“The Following” Recap: Love Means Never Having to Say “You’re Crazy”

Finally, The Following starts asking the same questions that we’ve all been yelling at the screen for weeks, starting with, “How did Joe Carroll escape in a helicopter in broad daylight?” Pretty soon they’ll have characters on screen asking things like, “How many people live in Richmond, anyway?” and “How many dimes can I fit into Kevin Bacon‘s adorable frown lines?” and “Who writes this stuff?”

At a videoconference debrief with The Washington Brass, Debra “The Brass Cupcake” Parker (Annie Parisse) reports that they have thus far uncovered 47 false identities for Joe’s prison visitors. In other words, it is officially easier to get into a maximum security prison to visit a notorious serial killer than it is to get a library card. (You don’t have to bring a utility bill with you to the prison!)

They now think that’s it’s possible that there are over 100 cultists, ranging from bored or lonely housewives to full-on Real Housewives (i.e.: full-bore psychopaths).

Speaking of the cultists: back at Nuts’ Landing, Joe (James Purefoy) quotes “a dream within a dream” to the cult and thanks them for their time, efforts, and willingness to sacrifice themselves for a twinkly-eyed college professor with a God complex. He tells them that it is time for “the next part of the story.”

The Feds move their base of operations to DC – which makes sense, considering that there has been a major bloodbath happening within a four-block area of Richmond, Virginia every five minutes for the last week. Parker and Hardy are allowed to keep operating their task force there, because that would make the least amount of sense.

Back at Nuts Berry Farm, a nervous blond girl pitches her chapter to Joe, and we flashback to a 2007 prison visit: her name is Amanda and she wrote Joe letters about her cheating husband, whom she just killed and dismembered along with his mistress. Apparently Joe told her, “insist on happiness,” and to her, happiness was a warm gun. She can’t go back to Oklahoma so Joe hooks her up with Roderick to take her to the safety of the compound. So at the end of the day Joe is basically the serial killer equivalent of a Pokemon trainer, capturing and cultivating various psychos to later pit against Charmander and Squirtle in the arena?

Back in the present, Amanda says, “I want my chapter to have a happy ending.” GOOD LUCK WITH THAT.

Meanwhile, on-the-lam Jacob (Nico Tortorella) surprises his mom at their country house. She is there hiding from the manhunt for Jacob, and Jacob is there hiding from the previous several episodes. Paul (Adan Canto) is not looking too good, despite the protestations to the contrary being made by his open shirt and heaving, furry bosom. Meow. Jacob insists to his mom that he never killed anyone. Mom says Paul has sepsis and will die soon without a hospital, and that Jacob’s dad – whom Jacob clearly hates – is on his way.

Joe calls Ryan (Kevin Bacon) to follow up on Mike’s condition and commiserate about how hard it is to love Claire. Women – can’t live with ‘em, can’t kill enough of ‘em!

At a diner in Richmond, two women meet for lunch. One goes to the bathroom and while she is gone Amanda sits down with the other lady. She is fiddling with something under the table as she tells the woman to tell Ryan Hardy that “love hurts.” The other woman comes back from the bathroom and asks what’s going on and what Amanda has under the table. She says it is a speargun and she wants to try it out. She spears the lady straight through the back of her booth, and Amanda and Louise make a quick exit.

Okay, that was f*cked up.

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