Episode Title: Even Cowgirls Get the Black and Blues
Original Airdate: 10-27-15
Got your glass of sweet tea ready? This week Liv and Clive investigate the strangulation of a sweet country girl in the big city. The only suspects are her ex-con ex-boyfriend with anger management issues and her I’ll-give-you-an-advance-if-you-give-me-one boss.
As for world building, it felt like they dropped a ton of bricks on us this episode. Peyton and Liv make up. Peyton starts cracking down on Voss’s imprisoned associates, but despite the promise of reduced sentences, no one will give her info on the Utopium kingpin, that is until Blaine walks through her door.
Speaking of Blaine, one of his lackeys finds the guy who cut the Boat Party Massacre Utopium, but the reformed dealer has now found Jesus and refuses to divulge his formula. So Blaine has him turned and throws him out on the street, sure he’ll be back ready to spill when the brain cravings hit hard.
And speaking of cravings, Major’s Utopium addiction has him shutting out everyone. Liv and Ravi both have it out with him, but Major just goes to score more U. When the guy he’s buying from turns out to be one of his former kids from the group home, he shows up at Liv’s, asking for help. The two kiss for the first time since before her transformation (excluding her delusional psychotic episodes, obviously).
I found this episode to be a breath of fresh air. After seeing the previews last week, I was afraid it was going to be offensive to us Southerners. But it wasn’t. This is the most toned down Liv has been so far this season. She had a few silly pseudo-Southern catchphrases and picked up the victim’s love of sad country songs by performing one during open mic night, and it was all very tasteful. However, the case this week was actually random. Seriously, it was just a random killing in a wrong-place-wrong-time, which happens all the time. So I liked that the writers recognize not all murders happen with some complex scheme involved. It was probably done so they could put in more content, because they packed in a lot.
I’m still curious as to why Blaine is so interested in the cut Utopium. It’s not as though he needs it to make zombies and I certainly doubt he wants anyone else cured because then he’d be out of the brains-on-wheels business. Maybe I’ve missed a step. Sometimes the Max Rager/Utopium connection flies over my head. But a “born again” zombie is like a new level of irony, no?
I actually thought they’d drag out Major’s downward spiral longer. He’s only been doing U for three episodes and I expected at least half a season before he’d hit rock bottom and seek Liv’s help. I hope the writers have something bigger, or better, planned, otherwise this sidestep of Major’s will have felt rushed. I am eager to see if this drives his and Liv’s relationship back down a romantic path. We saw them as an actual couple for about thirty seconds in the pilot, and despite all of her voice over lamentations, I sometimes have trouble believing they were planning on forever. A taste of that, even if it’s short-lived, would be nice.
Lastly, could we please get Babineux some backstory? His flirtations with the new FBI agent are promising. I feel like we know virtually nothing about him, except that tidbit about his undercover work that caused him some trouble. He deserves more and I hope this is a first step in that direction.
Overall, a very good episode that encompassed all the fun, charm, heart and intrigue from last season. I hope they keep it up.