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We’re rewatching Z Nation on Netflix, and today we’re looking back at when the show hits a new high in episode 112 “Murphy’s Law”.

The “Operation Bite Mark” gang comes across a Country Club, filled with “middle-class” zombies. After trapping themselves inside the clubhouse, things get a bit dicey. They are quickly aided by a few new strangers, that once again are too nice to be true.

Zombie golf, anyone?

Meanwhile, Murphy (Keith Allan), who can walk amongst the zombies, practices his golf swing. This leaves the newbies to question why he can do this, and they develop a scam of their own.

Murphy’s big mouth gets himself kidnapped by the new gang, however, he devises a plan to leave a “trail of crumbs.” With the help of a random spy cam, he leaves clues for Citizen Z to lead his friends back to him.

It so happens that the kidnappers want Murphy to waltz into a horde of crazed zombies, at an untapped drug lab, so they can load up on OxyContin. Upon arrival at Mesa Pharmaceuticals, they find the zombies tearing about and it’s clear that they have consumed different drugs, from speed to Viagra! Plus, Murphy discovers that he has some more tricks in his blood stream. He’s evolving into something else.

Aided by Citizen Z, and an errant road sign, of course the gang find Murphy and help him to escape the trouble he’s in. They also get a first-hand look at his new power.

They then use a radio in the office to talk with Citizen Z. He informs them that he discovered that Dr. Merch (Lisa Coronado), whom they need to see in California, may not have made it all the way there herself. So, he redirects them Fort Collins Colorado for the next and final episode of season one.
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Skeezy’s Brown Ale, 5 Rights Brewing, Marysville

Style: Brown ale

Stats: 5.8 percent ABV, 30 IBU

Available: On tap at the brewery, NYP Everett, Emory’s on Silver Lake and Creekside Alehouse and Grill.

My thoughts: Church and zombies rarely go together, but for 5 Rights owner and head brewer R.J. Whitlow they do — and the combination inspired a new beer series.

Whitlow, who was the media director for Northshore Christian Church for 16 years, met Dan Merchant while the producer visited the Everett church to promote his film, “Lord, Save Us From Your Followers” in 2008. When Merchant debuted his next project, “Z Nation,” a post-apocalyptic zombie show on Syfy a few years ago, Whitlow and his wife, Kristi, couldn’t help but dive in.

“It’s a total guilty pleasure and very bingeable,” Whitlow said. “It has no gravity on our life, so we can just sit back and enjoy.”

The show is shot in Spokane and has a number of memorable characters, including Murphy, the only known survivor of the zombie infection. Because of the local connection and his friendship with Merchant, Whitlow reached out to the show’s creator to see if it would be possible to brew some beers in tribute to the show.

“I was worried about rights and all of that and Dan was like, ‘Oh, I own all of it. Go for it,’” Whitlow said.

Skeezy is named after one of two low-life grifters on the show, Skeezy and Sketchy, who travel around the zombie wasteland getting into mischief and stealing money to build a wall. (Sound familiar?)

The ale named after Skeezy is a nicely balanced American-style brown. Hopped with Centennial, Willamette and Cascade hops, the brown ale has a solid malt backbone like any good brown, but the hops give it an assertive if measured hop character that complements the malt well. The beer is a drinkable 5.8 percent and isn’t too sweet like many brown ales.

The brown is the second in the Z Nation Tribute Series, which kicked off with the Z Wacker IPA, named in honor of the spikey baseball-bat-like weapon popular in the show. Z Wacker is an IPA made with Citra, Simcoe and Centennial hops. The late addition of hops and some dry-hopping gives the beer a big tropical nose and a dry finish. It’s on tap at the brewery and NYP Everett.

When he finally brings his 10-barrel brewhouse online later this spring, Whitlow plans to brew more beers in the series, including a Citizen Z Pale Ale made with HBC 431 hops, a saison, Belgian dark strong and a not-so-Irish red ale named after the star of the show, Murphy.

He’s hoping one day to even parlay it into a bit part as a zombie entree.

“Kristi and I would love to be extras on the show,” Whitlow said.

Season 4 of Z Nation is scheduled to premiere on Syfy in the fall of 2017.

From the brewery: The second in our series of tribute beers to our favorite zombie apocalypse show, “Z Nation” gives a shout-out to one of our favorite post-apocalyptic shysters and all around patriotic and fun-loving characters. Like our friend Skeezy, this American brown ale is not quite as advertised, bringing a bold and assertive hoppy edge to a typically malty, rich and somewhat sweet character of this chocolate malt forward style. Our generous use of Centennial and Cascade hops will help make America America again.
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Check out the names of some of these scientists, guys. We might see Justin Shenkarow's character Iggy again. Steve didn't get eaten by dogs, and apparently they sent him top a fairly high-end medical school. Harold is probably one of Marshal's New Jersey cousins.

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