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Z Nation - The White Light - Review: "Why the hell is everybody shooting at everybody!"

This was one of the most exhilarating and yet one of the most heartbreaking hours of zombie television this reviewer has seen in recent memory. From beginning to end 'White Light' was basically one long battle/chase scene and boy was it chaotic.

This week the heroes find themselves in the middle of flat out warfare as they run around Cheyenne, Wyoming looking for Murphy, while eluding the dozens of bounty hunters who are also seeking to capture Murphy and bring him to the CDC. What made this episode crazy was that for everyone who died, only more zombies would arise creating even more chaos.

One of the highlights of 'White Light' was the fight scene between the sniper and Doc, which was a dirty, bloody, and tense brawl. Those punches really hit hard. Considering the high stakes in this episode and the fact we have a new cast member, the death of one of our heroes was expected. Doc is too likeable of a character for them to write off, but you never know with Z Nation, and thus there was some edge of the seat suspense when Doc was being choked out. Fortunately, he survives; however, Doc coming out of his body and seeing the knife on top of the cabinet to save himself was too convenient and will hopefully be explained in future episodes. It seems this will be important as some of the other characters had an out of body or a blast to the past experience upon being near death.

Another highlight action sequence was Warren's shootout with the lone gunman. Warren would eventually run out of bullets and as she approaches the man he punches her out immediately. It seems the writers did not want to overload this episode with too many action sequences, but it would have been nice to see Warren put up some fight as her character is much tougher than that. The leader of the group would eventually be saved from Vasquez, officially cementing himself as part of the team.

"White Light" was not without its trademark Z Nation humour. The wide shot scene with Murphy running into a building clumsily followed by a horde of zombies who suddenly stop when he stops, was brilliantly hilarious. Moreover, having Cassandra wear that ridiculous white fur coat as she manically ran around chomping into people's necks was a stroke of genius. In particular, that scene focused on Warren taking cover behind a car, with Cassandra running into camera view in the background as she chased Vasquez before turning back was another hilarious moment in this episode only because of that stupid jacket.

What made 'White Light' special, however, was that we got a fair share of character moments too. Murphy giving up and throwing himself off the roof really showed the frustration he truly feels at being this chosen one. And then of course was the death of a character. Mack, who hadn't been adding much to the show, finds himself locked in a stairwell as he gets chomped on by a group of the undead. His death would lead to the episode name, the white light being the last thing he sees before Addy gives him mercy.

Mack's death would be the catalyst for the end of the chase, with Addy finding Murphy and beating him to a pulp. Ultimately, Murphy was responsible for the situation everyone found themselves in and he got what he deserved. What made this scene brilliant was Murphy letting Addy beat him up by stopping Cassandra. The look on his face showed that deep down inside he understood he had this coming for him. The silence as Addy looks at Murphy after revealing Murphy's death was heartwrenching.

The comradery between these characters is truly starting to be felt. Mack's death seems to be that event that will bring them closer and lead Murphy to seeing the error of his ways. It will be interesting to see how Vasquez fits into the group, but early on he does have quite the commanding screen presence.

One character who I can not speak as highly of is Citizen Z who spends a couple scenes killing the zombies who infiltrated his base. This was the perfect week to take a break from the character, but he continues to show up and not add anything meaningful to Z Nation, especially this episode with the one big setpiece involving the hunt for Murphy.

'White Light' also introduces us to a mysterious new character who, throughout the episode, was a thorn in the side for our survivors with his rocket launcher. The z on his hand is curious and it seems he will play an important role this season.

Overall, not only was 'White Light' an absolute thrill from beginning to end, but it also served as an important episode for the building of relationships between this growing family of survivors. Z Nation's sophomore season now looks very promising.

What did everyone think of this episode? Leave your comments below!

About the Author - Kollin Lore
Kollin is an entertainment writer and a film and television, in particular genre TV, freak having grown up during the 90s and early 2000s a dedicated fan of Buffy and Angel. Current shows like Person of Interest, Supernatural, Ripper Street, Penny Dreadful, Grimm, The Blacklist, Game of Thrones, and dozens of other shows are currently occupying Kollin’s nightly hours. His reviews for Into the Badlands and The Expanse will be coming this fall!
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