The Following Season 3 Episode 6: “Reunion”
Created by Kevin Williamson
Directed by Mary Harron
Starring Kevin Bacon, James Purefoy, Shawn Ashmore, Sam Underwood, Valerie Cruz, Jessica Stroup, and Michael Irby FOX
Air Date: Monday, March 30th, 2015, 9:00pm
5 words. “What took you so long?” I know Joe, trust me I feel your pain. While no one can say this season of The Following has been boring, it has lacked a certain something thus far. A show never short on evil doers, Season 3 has lacked the “Big Bad.” Mark Gray (Sam Underwood) is totally bonkers having amassed the personality of his dead twin, and Arthur Strauss (Gregg Henry) is a tad blah as the show’s new villainous puppeteer. Thankfully, all the pressure has gotten to Ryan Hardy (Kevin Bacon) and he’s returned to seek advice from the man he said he’d never see again… Joe Carroll (the awesome James Purefoy). Their talk comes with conditions: Ryan needs something to catch Strauss. Joe wants what he always wants: More Ryan Hardy. “Tell me something Ryan; in your dreams, am I in them?” Oh, I’m so happy he’s back!
With Max (Jessica Stroup) recovering from a vicious attack last week, Ryan and Mike (Shawn Ashmore) dig for clues to possible students of Strauss and end up in Beacon, NY. There we return to the classic touches that made The Following a breakout hit in 2013: masked killers, mass graves, and all-around unspeakable evils. A killer, nicknamed the Tin Man by an M.E. has killed a number of people over the years, removed their hearts, and buried them under trees marked with dolls. Meanwhile, Strauss and Daisy (Ruth Kearney) are held up in a horror staple: the cabin in the woods that happens to be filled with rows of jars with hearts.
We learn through flashback about one of Strauss’s students played by the haunting Michael Ealy. Ealy has the unique ability to look both charmingly handsome and blankly empty at the same time. It’s a perfect look for such a creepy character. He was assisted and recruited (basically adopted) by Strauss years ago and now Arthur waits to reunite with his “best student.” That reunion was… Holy Crap! I’ve said before that The Following is the best on TV for its “HOLY SHIT WTF” moments and the last ten minutes of this episode bring the thunder!
This was the best episode of the season and really brought the show back to genuine creepiness and horror of season 1. Team Hardy is spiraling into disarray. Ryan and Max both don’t trust Mike’s motives and Max’s boyfriend Tom (Gbenga Akinnagbe) is posing to become a threat. The episode ends where it begins, where it feels at home, with Ryan and Joe. When Ryan asks, “Who’s Strauss’s best student?,” you don’t know if Joe is insulted, interested, or excited. OK Following, now gimme more!
The Following returns with a new episode next Monday night at 9pm EST on FOX.