James Patterson’s Zoo: Human Nature Is A Criminal Offense

The first season of CBS’ animal apocalyptic drama took things quite seriously as we delved deep into the quintessential question of synthetic genetic mutation within the entire planet’s animal kingdom. This turned every beast against us, domesticated, wild and otherwise. Season two has gone bananas. We’ve got numerous animal attacks across the globe and a luxury plane that would make Agents SHIELD’s jet look like toy. We have new characters come into play, the stakes are higher and our heroes are put into one perilous scenario after another.

We can count on CBS to either cancel shows like they’re picking cotton candy, or give us craziness amidst the summer shows line up of seriousness. There’s a whole lot summer madness at CBS with Extant, BrainDead and American Gothic. Unlike its sister network the CW, CBS has proven itself capable of making great shows, casting well for roles and toning down the plot armour with the likes of Zoo, The Good Wife (just had its last season) and its conglomerate of crime dramas. Both networks are run by Warner Bros. One is DC’s superhero show hangout as well as being the home of Supernatural and other comic book based show, iZombie. The the other has developed a reputation for cancelling shows without hesitation, but they have also pulled some crackers out of the hat in past years like Frasier, Star Trek TV Franchise, Twin Peaks and Hawaii Five-0. They have history of making shows that develop a cult following.

Jackson Oz (James Wolk) looking a little frightened right next to our striped friend
(Zoo, CBS)

In this culture where reality and game shows are gaining better ratings than new content, Zoo shows us that there are still people out there trying to create something new and unique, even if it is very B-Movie. Who doesn’t like a good B-Movie right? I do and will always love B-Movies. Even with the budget CGI for the animals, the shows make up for that with great storylines and a great cast. Based on the book from James Patterson, Zoo is a science fiction, thriller drama. Remember, James Patterson is one of those Stephen King-like authors who writes at superhuman speeds releasing five books per year. He provided the source material, with Michael Katleman (The Last Ship) directing the first two episodes.

The Zoo crew are back with Mitch Morgan (Billy Burke) as our very anti-people veterinary pathologist. There’s also Kristen Connolly (House Of Cards)  as Jamie Campbell with James Wolk (Mad Men) and Nonso Anozie (Game Of Thrones) playing Jackson ‘Rafiki’ Oz and Abraham Kenyatta, with Nora Arnezeda back as Chloe Tousignant, the French agent. Newcomers include Josh Salatin (The Following) playing the slippery Logan and Alyssa Diaz (Ray Donovan) as the hard, pragmatic and honorable solider, Dariela Marzan. We are also introduced to the season’s antagonist, General Davies (Peter Outerbridge). Peter Outerbridge (12 Monkeys) is your go-to non-British villain. He wants to play God by killing all the animals and repopulating the world with them. This is what came to be known as the Noah Objective. When you watch movies and shows as religiously as I do, you see that mankind playing with things they don’t understand doesn’t tend to end well.

Mitch Morgan (Billy Burke), Jackson Oz (James Wolk) and Chloe Tousignant (Nora Arnezeder) (Zoo, CBS)

Mitch Morgan (Billy Burke), Jackson Oz (James Wolk) and Chloe Tousignant (Nora Arnezeder)
(Zoo, CBS)

In this world of bloodthirsty birds and rabid tarantulas you’d think they’re the bad guys. But in the grand scheme of things, the real villains of the show weren’t the animals, it was other people. Not to forget to mention people are still playing politics when the whole world is going to the dogs, literally. The apocalypse has made people cynical but more importantly, violent and out for blood. An example is when one group vote on who should be fed to the animals to stop them coming for “them.” Through these turns of events, humanity has become just as ferocious as the animals. We are animals, we’re giving into our human nature and our nature is rather quite criminal. All in all, a great season, with plot twists galore, thought-extinct animals, mind-boggling questions and creatures that go bump in the night.

This season was feral and that’s not just the sabretooth cat