Previously on Z Nation, ‘Day One’
Starring: Kellita Smith, DJ Qualls, Keith Allan, Anastasia Baranova, Russell Hodgkinson, Nat Zang, Matt Cedeno | Director: John Hyams
BITES AND MORSELS
The group encounter bounty hunters who may have seriously wounded 10K. The Zeros set up an ambush and attempt to get their revenge on Murphy. The CDC finally reveal their big plans to their prized acquisition. An old enemy returns to aid the gang and begin the long process of amending for past misdeeds. Citizen Z leaves his post to find new purpose.
ZOMBIE ROLL CALL
As expected, it was a wild time in “All Good Things” as the CDC, Zeros, disembodied Dr. Kurian and yes, even some zombies made an appearance. Also featured were a new variant of undead created by the desperate scientists that reside in Zona. They look harmless enough, until one notices their glowing blue eyes puts an eerie chill down your spine. Riddick, they aren’t.
CALL OF THE WILD
Back in Camp Northern Light, Citizen Z (DJ Qualls) is somberly closing up shop. His network has been compromised, power near empty and, worst of all, Z may have cost the lives of all his friends. Distraught and dejected by these series of misfortunes, Citizen Z is no more; only Simon Cruller remains. As winter fast approaches, Cruller packs up – with pup in tow – for parts unknown.
The frozen tundra isn’t kind to Cruller and pup as it literally stops him in his tracks. Simon seems compelled to amble aimlessly in the wilderness as atonement for his failings. A bit rough, given the look on his face as his life appears to draw to its end. Out of the flurry a figure appears. Is this person friend or foe? An old face or a new ally? In any way, Cruller is in a bad spot and needs all the help he can get.
Besides, Simon can’t die. Not while this fluffy ball of adorableness exists.
ALL’S WELL THAT ENDS WELL
Thanks to the mysterious Auntie, the CDC are alerted to Murphy’s presence and hastily arrive at the dilapidated bar from their submarine. Say whaaaaat? Talk about rolling up in style. Two officers with a tac team arrive to acquire “The Package”; before they do, in comes Dr. Marilyn Merch (Lisa Coronado) to verify whether Alvin is the real deal. That’s quickly confirmed when Murphy all but tears Dr. Merch’s head off for forcing him to endure such a hellish existence the last two years. Despite it all, Murphy reluctantly agrees to complete Operation: Bitemark for the sake of all who lost their lives to keep him alive.
Warren transfers Murphy over to the “CDC” (with an injured 10K in tow) and all appears on the up and up at first. The sub Captain and Dr. Merch give Murphy cliff notes on the current state of humanity: Many affluent folk reside on an island called Zona, a sanctuary free of strife, want and most especially, undead. A vaccine was produced early on but it doesn’t make one immune of ZN-1. Rather, it delays the inevitable change to a full blown Z.
Yeah, no. This isn’t going to work at all.
It takes no time for Murphy to gain the upper hand and bite his way out of a bad situation. Meanwhile, 10K awakens from his emergency surgery with no clue about where he is and what’s going on. Poor lad. He gets shot in the gut and finds himself in yet another firefight. Tommy better know how to swim…
¿QUIERES UNOS CHINGASOS?
The family has finally broken up and it’s pretty heartbreaking. Relieved from the burden of command, Warren and the others are now free to go about their own path and make the best out whatever life they can cultivate in their rotten world. They barely have a chance to think about what veggies to plant in their gardens before the Zeros ambush them. La Reina (Gina Gershon) is still half-alive and quite mad, looking like a woman who shook her head while spraying a whole can of Aqua Net in the air. The gang puts up a decent fight but the Zeros eventually overpower them and make their way inside the shack.
La Reina still thinks the world of Roberta and claims there’s no beef. All she wants is El Murphy for all the mess he started down in Mexico. The Queen’s attitude changes in a hot second when Roberta tells her for the umpteenth time that Murphy is gone; the two have a damn violent throwdown up and down the lounge. For a moment it appeared La Reina had the upper hand but Warren was saved at the last second by… Escorpion?!
¡¿Que rayos haces tu aqui?!
Like Citizen Z, Escorpion (Emilio Rivera) is no more. He has renounced his former life and goes by his Christian name once more: Hector Alvarez. Understandably, Vasquez is pissed to see him alive and is ready to blow Hector’s brains clear across the room. Ultimately, Javier allows Hector to live as both men have profoundly changed in these last, long weeks. At first, it appears Alvarez’s change of heart is quite convenient and a tad unbelievable. However his ordeal with a horde in the Zeros compound would leave any person with an extremely altered worldview.
Thankfully, both Vasquez and Alvarez will live on and continue their road to redemption, albeit on separate paths. The former decides to cast away his pain of loss in solitude, while the latter seeks to provide charity to those in need.
A NEW MURPH ORDER
Before jumping back on the road, Roberta, Doc, Addy and Hector head to the beach for one last stroll. They arrive just in time to witness the CDC submarine go up in flames and sink to the depths. Doc trails a zodiac with his binoculars and notices Murphy at the wheel, carrying a handful of troops, the Captain and Dr. Merch… all with fresh bites on their faces. If that wasn’t bad enough, a pair of MiGs fly overhead and a North Korean mysterious military patrol have the four of them surrounded.
Z Nation S2E15
What a fantastic season. Undoubtedly, Z Nation was going to retain its status as an entertaining series this fall. Yet it surpassed all expectations with its desire to shake up the status quo and breathe new life in a genre about dead folk with hunger pains.
Thanks to the hands-on approach of series creators Karl Schaefer and Craig Engler, and rotating roles within their committee of writers and directors, Z Nation provided tight, clean storytelling while continuing to push the envelope on the already eccentric and irrationally fearsome concept of a zombie apocalypse. Add to the fact they’ve casted an ensemble that’s ready and willing to get down and dirty to deliver engrossing performances every week.
Considering Z Nation’s especially novel quality of merging genres that appear incompatible on the surface – as well as the adaptability of the cast to draw inspired portrayals in insanely bizarre conditions – the series is well deserving of its dedicated and steadily growing fanbase. The show is unlike anything currently on television and given its recent renewal for a third season, Z Nation is bound to become an even wilder ride.