It’s worldwide pandemonium as animals revolt in Zoo season two…
Forget the zombie apocalypse. The animal kingdom has been rising up, baring its teeth and threatening mankind in CBS’s Zoo. Based on the bestseller of the same name by James Patterson, the TV series finds zoologist Jackson Oz (James Wolk) and a group of experts investigating numerous violent animal attacks. However, those isolated incidents are about to explode on a more epic scale in season two.
“The important thing for us was raising the stakes of the show,” says executive producer Josh Appelbaum. “If last season was the hint that there was something going on with the animals, and the search to understand what’s going on, now it’s a global event. Borders are shutting down. Quarantine zones are being set up… They are quarantining house pets.
“In the premiere, you find out the mutation has taken an unexpected turn,” he continues. “All the stuff we’ve been seeing starts to affect a different species. That is wildly alarming and has great personal stakes for our team. Now the world has become almost a war zone. A lot of areas are under attack. Cities have fallen. Even navigating our way around the world becomes an obstacle for our people.
“At the same time, and probably more importantly for us, last season there was a lot of time spent having our team get to know each other,” he continues. “They didn’t assemble until the end of episode three and they didn’t really get to work together until four. It was hard to give them opportunity to have personal conflict because they were all strangers. Now, they have a lot of history, and that history breeds conflict. They are still a family, so they fight like a family would.”
Part of the fun of Zoo involves seeing exactly which beasts will revolt. The series previously featured lions, leopards, bears, bats, dogs,
In our twohour premiere, there’s a bad elephant that has an incredible debut
wolves and rats. This season introduces a few enormous creatures that guarantee big trouble.
“In terms of animals, in our two-hour premiere, there’s a bad elephant that has an incredible debut,” teases Appelbaum. “It’s probably one of the coolest things we’ve done on the show. Another thing we haven’t seen that we’re working on right now is primates…
“What we are starting to realise is the stuff that has happened with the animals is affecting the environment in a major way,” he adds. “As the ecosystem gets disrupted, it changes the environment. The world is becoming a much more hostile place.”
Appelbaum’s credits include the mythology-heavy Happy Town and Alias. Serialised series often pile on the twists and secrets without offering any answers. Appelbaum promises that won’t be the case with Zoo.
“On Alias, it worked great to hold on to the Rambaldi elements and what that was all about, for as long as possible, because I think it was something you didn’t want answered,” Appelbaum explains. “On something like Zoo, it’s a different show. It’s a summer event series. You want there to be mystery, but you want some satisfaction by the time the run is done. Last season, we didn’t quite give the origin of the mutation, but we told you how it blew up. There was something pretty significant to hang your hat on. The stuff this season gives you context as well. I don’t think that people will be frustrated.”
Zoo season two airs in the US on CBS from 28 June, with a UK airdate TBC.
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