“Fight or Flight” is episode two of season one of Zoo.
In the previous episode, “First Blood”, animals had started behaving oddly. Lions had escaped from a zoo in Los Angeles and gone on a killing spree and in Botswana a pack of male lions (male lions do not hunt in packs; generally they don’t hunt at all) had attacked a safari camp. Jackson Oz and his friend Abraham from another camp had fallen afoul of the lions; Jackson got away, along with Chloe Tousignant, a survivor from the first camp. Abraham was presumed to have been killed, but a lion has actually hauled him into a tree. Presumably, to dine on later. Jackson tried getting help from the police, but they arrested him for interfering with a legal rhino shoot.
Also in LA, cats had been disappearing from a residential neighbourhood. When reporter Jamie Campbell told veterinary pathologist Mitch Morgan about this, he went looking for the cats – and found them. They weren’t dead, but they were all waiting in a tree above an elementary school which was going to open as a day camp the next day. Which, when you think about it, sounds rather as if the cats were laying in wait for their prey. Which is creepy.
This opens with Jamie and Mitch still under the tree with the cats in it, She thinks they should report it; Mitch says that there is a logical explanation for the cats behaviour. And that the lions from the zoo simply did what lions do. Jamie calls animal control – Mitch says the cats’ behaviour was simply down to honeysuckle, which has a similar effect to catnip. After the call to animal control, the cats all leave and head back to their homes.
Jamie is doing research on animal behaviour, focusing on the company she believes is responsible, Reiden Global (her obsession is personal). She’s also being evicted and someone is hacking her laptop. She does find something, a chemical she thinks is responsible for the aberrant behaviour.
In Botswana, Jackson is locked up and demanding that the arresting officer – who he knows – to let him out so that they can find out what’s happening with the lions. The officer lets him out, but does not believe that the lions are acting abnormally. Jackson wants the safari camps shut down, but the area is dependent on them to survive. Jackson, when entering Chloe’s number onto his phone before she heads back to Paris, discovers that, whilst locked up, Abraham had tried to ring him. So Jackson and the police head back to where Abraham was last seen. Abraham is found, alive, and Jackson looks for clues in his father’s recordings. He’s no longer convinced that his father was just crazy.
In Slovenia, a couple have a young boy they are adopting. There is a dog in the lobby of the hotel they are staying in, and the man asks for it to be removed. The young boy wants to go to the circus to see the performing tigers.
The behaviour of the lions in Africa and LA proves to be increasingly disturbing, and more species are acting oddly.