3 “Let Your Love Groan” & 1.4 “Life Orr Death”
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Stan Against Evil 104-03

Stan Against Evil
Episode 1.3 “Let Your Love Groan” & 1.4 “Life Orr Death”
Directed by Jack Bishop & Justin Njim (1.3, 1.4)
Written by Jessica Conrad (1.3) & Guy Busick & Ryan Murphy (1.4)
Created by Dana Gould
Starring John C. McGinley, Deborah Baker Jr., Janet Varney, Nate Mooney
IFC
Air date: Wednesday, November 9th, 2016, 10pm

Last week on IFC’s new horror comedy, Stan Against Evil, Stan (John C. McGinley) and Sheriff Evie Barret (Janet Varney) took down a goat demon with the help of Stan’s daughter, Denise (Deborah Baker Jr). That leaves 170 more demons to go.

Stan Against Evil 1.3 “Let Your Love Groan”

This week opens in a bar as two internet daters meet and quickly get hot and heavy in the bathroom. When the woman asks the man if he loves her, he of course says yes, and her eyes beam red and soon he’s left sucked dry… no pun intended… pardon the double entendre.

Evie decides to give speed dating a chance but needs a super judgmental hothead to “weed out the crazy.” Enter Stan, who is duped on the promise of men fighting bears in a boxing ring. Much to their shock and awe, both Evie and Stan meet people. After chasing away a crazy cat lady, Stan meets Brenda (Tara Ochs) who gets his attention with straight bourbon in a coffee cup. Evie meets Sloan (Josh Ventura) and he seems great until they kiss goodnight and his eyes turn red and lights start-a-flickering.

As everyone meets their new soul mate, they begin to age rapidly, with dark blue spider veins appearing all over their bodies. Denise is affected to after finding her soulmate, a potbelly pig. Stan however is not affected and he seems as shocked as he can muster when Evie shows up.

“What happened to you? You used to be pretty and now look like business end of a baboon’s asshole.”

Evie translates Claire’s demon guide and realizes they’re dealing with succubus. She finds the incantation to destroy them and because it’s the only thing a demon can do when it hears the words, it explodes a bloody mess. They rush home to battle Denise’s potbelly pig demon and finally Stan tries to do away with Brenda… but turns out she’s not a succubus, just overbearing with the dietary restrictions. I laughed my butt off through that episode. The three leads play so well off one another and their interactions range from the utterly hilarious to the surprisingly emotional.

Stan Against Evil 1.4 “Life Orr Death”

First off, no, it’s not THAT Ryan Murphy; he of American Horror Story and Scream Queens. We open in Willard’s Mill, 1693, where accused witch Abigail (Adelle Drahos) is burned at the stake, and then apparently sent to Hell. Back to present day ,and Stan is boxing up Claire’s demon hunting material. He plans on making that room a tribute to his hockey memorabilia. Unfortunately, Denise tells her dad that Claire donated all of his hockey stuff to the church. Soon Stan is at odds with the new priest, and Evie is called in to break things up. It needs to be said how utterly ridiculous and great Nate Mooney is as Deputy Leon Drinkwater. His explanation of why he’s going to see the “remaining Bee Gees” is just tremendous stuff.

Father Donovan (Drew Matthews) tells Evie that Stan can have his Bobby Orr hockey stick back, but meets her in the basement, revealing he is a demon who transports her to the same hellish spirit world that Abigail was sent in the beginning. Evie meets Abigail in the “space between the spaces,” and learns the demon must be pierced in the heart with a wooden spear… so you just know he’s gonna end up using the hockey stick. McGinley is very similar to his Scrubs character of Dr. Perry Cox as Stan. Grouchy, sarcastic, dismissive… but somehow, someway he oozes charm. Take his “Bobby Orr’s helmet” talk with Denise. It’s actually rather insightful, until he gets annoyed with her questions.

Stan Against Evil breezes by so quickly, and in the 30-minutes it’s on, you’ve laughed and likely someone or something is blowing up and making a gory mess. It doesn’t take itself too seriously and yet manages to convey emotion when it wants to.

Stan Against Evil returns another double shot of episodes starting Wednesday night at 10:00pm ET on IFC and also available on the IFC app.

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