The Following Review: One Step Closer

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"The Siege" was a nail-biting episode of The Following that drew Ryan Hardy mere feet away from rescuing Joey.

It was nice to see Ryan and the FBI make progress and put a potential snag in Joe Carroll's master plan, especially because Joe's usually been so many steps ahead.

Claire Finds Trouble

Even behind bars, Joe's the ultimate manipulator and he's easily becoming the villain you love to hate. The difference in his lawyer's demeanor between the past and present was a complete shift from confident and in control to fearful and obedient.

And maybe it's because Joe has the accent that adds to his menacing and sophisticated personality, but it's becoming clear with each episode that Carroll is television's Hannibal Lector. Minus the fava beans, chianti, and eating people, of course.

But even with Joe's scheming and Poe references to call upon the next stage of action, sometimes a bit of luck and circumstance can change everything.

It's great that Joey isn't a stupid kid and was trying to find his way back to his mom. So often, shows have child characters that make all the wrong choices or can be just plain useless, but Joey not only had the smarts to call home secretly, but run away, and even get innovative to escape when he was locked up again.

At the same time, the episode really gave the characters a chance to not make eye rolling decisions.

The couple that found Joey not only recognized him but called the police. Hank, the new follower, was able to see the cop in the mirror and hunt him down. The FBI guy that was escorting Claire didn't dumbly wait outside the bathroom but rather immediately checked in.

These types of actions instantly made the episode that much more compelling.

Maybe you could argue that Claire ditching the FBI and jumping in the vehicle with Roderick was a bad move, but I take it more as her desire to do anything to get her son back. Being her mother and wanting him safe blinds her from making every rational decision.

Each move made and the prospect that Joey might escape really made the hour an edge of your seat thriller. I knew as soon as the couple found Joey they were in for trouble and I've got no problem if Paul gets his comeuppance.

At least Jacob has managed to avoid killing anyone, so there is hope for him, but I've got a feeling his dark path is just beginning.

But, wonderfully, Ryan was deputized and given his own gun. Good idea by the FBI? Maybe not because people seem to drop around him wherever he goes, but great idea for viewers because it reinforced how much of a bad ass Kevin Bacon is when hunting down the clues.

With that gun, Ryan is definitely a shoot first/ask questions later kind of guy. And that works for me.

Of course, the episode ended on a fantastically frustrating cliff hanger with Ryan so close... yet so far away. With the great pacing and build up to cut off where it did, The Following definitely has me wanting to come back for more.


Editor Rating: 4.7 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.1 / 5.0 (137 Votes)

Sean McKenna is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.


Are u kidding me? Fake cops and fbi??? the writing is now just comical, maybe this is supposed to be a comedy? This is the worst written show I have ever seen. Wont waste another minute watching this joke.....


Just when I think the writing cant get any worse, they top it!! This once promising show wont last much longer....thankfully


I share the frustrations about there being so much pure stupidity in the writing - why would Ryan turn his back on the open front door knowing there is at least 3 'murderers' nearby who are likely after him? - and where is the backup that always seems to be just 'minutes away' but doesn't arrive in tine? - and Claire getting into a car with an unknown likely killer? I love the idea behind the show but there's a boat-load of stupidity written into the characters. The only thing that will save it for me is if Ryan does a 'Jack Bauer' and starts racking up a body count of low-life killers.


I'm mot sure what Claire was thinking. Yes she wanted to see her son, but she also knows that Joe has tried to have her killed before now. What motive would he have to actually reunite her with her son and possibly undermine what his minions are doing. I don't think Ryan was in a shoot first mentality. He did give Hank a verbal warning. And Hank swung around and leveled his gun at Ryan. Ryan didn't have time to do anything but fire. I'm glad they've introduced a deeper level to the cult. I love how Joey is being portrayed. He's a smart kid, but it's not as if he's acting too smart for his years as is often done too on tv.


This is the show that television needs, it's outstanding and SO awesome! The cligghanger was good but we all know nothing is gonna happen to ryan, that was not part of Joe's masterplan. I see one option for the three devils, telling Joey that ryan is bad ( ofcourse the smart kid wouldn't buy that and go to hero mode). And backup is on the way so i have full faith in the fact that Joey&Ryan will be alright, only this time Claire will be missing. This just keeps getting better and better!


Okay, Nosgoth1979, this website isn't about your amazing DVR that you're advertising everywhere you go with all your other friends who also bring it up everytime they're commenting. I keep seeing some of you pop up in the comments and that's getting REALLY annoying.


i'm guessing one of the followers is gonna die on the next episode with the FBI now knowing where the farmhouse is. And that person is.............PAUL he really gets on my damn nerves so he needs to go. Finally little joey knows he's not safe with emma aka 'the nanny' so good for him to find the cell phone to call his mom. But now the mom is about to go missing what the hell?


This show is getting ridiculous.
It is obvious the guy in jail is sending out coded messages to his followers. Why would the police/FBI continue to let him do it.
The mother is stupid. It was the perfect opportunity to place a "bug" on her.
Where were all the police? In real life there would be cops and helicopters everywhere.
I find the show exciting, but the writing is comical.
The characters are all stupid. Last week, Ryan's back up was nowhere near ready to help him. The girl who kidnapped the sister had no way to track if anyone was outside helping Ryan.


Didn't realize there was a limit to the length of comments. Anyway, to finish, Ryan comes into the house and didn't follow proper procedure by allowing his back to be exposed when he saw Joey? Won't go into the other obvious and predictable scenarios the writers are coming up with but the mother losing her protection and getting into a vehicle knowing what her ex is capable of doing? Either she is emotionally challenged or just plain stupid. This may last a full season but have my doubts it will return for a second one. I enjoy good suspense but lose interest when suspense is replaced with over-reaching stupidity.


Maybe it is just me and an ever growing cynicism about the way these shows are written but this is becoming boring and frustrating as heck. First of all, Ryan has a bad heart and yet he "RUNS" a half mile to where Joey is being held? Heck, when they called him in to help, he was in miserable condition. Then, you have a deputy who seemed to be afraid of his own shadow who was apparently trained in law enforcement by way of an internet police academy school and he ended up letting someone with a gun take it away and kill him? The police officers were informed about how bad these people are and yet he wouldn't pull the trigger? The location is identified and no helicopters are dispatched when they have been ordered to be ready to lift off in a moments notice? Well, considering that it took the local police almost 30 minutes to get to our house when it was broken into, I guess that one is close to the truth. Ryan comes in the house and fails to follow proper procedure when he knows there at least three bad guys around and he turns his back on an obvious situation where he left himself exposed to being surprised? He should have asked if anyone was upstairs and then told the kid to get back in his room and wait. As for the mother, she knows what her ex-husband is capable of and that he has a "Following" and that the last thing she should ever do is allow herself to be alone without protection but the kicker was when she got in the car with the bad guy. Either she is totally clueless and emotionally compromised or just plain stupid. The attorney? Now, just how did she explain to her friends how she lost two fingers on her left hand right after dropping her client, a known serial killer? I understand this is all fiction and the writers are taking liberties with reality but so far, even the most far reaching science fiction has more of a ring of truth than this predictable failure. If it lasts a full season, I will be surprised.

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The Following Season 1 Episode 5 Quotes

What if I told you that your dad wasn't a bad man?


No more lies Jacob. This is about trust.