DISCLAIMER: This iZombie recap contains more spoilers than the number of times Blaine has been accused of murder. Hey, when you’re in his line of business, it’s par for the course. You’ve been warned. Prepare for the zombie uprising, and enter at your own peril. 

Welcome back, zombies of New Seattle! iZombie gave us a whopper of an episode this week. Tough decisions were made, heads rolled (literally). Chase’s decision to publicly execute Mama Leone/Renegade will act as a catalyst for the rest of the season, I suspect. We dealt with undead discrimination, and toyed with the notion of whether zombies and humans can truly live in harmony. iZombie is so very adept at handling the heavy-hitting issues with finesse, and this episode is no exception. Very resonant and timely. 

Alright, ready to delve into “Goon Struck?” Just be sure to give Liv a wide berth when she’s on the ice. Liv on goon brains means she’s very violent when armed with a hockey stick. 

We open with Peyton (Aly Michalka) in her office, being her bad*** lawyer self. She’s listening to a case involving a zombie bus driver named Harrison (Adam Kirschner). The attorney on the opposition hopes to fire Harrison, citing that humans are fearful the bus driver will go into “rage mode.” Peyton retorts that this is “tantamount to discrimination.” Oh Miss Charles, it is discrimination. After the lawyer takes his leave, Peyton speaks with Harrison alone. He reveals that brain tube rations are shrinking by the day, and have become increasingly watered down. He has a family to feed, thus his own rations are going to his wife and children. Peyton vows to send him extra rations so he can also stay nourished. Aw, Peyton. Such a big heart. 

Meanwhile, Major (Robert Buckley) is on a roadtrip with Don E (Bryce Hodgson), of all people. Major looks less than enthused. Where they’re going remains to be seen. Suddenly, we hear a cry for help emanating from Major’s trunk. Uh oh. Perhaps this isn’t the frivolous buddy cop comedy roadtrip we all asked for after all. 

Later, Liv (Rose McIver), Clive (Malcolm Goodwin) and Ravi (Rahul Kohli) are visited by Filmore-Graves employee Enzo (John Emmet Tracy). Four unidentified bodies lay lifeless before them. Apparently, said bodies were murdered in cold blood. Three of them were zombies, while the last was human. Enzo is declaring this heinous act a zombie hate crime. Clive identifies the human as Gordie Shultz, a hockey player. Ravi and Clive are thrilled at the prospect of Liv going on “goon brains.” Liv, however, is petrified. I think Liv make an excellent hockey player. We see her prepare her typical brainy culinary masterpiece and, as per usual, I’m salivating over a dish that contains human brains. Am I a zombie? Only time will tell…

Next, Major and Don E make a pit stop at a gas station to stock up on supplies. Translation: Don E was getting the brain munchies. Our favorite Blaine sidekick saunters into said gas station and grabs the necessary items for bodily fuel: a giant blue slushie, chips, a hotdog. However, the cashier asks to see his zombie ID card. Don E, being the spitfire that he is, refuses to hand over his card. Shortly after the incident, Don E slips into Major’s car with all the items he initially nabbed from the gas station. As the car pulls away, we see the cashier exiting the building brandishing a baseball bat. Methinks Don E might’ve used “rage mode” to get away with not showing his ID card…

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Meanwhile, Liv and Clive are in the locker room of the hockey team Gordie played with. Liv is already experiencing the effects of “goon brains,” and it is glorious. I’ve said this before, but I would love to see McIver act alongside Tatiana Maslany. Both are expert character actors. Anyway, our favorite crime-solving duo grills the hockey team for details regarding Gordie. Everyone agrees that their fallen teammate was an all-around good guy. However, they all appear to be withholding critical information. Thus, Liv decides to take it to the ice, hoping the sport itself will open the boys up. It’s Fan Appreciation Day, meaning children are on the ice playing alongside their hockey heroes. Can Liv reel it in with the hockey talk? Probably not, and I wouldn’t want it any other way. 

Pictured: Rose McIver and Malcolm Goodwin, cwtv.com

Later, Liv is busting butts on the ice during the Fan Appreciation event. Ravi eagerly sits with Clive and watches the spectacle unfold. Liv is violently pushing grown men aside like the bad*** she is. Suddenly, she’s rocked with a vision – a vision of one of Gordie’s teammates pummeling him with punches. Bingo!

Then, Liv and Clive bring in Levon (Daniel Bonjour), the man laying on the punches in Liv’s vision. He seems rather nonchalant for someone who’s a potential murder suspect. Levon reveals that yes, they did have a volatile relationship initially, but once Gordie switched over to Seattle’s hockey league they became bosom buddies. Best buds. Brothers from other mothers. Levon writes down on a piece of paper that he’s a zombie too, and puts it on display for Liv to read. He knows that Liv ingested Gordie’s brains. Well, that’s an interesting twist. I think these two will do the horizontal tango. 

Meanwhile, Chase (Jason Dohring) is having a meeting with his team regarding the crisis in New Seattle. Brain tube shortages abound. Someone is cutting their supply, but who? Oh, and General Mills is toying with the idea of nuking Seattle altogether, to obliterate the zombie “disease.” So, there’s that. Chase’s council is now abreast of the former’s capture of Renegade. We see flashbacks of when Blaine brought Mama Leone (Dawnn Lewis) to Chase. Instead of executing her for her crimes, Chase decides to freeze Mama Leone alongside the other frozen undead. A merciful punishment if there ever was one. Chase’s council objects to their leader’s decision, citing that a public execution would keep New Seattle in check. Let them know that what Mama Leone did, turning humans into zombies, is a capital offense. Chase is clearly conflicted. I love me some good inner turmoil. 

Later, we see Major and Don E sitting inside a dingy motel room, which is a quintessential staple of the classic roadtrip. Don E lugs in a rather heavy bag. Once unzipped we see Sloane Mills (Laura Bilgeri), the daughter of the aforementioned General, crawl her way out of said bag. Kidnapping…nice. 

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Then, Major notices that Don E made the evening news with his stunt at the gas station. Apparently, he went full “rage mode” on the cashier. Major chastises Don E for his carelessness, citing that now law enforcement will be on their tails. Don E retorts that he can’t help it if he’s an emotional zombie. He wears his beat-less heart on his sleeve. Sloane is horrified to discover that her captors are undead. However, she’s more or less preoccupied with finding something to sate her drug problem. She’s coming down from a high. 

Later, Liv has another groundbreaking vision. She sees Blaine (David Anders) shooting the three zombies dead, prior to slaughtering Gordie. Blaine is the killer! Liv is ecstatic that they finally have a reason to put Blaine away for good. 

Next, Blaine is sitting in the interrogation room. Liv and Clive question him on his whereabouts that night, but Blaine is distracted at the sight of Liv’s missing tooth. Yes, our girl is rocking the missing tooth look. Blaine’s alibi seems to check out, but of course Liv knows the truth. He’s lying!

Then, Don E and Major both awake from a temporary snooze to find Sloane is MIA. They were supposed to pass her off to someone else. Our pair finds Sloane unconscious in the bathroom. She overdosed and her pulse is practically nonexistent. Their captive is on death’s door, which was not part of the plan. If General Mills’ daughter dies on their watch, he’ll most certainly nuke the city. Major makes a tough choice considering the circumstances. He scratches her arm. Sloane awakens with a gasp of undead life. She’s on Team Z now!

Pictured: Rose McIver and Rahul Kohli, cwtv.com

Meanwhile, Liv and Clive toil away at grilling Blaine with questions. He appears to have an air tight alibi, but Liv is determined to poke holes in it. Suddenly, Blaine reveals that he wasn’t anywhere near that laundromat. Uh oh. Liv and Clive never told him where her vision took place. So, this was when Blaine kidnapped Mama Leone! 

Suddenly, Enzo appears and tells Clive that he solved the case. Liv goes berserk and lays the WWE smackdown on the Filmore-Graves soldier. Goon brain has made her formidably strong. Clive breaks apart the fisticuffs and attempts to pacify Liv. She marches into the interrogation room and proceeds to go rage mode on Blaine. I don’t blame her. I’d rage mode all over him too. She has another vision of Levon attempting to pacify a newly undead Gordie. Time to pay Levon a visit. 

Next, Liv finds Levon in the locker rooms of his hockey team once again. He divulges that he worked for Mama Leone. Unfortunately, he doesn’t know where Blaine took her or what her fate is. 

Later, back at the precinct, Peyton marches in and informs the bunch that Blaine is being released, courtesy of the Mayor’s office. Of course, that really translates to Chase Graves upholding his end of the bargain with Blaine. Liv is livid (heehee) that, once again, Blaine is walking free. However, there’s not much she can do about it. 

Pictured: Aly Michalka and Rahul Kohli, cwtv.com

Then, Peyton learns that a bus accident occurred involving Harrison. He fell asleep at the wheel and, upon waking, was enticed by the blood of the injured and feasted on a brain. One woman, who was armed with a gun, shot him in the head. Peyton feels immensely guilty. Chase arrives on the scene and our crew informs him of what happened. He vows to make sure Harrison’s family is provided for. Apparently, he was extremely malnourished and that’s what caused him to pass out. Chase’s council continues to pester him about making an example out of Mama Leone. Every new zombie strains their resources beyond repair. 

Next Don E, Major and Sloane return to Blaine’s lair in crates. Sloane is currently feasting on a brain, her new zombie hunger kicking into high gear. Of course, turning Sloane was not part of the plan, but Blaine urges Major to take her under his wing. 

Later, Major finds Chase sitting forlornly in his office, drinking his troubles away. Major informs Chase of the botched mission involving Sloane. However, her turning zombie was actually a genius move. Now they have leverage against General Mills. Would he really nuke a city that contains his undead daughter? Major gives Chase some unsolicited advice regarding having to do what’s necessary to survive. This gets the wheels turning in Chase’s head. 

Pictured: Jason Dohring, cwtv.com

Next, we see him unfreeze Mama Leone to inform her that she will be publicly executed for her crimes. You can see the inner conflict roiling within Chase as he says this. Dohring is an expert at nuance. 

Later, Peyton arrives at the morgue to inform Liv of Mama Leone’s execution. The gang arrives in the square in full force. Chase makes a formal announcement about the importance of adhering to the rules. Zombies and humans can coexist peacefully if these rules are followed. The crowd seems to be split – half are chanting to cut off Mama Leone’s head while the remainder find this execution utterly inhumane. Mama Leone is brought out in fetters, and her head is placed on the guillotine.

Liv tries to stop the execution, but is obstructed by a Filmore-Graves soldier. She notices Major standing stoically off to the side and screams his name amidst the chaos. He doesn’t hear her. Suddenly, Mama Leone loses her head, to the horror of Liv and everyone who loved Renegade. Afterwards, Liv locks eyes with Major, and you can see she’s utterly disappointed in him. I would be too. 

Now, Liv approaches Levon. She reveals she’s determined to take up Mama Leone’s mantle, determined to finish the work she started. Helping sickly humans find new life. Oh, she’s definitely going to horizontally tango with Levon now.

iZombie never fails to disappoint. Usually I look to this show for its zany comedic elements, but this week it took on a darker tone. Discrimination is something we currently deal with in our society, and iZombie Season 4 is permeated with this theme. To me, Dohring was the MVP of this episode. He infused Chase with layers we hadn’t seen previously. Chase struggles with the weight of New Seattle on his shoulders – all he wants is for humans and zombies to coexist peacefully. But is that even possible? Now, with Liv shouldering Mama Leone’s work and Angus mounting his zombie revolution, where is the line in the sand? So many questions! This season is shaping up to be the best yet. 

Do you think Liv will successfully take up Renegade’s work unnoticed? Will her decision further drive the wedge between her and Major? How will Chase’s decision to execute Mama Leone affect the masses? Will General Mills stand down from his decision to nuke Seattle if Sloane is revealed to be a zombie? Join me next week as I recap iZombie, here on Geek Girl Authority. 

iZombie airs Mondays at 9pm on your CW affiliate. 

 

 

Melody McCune

Before moving to Los Angeles after studying theater in college, I was born and raised in Amish country, Ohio. No, I am not Amish, even if I sometimes sport a modest bonnet. I also work publicity for WhedonCon, a convention celebrating the works of Joss Whedon. I love cheese. I love geek. I love lamp.