The Following: Season 1, Episode 3

The Poet's Fire (4 Feb. 2013)

TV Episode  -   -  Crime | Drama | Mystery
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Ryan's belief that that Joe Carroll has more acolytes than the six they have so far identified is proved correct when a street performer - wearing an Edgar Allan Poe mask - sets a man on ... See full summary »



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Title: The Poet's Fire (04 Feb 2013)

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Troy Riley
Maggie Kester
Meghan Leeds


Ryan's belief that that Joe Carroll has more acolytes than the six they have so far identified is proved correct when a street performer - wearing an Edgar Allan Poe mask - sets a man on fire and then disappears into the crowd. Using CCTV, they soon identify the attacker as Rick Kester. They question his wife who says her husband, from whom she is separated, is dangerous but that she also has little idea where he might be found. Ryan realizes that the dead man was one of Carroll's critics. Meanwhile, relations among Joey's kidnappers continues to deteriorate. Paul and Emma continue to bicker and Paul decides to leave the house, returning later with someone in tow. Flashbacks reveal a new reason Paul may not like Emma. Written by garykmcd

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4 February 2013 (USA)  »

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16:9 HD
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First misfire in a promising series
10 February 2013 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

I will preface this review by saying that I have thoroughly enjoyed the first few episodes of The Following. The premise is dark and stylish, the acting is classy from James Purefoy who is marvellously malevolent as Joe Carroll, and also particularly from Valorie Curry who has quickly established a seriously unsettling character in Joe's deranged apprentice Emma. Kevin Bacon is also well cast as Starling-esque FBI agent Ryan.

However having so quickly and effectively established an atmosphere of terror, constant suspense with the idea that every character encountered so far could potentially be part of Carrolls' following, the decisions made by the FBI task-force in this episode are strikingly stupid. After arresting and detaining suspect Maggie Kester, who attempted to attack Ryan WITH A KNIFE they decide after a few hours that she's OK to go back to her own home, not a safe house, not a motel, but her own home with only one officer in tow in case her already established "follower" husband returns. This then leads to the painful process of the characters slowly piecing the threat together and to no-ones surprise they are too late in acting on the info to do anything about it.

To me this was a real disappointment as I felt it cheapened the established characters, by gleefully walking them into a fairly obvious trap. The trap lacked the sophistication that has been present so far, and the fact that protagonists just walked strait into definitely made me care less about the characters. However the rest of the episode was pretty good particularly the afore mentioned Valorie Curry whose character has a murderous intensity as well as psychologically-damaged depths, which she plays beautifully without going to far over the top.

I'm hoping this episode was just a blip in what has been a great series so far.

Thanks for reading, PC


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