iZombie: Insane in the Germ Brain

"Nobody's been luckier than me."

Traditionally, this is the point in a standard season of iZombie where everything starts to come together. The same can be said for this episode, but while previous seasons have felt organic in how they’ve merged all of the different plot strands floating around at that particular point, there was something stilted about what transpired here.

There was such an inevitability to so much of ‘Insane...’, which might account for it falling a little flat. Clive and Dale were always going to break up; Chase was always going to fly off the handle; Major’s recruits were always going to get hurt; the brain smugglers were always going to get caught; and Isobel was always going to die.

That last one certainly packed a punch, which was obviously the intention, but it doesn’t stop Isobel’s whole arc on the show from feeling a little...meh. I liked her as a character, and I really liked how she played off the core cast, but it all left me feeling a little empty. I think part of that is because her death was written on the walls from the start, but the biggest issue that stops me from completely buying into her story stems from her obvious role as a sci-fi maguffin.

Will we remember Isobel as the funny teenager with a dark and repetitive humour? Or will we simply remember her as the sick girl who gave Ravi the chance to recreate a zombie cure? I’m really not sure. What I do know is that iZombie is 100% guilty of playing around with the same emotional manipulation that it lambasted This Is Us for a few episodes before this. Oops.

Another thing that’s been written on the walls is Angus’ church becoming a far more prominent and incendiary force in Seattle, and Don E’s broadcast riled up enough of the population that the preacher’s life is already in danger. The time difference from the broadcast to the attack at the church must be some kind of record for an assassination attempt, right? I have to admit, I had forgotten who the kid with the gun was until Tucker started reacting to the situation. Did it have to be him that charged the church? And did it have to be so soon?

It was amongst the list of things I saw coming, but hopefully Chase’s fatal temper tantrum will be enough to convince Major that he’s been playing on the wrong side of the zombie war. He’s had one of the most infuriating character arcs this season and it’s been far too long since I’ve felt any bit of sympathy for him. Leone’s execution didn’t faze him, he even felt no guilt for terrorising the media, but I think he might finally be seeing sense now that one of his subordinates is done for, and the other is seriously hurt. Seriously, this better be the last straw because I’m starting to believe that he’s as in love with Chase as his colleagues pretend he is.

Plus

There wasn’t a whole lot to the case this week, but I did love the dramatic fall off the chair after that guy sneezed on Liv.

I have to give Major credit for his dialogue with Roach’s gang, which was pretty great.

Peyton’s mayoral trip to DC might just be a blessing in disguise for her, since it looks like Seattle is about to become a far more dangerous place for both humans and zombies. I’m glad that her friends and family both agreed that she’s better off out of town, but that goodbye felt strangely finite.

I can’t imagine Seattle will get nuked, but I can see Peyton’s attempts to stop it from happening coming right down to the wire.

Can we take a moment to appreciate the Peyton wig?


He Said, She Said

Liv: "Sorry I’m late. With all the hacking and sneezing, trying to get through town is like ice-skating on a Petri dish."

Ravi: “I know this is just your coping mechanism, but would you mind picking one not quite so heart attack-y for me?”

Liv: “You're just lucky I have a soft spot for dark, repetitive humor.”

Isobel: “Liv, Ravi. Try not to be sad. Nobody's been luckier than me. I got to meet the two of you.”

There were some great story beats here, but ‘Insane...’ was a little too clunky to work as well as it could have. Hopefully the final two episodes of the season are more fully realised than this one, because otherwise the show might bungle the climax it’s been building to for the past 11 episodes.

3 out of 5 Petri Dishes

Originally posted at PandaTV.

1 comment:

Patryk said...

I felt the clunkyness, most of it comes from plots that come out of left field either because they were not foreshadowed or because I forgot the foreshadowing. Like filming Angus' sermon or Payton going to DC.

Major probably won't choose sides before Liv's line is on the line as the new Renegade.