In Review: iZombie, Episode 2 “Brother, Can You Spare a Brain?”

Much better than the pilot, with a lot going on in creating the zombie mythology.

iZombie, Episode 2 “Brother, Can You Spare a Brain?” Broadcast March 24, 2015

Written by Diane Ruggiero-Wright

Directed by John Kretchmer

“Previously on iZombie,” Dr. Charkrabarti asks if Liv is the only zombie out and about. “That’s the one thing that keeps me up at night,” she narrates. “That zombie haunting my dreams. He’s out there.” In the present, Lola and Sebastian come back from dinner to find Javier dead, the non-business end of a paintbrush stuck in his eye. Cue opening title sequence.

The police are on the scene with Liv and Ravi checking out the corpse. Ravi reveals the dead man was a well known artist, much to Liv’s surprise. Babineaux shows tells the pair that he thinks the wife committed the murder, because if a husband’s dead, they did it, and vice versa. Back at the lab, Liv scrapes brain matter off the paintbrush, nukes it, and chows it down as a taco. At her apartment, Major arrives carrying a box of her things. Roommate Peyton’s arrival has Major exiting and she makes Liv feel guilty, again, for breaking off her engagement with the perfect guy. That night Liv has a dream of the male zombie from the boating incident asking, “Wanna have a bite?” and lunging at her. She wakes upset and goes to work to use the computer to search social media about the boat disaster to find information on Zombie Two. Ravi tells her to relax and throws her a magazine to distract her. The women’s periodical triggers a memory of Javier having an affair. Liv goes to the police station to tell Babineaux what she saw, overly describing the tryst from Javier’s point of view. He takes her with him to go back and question wife, now widow, Lola. Once there, they find her with the woman from Liv’s vision. Lola introduces the pair to Tasha, her favorite of Javier’s lovers. Cue first commercial break.

This was a much better mystery than the pilot and provided a lot of information, as well as creating new questions, about being a zombie. Once again Rose McIver is sensational as Liv. She can go from serious to funny at the drop of a hat, and Liv’s two interrogation scenes with Babineaux were hilarious. Her sideways glances were hysterical. Her new abilities in the episode were fun. Malcolm Goodwin has to play straight man this time out, leaving Babineaux not much to do but work on the mystery. Dr. Chakrabarti gets out of the morgue, and Rahul Kohli gets some fun scenes, with his wardrobe at the final event a nice nerd touch. Stealing the episode is David Anders as Zombie Two, Blaine DeBeers. His scenes with Liv make the episode, and Blaine gets to start some new plot threads as well. I’m looking forward to seeing more of this character. Robert Buckley also got to stretch beyond Major’s one note appearance in the pilot, and I know this isn’t the last viewers will see of him. And how about that car scene?

The good: The script by Diane Ruggiero-Wright, Rose McIver, Robert Buckley, and David Anders, brain tacos, a scene in a back alley, the best name for a business named after a 1980’s indie band, Jimmy the police sketch artist’s attitude, and Babineaux’s logic for discovering the killer.

Fun lines: “Hint: She eats brains,” “Much,” “It was like watching a flower bloom,” “Heard you were looking for me,” “I’ll drop trou if you think you can cure this,” “Where’d you go?”, “How did that happen?”, “Death’s gonna be swell,” and “I’m not the kind of girl you want to mess around with.”

The bad: Malcolm Goodwin not getting much to do, but the script was solid.

Overall grade: Much better than the pilot, with a lot going on in creating the zombie mythology. Overall grade: A

Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer's Guide for several years with "It's Bound to Happen!" and he's reviewed comics for TrekWeb and TrekCore. He's taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for five years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.
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