The season two premiere of the FOX suspense drama “The Following” brought some new characters, along with several twists, plot lines and a new cult. The main question coming into this season premiere was if Joe Carroll was still alive and throughout the episode you anticipated how he planned his escape if he did survive the fire back at the light house.
Overall, this season is off to a good start with many interesting story lines, and characters.
“Resurrection” begins where the season one finale left off. Ryan Hardy survives a serious stab wound from Molly, his ex girlfriend, who also happens to be one of Carroll’s followers. Unfortunately Claire gets killed and as a result there is plenty more devastation added to Hardy's dark and painful life. One year later, you notice that there is plenty of change with the characters- including Hardy- and that the show has an entirely different feel than the first season.
This is a new Ryan Hardy. He no longer drinks or looks like a man who lost everything and has nothing to live for. It seems like he has a new outlook on life. He runs every morning and is now a college professor. After several gruesome murders take place on a New York Subway train that involve Joe Carroll and masked cult members, Hardy is called by the FBI for help with the case. While Hardy says he was not contacted by Carroll and knows nothing, he says he does not want to be bothered and has put the Carroll case behind him.
As the episode goes on, we see that Hardy has been working the Carroll case all along. However, he decided to go the Charles Bronson route by playing the vigilante role so to speak, along with the help from his niece, Max. While Hardy hits the New York streets and runs into a lead that proves Carroll is still alive, we are introduced to a new character, Luke, played by Sam Underwood, who is a new member of Joe Carroll’s cult. Luke is as psychotic as they come- he has the look, the attitude and a twin brother to top it all off. A uniquely psychotic scene involves Luke taking over the role of remaking a Edgar Allen Poe-styled murder by killing an innocent girl, dressing her body up, dancing with her and going through her refrigerator- to top it off he dressed her corpse in a white dress.
Luke as the villain for this season would be a treat. His crazy ways along with his personality make him a dangerous and entertaining character. As for Emma, we see her sporting a new modern punk look. She has a pink Mo hawk and several piercings in her nose and lip. While we did not see much from her in this episode you could rest assured that she will be a threat to Hardy and the F.B.I.
Toward the end of this episode, we cut to the woods, where a girl is watching the news and has Ryan Hardy on the Television. As the camera follows a man headed towards a cabin in the middle of nowhere we see a bearded Joe Carroll living under a new name and identity, Daryl. It seems that this episode took a page from the Walking Dead, after The Governor is living under a new name, and also sported a beard. The good news is “The Following” can get away with it because the character development and plot line works.
Now that Carroll is alive and a new cult has emerged, how will Hardy handle the tragedies he did back in season one and in the future? It is certain that Hardy and Carroll will clash once again.