Earlier this year, The CW débuted iZombie — the latest from Veronica Mars creator, Rob Thomas. iZombie, is based on the comic series by Chris Roberson and Mike Allred and tells the story of Liv Moore, a young, aspiring doctor-turned-zombie morgue assistant. When Liv eats the brains of the bodies that come into the morgue she is able to see snippets of their memories. And she uses that skill to help solve their murders. The show is the fabulous mix of Veronica Mars and zombie mayhem that you never knew you wanted.
Warning: There are heaps and heaps of spoilers for Season One ahead.
The first few episodes start off quite light, with great characters and fantastic puns, but as a few of us here at WWAC soon discovered, it doesn’t waste any time proving that it’s more than just brains and one liners.
Since we heard that the cast was back together to film Season 2 we wanted to share the top six moments that shocked us for Season 1 (although in all honesty this list could have been a lot longer.)
— Rose McIver (@imrosemciver) July 15, 2015
Episode 7: Lieutenant Suzuki’s Surprise
Kate: This was the episode that made me realize that Rob Thomas is still capable of surprising me. The case-of-the-week procedural genre lulls the viewer into a false sense of security, and Thomas uses that to his advantage in this episode, when Lieutenant Suzuki gets shot in the line of duty. Instead of dying tragically, Suzuki goes into Full On Zombie Mode™, rips the door off the refrigerator and uses it as a shield before taking out the bad guys himself, and we, the viewers, who had been previously been able to keep track of known zombies by counting on one hand, realize there may already be more zombies among us than we know.
Episode 8: Ravi and the Zombie Rat
Kate: Once again the viewer (and Ravi) are lulled into a false sense of narrative security, only to be shocked into alertness, which carried over from this episode into the next. Early in the episode, we see Ravi testing the chain mail protective gloves he’s wearing during this scene. No harm, no foul. Which was why Ravi being bitten while wearing the gloves came as a complete surprise.
Episode 9: Bradley James breaks our hearts (again)
Christa: When Bradley James first appeared in iZombie as the handsome, guitar playing zombie Lowell, it was too easy to fall for him. He was charming, he was kind, and he genuinely cared for Liv. He was able to share something with her that nobody else could. So when he sacrifices himself, by trying to kill Blaine when Liv couldn’t, it was a shot to the heart (or the head in this case).
We should have known their romantic bliss wouldn’t last. The show had been getting darker by the episode. But it happened so quickly, and with so little warning, that we’re still recovering.
Episode 11: The end of Astroburger
Kate: Astroburger was a fascinating, and for once, medically accurate (I’m looking at you, Teen Wolf) depiction of life with mental illness, and life in a mental health facility. Rather than going for antiquated psychological horror a la One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, this episode of iZombie demonstrates that the real horror of mental illness is being betrayed by your own mind. When Liv realizes that Johnny Frost was never there to begin with, it’s terrifying, but realizing that her heartfelt confession to Major about zombies, and and subsequent acceptance was also a delusion felt like a punch to the gut. The final twist was seeing Major’s reaction to finding out that zombies are real, a painful juxtaposition encapsulated by this side-by-side gif comparison.
Episode 12: Peyton finds out.
Angel: iZombie’s got a pretty uneven ratio of male to female characters, with Liv and Peyton Charles’ friendship as one of the few female relationships highlighted on the show. For much of the season, Liv and Peyton are distant, but even as they begin to repair their friendship, Liv’s new identity as a zombie still keeps them apart. She manages to keep it a secret until Sebastian threatens Peyton’s life, and then the ensuing fight doesn’t just kill Sebastian—it shows Peyton the full extent of Liv’s zombie rage. There’s no denying what Liv is now, and Peyton understandably freaks out, running out of the apartment before Liv can explain herself. It’ll be interesting to see how Peyton’s awareness will play out in season two, and whether the two women will be able to connect again.
Episode 13: Liv’s Choice
Christa: This list could easily have been filled with moments from the season finale. The episode starts at a breakneck speed and never slows down. But the final scene really toyed with our emotions. After Evan, Liv’s brother, gets caught up in the explosion at the butcher shop, he is rushed to the hospital. There the doctor tells Liv and her mother that they need more blood, and of course Liv is a match. But when her mother tells her to go with the doctor, Liv responds with a very clear, “No” before the episode cuts to black, leaving us to struggle with her impossible choice until next season. Will she really be able to let her brother die knowing she could save him? Or will she change her mind and make him a zombie too?