This one starts like a horror movie, with a couple of horny teenagers (Amy and Paul) getting busy in a car in Ithaca, New York. They hear a noise and the girl is ready to ignore it (which is a twist on the usual), but the guy makes a classic horror movie mistake … he goes to check it out alone. He finds someone—or something—that attacks him and he stumbles back to the car all bloody and torn up. Whatever it is follows him and attacks the girl too. At the Warehouse, Pete is worried about his mom (and the other Regents), but Artie says they’ve gone into hiding for protection. Artie sends Pete and Myka to Ithaca and Leena asks how Claudia’s doing. Artie says he gave her a few days off to help her get over Steve getting fired. Leena asks what happened and Artie is circumspect, but mentions that Mrs. Frederick has had Steve’s accounts frozen and his passport revoked.
Claudia’s doing a set at the local coffee shop (finishing with a somewhat folksy cover of the Runaways’ “Cherry Bomb”) and afterwards she’s approached by a good-looking dude named Dwayne who asks if she’d like to join his band. She says she’ll think about it and tries to call Steve for advice, but as usual, Steve isn’t picking up. Maybe it’s just me being cynical, or maybe I’ve seen too many of these shows, but I can’t help wondering if Dwayne is hiding something; like maybe he works for Sykes and is spying on Claudia. He gives her a button for her jacket, which I’m thinking is a tracker or a microphone or something. Claudia isn’t suspicious at all (did I mention this guy’s really good-looking?)
In Ithaca, Myka and Pete talk to Amy, who tells them something bit her and Paul (who’s still unconscious), but she didn’t see what it was. The bite marks on her neck are human, which makes Pete think vampires or werewolves. Myka doesn’t believe that stuff, but Pete points out that a lot of artifacts have their basis in fairy tales. Myka suggests they check out the Lovers’ Lane where the kids were attacked. (Pete: “Okay, but I only go to third base.”) In the woods, Myka goes to look around and Pete goes after her; he’s obviously seen enough horror movies to know you don’t stay by yourself in that situation. They find a guy eating a dead deer, covered with blood and snarling like an animal. Pete revises his earlier theory and decides this dude is a zombie.
The guy tries to speak but can’t, then freaks out and attacks. Myka blasts him with the Tesla and searches him. His name is Kevin Monroe and his body feels cold, so they take him to a hospital. They call Artie to describe Kevin’s symptoms—extreme pallor, frostbitten extremities, and deer eating among them—and he says there are a few artifacts that could simulate living death. Artie tells them to keep Kevin restrained until he gets there. Artie interrupts Claudia’s time off to ask her to research the undead. Claudia goes to the Warehouse and calls Steve for the zillionth time, but this time he actually picks up. Unfortunately, he only answered to tell her to leave him alone and says they’re not friends anymore.
Claudia wonders aloud why Steve’s being such a dick just as she’s passing a soothsayer machine called Sallah … obviously a Zoltar knock-off. It spits out a card that says, “Death Comes For You This Night”; Claudia ignores it, but gets freaked out when a big statue topples off a shelf and almost hits her. In Ithaca, Pete and Myka check Kevin’s house, where they find empty food containers all over and the thermostat cranked way up. They also find Kevin’s son (Danny) hiding in a closet, but he’s too freaked out to talk. They bring him to the hospital to see his dad and Artie tells them he monitored a call from a frat house about someone eating a squirrel and trying to bite the other frat members. Pete and Myka go to check it out, leaving Artie to try and get some info from Danny … not exactly Artie’s strong suit.
At the frat house, some guys tell Myka that one of the pledges (Moose) came back from a taco run complaining about being cold. Then he started eating everything in the house and went nuts, trying to bite everybody. He’s currently holed up in the basement pantry, so Pete and Myka head down. Moose is pretty far gone, ready to chow down on a rat. He goes after Myka and Pete whacks him in the head. Before Pete can cuff him, Moose bites him on the arm. Myka knocks Moose out, but Pete is freaked, wondering if he’s going to get all zombified.
Myka calls Artie, who says Paul and Amy still don’t have any symptoms, so maybe Pete won’t turn at all … but he warns Myka to keep a close eye on him just in case. Pete tells Myka he wants her to be the one to put him down when he turns and she agrees immediately. She’s just fucking with him, but he’s still worried … especially when Moose is brought out of the house moaning about the cold and how the light hurts his eyes. Myka realizes the people affected are light-sensitive and figures maybe the artifact’s effects work in stages. Pete has a stomach rumble and says he’s starving—not for human flesh, just regular Pete type of starving. He hits the taco truck across the street, embarrassing himself with his shitty Spanish and making Myka pay.
At the hospital, Danny still won’t open up about what happened with his dad and a doctor tells Artie that Kevin’s organs will fail soon if his body temp keeps dropping. At the Warehouse, Claudia has another near-death experience and is having computer troubles as well. Leena calls to tell her Dwayne is at the boardinghouse looking for her, so she heads over. She missed her first rehearsal with the band, but that’s the least of her problems as her bad luck streak continues. She and Dwayne almost get smashed by a falling light fixture and Claudia says he should stay away from her because she’s marked for death.
At the hospital, Kevin is getting worse until Artie puts some artifact glasses on him; the glasses belonged to Albert Butz, inventor of the thermostat, and they stabilize Kevin’s body temp, but Artie knows it won’t last. The doctor tells Artie that Paul and Amy were discharged and he realizes whatever makes people turn into zombies isn’t transmitted by biting. Moose is brought in but he gets loose and starts rampaging through the hospital. Pete and Myka arrive and corner Moose as he attacks a candy machine. Myka can’t take a shot with her Tesla because she’s got the chills (uh oh …), so Pete blasts Moose. He gets up and Pete pulls his gun, but before he’s forced to shoot, Moose keels over dead, either from shock or hypothermia. Artie tells Pete the bites aren’t transmitting the zombie plague, which makes Pete feel better … until he gets a good look at Myka. Yup, she’s got it.
Myka’s worried about turning into a ravenous zombie, so Artie suggests they talk to Danny, since he’s the only one who might have a clue. Danny finally opens up and tells them his dad ate tacos from a truck the night he turned. Pete realizes it’s the same truck he and Moose ate from … but Myka didn’t have anything (“Eat food from a truck? What am I, Pete?”), so something else on the truck must be infecting people. Luckily Pete’s food obsession pays off (he’s following the truck on Twitter) and he figures out the truck is at a construction site not too far away. Myka insists on going, to keep her mind off her imminent demise.
At the Warehouse, Claudia repeatedly queries the Sallah machine and keeps getting doom-laden (and personalized) answers. She douses the machine in purple neutralizer goo and figures she’s won, but as she’s leaving she runs into a puddle of water that’s dripped from a container marked “Eau de Vie”. Unfortunately, this isn’t booze it’s living water and it envelops Claudia, threatening to smother her. In Ithaca, Pete and Myka show up at the construction site, but before they can do anything, Myka’s hunger gets the better of her and she attacks Pete. If that wasn’t enough, a quartet of zombified construction workers attacks the SUV, leading to a classic zombie movie trope … the siege. Myka knocks Pete’s Tesla into the back seat, so he shoves her out of the SUV and locks the doors. Too bad for him the keys went with her.
At the Warehouse, Leena sees an alert on the monitor and saves Claudia from the Eau de Vie. Claudia tells her about the Sallah machine and Leena explains that Sallah isn’t a fortune-telling machine, it’s a machine that hypnotizes you into believing the worst will happen. Leena says the only way to beat Sallah is to actively ignore him (Claudia: “like I do with Artie?”). Pete calls and asks Claudia to hack the power grid in Ithaca and turn up the lights at the construction site. That freaks out the zombies and Pete gets out of the SUV and heads for Manny’s taco truck.
But Claudia’s power surge blows all the lights and the zombies come after Pete, who just gets inside the truck in time. The zombies claw at the truck as Pete searches inside for the artifact. I don’t know why the zombies don’t turn on each other; if they’re so hungry they’ll eat anything, why not eat each other? They’re still made of flesh. Anyway, Pete figures out the tip jar (which Manny says he found in Utah) is the artifact, but since he doesn’t have any neutralizer bags, Pete just smashes the jar. That instantly cures the zombies of their hunger (and hypothermia), including Kevin back at the hospital.
Later, Artie shelves the shards from the busted jar, which turns out to have been buried in 1846 by the Donner Party. So that explains the cold and hunger, which apparently was triggered when people put money in the jar because some people in the Donner Party actually buried their money … which is weird considering the circumstances. At the coffeehouse, Claudia tells Dwayne she’d love to join his band (and gives him a smooch), but warns him that crazy shit sometimes happens to her. Elsewhere, Steve finds out his credit has been torpedoed, but Marcus Diamond shows up to pay his bar tab … and offer him a job. Steve’s not too keen on working for killers, but Marcus points out he doesn’t have many options. After thinking about it, Steve invites him to sit down. I’m betting Steve is just going along so he can get information on Diamond’s operation and get back on Mrs. Frederick’s good side, but we’ll see.