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This Is Obvious, but The CW Should Renew iZombie

We all know what happened the last time the network canceled a Rob Thomas show

Kaitlin Thomas

It's officially mid-April which means broadcast networks are assessing which shows are performing well and which are not to determine what will be renewed or canceled come May. In response, fans are stocking up on bubble wrap to layer over their favorite as-yet-to-be-renewed programs in order to protect them from the blow of the cancellation axe. On Twitter, fans of The CW's iZombie, a low-rated but beloved series currently in the middle of its fourth season on the young-skewing network, are rallying behind the #RenewiZombie hashtag and sharing why they want the Rose McIver-led series to live to see another day. And if there's a show that deserves at least one more season to wrap up its story, it's the little zombie show that could.

As anyone who's seen even a few episodes of iZombie can tell you, when the show premiered, it immediately set itself apart from other zombie-themed programming -- namely the insanely popular AMC drama The Walking Dead -- by offering a new spin on the genre. By infusing the show with a sharp wit, great sense of humor, big heart and healthy dose of intelligence, co-creators Rob Thomas and Diane Ruggiero-Wright created a complex, well-rounded series that's about the living and not just the living dead.

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Despite the show's case-of-the-week format, there's an overarching narrative each season that is cleverly and painstakingly plotted, making the show smarter and more ambitious than most everything else on broadcast TV. So even when it makes a rare misstep, or when an episode falls flat because of a lackluster brain or because it's merely a stepping stone to something larger, the good still outweighs the bad.

Case in point: iZombie has suffered growing pains in the wake of expanding its world by making the existence of zombies public knowledge and then forcing the human and zombie populations of Seattle to coexist within a walled city. The series has obviously become more overtly political as a result of this next step in its evolution, drawing parallels to war-torn cities whose inhabitants are engaged in a battle for control, but the sheer ambition on display as the show evolves beyond its initial premise is remarkable. And to be completely honest, a willingness to shake things up when a series is working just fine is admirable, especially when said series is a zombie show.


Rose McIver and Malcolm Goodwin, iZombie

Katie Yu/The CW

But creativity, ambition and a successful track record of clever twists aren't the only reasons a show like iZombie deserves to be renewed; there are also plenty of reasons within its narrative as well. In addition to the fact Liv and Major (Robert Buckley) are again on the outs and there are lingering questions surrounding Blaine (David Anders) -- is he ever going to be the series' Big Bad? -- Ravi (Rahul Kohli) has yet to be able to replicate a lasting cure for the zombie virus. It'd be rude to deny the show this proper conclusion -- assuming that a cure is still the ultimate goal -- especially when one considers that The CW has not unceremoniously canceled a show since 2014, when it cut down The Carrie Diaries after two seasons. Since then the network has allowed a number of established shows a chance to wrap up their stories with a proper ending; iZombie should receive the same opportunity.

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Because it's quite clear iZombie is much closer to the end of its story than the beginning at this point, and not giving it the opportunity to wrap things up the way the creators planned to would be heartbreaking in this context. But if you really want to know why iZombie should be allowed to finish out its run with at least one more season, it's because The CW already did Rob Thomas dirty once, and we all know how that turned out.

iZombie airs Mondays at 9/8c on The CW.

(Full disclosure: TV Guide is owned by CBS, one of The CW's parent companies.)