comedy & parody

[TV Review] Z Nation Season 2 (2015) ★★★★☆

Murphy attacked by weed and rescued by Warren and Doc in Z nAtion season 2

Z Nation is a real treat, delivering more of everything, more over the top fun, action, humor, fantasy and drama.


The second season of Z Nation brings more fun to the scene, but also continues on a journey across America as the fantasy element deepens. New types of zombies arise, new friends are made, and new enemies surface. They encounter all sorts of weird people, end up in the most bizarre predicaments and have the most crazy adventures.

There’s a whole lot going on this season, while the story about a cure, Murphy and the evolution of the zombies takes a huge fantasy turn, that delivers some creative hilarious fun.

This second season consists of 13 episodes each with a duration of 43 minutes. It’s a road trip series full of zombies, but evolves in much bigger storylines and slowly the stakes are getting higher. 


Plot

After they met Dr. Kurian, the one who is responsible for the zombie outbreak in the first place, in Fort Collins, Colorado, that turned out to be a deception and worse, things got really ugly. Cassandra died, but was brought back by Murphy who bit her and she turned into a hybrid zombie, under the control of Murphy. Doc got shot and Murphy escaped and by doing so a series of nuclear bombs were released and one of them was heading towards Northern Lights…

Citizen Z had a brilliant plan and locked the bombs unto each other exploding in midair, but causing a fall out. He and Pup had to leave Northern Lights.  

Of course Doc is still alive, and now the group has to find Murphy and Cassandra. While Citizen Z has put a bounty on Murphy’s head, all kinds of hunters are flocking in, resulting in an enormous gunfight, and not everybody makes it out alive. 

Vasquez joins the group, now called Operation Bitemark, when Murphy is captured and they set course for California. On the road they have to deal with old and new problems. The radiation has turned zombies into Blasters, but Murphy also discovers that his fling with Serena resulted in pregnancy and she gives birth to a zombaby, that is as blue as a smurf. And they encounter La Reina the leader of the Zeroes a drugs cartel who deals in Z-Weed.


Why you should watch it

This new season is very well balanced. It starts out with a great episode that is very realistic and harsh, but soon the storyline picks up the campy fun and bizarre weirdness. The zombie stuff is going to be over the top campy fun and imaginative. A zombaby, Z-Weed, a zombie tornado, a zunami, George R.R. Martin as a zombie, and the Blasters, bring in the very creative zombie fantasy craziness. But the way the Z’s are killed is also very imaginative and creative and gives this series its own voice, and a comic book or game vibe. 

The road trip adventure style works really well and gets even better, encountering many different people across America. Drugs, Z-Weed is still in business and the Zeroes led by Escorpion are involved and so is Dr. Kurian, who seemingly made it out alive. There’s phytozombies in the Giant Shop of Horrors, and Murphy’s aversion of zombies surprisingly turned into empathy, caring for the zombies.

They come across a zombie museum where The Collector wants to have Murphy as his main exhibition. Which is a great episode with a zombie George R.R. Martin still signing autographs.

In RoZwell they come across a UFO cult, which is hilarious and creepy fun at the same time. But they also find something that’s called Zona. 

Doc and 10K are captured by a Native American tribe, but soon make friends. Who can resist these two?

But we also get to know the characters more. Through their actions, but a flashback episode takes us back to Day One, and we follow each of them, surviving the outbreak. These background stories lets us understand who they are or were and it explains some things about their actions right now. 

There’s plenty of room for Murphy and his connection to the zombies and his blood that holds the cure and adds a big fantasy vibe to the series. His character develops quickly and it makes him the most interesting person. His little changes, but also the change in composition of the group, cause some frictions and keeping the eye on the goal is getting harder. Oh, and he’s a bit blue now too. 

It’s a fun and hilarious ride through a crazy messed up America. With the main focus on campy fun, there’s also room for some serious business, a lot of action, heartbreaking moments, danger, weird and bizarre situations, and a storyline that starts to develop turning into a bigger story. 


My favorite part 

Who doesn’t like a small blue baby that growls? It’s a whole nevel level of weirdness. It’s a birth like you have never seen before. It’s fun, but also touching and heartbreaking at the end. It also shows a whole new side to Murphy, who’s suddenly a father of a very special kid. The decision to give her up to keep her save is the first selfless act we see him perform and proves his character isn’t a one dimensional grumpy guy. 

Murphy’s character gets more fun the further south we go. He brings in the fun, lightens up the scene and is therefore becoming a real competitor to the fun Doc brings in, although on quite different levels. Doc still is by far my favorite; harmless, unless you’re a zombie, then watch out. He’s so lovable and easy going, making friends wherever he goes, meanwhile killing zombies like a badass and getting into trouble but getting out of it just in time, every time. His relationship with 10K grows and they make a great grandson-gramps kinda pair. 

But that’s the real strengths of the series isn’t it. Apart from all the crazy fun and hilarious fantasy that’s going on, the characters are the strong foundation of the series. A rather heterogeneous group, that works really well together forming a great team and building a strong bond like family. 

Of course all the creative zombie fun is so imaginative and delivers a unique voice to the genre, honoring it and turning it into total crazy zombie chaos, surprising the viewer every time with what you can do with a zombie. 


Ratings

Rating:★★★★☆

Fun factor: ★★★★★

Gore factor: ★★★☆☆

Entertainment factor: ★★★★★


Read more about Z Nation:


Cast and crew

Z Nation is created by Karl Schaefer and Craig Engler. It stars Kellita Smith (Roberta Warren), Russell Hodgkinson (Doc), Keith Allan (Murphy), Nat Zang (10K), Anastasia Baranova (Addy), DJ Qualls (Citizen Z), Pisay Pao (Cassandra), Michael Welch (Mack) and Matt Cedeño (Vasquez).

Music: Jason Gallagher. Cinematography: Alexander Yellen. Production companies: The Asylum, Go2 Digital Media. Original network: Syfy.