Saturday, April 30, 2016

Zoo, Season 1, Episode 8: The Cheese Stands Alone

It’s time for another terrifying animal attack of the week – this time back in the US, a holiday island. An island that is being overrun by a gazillion rats after a cargo container full of Reiden grain lost all their crew to enraged bitey rats that multiply many many times over

The island has nice childhood memory associations for Jackson, including Sherriff Becky, a childhood friends. It also has a hotel where all the rats have decided to gather in their many many many many many thousands. I’m not someone afraid of rats but yes, that’s nasty. Them staying in one hotel which is abandoned also means we get lots and lots of sinister fighting rats in the dark

Honestly there are few settings more scary than an abandoned hotel in the dark?

They’re here to kind of stop the animal outbreak but more for research (given that they have the mother cell, there’s not really as much need to go find various creatures and see what’s happening. They know what’s happening). But the limited research they do it (it’s mainly spooky rat corridors) shows that the rats are multiplying by cloning – even the male rats having litters – and some great rat queen is then feeding them all

They make the huge logical leap that the mother cell isn’t just speeding up evolution, it’s directing it; turning each animal into a more tailored tool for human destruction: bears get armour, lions telepathy to work together, rats become even more numerous.

Personally I think I prefer normal animals just being scary. There’s something more sinister about the mundane, the creatures we’ve completely discounted, rising up and killing us without the need for super powers. I think it’s far more terrifying to have a show depict that the animals all around us COULD kills us (without needing super powers) if they wanted to. They just… don’t.

The day is saved with Chloe and a flame thrower. So less breeding, more fire proofing was probably needed.

Jamie tries several times this episode to invoke her inner Spunkiness, wanting to run off alone, wanting to go do some investigating where the police may find her and generally. Thankfully Abraham is there with advice as well as questioning her focusing her life on one goal. I like Abraham, I like that he is so wise and grounded and sensible and gentle – but I wish he wasn’t such a gentle wise advisor to her-increasing-spunkiness.

And we have a cameo from a head honcho at Reiden. A “conflict manager” which I presume means he kills people. In addition to having his blind date ruined by a rampaging horse he also learns his favourite protégé is dead – that would be FBI agent Schaffer who Jamie shot. I expect consequences.

Mitch didn’t go to ratty hotel – because he’s busy preparing to sell them all out to Reiden. Before he does that he goes home which includes lots of sweet moments with his daughter and some much more tense moments with his ex-wife who is hella pissed at him suddenly swooping back into their lives after so long apart. Of course Mitch can’t really answer why he’s worried now, or why. I can see why we have this. Mitch is about to do something everyone is going to curse him for – give up the Mother Cell to Reiden. It’s sensible to remind everyone why he is making such a choice.