* Spoiler alert for iZombie season 4, episode 8.
Is the new crusader “Renegade” version of Liv a knight in shining armor? She certainly thinks so this episode, as she’s on the brains of a person whose passion was LARPing. For those of you who don’t know, that’s Live Action Role Playing – which as Ravi explains, is like Dungeons and Dragons but you actually act out the scenarios, in medieval gear and everything. Only, in the city of New Seattle, a new type of LARPing for zombies has emerged. Since zombies typically don’t die, or even really get hurt, unless you blow their head off, zombie LARPers have started playing with real swords and weapons.
So what if you’re the best LARPer around, and this new form of playing is the ultimate fantasy to you, but you’re a human? That’s right, you tell everyone you’re a zombie and go join the Z-league, danger be damned. Such is the case with this week’s victim, who wound up getting a sword through the gut and being left to die as his fellow LARPers realized he wasn’t actually a zombie and panicked. As Liv and Clive try to track down the killer (who winds up being a zombie husband jealous of his human wife’s affair, and using the LARPing as a cover to kill the guy), Liv stays in medieval LARPer character the entire episode, speaking in a faux medieval voice and spouting noble and annoying platitudes. It’s funny, but a bit of a downer since we never actually get to hear from the real Liv all episode.
Meanwhile, after finding out about Liv’s new illegal mission last episode, Peyton decides that what Liv is doing is nothing short of heroic, and she wants to be part of it. Unless Peyton has a secret fortune that they can use to bribe all the necessary people to sneak people into the city Liv tells her, she’s not useful. Luckily, Peyton doesn’t have a secret fortune, but she realizes she knows someone who does. One of the guys who ratted out Mr. Boss last season, Casper Cotter, is sitting in the city prison right now, and he knows where the nest egg is hidden. By promising to get him on a bus of other prisoners being shipped out of the city, Peyton convinces him to tell her where the money is.
The one problem with Peyton’s plan, (you know, other than the fact that she could get caught and go to prison or be executed), is that Mr. Boss is back, having smuggled himself into the city, and he wants his money back. He convinces Blaine to help him by offering him a cut, and the two of them figure out that they have to stop the bus. However, Blaine’s skeptical that they can do it, claiming that they don’t have the manpower. “And you call yourself a crime boss?” Mr. Boss sneers. “You should have an army of nameless, faceless, yes-men.” Don E. and Blaine come up with the answer at the same time. They don’t have a blindly obedient army, but Blaine’s father, Brother Love does (earlier in the episode his zombie disciples actually swallowed their food on command). And so the plan to unleash the radical, starving zombies upon the prison bus is born.
Blaine convinces his father to join them by telling him that his zombie followers deserve brains, and what better way than to get them from the least deserving of society? The carnage as the zombies overrun the bus is disgusting, even just from some of the descriptions given by Blaine, Mr. Boss and Don E. as they watch, unphased. Cotter is brought before them, and tells them where he hid the money, but it doesn’t matter because it’s too late. Peyton already got the money.
Peyton hands the cash over to a grateful Renegade and her crew, but don’t think they’re off the hook as I’m sure Mr. Boss won’t stop until he finds out who has his cash. Liv scratches a bunch of sick people, saving their lives with the zombie virus. But wait, there’s a catch, because there’s one girl, Isabelle, who arrives later than the others, and when Liv scratches her, nothing happens. What is going on here? is basically the question everyone in the room is asking as they all look at each other baffled and scared. “I’m going to die aren’t I,” says Isabelle.
If you think, though, that Liv, Peyton, and their crew are the pure heroes right now, Chase Graves and Major are in the episode to remind you different. The city’s zombies are starving, and every day with more zombies and without a major influx of brains, they grow closer and closer to armageddon. With all of the new zombies Liv’s making, the city will be at that point in no time. To that end, Major grows only more determined to figure out who in Filmore Graves has been skimming brains off the top and selling them on the black market, and he goes deeper and deeper undercover to get answers.
The city is on the verge of zombie starvation, Mr. Boss is back, and the threat of Brother Love’s radical zombies are finally unleashed. To say the stakes on iZombie have never been higher would be an understatement.