iZombie Season 2 Episode 16 – TV Review
I can’t believe it took so long for Liv to finally become a zombie stripper.
TL;DR The COW sees Liv working with Peyton to solve the murder of a stripper, and hurt Mr Boss’ operation; the cure works on Blaine, but he loses his memories; Ravi discovers Major is a zombie hunter; Major regresses to being a zombie again.
So the COW is kind of a winding marathon, but the gist of it involves the murder of a stripper who was about to give Peyton information learned through her boyfriend, a Mr Boss employee, about a stash house. Peyton puts Liv on the case, and they work together. Red herrings include the boyfriend, a client she robbed, and a fellow stripper’s also-gangster boyfriend. But it turns out said fellow stripper did it to keep a credit card robbery side business going. Liv does help Peyton identify that stash house, though, and she puts an enormous dent in his drug operation. Meanwhile, Blaine totally shot himself up with the maybe cure from last episode, and is back to being human again. He also doesn’t remember anything about zombies, either of his businesses, or even Liv. Which leaves Not E and Eyepatch Goon free to take advantage of that Utopium just sitting around. Meanwhile, Ravi starts putting things together about Major and the Chaos Killer, and eventually confronts him for his zombie hunting ways. The stress of the confrontation triggers Major’s zombie regression, but Ravi knocks him out using Major’s own drug gun. And Liv finds the gumption to dump Drake, but a visit to his mother, who is resigned to the belief that Mr Boss has killed him (he was abducted by Major last episode), clues Liv in on Drake’s status as an undercover cop.
Oh, yeah. I forgot about that.
I don’t know how iZombie manages to keep so many wheels turning, while at the same time delivering a satisfying COW.
I complained about the lame twinanigan COW last week, and even advocated for the abandonment of the COW formula. But when it works like this, it works.
And when Liv is a stripper, it werqs.
Why I hate this episode:
iZombie doesn’t really take any risks with the stripper angle. With the violence, the show is already in upper-tier ratings territory, so why not have Liv show a little skin? Even the guest star strippers spend the episode mostly fully-clothed. Pretty weak.
I make this complaint often, and I know it’s more like a backhanded compliment, but the episode is so full of good stuff that other subplots get left out. Most notably, the Gilda/Steven stuff. We get a quick glimpse of Gilda searching Liv’s house for brains (she is most definitely zombified), but then Steven’s scary black man abducts her and that’s it for the episode. Dale and Babineaux’s investigation also doesn’t get any screentime.
When they’ve decided to sell the Utopium, Not E tasks Eyepatch Goon with scratching him so he’ll become a zombie. The audience is left to assume why, and I think it’s so that he’ll be difficult to dispatch by Mr Boss, like with what happened to Blaine. But I would have thought Not E would have seen enough of zombie horror not to go for it so willingly.
I’m starting to think maybe Kacey Rohl’s character isn’t coming back. Say it isn’t so.
Oh, and I legitimately forgot that Drake was an undercover cop. Because Drake is forgettable.
But it’s not all bad:
But you know what isn’t forgettable? Liv’s sassiness on her stripper brains. I hope she saves some for later, because she’s fun. And she gets shit done.
And she also gets the best line of the episode. One of the strippers (Awkward’s Jessica Lu) is bawling in interrogation. Not because she’s afraid of being questioned about a murder, but because she’s worried her family will find out she’s a stripper. In any case, Liv isn’t a fan of the waterworks: “It’s like a friggin’ Adele concert in here.” Right?
iZombie upholds its tradition of reusing its minor characters by bringing back Daran Norris’ character again as one of the stripper cabal’s credit card fraud victims. Pilot represent. And it’s not the first time he’s come back, either.
Babineaux may not get much on the subplot front this episode, but iZombie manages to squeeze in his lingering animosity towards Peyton for bailing out Blaine and ruining his Chaos Killer and Meat Cute investigations a few episodes ago. Continuity!
The murdered stripper has goldfish platform shoes. I don’t like to throw “yass” around arbitrarily, but yass.
I’m glad we got confirmation on Gilda’s zombification. And I’d like to believe Scary Black Man is abducting her on orders from Steven to keep her safe. Though, a reveal that she’s the new lab zombie wouldn’t shock me, either.
With Peyton in the know on all things zombie, she is demanding of Liv to have visions of the stash house. It’s how a real person would probably want to use that ability. Who knew the show about the zombie detective would be so down to Earth?
Liv gives Peyton a lap dance because it might help trigger a memory. It’s appropriately uncomfortable.
Blaine’s such a nice guy without all his greed and zombie-mongering.
Ravi finally gets a chance to shine as he sniffs out the truth about Major. He notices the safe in his room, and successfully sets about cracking it. Inside, he finds Major’s zombie hunting paraphernalia, and his hit list. He pieces together that Major must be hunting zombies.
Acting out of line for a CW show character, Ravi almost immediately confronts Major about it, and his scared and betrayed demands for the truth are affecting. He thinks Major’s been murdering zombies, and is dutifully indignant about how little Major must therefore care about Liv.
The intensity of the shame and embarrassment Major feels at the discovery of his secret triggers his re-zombification. Poor Major.
Oh, and Ravi doesn’t waste a second in shooting him up with his zombie knockout drugs.