I wrote about the new FOX show The Following and how I liked the first episode but was concerned they couldn’t make a weekly series out of it. Through 11 episodes my concern has not only been proven correct but the Federal agents in the show have to be the worst agents in the history of the FBI. The writers continue to find ways to pull plot points out of thin air that make no sense as if they know what the final episode of the season will be and until then it is all filler. I am disappointed.
From my initial review back in January:
I watched the premiere episode of FOX’s new drama “The Following” that stars Kevin Bacon. It seemed like a cross between CBS’s “Criminal Minds” and the case of crazy man Charles Manson. I did think that it was unnecessarily graphic but I liked the plot and the concept. I just don’t think the show will last as a weekly series.
The main issue I have with the show is the villain is way too smart and the police are way too dumb for even TV show logic.
The show takes place all within the state of Virginia and the serial killer Joe Carroll and his dozens of cult members live in a huge country estate and yet the police can’t find him at all. It reminds me of the bad NCIS agents on NCIS LA who can’t keep the terrorists out of Los Angeles.
I think the problem is the same for both shows – trying to make compelling drama in a relatively small location. It just doesn’t work for a weekly show. Even if you have to fake locations you need to expand your world or the show grows stale like ‘The Following’ has grown stale for me.
The focus on the increasingly ridiculous cat-n-mouse game between Carroll and Hardy takes away from other interesting stories with other characters.
The back story on the FBI agent Debra Parker, played by the great Annie Parisse, was touched on the 2nd episode she was in but hasn’t been mentioned again aside from one or two flashback scenes. I thought her experience in a cult as a child is interesting for the whole plot of the show but it seems the writers don’t.
I just get the sense that they wrote the first episode and knew what the final episode of the season would be but in between is just filler – biding time until the end.
The show has been renewed for another 15 episode season, but based on far the show has fallen since episode one, I don’t plan to keep watching unless the plot and writing improve immensely.