Up front, iZombie has a lot going on. It’s a procedural, but it’s a zombie show, but it’s a fake-psychic show, but, but but.
But it’s delightful.
The show follows Liv Moore (I know), who in the first five minutes of the pilot transforms from a promising young med student to reluctant zombie after a boat party goes awry. In order to sate her newfound need for brains, Liv abandons her surgical residency to work as a medical examiner in the morgue (alongside the beautiful, charming, hilarious Ravi).
Brains aren’t the only big change in her life. She’s now preternaturally pale and depressed as hell. In order to avoid infecting her perfect fiancé (Major Lilywhite), Liv dumps him. Once you’ve seen his face, you’ll understand what a travesty this truly is. Her family is under the impression she is simply suffering some mild PTSD after witnessing the veritable massacre that was the boat party, but Liv is struggling a lot more than that.
Thankfully, Liv is given some purpose again with the realization that the brains she consumes give her flashes of the deceased’s life and their graphic deaths. Using this new information, Liv joins forces with the local police department, partnering with skeptical Detective Babineaux to solve the murders.
- Veronica Mars lovers. It’s got the same procedural roots, witty characters, and snappy writing that viewers have come to expect from Rob Thomas and Diane Ruggiero-Wright. It’s current and polished and refreshingly diverse. And great news Veronica Mars-lovers: Major is not just another Duncan Kane! He is so, so much more.
- Fake-Psychic show obsessives. It’s hard to believe there’s still a market for this very niche genre, but iZombie fills the Psych-shaped hole in my heart.
- Those who’ve missed seeing Sark / David Anders on their screens. (I’ve just started watching Alias, so his presence is especially delightful.)
- Fans of Merlin – Bradley James (Arthur) makes some recurring appearances as rock star/Liv’s hot British boyfriend.
- Science! – Ravi tries to reverse engineer the zombie virus as well as attempting to create a potential cure.
What Else I Love
It’s not just a fake-psychic show. Or a zombie show. iZombie has the added bonus of a deftly implementing a twist in which perimortem flashbacks aren’t the only side-effect of Liv’s condition: she also temporarily exhibits some of the victim’s personality traits, from kleptomania to a peppy cheerleader persona. What could be an annoying trope has been cleverly used as a nice comedic tool.
Season 2 premieres October 6th on The CW.