'iZombie' Showrunner Rob Thomas Talks Season 2 Story Arcs

iZombie banner Liv Rose McIver

[Warning: SPOILERS for iZombie season one ahead.]


The CW has thrown itself wholeheartedly into the pages of DC Comics over the past few years, not only with the ever-expanding shared universe of The Flash, Arrow and Legends of Tomorrow, but also with Rob Thomas and Diane Ruggiero's supernatural detective show iZombie. Based on the Vertigo comic of the same name by Chris Roberson and Michael Allred, iZombie stars Rose McIver as Liv Moore, a doctor who finds her promising career derailed when she gets turned into a zombie and ends up working in a morgue.

Thomas was previously best known for creating the detective show Veronica Mars, and iZombie also has a procedural element. Every time Liv eats human brains she acquires some of the personality traits, skills and memories of its previous owner, making her a valuable ally for homicide detective Clive Babineaux (Malcolm Goodwin). Elsewhere in season one, zombie crime lord Blaine (David Anders) was busy populating Seattle with zombies and getting them hooked on his exclusive supply of brains.

Rounding out the cast of main characters are Liv's friend and co-worker Ravi (Rahul Kohli), Liv's confused ex-fiancé Major (Robert Buckley), and Liv's equally confused roommate Peyton (Aly Michalka). By the end of iZombie's first season, pretty much everyone (with the exception of Clive) knows that Liv is a zombie. So, with no more secrets to keep, where does Liv go in season two?

Fortunately, iZombie fans don't have to wait until October to find out what's on the way in season two. Screen Rant sat down with Thomas at San Diego Comic-Con 2015, and the co-showrunner spilled (some of) the beans regarding what's on the way for Clive, Blaine, and unscrupulous energy drink company Max Rager.

Live to the Max!

iZombie Steven Weber Max Rager

Liv's troubles began when a tainted batch of fad drug Utopium collided with the occasionally deadly energy drink Max Rager at a boat party and created the first batch of zombies. Needless to stay, Max Rager CEO Vaughn Du Clark (Steven Weber) was more interested in protecting his bottom line than preventing more death and chaos. In season one he was already making plans to duplicate zombie superpowers in an energy drink form, while also eliminating the zombie side effects and quietly wiping out any existing zombies to cover his tracks. According to Thomas, season two will see these plans begin to play out.

"Essentially, Max Rager has decided it’s in their business interests to eliminate all the zombies in Seattle. Suddenly, zombies are going to start disappearing. And one of the things that that will result in will be Liv and Blaine [becoming] very strange bedfellows as they are trying to thwart the same problem. It’s in neither of their interests for zombies to start disappearing from Seattle."

Liv and Blaine have never got on particularly well (Blaine being a greedy, power-hungry, morally bankrupt murderer kind of got in the way), so it will certainly be interesting to see them trying to work together. Thomas went on to say that it's a pleasure to finally have McIver and Anders share more scenes, after spending much of the first season engaged in separate storylines.

Clive's Clues

iZombie Astroburger 3

When Liv first met Clive, his reputation as a homicide detective was suffering due to the fact that he had yet to actually close a murder case. Despite having a 'psychic' on his side to help him finally solve some murders, Clive's attempts to uncover the bigger picture of what was happening in Chicago were hampered by the fact that his boss, Lieutenant Suzuki, was a zombie on Blaine's payroll (brainroll?) and was helping to keep the zombie outbreak a secret. It seems that Clive is a better cop than his colleagues give him credit for, as Thomas explained that the detective is going to keep digging in season two.

"Clive is not satisfied with the investigation into the [homeless youth] murders. Essentially, the police are happy to attribute everything... Lieutenant Suzuki busted up a drug ring and it’s all in a neat little bow. Clive is not going to let go of that. So we’ll have this creeping investigation by Clive that, of course, will point back eventually towards Major and Blaine being involved. So he’ll be on top of that."

A key part of Liv and Clive's dynamic so far is that Clive doesn't know that Liv is a zombie - or even that zombies exist. Obviously this is going to hamper his investigation, but Thomas and Goodwin both described Clive as being oblivious to the truth and unlikely to make the same logical leaps that Major did. At least, not just yet.

Side Effects

iZombie white zombie rat

Ravi's determination to help Liv in season one led him to create a cure for zombieism that successfully treated a rat. Liv was, of course, overly eager to jump straight into human trials in order to cure herself, but ended up using the only two doses of the treatment on Blaine and Major. Thomas explained that Ravi's concoction was a long way from being FDA approved, and that both Blaine and Major will pay the price for this in season two.

"That was a very untested cure and it will have side effects that will come into play pretty significantly with Blaine... You’ll start to see the side effects in episode one of season two. And it won’t be the only one. You’ll see one of the side effects right away and over the course of the season you’ll see more of them... There’s still a rat that has taken that cure. So you’ll have in this little glass cage the opportunity to preview what might be happening to Blaine and Major."

The rats that Ravi experiments on tend to have rather bad luck. The first batch of rats all met unhappy ends, including the ironically named zombie rat Hope. If the last surviving rat dies then it will be bad news for Blaine and Major but good news for Kohli, who admitted at Comic-Con that he's not a fan of Ravi's furry friends.

"I don’t like rats. You know what? I feel like by the end of filming I was all right with the rats. And if I now request it, they’d be like, 'Oh, you know what? Maybe we should get snakes for season two.' So I’m pro-rat now because I don’t want them to change and give me something worse. 'Oh, Ravi needs to build the cure with a boa constrictor.' Rats are now fine."

iZombie will return to The CW for season 2 on Tuesday, October 6, 2015.

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