Recap 'Santa Clarita Diet' Season 1 Before The Zombies Return

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Before Santa Clarita Diet premiered in 2017, Netflix strived to keep the plot of the Drew Barrymore and Timothy Olyphant TV show under wraps. But it was quickly revealed in Santa Clarita Diet Season 1 that Barrymore's character Sheila is turned into a zombie. Unlike most zombie-themed programming, Santa Clarita Diet is a quirky family comedy very much grounded in reality — with the added twist that the mom of the family needs to feast on human flesh. Season 1 left Sheila, Joel, and Abby in a pretty precarious position, so before you pick up with Season 2 when it premieres on March 23, recap Santa Clarita Diet Season 1 to remember how the Hammonds ended up where they did (it's quite a predicament that they're in).

Sheila and Joel Hammond started Season 1 as respectable, albeit a bit boring, realtors in the Los Angeles County city. But all within the first half-hour episode, Sheila becomes violently ill, throws up what appears to be an organ, and starts craving human flesh — sexually and as food. Sheila and Joel, with their teenage daughter Abby, consulted with their nerdy neighbor Eric and figured out that Sheila is now both dead and undead, aka a zombie. They never really discovered out how Sheila became infected in Season 1, but plenty of other shenanigans went down. So if you're not as focused as Sheila is in her zombie state, this recap will get you all set for Santa Clarita Diet Season 2.

Sheila Became A Zombie

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The story began with Sheila already infected and she quickly figured out that she's not really alive anymore since she no longer has any blood. (Instead, her blood is replaced with a disgusting black goo.) To feed her new appetite, she ended up killing people in order to eat them — starting with Gary, her coworker who had tried to force himself sexually on her. But she loves life as a zombie since she feels more alive than ever and her relationship with Joel vastly improved ... besides all the complications that come with the murdering.

Their Neighbor Blackmailed Them

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One of those complications was the fact that their next-door neighbor Dan was a corrupt deputy sheriff. He found Gary's finger in the Hammonds' yard and blackmailed Joel to kill other people for him, including a criminal named Loki and the man who was sleeping with his wife. Joel and Sheila didn't murder the men as Dan ordered (more on that in a bit) and it led to Joel killing Dan with a shovel. But at least Sheila got a meal from the whole ordeal.

Sheila Made Another Zombie

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Dan's first hit he ordered was on Loki, which Sheila wanted to take care of so she could feast on human flesh again. Yet, Joel and Sheila were inept murderers and Loki escaped — but not before he got bitten by Sheila. He turned into a zombie too and he became a pretty good guy (and pretty good guitar player). Sheila and Loki bonded over the fact that they kept losing parts of their bodies (like toes). But their friendship was over before it really got a chance to begin after Loki tried to kill Joel. So the Hammonds did kill the undead Loki — it just wasn't in any sort of way that Dan could have predicted.

More Cops Entered The Picture

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After Dan's murder, the Hammonds unfortunately had even more police officers circulating their home. And one sheriff deputy who appears to give them trouble in the Season 2 trailer is Anne Garcia. She started to date Dan's wife Lisa immediately after Dan's death. So if Lisa and Anne's relationship continues, Sheila's snacks are definitely going to pose a problem.

Abby & Eric Bonded

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While Eric has a major crush on Abby, the pair were just friends in Season 1 — which was immensely beneficial for both of them, considering that Abby's mom had become a zombie and that Eric's stepdad Dan was murdered. Eric also became close with Joel, as the pair of them tried to find a cure for Sheila's condition. So Eric is pretty much an unofficial family member and should stay that way in Season 2.

They Found A Potential Cure

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Joel and Eric's efforts led them to track down Dr. Cora Wolf (Portia de Rossi), who had been working on a cure for the virus. While she said that she couldn't make someone alive again, she could try to stop the deterioration and her methods were based on an ancient Serbian book. Dr. Wolf moved in with the Hammonds and created the cure, but needed one last ingredient — the bile of a pure-born Serbian. So Sheila and Joel visited Abby's principal's Serbian grandmother's house (Joel had gone to her previously in the season) and tried to get her to vomit. However, their plan to get an elderly woman to vomit unsurprisingly backfired.

In the last episode, Abby tested the unfinished cure on herself. While it didn't seem to have any negative impact on her, her zombie fate could be up in the air. And Joel got arrested for being in Principal Novak's baka's house and was institutionalized — but it seems like he'll get out sooner rather than later in Season 2. As for the zombie, Sheila chose to lock herself up in their basement to keep her from killing anyone else. But that didn't stop Dr. Wolf from leaving the messy situation and entrusting Abby with the Serbian book on zombies. So Abby should be in charge once Season 2 starts, which is a good move since she may just be the most reasonable character. But expect for things to get very messy very quickly once again — after all, her mom eats people.