iZombie Season 2 Episode 4 Review: “Even Cowgirls Get the Black and Blues”


Since the end of iZombie‘s first season, when Major discovered the truth about Liv, the series has been building towards the events of “Even Cowgirls Get the Black and Blues.” After so much deception and betrayal from both of them, Liv and Major are finally honest with each other about how they feel and what they need, and the result is another incredibly entertaining and emotionally powerful hour of what I considered to be the best show currently airing on The CW.

What works so well about both of the main Liv/Major scenes from this week’s iZombie is not that they simply connect with the brain-of-the-week theme (the idea that loving someone may not be enough), but that they are authentic and emotionally earned moments for both characters. After Liv tries again to explain how she feels to Major (and he remains essentially unresponsive), it’s insanely satisfying to watch her lash out at him about how difficult the last year has been for her and how she’s been constantly trying to make up for her mistakes, only to have the door slammed in her face by him time and time again. These feelings have been boiling inside of Liv ever since iZombie first began, and to see her finally release them, completely unfiltered, is one of the character’s (and Rose McIver’s) best moments on the series yet.

Similarly, Major arriving at Liv’s door in the episode’s closing moments is also a terrific scene. With just three words–”I need help”–the facade that Major has been constructing finally shatters, as he opens himself up to the one person that he truly believes can make a difference in his life. Instead of turning to drugs or his “self-loathing” sex with Gilda (or Rita, as he calls her), Major becomes as honest and vulnerable as Liv is earlier in the episode, signifying that the two of them may finally be able to take a step forward with each other. The kiss they share at the end of the hour isn’t them falling back into their old ways; it represents a new beginning, the hope that, with the both of them being fully present in their relationship, they can start fresh and make something better together.

It’s true that two people can love each other and still wind up hurting one another; somebody lies or keeps a secret because they’re so afraid that the person they care about most won’t be able to see them the same way if they discover the truth. That’s what happened with Liv and Major before, and it’s continued to be their relationship throughout most of these first four episodes of iZombie Season 2. Their love, in many ways, has been just like the song that Liv performs at the country bar (which is obviously more inspired by her and Major than Lacey and Sue, even if it’s not explicitly stated), but the final scene of “Even Cowgirls Get the Black and Blues” suggests that the next song of their relationship could be different, a more hopeful, optimistic duet that can lead them towards a better future.

Other thoughts:

  • I wrote this on Twitter, but after watching this episode and seeing Rose McIver sing, while still knocking her comedic and especially dramatic scenes out of the park, I’m pretty sure it’s confirmed that she can do anything.
  • Let’s all appreciate how easy and understanding Liv and Peyton’s first conversation together was. So happy that Liv has this friendship in her life again and also that the lovely Aly Michalka is back on this show.
  • I know I spent my entire review discussing Liv and Major, but man, how absolutely dynamite were all their scenes this week? I just want to watch Liv’s angry speech to him on repeat. McIver and Robert Buckley killed it.
  • The new FBI agent (who is investigating the disappearances of all the rich dudes that Blaine, Vaughn, and Major have been killing) seems to have taken an interest in Clive, which I’m all for. If there was one minor issue with iZombie‘s first season, it was that Clive didn’t feel as fleshed out as the rest of the show’s characters. Giving him a little bit of romance could help show us a new side of him and give the usual straight-laced detective a little more personality.
  • Blaine is still wickedly vicious, as he turns Gabriel, the maker of pure Utopium, into a zombie when he won’t give him the formula. He also surprisingly works with Peyton to help take down Stacey Boss, and while I did very much like their scenes together, I’m really hoping iZombie avoids any type of romance between these two. Making Peyton legitimately interested in a guy she knows is a criminal would be insulting to her character.
  •  All of Liv’s little country sayings were hilarious and adorable.
  • Blaine’s two cronies discussing whether or not Jesus was a zombie was the kind of ridiculous humor that I love to see from iZombie.
  • This week in Ravi is the best: he names his and Major’s dog “Minor,” wears a cowboy hat when he goes to support Liv at her open mic performance, and has this wonderful exchange with Steph after she meets Peyton: “That’s the girl you used to date? Damn, player!” “No, I’m not high-fiving that. I wasn’t born yesterday.”

What did everyone else think of this week’s episode of iZombie? Comment below and let me know.

[Photo via The CW]

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