Hey folks. This is Scott. I’m stepping into Tess’s blog domain here because I want to make a quick statement regarding the “I’ll swallow your soul” (henceforth SYS) EVP. As we indicated during the episode, we are well aware that the character Henrietta says this line in Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead II. To be more specific, she said it five times before he cut off her head spectacularly. Well, she said it a few times even after that.
The line was not in the first Evil Dead, and it was not in the third film, Army of Darkness either. After Army of Darkness, our hero, Ash, was ported over to an original series on Starz called, Ash vs. Evil Dead. That series ran for three seasons, but sadly for fans, Bruce Campbell has gone on record saying he’s ready to move on from playing Ash so there will not be a fourth season.
The iconic line was uttered twice in the course of Ash vs. Evil Dead’s 3 season run. Once in the first 2 minutes of the season finale of the first season entitled “The Dark One.” Then again in the first minute or so of episode one of the third season, entitled “Family.”
I’ve compared the SYS EVP to all of Henrietta’s lines in Evil Dead 2, as well as the Season Finale of the first season of Ash vs. Evil Dead, but was unable to find a streamable version of episode 1 from season 3. I found that none of the five times Henrietta said it, nor one of those two times I could find it in the Starz series matched the voice, delivery, and quality of the one in the SYS EVP. So that’s the first observation I wanted to share.
Regarding the timeline of the SYS EVP as it relates to the Evil Dead franchise; Evil Dead came out in 1981 but did not have that line in it. Evil Dead 2, which did feature that line 5 times, came out in 1987. Ash vs. Evil Dead did not appear on Starz until 2015.
The SYS EVP, recorded in March of 2005, eighteen years after Evil Dead II, and ten years before Ash vs. Evil Dead. Evil Dead II is a possible inspiration for the line by that logic, but not the Starz series if the file dates are accurate. We have not personally verified them, but have no reason to doubt their veracity at this point.
That particular file is among hundreds of EVP files associated with it, all from the Sallie House, that has been shared with us by the Pickman family. By their admission, they’re not organized in the best way because they are from multiple investigations, by various investigators with varying degrees of standards for terminology and categorization. The Pickmans themselves were involved in some but not all of them. However, 99 percent of the EVPs are labeled with the date they were recorded. Is that easy to change? Sure. We have not as of yet explored metadata on the source files, and our timestamps were all updated in the process of moving the data around in our archives. But manually entering random dates in a couple of hundred EVP file names is some diligent hoax work there if that’s what folks are doing. Knowing the Pickman’s as I do at this point, I am not of the mind that the dates of all of those EVPs are made up. I do not believe that.
The Kansas Paranormal Group collected the SYS EVP during an investigation. The voice in it is not the voice of anyone who was present. We’ve found numerous cases recently of peoples own voices appearing in EVPs, and I’ll point to the presence of what sounds like a version of my voice in File 10 during a time when I was not even in the room. To be clear the Pickman family was closely associated with KPG, but as far as we can tell the group at this time is no longer particularly active. The investigation that captured the SYS EVP was, after all, 13 years ago.
As I said, the SYS EVP is only one of probably over 200 that we have right now. I’m not going to pretend I’ve heard them all, but I’ve listened to several dozen and while I don’t always listen to what the person who captured it thought was there, MOST of the time I do. We all know how that works so take that with a grain of salt, but here’s some of what the other EVP’s we have been saying.
1) “There was a boy there.”
2) “Take it to him, Margaret.”
3) “Now you are one of us.”
4) “Can’t keep warm.”
5) “It’s Murphy’s Law.”
6) “Thomas do you want some sun.”
7) An apology after a camera turns off saying, “Sorry about that.”
8) “Did somebody already take the rabbits.”
9) “Deep Unknown”
10) “Here’s another seer.”
11) “I’m a little bit scared.”
12) “I’m not putting anything back.”
13) “Tell Everyone.”
14) “There’s something else. Don’t hurt him.”
There are at least 150 more. We’re going to go through all of those EVPs as time allows an attempt to help the Pickman’s organize them for posterity.
So, yes, the ’swallow your soul’ EVP is in a cult classic horror film and later TV series. The EVP reportedly being recorded after the former and before the latter. Do I think that whatever is there might have said it anyway? Yes. I believe it’s a prankster with a dark, twisted and sometimes sick and evil sense of humor. By 2005, multiple investigation teams had been in and out of that house. We could go so far as to say that no one knows how many people had been in and out of there doing God knows what. The Pickmans moved out 15 years prior. It’s easy to imagine people paying for access, going in there with a few beers and even watching Evil Dead II inside the house to see what would happen. Could that thing that is there have seen that scene? Maybe also loved it? Yeah. Do I think it would find a way to repeat it back because it knows what scares people? Yes. Why? Because it is sentient and it feeds on fear; correction, it feasts on fear.
The other thing that EVPs do all over the world, not just in The Sallie House, is mimic. They mimic the people in the room. They mimic the people doing investigations. So why can’t they mimic media? I’ll also add, that when it comes to scary things to say, “swallow your soul” is not exactly the most original line in the world. I’d ding both Sam Raimi and the entity at the Sallie House on that one, and frankly, it plays into the clumsy nature of how these things communicate in the first place. They aren’t great at it.
I think the other thing that makes this one so unusual, especially for our audience, is how clear it is. It’s in an entirely different class from our File 10 EVP, but it’s a well known class and certainly not exclusive to The Sallie House. But it does fall into that danger zone of the picture that’s too clear so it must be fake! Although some could say that File 10 is the picture that’s ‘too blurry’. I digress.
I suppose my overall point is this: even if that SYS EVP is an exact match for a line in a movie or TV show, having been in that house, it will take more than that at this point for me to rule it out as authentic. Additionally, just because you can find an instance of dialog in an EVP that was said somewhere else, does not mean it’s not authentic. You should also keep in mind that if you hear a particular phrase from a piece of media, that’s not necessarily where it originated.
If this one were proven a hoax somehow, it would not negate the other couple hundred EVP’s we have in our possession now, all the years of other evidence, including the photos, nor of course the EVP that I got. The mountain of evidence in our possession right now involved dozens of people if not more from all walks of life. Could someone have been up to something? Sure. But even if that were the case, it would not change what I believe about what is in that place.
With any other house, or maybe other people providing evidence that I don’t know, I would be more doubtful. Not this place.
November 20th, 2018
The above image is an 1866 painting Dancing Fairies by A Malmström. This work is in the public domain.