More brains, more problems: iZombie Season 2 preps for launch

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Jul 23, 2015

iZombie turned out to be one of the most delightful surprise hits of the last TV season, and it's coming back on Oct. 6 with plenty of zombie vengeance. Executive producers/showrunners Rob Thomas and Diane Ruggiero are responsible for the off-book adaptation of the eponymous Vertigo comic and are already five scripts into charting their sophomore season.

The first season finale, "Blaine's World," turned Liv's world upside down when her undead secret was revealed to Major (Robert Buckley), her former-fiance-turned-zombie-hunter, while the delightfully villainous zombie Blaine (David Anders) was poked with Dr. Ravi's (Rahul Kohli) antidote and reverted to his humanity once more.

Actress Rose McIver told Blastr and other select reporters at San Diego Comic-Con that the action would pick up three months after that fateful night and that Liv's world is still in turmoil. "Liv was so fearful and didn't want anyone to find out she's a zombie, because she thought she would be abandoned or isolated," the actress detailed about her Season 1 motivations. "Now, in many ways, her worst fears have been realized. [Her sister] Peyton [Aly Michalka] left, and Major is furious and still feeling betrayed. Going into this season, if they choose to accept her and forgive her, they could potentially have a closer relationship. But it's pushed Liv away."

Meanwhile, Liv will still be assisting Detective Clive Babineaux (Malcolm Goodwin) as a "psychic" on his cases, all the while ingesting victim brains to solve cases. But EP Thomas said those brain personalities that Liv manifests will get more fun in Season 2.  "One of the things we've learned in Season 1 is that the more she eats the brains of the pure archetypes, the easier it is for Rose to play it and the humor to translate. Playing somebody with antisocial personality disorder, which is marked by not being emotionally engaged, is a very hard thing to play. Trying to figure out if it's Liv's brain, or the dead person's brain, becomes very hard, as opposed to say, being on cheerleader brain. That contrast is easy for the audience to understand and gives her something more concrete to play. But Rose has been knocking it out of the park, and we've gotten smarter about finding the right brain of the week to eat that is the most fun."

What the show won't be doing is going back to its source material, the comic book created by Chris Roberson and Michael Allred, which delves into more supernatural creatures. "We're inspired by the comic books, but we firmly decided not to have otherworldly characters," EP Ruggiero clarified. "It's just zombies. We're not going to have a vampire, or a were-terrier or a ghost. They worked great for the comic, but I think it's not right for our show."

And she added the creators were A-OK with their creative choices. "The comic writers have been super supportive and into it. If they hated it, I would be miserable. It would suck," she laughed.

As for Liv's upcoming adversaries, Thomas said, "In the middle of the finale, [Max Rager energy drink CEO Vaughn Du Clark] played by Steven Webber said, 'We're going take out all the zombies,' so that will be a big part of Season 2. It will force Blaine and Liv to be strange bedfellows, because they don't want to see all the zombies taken out."

And expect Blaine to still be unhappy about being human and losing his supernatural strut. Actor David Anders confirmed, "Blaine is going to be dealing with his newfound humanity. Although he's cured, there might be some side effects. It's not a perfect cure. It's not a failsafe." Until that works itself out, he also teased, "There might be some teaming up that happens between Blaine and Liv. She's going to have to get over her hatred. He's going to have to do some apologizing, and do some tap dancing to win her over."

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