iZombie – Season 2 Episode 14
“Eternal Sunshine of the Caffeinated Mind”
iZombie deals with the discovery of the tainted Utopium that can help Ravi find the cure and stop Major from reverting back to zombie form. This applies to Blaine as well but that’s a separate issue that I’ll come back to a bit later on.
This episode lulls the viewer into a false sense of security for the first two thirds or so by starting off as a standard iZombie episode. There’s a murder, Liv consumes the brain of victim causing her to have visions leading to the murder being solved. Hilarity obviously ensues along the way.
I don’t have too much of a problem with the iZombie formula other than the cases being the least interesting part of the episode. The personality absorbed and Rose McIver’s performance of Liv exerting whatever that personality is always immensely entertaining TV. My main issue is that I tend to lose interest in who committed the murder somewhere in the middle because I always want to return to the more interesting stories running parallel to the case.
By spending the bulk of the episode focusing mainly on Liv and Clive trying to solve a murder it ticks along nicely but never manages to dazzle. I really enjoyed Rose McIver’s performance as someone who was obscenely positive to the point of being painfully naive and it was great to see how annoying she was to everyone around her. Even Ravi had trouble humouring her at times. The case did have an interesting result with the manipulative daughter of the victim convincing her boyfriend to commit the crime and take the fall for her. Love makes us all do crazy things doesn’t it?
There was some great comedy during the investigation of the case. My favourite laugh out loud moment was the admission of why it took an hour to make a short commute. It’s disgusting and hilarious at the same time. Lots of the positive statements from the employees of the coffee shop were played successfully for laughs as well.
The quest for the cure took a major -pun intended- step forward this week as Ravi was able to test on rats again. The drawback is that the cure doesn’t seem to be working on the rats any more which means that Major has a huge problem. In the not too distant future he will become a zombie again which might produce yet more interesting things for him to do on this show. I’d like to see an entire season of zombie Major as he gets in enough trouble as a human so I can only imagine how the writers will torture him as a zombie.
This whole experience has made Major aware of his own mortality and it suddenly dawns on him that he has been lying about his actions for too long. He doesn’t want that to be his legacy so goes to Liv to confess everything. The opportunity is interrupted by the arrival of Gilda who pretends she has never met Major before despite their very physical history. As he leaves he calls her Rita to give Liv the clue she needs to know the truth about her and the reaction is priceless. Even through the remnants of her naive optimist brain her anger and frustration comes through and she punches Gilda for listening to her emotional anguish while doing everything she could to make it worse. It has been a long time coming and Gilda definitely deserves it. Of course she doesn’t yet know the Max Rager connection but that information will be coming very soon.
I’m really enjoying how complex Drake is turning out to be. The reveal that he is an undercover agent gathering evidence that can incriminate Mr. Boss is something I certainly didn’t see coming. With that comes the reveal that he didn’t kill anyone and sent them to a safe house instead. We also find out without a doubt that Drake really cares about Liv and keeps up a tough guy persona as a way of protecting her and himself.
I really love that his boss is played by none other than Keith Mars himself, Enrico Colantoni. I’m guessing he will be around for a little while at least and as a Veronica Mars fan I am completely on board with that.
This whole situation is even more complex as Drake has ties to Blaine but doesn’t know that Blaine is the one who wants to move in on Mr. Boss’ territory. I almost feel like I need to refer to a chart to remind myself of how people connect. The criminal underworld of Seattle is clearly a very small pond.
Mr. Boss figures out that Blaine is the one who wants to overpower him and take over which leads to him slitting Blaine’s throat and leaving him in a shallow grave. It’s very harsh punishment but completely understandable given the circumstances. Luckily -and predictably- Blaine becomes a zombie again and rises from the dead to seek revenge. I can’t wait to see what Blaine has planned next now that he has shed the mortal coil.
I won’t hold it against the episode for this being predictable as the reveal was so well done. Showing Candy eating brains then cutting to Blaine rising from his grave was a really memorable way to put the point across. I can’t wait to see what Blaine has planned next now that he has shed the mortal coil.
Having Blaine’s resurrection be in the background of the scene made it more effective and reminded me of the murder being seen from inside the coffee shop earlier in the episode. There were definitely some interesting uses of camera work in this episode.
A good episode that is very oddly structured but manages to make up for a slow start with some really powerful reveals. The revelations about Drake and the development of Blaine’s war against Mr. Boss are definitely the strongest elements.
• Rose McIver’s bubbly and naïve performance
• excellent and shocking reveals
• a slow start that feels a bit formulaic