iZombie – Season 2 Episode 6
iZombie finally gives Clive something more substantial to do and Liv manages to get herself a temporary gambling addiction.
There has been a trend over the past couple of episode of Liv’s alternate personalities being far less dominant than we have seen before. While it’s fun to see Rose McIver go almost completely off character with hilarious results I also enjoy the time spent developing Liv’s default personality. I think there’s room for both in the show and lately it has been more appropriate to have Liv be more dominant given everything that is going on.
Despite all of her misgivings last week she has decided to throw caution to the wind and resume her relationship with Major. It’s a risky idea because they aren’t initially sure if they can be properly physical with one another or not so being together seems to start off as an exercise in frustration for both of them. Both of them seem to be insufferably optimistic about it to the point that I was wondering if Major was still high on Utopium. Liv could certainly be more predisposed to taking risks given that she had eaten the brain of a gambling addict but Major is all kinds of messed up.
One thing the episode proves is that these characters are more interesting apart than they are together. Up until now their relationship has been defined by the tragedy of being unable to be together but now that they are in a relationship both of them are pretty dull when together. Nothing against the actors who do a fantastic job as usual but the scenes just aren’t that compelling. When they aren’t being annoyingly couply they are talking about the risks surrounding their physical relationship. The connection is made to HIV but the episode doesn’t really do anything with it as this whole issue is sitting in the background and is mostly played for laughs.
The short end of it is that a physical relationship between a zombie and a human is impossible unless that human is content to become a zombie. That’s exactly what happened to a woman that Blaine slept with in the first season so I can’t say I’m surprised. I suppose the question of “what if we use protection?” has now been answered but I’m not sure that an entire episode needed to be wasted on it.
Of course this creates complications between Major and Liv who naively think that they’ll be fine and just have to be more creative. I suspect it’ll be no more than an episode or two before Liv’s rational mind gets to work tearing it apart and realising that there’s no future for them as long as Liv remains a zombie…or as long as Major wants to remain a human.
The blissful happiness can only last so long anyway as Major still has the problem of his secret zombie killing spree, his affair with Gilda and his drug addiction to deal with. He lies to Liv all the time about what he’s really doing and that should surely create some scenes that aren’t irritating to watch. I did find it interesting that Major is only freezing the zombies and dumping dummies into the river but still it’s not something that Liv will be happy with.
Clive has a lot more to do this week with more of his personality come through. It was great to see him get a little starstruck by the appearance of a famous basketball player and his love of basketball is slowly becoming something that his character is known for. Malcolm Goodwin has great chemistry with Jessica Harmon’s Dale as evidenced by their scene together where they discussed the case but were also heavily flirting.
His relationship with Liv is a largely professional one but he definitely seemed much more tolerant of her this week. When she speaks to him about sports or other such topics he is more willing to meet her halfway and doesn’t show the same annoyance with her that he has recently. I really have to credit the writers for being very clever in writing the scene where Clive catches Liv watching basketball highlights and deduces that she had been faking knowledge so that she could talk to him. That sort of convenience can be forgiven when it provides a solid plot reason for Clive to be less suspicious of her for a while.
This episode finally introduces the oft discussed but never -until now- seen Stacey Boss (Eddie Jemison). He only appears in a handful of scenes but his presence is positively magnetic. How can iZombie have successfully created three compelling villains that dip in and out all at once without any of them seeming at all similar?
Stacey proves why he is the boss of Seattle’s criminal underworld with his chilling speech about how to pull off the perfect murder through forcing the victim to commit suicide and his plot furthering scene with Peyton. He blackmails her with a side of threatening to stop her investigation or life might become very unpleasant for her. It is pointed out that cooperation will be rewarded but pretends to forget what happens when people don’t cooperate. Jemison is note perfect in this role and I can’t wait to see more of him.
Speaking of villains, Blaine has quite a presence in this episode. He is being extorted by his father who takes over his business as payment for not turning him into a zombie. Blaine is ordered to bring his father the brain of his enemy but instead he elects to bring him the brain of his own father also known as Blaine’s grandfather. It has been previously established that his grandfather is the only living person that Blaine actually cares about and David Anders plays the anguish felt by Blaine as he kills him perfectly. None of this makes Blaine any closer to redemption but it’s fine having a well developed character who also happens to be a bad person. Having these shades to Blaine is a big part of why he is such a compelling character.
The real tragedy of it is that when Blaine was killing his grandfather, Major was in the middle of kidnapping his father which removes the problem in a completely different way. It makes Blaine’s actions a bit futile but that’s what makes it so good. The look on Blaine’s face as he realised that he didn’t have to kill his grandfather was just perfect.
Blaine had another great scene when he was drunk and talking to Liv about the merits of being a zombie against being human. Blaine points out that there must be a part of her that likes it because now she gets to dispense justice and do something important whereas before she was relatively normal. It’s hard for Liv to disagree considering all the good she has done and all she has learned. I could honestly watch these characters talk about this for an entire episode it was so good.
A solid episode that was let down by some insufferable scenes featuring the recently reunited Major and Liv.
It turns out that Major and Liv are most interesting when they are apart as their scenes together were really boring to watch. Well acted by boring as they did all of that insufferable couply stuff or discussed their potential to have a physical relationship. It turns out that it’s impossible without turning Major into a zombie so it won’t be long before Liv’s rational mind kicks in.
There’s a lot more to Major that Liv doesn’t know about such as his drug addiction, zombie killing spree and affair with Gilda. I’m sure it will all come out soon and Liv won’t be best pleased by any of it. Tragic for the characters but entertaining for us. The revelation that Major isn’t actually killing zombies but freezing them instead while dumping dummies into the river is an interesting one but won’t disguise the fact that Major lies to Liv constantly.
Clive got a lot more to do this week with a lot more of his personality coming through. It was cool to see him get a bit starstruck when he met a basketball player he admired and his flirtatious discussion with Dale is very fun to watch as well.
His relationship with Liv is mostly professional but when she shows interest in things that he enjoys and meets him more on his level then he is willing to loosen up a bit. I like that any suspicions were removed when he walked in on her watching basketball highlights and assumed that she was faking basketball knowledge.
Stacey Boss appears in a handful of scenes but leaves an impression when he does. His presence is positively magnetic and becomes another great addition to the iZombie rogues gallery. His chilling speech about getting away with murder and the veiled threat he makes towards Peyton really cements him as the head of the Seattle Underworld.
Blaine is extorted by his father who takes over his business while threatening to turn him into a zombie if he doesn’t cooperate. He is ordered to bring the brain of one of his enemies but instead decides to kill his own grandfather to get to his father. It is established that Blaine cares about his grandfather while not caring about any other living person so the fact that he is the one to kill him is a really big deal. It’s even more tragic when Major kidnaps his father leaving his actions meaningless.
His scene with Liv where they debate the merits of being zombie and human is excellent. I could have watched them do that all day as the two actors are great together.