The CW has done a great job in recent years of filling it’s programming with interesting and fun shows. The last two Golden Globe awards has seen the CW take home back to back trophies for Lead Actress in a Comedy Series and this year they renewed all of their original series. Now in its second season iZombie feels like the undiscovered gem in the CW’s line-up. As an adaptation of a relatively unknown Vertigo comic, the show had fairly low expectations to meet. What show creators Rob Thomas and Diane Ruggiero-Wright have created is a show that delivers a fun and engaging take on the zombie mythos with a rock solid cast that fearlessly moves the plot along at breakneck speeds while giving you interesting characters to care about. So if you haven’t jumped on the iZombie train yet, here are five reasons you should:
The show does quite a lot with very little and if you have been watching season two, I wouldn’t fault you if you were forgetting which players were moving which pieces and who was connected to who. For a show that very easily could have been “girl hides that she’s a zombie from family and friends” it instead goes to some surprisingly complex places. No, it never really loses its sense of humor, but it also isn’t apologetic of how sprawling its narrative can be. Crucially to the drama of the show, each character has their own part to play beyond reactionary players to Liv. Major has his own storyline in tracking other zombies due to his corrupt employer at Max Eager, Clive is investigating the ever muddled case at the Meat Cute from season one while Ravi works on an antidote to cure the zombie virus. If they were to overlap any of these storylines could cause big repercussions for the characters which makes the stakes naturally raise as the audience tries to keep up with who is lying to who and why.-Ally
I love a good pun and, luckily for me, so does iZombie. While some of the humor on the show plays it big and broad with Liv’s week to week different personality traits, a lot of the smaller comedic beats land perfectly. The comic strip, flash cards that the show uses to introduce each new scene is wonderfully playful, as is the play on words and names (Liv Moore took me embarrassingly long to catch onto). It’s a small thing but it brings a certain creative edge to the show that only makes it that more entertaining.-Ally
iZombie manages to weave between drama, horror and humor effortlessly and one of the reason it is able to do so is the rock solid cast. Rose McIver leads the cast as Olivia “Liv” Moore, and does an amazing job with a character that is constantly changing. The personality shifts Liv experiences every week present some fun challenges and McIver is up to the task. It isn’t quite a “Tatiana Maslany on Orphan Black” level of chameleon-hood but she is the sun around which the stellar supporting cast revolves. The other stand outs on the show are Rahul Kohli as Dr. Ravi Chakrabarti and David Anders as Blaine McDonough. Kohli’s Ravi is usually our source of comedy relief and while Kohli certainly displays excellent comedic timing there’s also a friendly charm to Ravi that makes him immediately likeable. Anders steals the show as an antagonist and pulls off that great magic trick of giving you a villain so fun and likeable that you root for him any time he isn’t going head to head with our hero. Anders brings an almost zany energy to his entrepreneurial zombie and he makes the show’s more stylized dialogue really sing. Rounding out the cast are Malcolm Goodwin as Detective Clive Babineaux, Robert Buckley as Major Lilywhite, and Aly Michalka as Peyton Charles. Three characters that on a lesser show would have stayed as the stock characters they are introduced as, the no-nonsense cop, the milquetoast love interest, and the overachieving best friend respectively, but have been given more and more dimensions as the show has moved forward.-Jose
When iZombie premiered in 2015, the zombie boom seemed over. Sure The Walking Dead on AMC was wrapping up its fifth season but it had been a few years since a new zombie property had shambled onto the pop culture scene and stolen our hearts. iZombie’s twist on the zombie mythology which actually closer to certain version of vampirism, does a couple of cool things for the show. It allows Liv a certain amount of leeway to operate in dangerous situations. There’s hardly ever a time where you fear for Liv’s safety as she navigates the various murder cases that she investigates. This means we can avoid Live being a damsel in distress and Clive never needs to rescue her. They can be a great crime fighting duo, or trio if you include Ravi, that work together as equals.
The main advantage that this new mythology provides the show is the various personalities that Liv takes on. When Liv eats a brain with a specific personality quirk it allows the show to play with the dynamics between Liv and the people around her. When a brain makes Liv especially romantic it complicates her relationship with her former fiance by making her act on feelings and emotions that she’s been holding back. Every episode has so much potential because you never know how Liv is going to be pushed out of her comfort zone.- Jose
While I’m glad it didn’t, iZombie is a show that very easily could have run out of narrative steam by the end of the first season. In many shows the very nature of the premise would have limited them with a similar story to that of a superheros except instead of hiding super powers, Liv was hiding the fact that she was a zombie. The show smartly outed her secret to key players and have since brought in enough big baddies so that finding a cure isn’t the character’s biggest hurdle week in and week out. The stakes continue to raise week in and week out and with recent, deadly consequences in Blaine and Majors sights, the show is revving up with some potentially huge developments. The series has only solidified their confidence in how they write action, how they play with character relationships and how they pose threats to certain characters. There is no better time to be watching the series.-Ally