TV Review: The Following 3.8 “Flesh & Blood”
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The Following
Season 3 Episode 8: “Flesh & Blood”
Created by Kevin Williamson
Directed by Marcos Siega
Written by Michael McGrale, Mary Leah Sutton
Starring Kevin Bacon, James Purefoy, Shawn Ashmore, Sam Underwood, Valerie Cruz, Jessica Stroup, Michael Ealy
Air Date: Monday, April 13th, 2015, 9:00pm

Before we get to the review of The Following 3.8 “Flesh & Blood,” here’s a quick recap of last week.

We got a clear vision of Theo, the psychotic “best student” of Arthur Strauss. Having murdered the good doctor, Theo (Michael Ealy) demonstrated his skills as a cyber serial killer by sitting right out in the open in front Max Hardy’s investigation, killing and framing everyone in his path. Max (Jessica Stroup) barely avoided joining his kill-list.

The Following 3.8 “Flesh & Blood” review: We begin Episode 8 with chief suspect Tucker Moore being ceremoniously dispatched by Theo… in a kitchen meat grinder! What complicates Theo is that he appears to be the perfect family man. Sure his wife suspects him of cheating, but not mass murder. Few characters I can think of on television have ever had the drastic duality of Theo. One minute he’s throwing his wife a surprise party, the next murdering her best friend and husband. See… I told you he wasn’t cheating on her!

Ryan and Mike (Kevin Bacon and Shawn Ashmore) are hard at work trying to find Theo AKA Sam Lewis, but he’s always one step ahead, like when his dummy house explodes with them in it. Things aren’t going well for Hardy at all. Last week he took a shot to the chest (in a bulletproof vest), and this week he is in all kinds of hell. Personally, his relationship with Gwen (Zuleikha Robinson) is on the rocks. She thinks he’s losing it and he probably is. As Joe Carroll (James Purefoy) approaches execution, both Joe and Ryan are having daydreams and visions of the other. I guess you can only share so much darkness before it bonds your souls together. Professionally, he’s now dealt with back to back near-death experiences at the hands of Theo and friends.

What The Following has lacked in common sense and plausibility over the years, it always made up for in sheer nerve-chilling madness. Joe Carroll, the Gray family, and now Theo are some of the most vicious and visceral killers on television. Michael Ealy deserves special recognition. After all the horror I’ve watched, anyone who can legitimately creep me out on broadcast TV is putting in a special performance. His portrayal of Theo is reminiscent of Michael C. Hall as Showtime’s Dexter; only Dexter was somehow a “good-guy serial killer.” Theo is what Dexter would be without Harry’s code.

After a shaky start, the show has found a phenomenal villain, and really… that’s what shows like The Following need. Joe is still alive for now, and his brief appearances have been fantastic. I love the Joe & Ryan love story going on, even if most of it are in their collective heads. And Theo is just so frickin’ cool and evil that you can’t wait to see what hell he rains down on our heroes.

The Following returns next week with a new episode, Monday at 9:00pm ET on FOX.

Image Gallery


THE FOLLOWING | Spotless from “Flesh & Blood”

Ryan follows up on a lead that could potentially be their killer.

THE FOLLOWING | We Found Him from “Flesh & Blood”

Ryan and Mike inspect the home of the possible killer.

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