The Vanishing: Review for Z Nation 403


Things generally run smoother when everyone works together toward a common goal. Well, the gang’s got part of that down, but without a common goal this episode devolves into chaos and bickering quicker than you can spell reunion.

Do they venture to Newmerica or wander wherever Roberta’s visions instruct? Is there a third path to tread which isn’t haunted by creepy noises in the woods?

The Vanishing:
Review for Z Nation 403
By A. Zombie

The first reunion doesn’t go as planned, at least on Murphy’s end. A huge part of what kept him alive in Lucy’s heart were their similarities and the psychic link from their condition. Not only did he leave her again only moments after they’re reunited, he also is cured, severing their only means of communication throughout her first years—even if they didn’t speak directly, she at least felt her father somewhere out in the world. That doesn’t mean Lucy’s adrift in stormy, apocalyptic seas by her lonesome. Roberta speaks to her on another level, much like the connection Lucy shares with Addy. That’s an important connection to have as Roberta’s visions drag her mind further and further from reality. However, now it’s Murphy who feels left out—okay, honestly he always has because of the cure, being blue, and finding himself at the center of a global manhunt. He’s really not happy unless everyone’s singing his praises and inviting him to dinner. But can you blame a guy who was nothing more than a lab rat to everyone until the cure worked?

The only one pleased to see Murphy so far is Doc. Sgt. Lilley and Lt. Mueller don’t know what to make of their new arrivals, Roberta most of all. Their reluctance is understandable. When she’s not 100% in charge and giving orders, there’s fear and something they can’t figure out in her eyes. This distrust is what leads them out the gate and into the creeptastic woods to look for 10k. Not everyone returns intact.

It’s not entirely clear what, exactly, makes all that noise in the forest. Is it one of these new megazombies? A herd of them who’re ridiculously good at hide-and-go-seek? Or is this an unseen foe who’s responsible for snatching everyone else? Possibly, probably, all of the above. And isn’t that just terrifying?

The hidden gem in this episode is the personal connection between Lilley and Mueller. We’ve learned never to get attached to new characters because they inevitably kick the bucket in some horrible way or another, yet here the writers go, dragging in this heartbreaking moment at the episode’s end to really endear us to Lilley in particular and her astounding willpower. If there were any doubts that the crew could trust Lilley, they’re all cleared up now. But don’t expect a lot of chit-chat from her.

There’s a fork in the plot road when the episode ends. They can drive north into Canada toward the promised Newmerica and a guaranteed reunion with Addy. Then there’s the crazy path where Roberta just wanders off toward the east because her own voice in her head says it’s the thing to do—this all ties back into the black rainbow and its accompanying fire rain which dominate her every thought. Despite trepidation toward trusting yet another paradise scheme during the apocalypse, Murphy is the most reluctant to turn east and follow the woman who’s protected him for years. He knows nothing good will come of it, but in the end his veiled loyalty to Roberta wins the moral dilemma. If she’s going to march to her certain doom, he’ll be by her side. As will Doc and 10k. Hopefully the others, too, once they figure out what exactly could abduct so many people without a trace or even a cry from the victims. It’d certainly suck for all those characters to just be dead. That’s an awful way to take out characters who’ve been with the main cast for a while.