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iZombie - Abra Cadaver - Review

iZombieHorde, I owe you an apology. I haven't been as active with my reviews this year and for that I am sorry. I underestimated how I busy I was going to be over the last few weeks and it kept putting me behind. The good thing is, I am back. The even better thing is, iZombie got picked up for additional 6 episodes, so I have six more chances to make you forget about this horrible lapse in review time. Though I'm sure that with the show giving me so much LIFE this year, you've probably been too busy enjoying the wonderful developments of iZombie season 2. It sure has been a doozy, from Blaine to Boss, Payton to Gilda, and the swoon-worthy Liv and Major romance, it's been hard to pick a favorite moment of season 2. But for every bit of great the show has become especially when it comes to serialization, we can't escape the fact the show is still a procedural at it's core and thus we get hours like "Abra Cadaver".

“This is the best brain ever. I almost want to start killing magicians so it never ends”
I love iZombie. I think it has some of the best talent on the network both on and off the camera. The show has done such a great job this year further developing the zombie-infested surburbia that is Seattle, and coming off last week's big reveal that Major ain't no Killa' this week's episode has me echo sentiments that are the exact opposite of Ravi's above. It's not that it was bad hour, it was just another hour. Sure, we got a few interesting new developments, but none of them as major as the one from the week before with Major. The thing with the serial lite episodes is that they have a memorable brain to make them enjoyable and this one really wasn't all that magical.

This week, Liv found herself eating (what was it she made? It did not look as appetizing as usual.) the brains of the magician Syd Wicked who was found dead in the hotel he was staying in for Prestofest with a playing card lodged in his throat. Ravi is of course geeked, (and disturbed by the smell which belongs to a dead fish sent by a rival of Syd's) as he was once a wand head. Clive, on the other hand seems to have a real problem with the world of magic or magicians that is(something I CAN'T ACCEPT BECAUSE HE BELIEVES THAT LIV IS A PSYCHIC BUT HE DOESN'T LIKE MAGICIANS?) and I just don't get it. There are, as always a few great moments that come from the investigation on this case. Liv does some pretty cool card tricks(which McIver actually learned for the show). All-in- all though, I just wasn't feeling this case too much. Syd, had made a living by exposing his rivals career tricks as fake while rising to the top, which meant of course he has enemies. But here is the kicker, the surveillance footage shows no one heading into Syd's room until the maid finds his body, which means his death must have been a trick of sorts. I will say the fact that the potential killer was a magician really had my eyes in the wrong direction, I was thinking just like Liv and Clive didn't think to look for the most simple and obvious answer which was right in front of me.

Syd, was a pretty morbid guy who had really burned some bridges with both his ex-fiance Houdina (Also a fellow magician who had cards suspiciously like the ones found in Syd's throat) and the magician he used to open for Magnificent Magnus. Houdina happened to be doing a show at the time of the murder so there's no way it was her, and Magnus was apparently getting it on with and auburn haired whippersnapper. Ravi's deep dive into Syd's twitter hate reveals that an act called Smoak and Meers was apparently subject to Syd's next exposure. I don't know what was more weird, how not funny it was that they were a blatant rip off Penn and Teller or that no one could tell that was a woman in a wig. It took me out of the scene to watch the obvious woman in drag referred to as a man. (I was over the whole mute-Meers whiteboard bit, but I did laugh at his response to Clive's where were you at the time of the murder questioning. "Not murdering.") The duo tell Clive and Liv that Houdina disappeared during her act and they head back to find Houdina. Houdina though laughs them off because of course she "disappeared" it is part of her act. She just changes into her waitress costume and tells people to tip their waitress, she informs them that the most simple answer is right in front of them. Then blam, it hits me. It was the damn maid.

Yes, the maid is the killer, but why? Oh, wait she was the man in the wig who everyone thought was actually a man, Meers (Who was Syd's next target). Liv outs Irena/Meers while they are filming their cable special that they are behind the murder of Syd Wicked. Meers/Irena got a part time job as a maid at the hotel in preparation to kill Syd and Smoak hired that young whippersnapper to seduce Magnus so he wouldn't have an alibi and look guilty. It was a pretty impressive plan when you think about it, but then when you think about it, why was the maid not questioned after the body was found? Why was she not questioned again after they reviewed the tape, surely they would have known then that she was "undocumented" then that would have exposed this whole ruse once they were about to deport Meers Irena. Sure, that would have cut this episode in half and would have been some sensible cop work, but it surely would have made this whole mess a bit more interesting. I'm sorry Syd, but your brain was not quite the spark I was looking for.
"Liv: It’s like I’m always Britney, but sometimes I’m hit-me-baby-one-more-time Britney, and sometimes I’m head-smashing car windows Britney.
Major: Real talk, I thought both of those Britneys were hot."

Okay, so there wasn't much in the way of Liv-Major moments this week, but I really needed to include this line in my review, because Britney is Life, Britney is Legend and Britney is all. I have to say, I've really come around on the Liv and Major pairing this season. Sure they aren't the second coming of Logan and Veronica, but they'll do. I love that instead of making this a long drawn out thing, the two are really giving it a go despite not being able to have sex. Sure, it's a little creepy that Major really wants to have sex with a technically dead person, but the less you think about that the better. Liv and Major are enjoying just being together it seems. Sure they aren't having full on Hamburger sex, but they are having Turkey Burger sex, so that's nice. (I would like to know what exactly that means, for science purposes of course)Liv, wants to know if Major is really okay with all of this, being with her even when she's got somebody else all in her...head. Major, true to super awesome boyfriend core, says he can handle it. Though, the more he sees of Liv with the weirdly death obsessed Syd brain, the more cracks seem to be forming in their foundation. This is evidenced when at the hour's end Major walks in on Liv doing some sort of wiccan ritual, he stops and watches for a moment, before heading up to his room without so much as a word. (WHY COULD SHE NOT HAVE DONE HER DARK RITUALS AT HER OWN PLACE? WHY!?)

Liv and Major's romance is not the only one that loses it's magic this week. Ravi, seems to really be put off by Steph's needy nature. So much so, that he asks Payton(you know his ex and current housemate) for her advice on the subject. Ravi eventually breaks up with Steph and then later makes a move on Payton only to be rejected. (Way to misread the signs Ravi.) Could Payton's rejection have a little something to do with the fact that she might be feeling a little sumthin' sumthin for a gentleman named Blaine? Earlier, Payton stops by to see Blaine to inform him that Mister Boss came to see her and knows that she has informant that used to work for him and it seems that Blaine may be charming the fuzzy socks off of Payton in the near future.

“Help me Zombie-Wan Kenobi, you’re our only hope”
This week it finally happened! After months of anticipating what a Liv-Blaine team up would be like we finally go it.We had been promised that season two would make strange deadfellows of Liv and Blaine and it seems like a lot of this season's set up was actually heading in that direction. Blaine pops by the morgue while Liv is reading tarot on the dead Syd and proposes they work together. Blaine's clients are disappearing, and he wants Liv to team up with him and figure out why or how. He knows that there's an FBI agent in town working the case, (Agent Bozzio, the one Clive has been cuddling up to) and Liv can help him get close and find out what they know. Liv is hesitant at first, should she team up with Blaine who is a known murderer who is only in this for his own needs? Blaine manages to appeal to her better nature and they decide to check up on Bozzio and see what she knows. They stake out her home waiting for her to leave with Clive for date night at the movies, but it looks the only the movie they'll be seeing that night involves the two of them and the beasts with two backs.

Liv and Blaine break in the next day and discover that Bozzio knows just about as much as they do about the meat-cute explosion and the disappearances of the zombies. Then, a letter comes through the mail slot which Liv begs Blaine not to open recklessly but he does and they discover that what is inside is the lab results proving that the brain Suzuki's wife found was human. Liv takes the results and decides to alter them and return them at later date. (Am I really supposed to believe the the FBI just drops off lab results via mail slots.) Liv does alter them to say Cow Bovine brain and drops them back off and she doesn't notice the creepy lady watching the house as she does. Later, the same creepy lady is about to ring the doorbell while Clive and Bozzio are in bed reading said lab results, but instead she just leaves the envelope on the welcome mat. (UH, what?)

“I’m an acquired taste. Like gazpacho or that free U2 album.”
Like that free U2 album, or gazpacho this episode is one of acquired taste. It does seem the show has been firing on all cylinders this season, so maybe this break was needed in the writers room to have good material for the rest of the season. The episode wasn't all bad, it was just that nothing really major happened this week. It was like after all this build up the show just came to a halt? What's going on with Vaughn Du Clarke and Max Rager? What's going on with Stacey Boss? What the hell is up with Major and his box full of zombies? Liv's brain residuals were lackluster at best and all we got out of the team up was more questions. I blame the iZombie writers for creating a momentum that was so great that an episode like this is just a bit dull by comparison. I don't need iZombie to go all Scandal (Never getting over that mess of a finale) on me and deliver a truly disappointing winter finale, so I'm hoping that this episode is not a reflection of what is to come. Hopefully it was more about world building for the rest of the season. Though I am welcoming the idea of the Payton/Blaine hookup as I just don't think Payton is good enough for my Ravi right now.

I'm not a fan of the Major and Liv subplot this week though. The pair have already come so far, so why do they need another obstacle to overcome. I mean, I don't quite know what was up at the end of the episode, but I really hope he isn't having trouble with the brain residuals. The guy can go with no sex but he can't deal with split personalities? The role play for the turkey burger sex would be amazing if he just embraced it. Though, I do find their declaration of honesty to be really good for the two of them. On the flip side, Major had the perfect moment to come clean with Liv about his involvement with the death of the zombies when she brought it up to him what she knew about the case. Does he really think when it does come out the "I was trying to protect you" excuse will fly when he gave Liv flack for doing the same thing with her secret? With that being said, maybe I should just embrace an episode like this for what it was and enjoy it, because I have a feeling things won't be as chill as they were this week for long.

So, what did you think of Abra Cadaver? Were you disappointed about the change of pace, or did you welcome it? Do you think Major can actually handle the side effects of Liv's eating habits? Are you excited about the Blaine-Liv team up? Any theories about who the mystery woman is? Sound off below!

Check out these glorious podcasts @iZombieNation and @iZombiePodcast
Follow these cool iZombie individuals: @iZombieFans_CW / @iZombieObsessed / @morales_ej

Remember that if you miss first airing and the live tweeting @NeptuneRising orchestrates a #iZombieRewatch #iZombieHorde #iZombie #iZombieRewatch

iZombie, The Hurt Stalker, airs Tuesday 8 pm CST December 1st on The CW.
About the Author - Winston Mize
Winston is a 25 year old goofball, born in the north, and currently living in the south. He loves TV.... for some it's coffee, for him it's TV talk that gets his day going. He wants to be a screenwriter, and watches some of everything. You name it, he's probably checked it out. And he would like you to know that it is okay for a 25 year old to play with action figures... well, he does anyway. He's semi-active on twitter, and has quite a lot of nothing to say. Get to know him and learn he is just randomness personified. You can check him out with previews/reviews of Minority Report, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, and iZombie this fall.
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