iZombie: The Fresh Princess

"I want you to promise me, that if the time should ever come where you and I might have to choose sides, that you'll let me take care of you."

There was a lot of course correction in ‘The Fresh Princess,’ though its exposition-heavy script didn’t make for interesting viewing for the first half of the hour.

One of my biggest grievances this season has been the decision to incorporate Liv’s relationship with her estranged father into an already crowded final run of episodes. The twist also brought her mother and brother back into play, with the former's initial reaction to seeing Liv again coming across rather contrived. Here, we see the writers use this plot in a more interesting and organic way, giving the story more heart, even if it’s a little rushed.

I’m glad we didn’t have to wait to see Evan again following Eva’s reintroduction a couple of weeks back. It’s a bit jarring that not only are Liv’s mother and brother around again, but Evan is also suffering from melanoma as a result of his injuries sustained in the meat cute explosion in season one. What I did like about this was how it seamlessly tied into Liv’s role as renegade, as she vows to use her connections to help get Eva and Evan out of Seattle so he can get the medical help he needs. There was a serious 180 with Eva here, with her hostile reaction to seeing Liv in ‘Filleted to Rest’ feeling a little at odds with how she’s presented this week. Regardless, I’ll take the improvements in character beats where I can find them.

I’m still a little confused by Martin and his overall end game for Liv, though. We didn’t learn any new information as viewers this week, but Ravi and Peyton’s team-up proved successful, and they were able to join the dots about Martin’s role in the development of the tainted Utopium. It’s pretty clear that Martin will have no intention of helping find a cure, given his proven allegiances to zombie extremism. Add to the fact that he essentially told Liv that a time will come when they will be at odds with one another.

Despite the rather dense family drama elsewhere, the case in this episode was light and fun, with a woman who has been stuck in a coma for 20 years acting as the catalyst for a fun pageant-centric investigation. Liv’s optimistic state of mind on this brain might account for how easily she took Martin’s veiled hints as to their future issues. She was also a little light on the intuition a few times throughout the hour, though she did have enough smarts to help join the dots of the case that Clive might have otherwise missed.

Plus

Peyton lost her job as acting Mayor, which is not at all surprising. Hopefully she'll still be able to help her friends over the next few episodes.

It was fun to see Blaine interacting with Ravi and Peyton again, and it was also great to get lot "Team Pavi" screen-time.

I honestly forget who AJ is every time he's mentioned.

He Said, She Said

Liv: "Your ex is such a pig, you def traded up. Rav is the bomb. Like, part Prince Jr., part Van Der Beek, but with a beard."

Martin: "I want you to promise me, that if the time should ever come where you and I might have to choose sides, that you'll let me take care of you."
Liv: "That's why we try our best, so that day will never come."
Martin: "I hope you're right."

Though it came together in the end, I did have a few issues with the pacing of this episode. Notably, the dialogue-heavy first half relied a little too much of the viewers’ knowledge of lesser characters. It made up for it with a bloody final coda sequence at Seattle’s pie festival, where CHICS let General Mills’ daughter loose on innocent bystanders – they really are the worst. The hour also covered a lot of ground in terms of bringing the season’s biggest elements together. Though I’m not 100% sold on them being able to finish it all in such a short space of time, I do have more faith in the series than I did last week.

7 out of 10 brain bagels.

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