ZOO. Photo: Hilary Bronwyn Gayle/CBS
While Jackson finds himself outrunning angry lions in Botswana (and meeting up with a beautiful French woman, naturally, because what would an apocalyptic, animals-running-the-Earth series be without some boring romance?), there are problems in the United States as well. There are the aforementioned kittens, which pop up toward the end of the pilot, but most of the action here revolves around a young and plucky reporter, Jamie Campbell (Kristen Connolly), investigating a deadly lion attack. She comes to the conclusion that it has to do with the awful, low-grade food the lions ate, starting a David-and-Goliath fight against an evil corporation. Her sort-of-boyfriend/sort-of-boss (Reid Scott) chides her for chasing unicorns, so Jamie links up with zoo pathologist Mitch Morgan (Billie Burke), who is just as invested in the case as she is. He’s also a surly dude who likes animals better than people (but is quick to clarify that he likes just about everything more than people), although I’m sure that by mid-season Jamie will help sway his opinion the other way.
Zoo‘s opening voiceover asks, “What if all across the globe, the animals decided ‘no more’? What if they finally decided to bite back?” This manages to work on multiple levels: If you’re seriously invested in that question, you’ll seriously enjoy the series. If you burst out laughing at the idea, you’ll probably burst out laughing throughout much of the series. It’s not great, but it’s a CBS summer series, so expecting greatness was pretty much always out of the question. While Wolk certainly makes the show enjoyable, it ultimately amounts to little more than an easy and laughable offering. You won’t miss much if you skip it, but you might get a few unintentional laughs if you stick around.