Saturday, July 1, 2017

iZombie 3.11: "Conspiracy Weary"

“It’s been a hell of a day. You might tell your friends to quit pointing those guns at me.”

This particular episode really set a lot of things in motion that will move us towards the end of the season. Things are becoming very complicated for our crew very fast, and surprisingly, considering the stakes of the zombie vs. human war that always seems immanent, most of the complications have their roots in romantic relationships. Liv, Major, and Ravi are all seeing new people, and as of right now, it seems like some of those new people can be trusted, and some can’t. You’ll be surprised by who we learn we can’t trust by the end of this episode. I’m guessing the creative team has a few more tricks up their sleeve to deploy before the end of the season, too. Justin, Shawna, and Rachel all bring their own unique concerns, and we’ll see how they all pan out. And I suppose the fact that I’m focusing on the romantic relationships so much here speaks to how much of the bigger mythology plots were addressed in this episode too. Some of that stuff was resolved, so we can move on to discussing the romantic relationships and the complications that could ensue.

The episode picks up right where the last one left off. Harley Johns is about to shoot Ravi in the head. Cooler heads prevail, and Harley ends up just hitting him, but the danger isn’t over. The mob still want to make Don-E a permanent zombie by causing him constant pain with a cattle prod. Before things can get to that point, though, Liv and Blaine crash the party in full-on zombie mode. They start fighting the zombie truthers, and soon they’re backed up by a squad from Filmore Graves. In the chaos, Rachel, Ravi’s new friend, runs away. Liv has amusing reunions with both Major and Justin during and after the fight. By the end of the skirmish, the younger Johns brother is dead, but Harley manages to escape. Chase Graves asks Liv to look into the possibility of a Johns compound outside the city and to run ballistics on some weapons that were at the site of the fight. Blaine also wants to do some sort of deal with Graves, but he doesn’t seem super enthused about it. Blaine, Don-E, and Liv all end up eating younger Johns brother brain together, Blaine and Don-E because why not and Liv because she thinks it could help her find the compound.

When Ravi arrives home, he sees that Major has built a “sex fort” in the living room, and that leads to the guys discussing Major’s thing with Shawna. Ravi’s skeptical, because he’s a smart guy. Rachel interrupts this conversation by showing up at Ravi and Major’s house. Ravi is very happy to see her, considering she disappeared in the middle of the big fight and all, but it gets awkward fast. He goes to kiss her but she backs off (but she’s not really upset by the attempt), but she completely freaks out and leaves once she sees Major and realizes Ravi’s roommate is the Chaos Killer (or “Chaos Kidnapper” as Major prefers to be known). When we next see Major, he’s in bed with Shawna. She wants to go dancing, but Major’s still wary of being seen in public. So Shawna responds by taking a picture of the two of them in bed with a selfie stick. Because of course that will stay private.

Liv wakes Peyton up in the middle of the night with what she claims is important news. She’s talking conspiracy theories. At first what she says is sensible – she mentions how the guard who killed Wexler is now dead too. Killed on a cruise (which just make me think of “Pushing Daisies”). But then Liv goes too far and mentions potential Illuminati involvement, and Peyton’s done. Bo Johns was a conspiracy nut, after all. Liv then shows up at the morgue, where she tries playing loud music so that she can’t be heard when telling Ravi and Babineaux about the weapons recovered from the scene of the fight. She’s going to go back to the scene to try and trigger some visions, but then they have a better idea. We next see Liv, Blaine, and Don-E all trying to out-conspiracy theory each other (Tupac and Biggie are alive, y’all!) at the Scratching Post. They’re all planning on going to the scene of the fight together. Meanwhile, at Filmore Graves, a soldier approaches Chase while he’s getting his spray tan on (kind of a gratuitous excuse to show Jason Dohring naked, but hey, I’m not complaining!). The soldier says that he ate some of Bo Johns’ brain too, and he had a vision of where the compound is. Chase wants to send a squad there right away, and he doesn’t want to let Seattle PD know about it.

Peyton’s receives Wexler’s personal effects from jail, and in his wallet, she finds a picture of his daughter, Tatum, and a key to a safe deposit box. She calls Tatum to the office to ostensibly give her the personal effects. She also wants to strike a deal, though. She wants to go with Tatum to open the safe deposit box in the hopes that it will contain the memory card Wexler died for. At first, Tatum doesn’t want to play ball, but then Peyton offers to help her figure out which bank contains the safe deposit box, so Tatum doesn’t really have a choice but to cooperate. Inside the box is a music box that belonged to Tatum’s mother, and inside the music box is a memory card, which Tatum gives to Peyton. On the way out of the bank, Tatum freezes for a minute, and she claims it was just “brain freeze,” but Peyton clearly suspects more is going on, since she knows about zombie visions and all.

The zombie crew and Babineaux are at the scene of the big fight searching for visions. At first, it doesn’t look like it’s going to be successful. All three zombies just have a vision of Justin chasing Harley’s truck, and they all knew about that already (it was on YouTube, after all). Then, Babineaux asks Liv to focus, and that makes her have another vision. Harley is telling Bo that he knows there’s a tracker on his car, and he’s going to use it against the police. Liv immediately texts this information to Major and Justin, who are about to be part of a Filmore Graves raid on the supposed Johns compound. They realize, as Admiral Akbar would put it, that “it’s a trap!” They tell Chase, who orders the squad to stand down. Everyone does except one pair, and part of compound blows up because of it.

Liv pulls her waking people up in the middle of the night thing again, and this time it’s Ravi, who is sleeping in the lab. She tells him one happened with the Filmore Graves op, then she asks why he’s sleeping at the lab. Ravi tells her about Major and Shawna, and this leads to the discovery of a tumblr page where Shawna has been posting all of her texts and pictures with Major. Liv shows this to Major, and he is horrified. He ends up breaking up with Shawna over it, even though she claims she was just trying to rehabilitate his image. Major, however, wants to go back to how things were before he was famous. Shawna thinks this is unlikely, and she leaves in a huff. Ravi’s having better luck in the relationship department. Rachel shows up again. She’s trying to make sense of all the crazy zombie stuff she’s seen, and Ravi confirms a lot of it. She also proves to her that he’s not a zombie himself. Finally, he starts telling her additional details about what went down at that fateful boat party.

Babineaux’s off the books ballistics guy shows up at the precinct with the results of his analysis, and Babineaux and Liv try to have a conversation with him without attracting too much attention from other nosy detectives. The ballistics guy confirms that the weapons used in the big fight are the same as what killed Wally. Babinaux and Liv think they have a huge break in the case. Liv gets home to find Peyton looking at the footage from the memory card. Wexler is calling somebody more powerful and asking for help. Peyton and Liv theorize that somebody who doesn’t want that footage seen, like Baracus, is the one really pulling the puppet strings. This is a huge problem, because Baracus has just been elected Seattle’s first zombie mayor in a special election. Liv also gets a call from Babineaux. Even though the cabin on the Johns compound seemed abandoned, he has discovered there was a noise complaint about construction noise on the property. Liv and Babineaux go to check this out, and they discover a doomsday prepper-style bunker. Sleeping in the bunker is none other than Harley Johns. Babineaux ends up shooting him when he doesn’t cooperate, and Liv has a vision that Harley didn’t kill Wally and his mom. He was outside their house and heard/saw someone else shooting. Babineaux is about to start beating himself up for killing an innocent man when Harley starts resurrecting, zombie-style.

Let’s end this post with some final commentary on the romantic travails of Major and Ravi. In the Filmore Graves locker room, Major learns from one of the other soldiers that t-shirts with one of his photos from Shawna’s blog are for sale, and the caption reads “Killer Abs.” The general media commentariat seems to blame Major for this, even though he had nothing to do with it, and when we last see him, he’s partying it up with his Filmore Graves buddies, trying to forget it all. On the Rachel side of things, we learn that she’s actually an investigative reporter when we see her pitch a “zombies are real” story to her editor. The episode ends with Ravi seeing the front page story and wondering what he has done. D-day appears to be here, folks!

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