TV Review: THE FOLLOWING Season One, Episode 6 'The Fall'

The Following is a serial killer drama series created by Kevin Williamson (The Vampire Diaries, Dawson's Creek, Scream) and stars Kevin Bacon, James Purefoy and Shawn Ashmore. The next episode is scheduled to air March 4th on FOX.

THE FBI estimates there are currently up to 300 active serial killers in the United States. What would happen if these killers had a way of communicating and connecting with each other? What if they were able to work together and form alliances as they left a trail of blood across the country? What if one brilliant and charismatic, yet psychotic serial killer was able to bring them all together and activate a cult of believers following his every command?

Season One, Episode 6

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The Following delivered it's most intense episode of the season (aside from the pilot…still). It also debuted the most useless subplots and flashbacks in the history of flashbacks. Kevin Bacon was on top of his game for 'The Fall' and finally gave us his best performance to date for the small screen. The way he taunts these moronic kidnappers was hilarious and showed just how clever he was and how he directly addresses their stupidity by easily turning them against one another.

I could be pissed off at how they continue to drag out this storyline but that would also oppose my praise for the series' urge to steer clear from the run of the mill 'monster-of-the-week' formula. New 'followers' continue to pop up and they become far more intimidating when compared to the really, really dumb kidnapping crew. In this episode we constantly hear about 'Rodrick' and he seems like the man running the entire operation who isn't bound to a cell. Carroll is behind bars but Rodrick sounds like a badass who puts in the real work.

While Bacon is Bacon-shanking lowlifes and messing with the dumbest criminals on the planet, Carroll's wife is being held hostage by what appears to be a young Josh Brolin. This dude is creepy and plays his part well while shedding some light on how the operation works on a broader scale. This info was thoroughly needed and I'm enjoying the pieces of this puzzle coming together but doesn't it all seem kind of silly considering this serial killer who inspires these people simply wrote some really crappy novel? How he inspires these people to this much of an extreme still doesn't strike me as being all that realistic, but considering the mental capacity of a few, then OK – I can see it a little.

The nonsensical flashbacks dealing with agent Parker's family and her upbringing in the cult were some of the most boring and out-of-place moments in an otherwise tension packed episode. Was there a time and place for that sort of backstory? You bet there was – but not right now. Her phone conversations with Emma were some of the poorest delivered lines yet and made me cringe. Bring me more Bacon because he's finally come out of his shell and it's awesome. 'The Fall' is worth your time solely due to Bacon's performance as he screws with these annoying young kidnappers.

3.5 Stars