In what seems like an inevitable development, Liv (Rose McIver) dons a spandex outfit to fight crime in the final heartbreaking episode of iZombie for 2015. Let’s bitch it out…
Case of the Week: The body of The Fog, Seattle’s secret dispenser of vigilante justice, is found in a dumpster in a cold open that deliberately masks (heh heh) who might be responsible for his death. Of all of the cases so far this season, this is one of the least substantial examples, if only because the Fog’s death comes off as less consequential than the details that are revealed when he’s gone. The fact that the female victim he is seen trying to protect in the cold open – Mary Contreras (Jenna Romanin) – is also the killer doesn’t really land in a meaningful way because she’s a non-entity, more of a ghost than a real character. She barely even turns up over the course of the investigation before Liv spots her at the warehouse in the climax.
Still, the fun that the writers and McIver have delivering clichéd superhero one-liners and the code of responsibility associated with protecting the city is endlessly amusing. My favourite moment occurs when Liv is hiding from goons in the warehouse and she slowly rises and sinks out of the frame as superheroes always seem to do. So silly! Unfortunately because all of her nocturnal activities are unsanctioned by the Seattle PD, Clive (Malcolm Goodwin) cuts her loose at episode’s end, effectively blowing up the show’s procedural angle and one of the series’ main relationships in one blow.
Crime Wave: The most memorable aspect of the case is what it reveals about Mr. Boss (Eddie Jemison), Seattle’s Big Bad mob boss who has slowly emerged from the shadows this season (mostly in relation to Aly Michalka’s Peyton and David Anders’ Blaine). Clearly the new information about Mr. Boss’ operation (disguised as a festive tree lot where the boss man plays Santa and his men play elves) is part of iZombie‘s long game. We learn over the hour that in addition to The Fog, there are a number of other vigilante characters protecting the city, though their day jobs and lack of formal training mean that they’re not exactly prepared to handle Mr. Boss’ firepower. His escalating arms game is the episode’s real case; we learn that Mr. Boss is planning to import a large cache of high-powered guns into the city. What he plans to do with the guns is (for now) less important than simply confirming that Mr. Boss has his fingers in a lot of crime pies. Stopping him is now part of Liv’s (and the show’s) agenda, especially now that he is firmly on her radar after their run-in at the precinct.
The Cure: After a week off, Blaine returns with a difficult proposal for Liv and Ravi (Rahul Kohli): turn Drake, an injured beefcake, into a zombie or lose their only connection to tainted utopia. ‘Cape Town’ makes the cure a fixture of the narrative in a way that it hasn’t been for most the season (which makes sense considering the next point below), so I appreciated that Liv’s decision to nick the injured man isn’t handled lightly. Still, getting their hands on more utopia to continue the cure trials isn’t as easy as they once thought; Drake’s role as Mr. Boss’ chauffeur likely means further conflict to come as story lines collide.
Major Hooker/Heartbreak: Major (Robert Buckley) spends the episode stalking Natalie (Brooke Lyons), a cute zombie that he meets in a bar. After opening the episode in the midst of an epic five hour fight with Liv, Major’s storyline involves coming to peace with what it means to be a zombie. This is achieved courtesy of Natalie’s completely terrible situation as a literal “hooker zombie” who is forced to service zombie men in exchange for brains. Her dark revelation certainly prompts Major to reconsider his relationship with Liv, and encourages him to finally open up and reveal his struggles.
Unfortunately he’s doing it with someone other than his girlfriend (and with a hot chick to boot!) so that’s not great. Plus when he tries to make a peace offering to Liv later that night, she confirms what we’ve all be dreading for weeks – their relationship won’t work. Just in time for the holidays, they realize that the lack of intimacy and the mood swings that accompany each new brain is the now the new normal. The fate of their future rests on the development of the cure, but in a disastrous new twist, ‘Capt Town’ ends with the discovery that the cured rat in Ravi’s office has unexpectedly reverted back to zombism, which has ominous implications for both Major and Blaine.
- Natalie reveals in conversation with Major that the recent spate of zombie disappearances have not gone unnoticed in the community and that they have taken to calling him “Boogeyman.”
- The chapter title ‘One Tree Kill’ may be my favourite one on the series so far. Love The CW inside jokes, especially given considering Robert Buckley is on this show.
- I cringed when Liv tells Major that she needs to help people considering her recent break-up with Clive. Will Liv go out on her own (like a vigilante super hero) when the show returns in January?
- All of the superhero stuff is really well done, up to and including Ravi’s closing voice over as Liv stands atop a building, surveying the city she’s sworn to protect.
- Major (when Liv asks how she doesn’t know he called his ex on a landline): “Because it’s not 1987!”
- Blaine (echoing a classic line from Star Trek): “Dammit Donnie I’m a brain dealer, not a doctor!”
- Liv (critiquing Ravi’s choice of superhero names): “I think I’d be the Klu Klux Klan’s favourite superhero”
- Natalie (to Major): “I literally got screwed into becoming a zombie hooker”
Your turn: were you surprised by Liv’s two break-ups? Are you heartbroken that she and Major couldn’t work out their issues? Excited to see the conflict with Mr. Boss coming into focus? How long before Blaine and Major are impacted by the news that the cure is only temporary? Did you miss the Max Rager story line? Where does the series go in the second half of the season? Sound off below.
iZombie has finished its fall run. The show returns Tuesday, Jan 12 with a meta-take on a zombie TV series. Can’t wait!