What a follow-up to The Following premiere. It was a shocking hour of reveals and manipulations. And, what about those Poe masks? Freaky! "Chapter Two" provided background on the relationships between Ryan and Claire, as well as, between Emma and Jacob. Both couples were brought together due to Joe and are both being manipulated by him even if in different ways.
He's definitely been kidnapped, but the poor kid doesn't even know it. He trusts his nanny Denise (Emma) without question, even though he's not allowed to call his mother. Given his age and the hectic activity when his father escaped from prison, it's understandable that he trust Denise.
Though, how long before he recognizes that something isn't right or misses his mother too much. It's interesting to know that he is familiar with Jacob and Paul already. Did Emma take Joey over to their house? Otherwise, how would Joey have known they were "gay"?
He made his move from dog to girls. He didn't have the precision of Joe Carroll, but he was just as deadly. He was determined to have his chapter play out as he wanted. After killing the girls, he went after Claire.
He may not be the smartest, but he was able to follow directions well. He killed the sorority girls and then sneaked into Claire's house with a full police presence there. Then according to Joe's plan, there was a face off between Jordy and Ryan.
Who would die? Claire or Jordy? That's where Joe's plan went awry. Ryan didn't kill Jordy. While it disappointed Joe, he played it off like no big deal when Ryan told him.
It's About Ryan
Joe has said that Ryan is his flawed hero in this great plan he has created and story that he is going to tell. Is it because Ryan captured him? Stopped him from killing Sarah the first time? Or, is it because Ryan slept with his wife?
It could be any or all of those reasons, but we know that not only does Joe have a plan for Ryan, Joe's followers are aware of Ryan's importance. At the cult house, Rick in the Poe mask said, "You shouldn't be here. You know you have to die, only not today."
Then Joe wanted Ryan to either see Claire killed by Jordy or for Ryan to kill the prison guard. That plan didn't work, but it was centered around Ryan. Is Joey's kidnapping tied to Ryan as well? Or, was that just a way to hurt Claire in the most painful way possible?
The relationship and game play between Ryan and Joe could be the most interesting aspect of the show, while also the most devastating to watch.
The relationship between Emma, Jacob and Paul is quite precarious. Emma and Jacob love each other and have Joe to thank for introducing them to each other. They have been manipulated by Joe, but Emma clearly had some issues at home.
When Emma killed her mother, Jacob wasn't surprised, instead he knew it was something she wanted to do and said, "You did it." That moment probably tied them even closer together. He adores her and doesn't hide it.
Paul was feeling left out. He went from Jacob's partner to just a guy living with Emma and Jacob. Given that he was pulled into a cult, he probably was looking for affection and family. This feeling of exclusion will most likely be a problem going forward.
It's a Cult
Agent Parker, a cult expert, joined the investigation. It's of note that she was hesitant to even classify this as a cult initially. It wasn't until they saw the cult house and Carroll's religion of Poe that she was willing to go there.
There doesn't seem to be any compartmentalization within the cult either. Emma, Jacob and Paul were all aware of what Jordy was going to do. And, they got the heads up that Emma's house was found from Rick.
Ryan's decision to keep Jordy alive could be helpful in the investigation. He knows the others, so what information could he provide. He may even know where Joey is being kept.
Claire and Ryan
In flashbacks, we saw how they first got together. It wasn't until after Claire was divorced that they had their first kiss, but they seemed to have been friends for quite awhile. It was Claire that first suggested to Ryan that he should speak to Joe about the crimes. That means they could have been friends all through the trial and up to that moment.
Even though they were only romantically involved for two months, they both still care deeply about each other. Since he is the only one she trusts, could she pull Ryan back into the world? It's only a matter of time before they make each other quiver again.
Just the Beginning
Joey was kidnapped, Jordy killed the sorority girls, he tried to kill Claire, and then a person in a Poe mask set someone on fire. Was that Rick? Or, is there another follower at work? How many are there? Joe is just getting started and the situation will continue to get worse.
The hour flew by quickly and yet, so much ground was covered it seemed like much longer than one episode. The twists and turns are unexpected, which makes for an entertaining thriller.
I'm anticipating where the mystery will go next, while highly intrigued by the characters and what would lead them down this path that they are on. In particular, the two threesomes: Emma, Jacob and Paul. And, Claire, Ryan, and Joe. Will their situations play out in a similar manner?
What about Agent Parker? Why oh why did she give Joe the Poe book at the end? I have no idea other than it either is part of her plan to befriend him as a cult expert OR she is a follower. I certainly hope it is not the later. Though, that would prove that he can get to anyone.
Were you on the edge of your seat for the hour? What do you think Agent Parker is up to? Do you want to see Ryan and Claire get together again? Is Joey safe with Emma?
(Image and videos courtesy of FOX.)