After last week’s episode of Z Nation, where Citizen Z was conspicuous in his absence, Batch 47 sees DJ Qualls back on form trying to keep the group headed in the right direction. Along with Citizen Z’s return, this episode features not one but two guest stars and the return of Dr Kurian along with Pie Girl, aka Serena, who has been searching for her baby daddy.
The return to the more comic side of Z Nation sees Dileep Rao (Drag Me to Hell, Inception) as Odegard, (the one who stumbled across the z weed) and who discovered the existence of batch 47; a substance rumored to be a herbal cure for the zombie virus. Odegard works for the Zeroes, the cartel that funded Dr. Kurian (Donald Corren) and distributes the zombie grown marijuana.
Head of the “new more user friendly” Zeroes is Sons of Anarchy‘s Emilio Rivera who played Marcus Alvarez in the popular series and is Hector Alvarez in Z Nation. Escorpion’s former employee Kurian survived his “Indiana Jones” escape from the nuclear blast but not without some damage. As Murphy puts it:
“Why should I trust an irradiated mad scientist with an ear that looks like Elvis?”
As Warren and Murphy reach the complex, Odegard has harvesters competing to find and collect batch 47, a feat that is rather deadly in that the zombie compost is full of “Fido Zombies” which are all interconnected via the plants. At the start of the episode two volunteer harvesters die before the opening credits roll.
Doc gets another good line this week as the show enters back into black, and flat-out broad comedy, with his tired complaint to Murphy about having to keep running after the savior of humanity.
“Seriously dude, I’m getting tired of chasing your bony ass all over this apocalypse.”
However, Doc is not the only one chasing Murphy’s bony ass. Serena who appeared early in the season has been looking for her “Baby Daddy Murphy” and their “baba” seems pretty excited when they bump into the gang, and Murphy at the end of the episode. For those fans who have waiting for more zombabies, their wish has been granted.
Although this zombaby is still in residing in Serena’s ever expanding tummy…for now.
Before Murphy’s Pie Girl returns, there are plenty of z weed gags. Cassandra inhaling from Odegard’s vape and after exhaling then sighing “This is some good sh*t” she offers the inhaler back to him. “That’s okay,” he says with obvious distaste, “you can have that one.”
Later, when Hector “Escorpion” injects batch 47 up Odegard’s nose, the future employee of the month feels no pain initially. “I feel good!” Unfortunately the feel good feeling wears off quickly and he becomes a fido zombie.
This episode sees the introduction of another type of zombie. Last week had Blaster Zombies and this week we see Fido Zombies. As the second season continues we can be sure that more variations will be trotted out by series creator Karl Schafer.
The humor was, once again, brilliant. Murphy finding the plot where batch 46 is, holding the remains of more Fido Zombies. “I can still feel them,” he says. Another excellent touch was that every time one of the zombies were injured, Murphy felt it. When Vasquez leaps on the “head” Fido and stabs it repeatedly in the head, Murphy feels it all.
There is a secondary story, in this week’s Z Nation, where a harvester is trying to find the herbal cure for her charge, a girl who calls her mom. Mariah is left behind at the end giving batch 47 leaves to the child to chew. Jessica Bork plays the role and the woman looks uncannily like a young Kate Jackson and despite the fact it was a cameo, she impresses in the part.
Kurian is taken away by Hector and the Zeroes and Murphy is once again with Warren and the gang. When Serena shows up with a very active “baba” Murphy, he and the rest of the group are pretty freaked out by the “pushy” infant she is still carrying. As Doc says, Serena (Sara Coates) looks about 10 month’s pregnant. Whether Cassandra (Pisay Pao) will be put out by the arrival of Serena remains to be seen.
Alexander Selling, who has been the cinematographer for 18 episodes of Z Nation directed this one, his first time in the chair for the series, and he does an excellent job. This was a “busy” episode with a lot of gags, including the headless Fido’s on the table, and Selling acquitted himself admirably.
The Asylum continue to up their game with Z Nation. The double dose of guest stars brought a lot to the zombie table and Rao ruled the episode. The series airs as part of SyFy Friday and is an addictive experience. Do not miss this alternative apocalyptic zombie setting to The Walking Dead.