Friday, April 27, 2018

iZombie, Season 4, Episode 8: Chivalry is Dead

Ok this may be the most annoying brain ever. And proof, yet again, that iZombie doesn’t understand how hobbies work.

Or how geeks work

Which is kind of weird - I mean how many of these speculative fiction shows approach geek culture like it’s some weird and alien thing. I know spec fic has become more mainstream, but the geek are still somewhat core audience here and I can’t imagine that their writers are this lacking in geekiness. A room full of writers producing a show about zombie medical examiners? One of them has to be passingly familiar with a D20.

Though I do appreciate Ravi in his geeky glory

The brain this week belonged to a LARPer who loved his medieval re-enactment. Which means Liv spends the entire episode painfully speaking like extras in a cut-price medieval themed restaurant. Words cannot express how much this annoyed me. Especially when random LARPers all decide to talk this way. To the police. During an investigation

Still leaving the crime aside for a while; Liv is now exposed as a human smuggler to Peyton. And… she’s in. She completely understands and respects what Liv is doing and wants to join. Liv is not a fan of this because of the risk but Peyton isn’t buying that - after all Liv is taking it. Liv does reveal they really really need money.

Peyton also has severe issues with Major and his shooting up a journalist’s office. As she should. Liv blames Fillmore Graves, calling them the Borg. Peyton doesn’t get the reference but Liv assures her that, dating Ravi, she will.

While Major himself is still working on getting in with Rus on various illegal activities so he can be exposed as the brain thief. After much buddy-buddiness he does manage to be invited to some illegal shenanigans - but it’s shutting down OTHER brain sellers (who work for Blaine). Major does manage to stop Rus killing them.

The murder, while making Liv super annoying and being weird with LARPing does introduce some nice ideas about how zombies in the city change things. The LARP group split in two, zombies and humans, not out of animosity but simply because zombies and humans fighting, scratching and stabbing each other seemed liked a bad idea. They also realise the advantages of zombies being nigh invulnerable so long as everyone keeps their blades below neck height which led one member to run with a zombie thunder-drome idea, zombies hacking and slashing each other for gore and profit.

The spanner in the works is the murdered man, Garrett, being human but joining the zombie team. He was the best swordsman so didn’t have to worry too much until the day he was impaled through the chest. The zombies claim accident - they were LARPing and Garrett lied about being a zombie and shouldn’t have been killed. This raises a whole lot of questions around sports and similar activities which can rely a lot more on zombie resilience but also raises the question of contamination and advantage.

Also I wonder if a zombie thunderdrome is a good idea in a city with a brain shortage since zombies need brains to heal… And bonus points for Clive sitting in a throne and being super uncomfortable by it.

Twist to the murder - the man who “accidentally” stabbed Garrett was using the wrong sword: the broadsword he should have used wouldn’t have been great at mortally stabbing someone wearing chainmail. He was carrying a different sword that was pretty much designed for stabbing him. And the dead man was cheating with his wife, and they knew he was human. Can they prove willful murder? Probably not

Actually I appreciate this. So many crime dramas basically have a 100% success rate which is, perhaps, the 16th most annoying thing about them (behind police brutalising witnesses, breaking and entering, the absence and demonisation of effective legal representation, indifference about rules of evidence… I hate police dramas).

Also, Peyton has a thing for men in armour.

We also have Angus trying to extort more brains from Blaine with his religious mutterings and Blaine not being impressed. Except by the rather ridiculous, slave-like obedience his minions have towards Angus.

This proves useful when Stacey Boss makes a reappearance. It seems the mild-looking crime boss has a huge stash of money in Seattle hidden by his imprisoned fence. He now wants that cash and is willing to cut in Blaine if they will helpfully free him from a prison bus, eat the guy’s brains and show Stacey where the money is hidden. Of course, they need an army to take down a prison bus

Enter Angus. Blaine and Stacey use religious nonsense coupled with the idea no-one will actually care if a bus full of prisoners is massacred to convince Angus to do the attacking for them

And I have to say Blaine, Stacey and Don-E can just take over every scene from now because they are just hilarious together and Don-E is becoming more than just a useless sidekick and is actually moderately capable.

They get their fence, they have him eaten and find… the money is gone

Because Peyton has already worked on the fence to get him out of prison anyway, got her hands on the money which she hands off to Liv. Yes she’s a member of the gang now

The biggest revelation is yet to come; because Isobel, the latest person they smuggled into Seattle, is immune to the zombie scratch. They may have the key to a cure or a vaccine… but I don’t think any of them have realised that yet