Previously on Z Nation, “Warren’s Dream”
BITES AND MORSELS
Warren and Murphy seek any means to leave Zona for the frontier. Lt. Mueller investigates the whereabouts of a convoy and learns there’s a brand new threat against humans. 10K and Doc get in a bind, Addy and Lucy are under the thumb of their captors, and for whatever reason, whole groups of people are disappearing.
ZOMBIE ROLL CALL
In this episode, there weren’t many Zs for the gang to mercy (in fact, there was really only one), yet the citizens of Zona displayed some zombie-esque qualities. Unless accidentally running over someone while drunk driving usually results in cannibalism down in Orange County, the townsfolk are in a real bad state. That aside, Murphy was also reacquainted with a few of his blends from last season; they met a tragic end as research fodder for Mr. Sunshine during his creation of a vaccine two years ago. Apparently Zona isn’t made entirely of rainbows and lollipops.
ALL’S BAD THAT ENDS BAD
So about that vaccine… it only took a couple years, but the alleged cure manufactured from Murphy’s blood appeared to be a temporary stop-gap with a bevy of catastrophic side-effects. Thanks to a quick recap from Dr. Teller (Frank Boyd) about Zona’s rapid descent, Murphy and Warren learned “contaminants” in Alvin’s blood have slowly destroyed the minds of the residents the moment they were injected with the vaccine. No one for save Roberta and Murphy are safe… not even the kindly Dr. Teller.
Some of the more entertaining parts of “Escape” were the insane antics Warren and Alvin literally stumbled upon throughout Zona, beginning with The Founder’s tense exchange between himself, Teller and Murphy. Though his time on the Z Nation has been brief, Michael Berryman has easily woven himself into the kooky texture that layers this show. Zona is only as strong as its Founder and from the look of him, the secretive compound that protects the one-percenters from the big bad world is raring to eat itself alive. Pun very much intended.
The true severity of the madness continued with a particularly creepy exchange between Murph and his croquet partner, Mr. Spears (Peter Jacobs) who was awfully cross about being paired with Beardsley, a resident who clearly didn’t play up to snuff. The overall situation was bizarre and comical in typical Z Nation fashion, but Jacobs’ demented turn as Spears added gravity to Zona’s precipitous downfall. With red-rimmed eyes that bulged with every bellow, hand firmly clenched around a bloody nine iron, Mr. Spears left a sobering impression on the trio of escapees as well as this writer. After his frenzied display, Not even Murphy could dismiss the fact that all was mostly lost in Zona.
Alvin and Roberta may have snuck off the island for the relative safety of the hellish, dying landscape that was once America, yet they’re in for the rudest awakening. No one’s survival was guaranteed in the post-apocalypse for some time now, but as seen in Warren’s visions and the group’s quality of life, hope is alive by the most frail of threads. Furthermore, the eradication of humankind may have become a certainly after Doc, 10K and Lt. Mueller (Henry Rollins) witnessed a new variant of Z that’s scarily resilient in concentrated fire.
Between the desperation felt by all within the makeshift compound and Addy and Lucy’s legit fear of their eventual demise, the journey to NewMerica has been perilous to write the least. Only a few days have passed since most of the gang reunited and nothing is going their way. Fellow survivors are growing antsy, supplies are dwindling and worst of all, the convoy meant to replenish the camp and provide transport to NewMerica had gone incommunicado a few clicks up the road.
Mueller, with Doc, 10K, Czarnecki and “Sarge” (Gracie Gillam) surveyed the area, only to be ambushed by the same men that kidnapped Addy and Lucy. The cat and mouse game between the dueling snipers doesn’t last too long – even after the marauders’ best gunhand is replaced by Addy – once Czarnecki turns into a Z after he was given mercy. Even with a hole in the head and the rest of its body turned into swiss cheese by a hail of bullets, this new strain of Z wasn’t going down without a fight.
Why and how this tenacious variant of Z exists is just as perplexing a question as the whereabouts of the refugees. When essentially the entire military force ordered to protect the encampment went on its search and rescue, everyone but Sun Mei disappeared in a matter of hours. Could the appearance of the new Z have anything to do with it? Were they simply tired of waiting and decided to fend for themselves? Why was Sun Mei left behind? So many questions!
One thing’s for certain: Addy and Murphy will move heaven and earth to find Lucy again. Unfortunately, the odds of making it through this new mission are likely the worst they’ve ever faced in their years of trekking across the post-apocalypse.