The Following Episode Review: "Welcome Home"
This week's episode is definitely the slowest paced show since the series began. With the craziness at the farmhouse and Joe's escape over, we get a more character driven episode. I found this episode boring. When I sit down to watch The Following I expect Kevin Williamson outrageousness. We didn't really get any of that tonight.
Once again, The Following starts out with a highlight package that would confuse you if this was your first episode. As complicated as this show is, they need the basic premise to come across in the opening along with some scenes from recent episodes.
The opening scene shows just how awesome James Purefoy is. I don't think there could have been a better man cast to portray Joe Carroll. How he switches back and forth from psycho to intelligent normal man comes across as very believable and shows just how messed up this character really is. The cult is waiting for him after his conversation with his son. It's creepy, but I wish there was some more insight into why these people follow this guy. And there are a lot of them.
The FBI brings in Nick Donovan (Mike Colter) to take charge in the case. I'm surprised it took this long after all the screw ups. What gets me is how Agent Parker defends Ryan Hardy (Kevin Bacon) after Donovan says it's time he gets back to his consultant role. Parker (Annie Parisse) has been pretty much saying the same thing the whole time. It's kind of like the "only I can beat up my brother, if anyone else does I'll beat them up" concept. Still, didn't work.
Roderick is revealed, as he comes up the driveway of the cult hideout in a police car with the sirens blaring. Good way to stay incognito. As much as we have been teased about Roderick, it was weird to have his reveal seven minutes in with a character we have never seen before. This would have worked much better as a cliffhanger reveal with someone who has been in a few episodes that we wouldn't expect.
Agent Weston (Shawn Ashmore) gets sent home for hacking the new boss' email. Of course, there are some of Carroll's acolytes in his hotel room waiting for him. I know these people are supposed to be everywhere but the writers are starting to beat it into the ground.
I liked how Emma tries to seduce Joe and fails. He loves his wife, even though she slept with Ryan Hardy. I think Emma will sleep with anyone in this cult, which may be the reason the men sign up.
You gotta love how this is the cockiest cult alive. They kidnap an FBI agent and don't even try to hide their faces. The FBI immediately gets their faces off the hotel security footage and a partial license plate. There are nine possible vehicles with the last four of the plate "685J" and same make, color and model of car. That seems like a lot to me. Of course, Ryan figures out which of the nine it is and shows up to try and save the day. The cult stabs Agent Weston in the stomach because he won't reveal the location of Carroll's wife. Before they slit his throat, Ryan breaks it up. Most of them escape because, wow, is he a horrible shot. I think he killed two of out seven of them while firing about twenty shots. The EMT's say that Weston will pull through after surgery. I don't get how Ryan doesn't blame Donovan for what happened. If he didn't send Weston home, all of this may have been avoided.
When Roderick reports to Joe, he says they lost five men in the firefight. I re-watched the shooting and he definitely only hit two. Cult member Charlie asks Joe to kill him for their failure, and he obliges. Charlie is their tech guy and is the only one who can hack the FBI servers. I'm sorry, but there is no way that Joe would kill him. Joe gets really excited when he kills people, which leads to Emma getting her way, even though he still loves his wife.
The Following has been one crazy high paced thrill-ride each week, but tonight was boring and had a major screw-up with Roderick.
5 out of 10.