iZombie: “Zombie Bro” is a return to most excellent form for the show

I think I almost one hundred percent loved this episode, which I was looking forward to with some trepidation after the racist mess that was the season premier. Everything about “Zombie Bro” worked, though. There were lots of “bro” puns, some interesting revelations, and a gut punch at the end that promises some serious drama in the future.

The murder victim of the week is stabbed to death at a frat party, which kicks off an investigation that has a couple of parallels with and tonal similarities to last week’s mystery. It’s interesting to me that they would do two such thematically similar episodes back to back, but I like the confidence that shows. It seems obvious that the writers aren’t worried about the audience getting bored and are certain that the other elements of the show will keep people coming back. In light of how heavily I criticized last week’s episode, I also kind of like that this episode felt sort of like a do-over of that shitshow, and I know that if I ever rewatch this series in the future I’ll be pretending that this was the season premiere.

Highlights of “Zombie Bro” include:

  • “E tu, bro-te?” (Have I mentioned how much I love puns?)
  • The guy with the same name as the murder victim.
  • Liv’s inappropriate laughter.
  • Furries.
  • Liv’s police tape dress, which is a miracle of handicraft that I wish I thought I could pull off for Halloween. (Sadly, I think I’m just too busty for that look.)
  • Princess Sparkles.
  • Major not knowing how to buy drugs. Because of course he doesn’t.
  • Ravi not knowing how to take drugs.
  • Seriously, all of the banter between Major and Ravi in this episode was great. I’m really starting to love these guys together, and I want more of this dynamic.
  • Liv’s is still Major’s in case of emergency number.
  • Ravi dancing shirtless. Thank you, iZombie writers.
  • Major falling asleep in Liv’s lap. I don’t care for Major that much, but I’d have to be a monster to not be affected by this scene.
  • Ravi trying to make sense of his messages to himself the next day. You can really see the moment when he gives up.
  • We get to meet Blaine’s dad, and it’s probably the best Blaine scene to date. This makes so much sense.
  • That whole ending, which was just heartbreaking.

As much as I loved “Zombie Bro” it’s not without its flaws.

  • Peyton is still missing in action, and this week she didn’t even get a mention. By the time she comes back, we’re going to have straight up forgotten what she even looks like.
  • Liv dragging Gilda to the frat party could have been really fun, but instead Gilda just came off as a wet blanket and Liv came off like some kind of weirdo with a case of arrested development who dragged her new roommate to a frat party. It was a completely wasted opportunity, and Liv and Gilda barely even interacted with each other. Considering how much both Liv and I are longing for Liv to have a friendship with another woman, I was pretty disappointed by this.
  • Everything Major-related that doesn’t directly involve Liv or Ravi. When he’s with other characters, Major is great, but by himself he’s just a big beige bore, especially since Liv and Ravi are both people who Major could talk to about the stuff he’s going through and he just sort of stubbornly refuses to.

Overall, though, this was great episode, and I’m very much looking forward to the rest of the season and trying to pretend that “Grumpy Old Liv” never happened.

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