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Z Nation - The Unknowns - Review

'The Unknowns' was a mixed bag of great and meh. In this fifth episode of Season 4, the team find themselves abducted by an unseen entity and tasked with suicidal tasks.

'The Unknowns' capitalized on the concept of escape rooms, which has been all the rage these days. Really, it was Saw light on the day the next film in the franchise, Jigsaw, was released. Coincidence?

For the first half, the concept worked amazingly. The situations the team found themselves in were really well staged, from Doc and 10K in the gas room with only one gas mask to Warren having to clear out an elevator filled with Z's.

The episode showcased the strengths of the survivors individually and as a team. I don't know how Murphy was able to survive on his own in the scenes we never got to see, but he did prove himself worthy when paired up with both Warren and Doc.

'The Unknown's' was an especial showcase for Sgt. Lillie, who I have fallen in love with. Cute, but tough, and again, she proved herself valuable to the team in helping a hyperventilating Warren calm down. We also got to know her a little bit more in this scene, which has given some nice depth to the character.

It is weird how this is the first full season we could have got of Red, but her role ultimately went to Sarge, while she once again disappeared for most of the proceedings. I don't see Red and Sarge existing together, and I fear the inevitable moment when one of them is written off.

The episode was mostly a serious one, though there was still some classic humour, ala, 10Ks love of dog food and Murphy coughing up the feathers after Doc asks him if he ate the bird. Too funny.

As aforementioned, the episode overall had its moments. The concept could've worked better in more capable hands, as often times, it felt monotonous. Yes, we do feel the frustration that the team feels of being knocked unconscious by that screeching sound over and over again, but still, it didn't make the most pleasant viewing experience. The fact there was no real payoff also hurt the episode. The mystery has been what has helped make Season 4 feel so fresh, but sooner or later, we will need answers.

I applaud the show writers for experimenting with a unique concept, like they have consistently these past 4 seasons with great results. Though the final product did not live up to its full potential, there were still some memorable moments that made the episode stick out in the season.


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