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REVIEW: iZombie 1×08 “Dead Air”

Once again, iZombie pleasantly surprised me with a somewhat entertaining hour of television. “Dead Air” was your average, underwhelming episode filled with confusing plot-lines and lame character identification, but at least it was much better than the last few installments. (spoilers ahead!)

As you recall from last week, Major was arrested and being held in jail where his worst enemies are both his fellow inmates and the Seattle Police Department. Predictably, the first time we see him this episode, his face looks like it’s been kicked in by a horse. Ravi works with Peyton to bail him out, and for once, I actually saw some decent character development on the show.

Ravi apparently has a crush on Peyton and wants to ask her out. The only problem is that she doesn’t seem to know he exists. Also, Liv doesn’t feel like Ravi is right for her roommate so she goes on this whole spiel trying to talk him out of it. I was so annoyed with Liv this episode because of what she was doing; rather than giving Ravi a chance and letting him pursue a girl that he is genuinely interested in, Liv tells him to cut his losses. She then tries to go all psychiatrist on him and attempts to probe into his “distant” relationship with his parents. One of the most satisfying parts of the episode was watching Ravi shut down Liv and tell her that she’s completely wrong about him. He calls Peyton and asks her out anyway, and Liv is decent enough to support it. Go Ravi!

We can’t place the blame entirely on Liv, though, seeing as she was influenced by the latest brain she’s digested. The murder-of-the-week involves a trashy radio talk-show host named Sasha who spends her days giving sex and relationship advice to callers. Naturally, Liv adopts these qualities and they cause a major rift in her relationship with Ravi, but the problem is that that’s the ONLY time the brain affects her. Throughout the rest of the episode, we BARELY see any of Sasha’s brain’s influence in Liv. It solely affects her communication with Ravi, which was probably done with the intention of causing an unnecessary tension between the two. A bit clunky if you ask me.

 

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For the umpteenth time, we get the same problem of iZombie: the show keeps casting actors and actresses that look almost EXACTLY alike! It’s the most frustrating thing I’ve ever encountered in a show. Peyton, Major’s girlfriend, and two of the suspects are indistinguishable from one another. I want to pull my hair out by the roots whenever someone comes on the screen and I find out that they’re not the same person as who I thought (maybe I suffer from facial blindness?). At one point, I figured Major’s girlfriend was Peyton. At another time, I thought Major’s girlfriend was the same woman who committed the murder. Maybe if we had proper development in these characters right when they’re introduced, then I wouldn’t have an issue. It also doesn’t help that most of these characters’ names are thrown out so casually that you forget who’s name belongs to who.

Major’s storyline was somewhat underplayed this episode. He’s making headway on his case to find his missing kids, but now that he has a criminal record and has lost his job, it’s become even harder to juggle these responsibilities. I will admit that one of the last shots of the episode featuring Major illegally purchasing a gun had me intrigued and wondering what he’ll be up to next.

Going back to Liv – I’m still not liking her relationship with Lowell. He’s obviously shady, and the actor is plain horrible, but the lack of chemistry is what kills it for me. Lowell is a zombie too, but you can barely tell because of his bleaching and bronzing. At least Blaine embraces his new lifestyle just like Liv does. Too bad Blaine a psychopathic scumbag (as we figured from both his past appearances and the last couple of minutes of this episode).

CW recently announced the renewal of iZombie for a second season. I’m happy that true fans of this show are being treated to another season, but I’ve just about giving up on being optimistic for iZombie to turn around. It had the makings of a hit, and it instead went the opposite direction. I see it as little more than just a time-killer at this point.

Final Grade: C +

+ The murder plot was intriguing.

+ For once, I thoroughly enjoyed Rahul Kohli‘s performance.

+ It was satisfying seeing Ravi put Liv in her place.

– Liv has become a bit self-righteous and arrogant; probably a side-effect of the brain she ate.

– More and more instances of common names and generic-looking actors/actresses being tossed around and adding confusion.

– So. much. over-acting!

Extra Thoughts:

– There was a lot going on in the last couple of minutes of the episode. I’m a bit worried that the next episode will be cluttered as it tries to resolve all these emerging plot points.

What were your thoughts on “Dead Air”? Are you happy that iZombie was renewed for a second season? Tells us what you think in the comments or on Twitter!

About the author

Alex Reale

From a young age, Alex knew he was destined to be a writer. He also harbored a deep infatuation with superheroes and comics. Luckily, he was able to combine these two passions through his role with A Place to Hang Your Cape, where he works as Junior Sidekick and Social Media Hero.

When he’s not writing for AP2HYC or working full-time as a content manager for a small business website, Alex is diligently at work on other creative projects including a fantasy novel collection and an independent comic series.

You can find Alex's first book, Dodger's Doorway, on Amazon!