“The Following” Recap: It Came Upon a Midnight Claire

Somebody needs to call the Poe-Poe, because this show has broken every law of good television.

What started out as a fun, frothy, ghoulish melange of police procedural and serial killer fantasia has devolved into an absolute dumpster fire of a show. It’s not fun, it’s not clever, it’s not compelling, and it’s not remotely believable anymore – and this episode’s stupidity put the final nail into the coffin of the show that should, in the words of Edgar Allen Poe, be “Buried Alive”.

Still, because I am contractually obligated to cover this episode… and there may be a gay character tucked into a crawlspace somewhere, here we go:

Jacob (Nico Tortorella) wakes up to the sight of a supremely ripped, towel-clad (and somehow not-dead) Paul (Adan Canto) entering the room. Jacob then finds Emma (Valorie Curry) dead in the shower. Wait, is this Jacob’s dream sequence or mine? Paul tells Jacob: “I’m trying to get you up.” Mission accomplished.

Remember crazy Amanda, who went on a spear gun killing spree last week and whom Ryan managed to psychologically thunderdome into giving herself up? Well, forget about her, because despite the fact that the is clearly the Feds’ best lead right now, we’re probably never seeing her again.

INSTEAD…

We get pouty, soggy-diaper Joey (Don’tKnow Don’tCare) wandering about the mansion with Emma and Joe (James Purefoy), who pretends to not know how to make s’mores in order to gain Joey’s attention. They’re called “s’mores” because you want s’more. I want s’mout, at this point. Also, Joe? The singular of “s’mores” is “s’more”, just in case you want to entrap any other kids today.

Claire (Natalie Zea) is clutching her coffee at a Radisson somewhere until Ryan (Kevin Bacon) barges in to tell her that the Followingers have a militia blah blah blah they get her and then then don’t and FINALLY there’s somebody in this crazy-ass cult who’s heard of Kevlar. Seriously, with all the satellite phone-scrambling crap they’ve been up to, they haven’t been able to rustle up a SINGLE bullet-proof vest before now? For the love of Roderick.

Ryan takes Claire to Nowhere, Pennsylvania, where Angel Batista from Dexter (David Zayas) is waiting to fill one of the most underutilized guest spots in procedural history.

Back at Nut’s Landing, Joe tells Jacob to forgive Emma because he says so. Ghost Paul tells Jacob Emma is a selfish bitch. And the militia boys are revealed to have taken Facebook photos of themselves shirtless holding machine guns. Don’t bother learning their names, because there will not be a quiz.

There’s a super-hot moment where Emma is perched on an overstuffed divan doing a pencil-sketch of Joe from memory, but then Jacob walks in. It is almost bizarre enough to qualify as camp, but then the two of them start bickering about how much they want to marry, f*ck AND kill each other, and we’re back to square one.

We also flash back to Ryan making out with a girl named Molly, who was clearly Claire’s lighting stand-in who accidentally wound up in a scene. I’d say not to bother paying attention to her, but for no reason whatsoever this woman appears in the last 10 seconds of the episode and it’s supposed to be significant, so GO AHEAD AND PAY ATTENTION. Also, seeing Angel Batista without facial hair is like seeing a cat wearing pants. Highly disturbing.

In one of the most WTF plot points ever, Claire – in the middle of a scene – finds a GPS device in her sweater. Ever heard of “deus ex machina”? This is “deus ex Chico’s.” I seriously cannot BELIEVE what I am watching.

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