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'iZombie' recap: 'Eternal Sunshine of the Caffeinated Mind'

'iZombie' recap: 'Eternal Sunshine of the Caffeinated Mind'
Rose McIver and Rahul Kohli in a scene from "iZombie." (Bettina Strauss / CW)

Blaine DeBeers has stepped on the wrong toes this time, and he's about to pay the ultimate price for trying to take over Seattle's lucrative drug trade and crown himself King of All Utopium.

Cold-cocked and kidnapped -- and nearly nude! -- he's headed to a sure death somewhere in the deep, dark woods, like so many double-crossers before him.

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Stacey Boss, the "iZombie" criminal don with ice water in his veins, will oversee this hit personally. That's just how ticked off he is with Blaine's backstabbing power grab, his cheap and potent Lucky U, and his confidential informant role for the district attorney.

But something happens on the way to Blaine's demise. His throat is slit, for sure, and he's buried in a shallow grave. It seems like this is the end for our resident sculpted-and-coiffed baddie. But it's not.

Blaine emerges from the dirt, "Kill Bill"-style, against the perfectly placed strains of Procol Harum's "Whiter Shade of Pale." Shocking some local Girl Scouts on a nature field trip -- maybe they'll learn the expression, "naked as a jaybird" -- he grabs their blanket and heads for civilization.

And -- get this -- he's a zombie again.

Need a minute to process?

Sorry, but there's no time. There are important details to discuss about this episode of the dram-rom-zom-com. And there's even a cameo in this very recap from Blaine himself, the singular actor David Anders, who added some context to this hour via a phone chat.

To wit: Who's more ruthless on the CW series, Blaine or Mr. Boss?

"Boss is a violent dude -- he's the smarter guy -- and he's been in the game a lot longer," Anders said Tuesday during a break in filming. "Blaine has been willing to roll the dice, and he's probably surprised at how much he's gotten away with so far."

But the tables turned on him, and then fortuitously turned again.

"When Blaine comes up out of the dirt, he has revenge in his eyes," Anders said.

This is going to be fantastic.

Anders, like a good "iZombie" soldier, won't give any spoilers for future episodes but he will connect a few dots and provide a tease or two. For instance, eagle-eyed fans might have noticed that Blaine was already starting to revert earlier in Episode 214, dubbed "Eternal Sunshine of the Caffeinated Mind."

Catch that clue? He can't taste the wine in that hour, which is a sure sign of the taste-bud-dulling effects of zombie-ism. So we know just how short-lived the ironically named "cure" is. "It's not a fail-safe," Anders said, noting that he knew he was living on borrowed time. Major's next, right?

And Blaine won't come out of this transformation unscathed. Can zombies suffer from PTSD? Anders doesn't say for sure, but fans should be on the lookout for signs of trauma in the snarky funeral home director. That shift between living and undead can't be easy, after all.

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There's plenty more going on in "Eternal Sunshine," like the long-awaited three-way meet-up between Liv, Major and Gilda/Rita. Minds out of the gutter, y'all, though that scene does end with a real tangible release -- in the form of Liv's fist connecting with Rita's face.

In short, Liv needs a new roommate but she's certainly found her anger.

Ravi, able to salvage some small amount of tainted Utopium from the unearthed corpses, makes another batch of "the cure," only to find that it turns his lab rat into a Romero.

Special effects: cool! Medical result: uncool! This is very bad news for Major.

Separate from the ongoing threads, there's the procedural beast that must be fed on "iZombie." But this week, do we care that much about the murder du jour? Fellow fans? Are you invested in this tale? Discuss.

It's good for some gallows humor when a giant air-conditioning unit falls onto a chipper coffee shop owner. Flattened like a Wile E. Coyote cartoon! But that was no accident -- it was murder.

Everyone loved Leslie, the owner of Positivity coffee commune, according to everyone who speaks to Liv Moore (Rose McIver) and Det. Clive Babineaux (Malcolm Goodwin). But there's that bitter ex-boyfriend/rival barista who could've had reason to kill her. And is her grieving daughter really what she seems?

Liv bakes up a rather tasty-looking pizza with Leslie's gray matter and immediately turns into the most optimistic goth gal around. Glass half full, that's her new guiding principle, along with a bunch of inspirational quotes and up-with-people affirmations.

Liv may be insufferably cheerful, but she's still zombie-sightful, and she and Clive eventually unravel the scheming daughter's plan to do away with the mom and run off with an inheritance.

That devoted faux-French boyfriend is just a pawn, and he takes the fall. The real culprit gets away clean, heading to Paris with "Zou Bisou Bisou" playing on her headphones. An unpunished killer? Quelle horreur!

Though the investigation might not be the most compelling, the episode does give us two key tidbits of information: 1. Drake is an undercover cop and 2. Love makes you stupid. Word.

Wait, Drake is a cop? That puts a completely different spin on his dealings with Mr. Boss (Eddie Jemison) and Blaine. He's a good guy? And he's so in love with Liv that he refuses to give her up, even though it may jeopardize his work? And Liv's totally into him? So that must mean that he will die soon.

Back at the morgue, Dr. Ravi Chakrabarti (Rahul Kohli) has been busy mixing and distilling and testing. Major Lilywhite (Robert Buckley), meanwhile, is anxious to try out the potion, no matter how experimental it is, if it means he could have an additional few months among the living. He's carrying the burden of too many sins and he's worried that he might die without confessing them. Poor Major.

But Ravi's best efforts are for naught -- it appears that his brew is responsible for a raging monster rodent. Back to the drawing board with a limited supply of designer drugs and a gloomy outlook. Even Liv's clichés can't help him now.

Also under the gun: Blaine, who has to repay a drug debt to his former employer, Mr. Boss, as he conceals his behind-the-scenes snitching to the D.A.'s office that's been dismantling Boss' empire.

But Boss catches on, makes himself a late-night reservation at a steakhouse and sets about his latest homicide. He and his goons catch Blaine at Shady Plots, post-coital and mid-song, a committed rendition of "Whiter Shade of Pale," and kidnap him in nothing but his skivvies.

This shouldn't end well and, initially, it doesn't. But, Blaine being Blaine ...

Gildarita (Leeanne Lapp) will probably bounce back too, even though we see her hit the floor after a well-placed right cross from Liv. She's down for the moment but far from out, I'd bet.

But this twisted-triangle truth -- finally spilled -- could open other floodgates. It has to be that way, doesn't it? Because I have questions, plenty of them. Such as: How long until Max Rager is exposed? How long until Major tells everyone he's the Chaos Killer and that he has a bunch of zombies on ice, ice, baby? And for crying out loud, how much longer will Clive be in the dark? Talk to each other, people!

Sadly there's a scheduling gap -- until March 22 -- so we'll have to ponder these matters for nearly a month before we get another "iZombie" fix. My guess is it will be a sprint from then until the April double-episode finale. Best advice: Catch your breath now.

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