Do you watch “The Following,” the Kevin Bacon show about an Edgar Allen Poe-obsessed serial killer named Joe Carroll? No? Good for you. I do. And I can’t stop myself, even though it’s one of the worst, most unbelievably, faultily constructed shows out there. Briefly — SPOILER ALERT if you for some reason plan on Tivo-ing this season or something — the show follows ex-FBI agent Ryan Hardy as he works with the FBI’s cult unit to track down a serial killer named Joe Carroll, who has started a murderous cult that worships Edgar Allen Poe. Carroll is out to be reunited with his son Joey and wife Claire, who totally hates his guts and is in love with Ryan Hardy. Naturally, Joe has some cult members kidnap Joey in order to lure Claire to his den of leather-bound books and sipping whiskey, and all this is clearly culminating in some kind of mass rampage.
There are only, like, four more episodes left, which THANK GOD, even though I dutifully turn it on every Monday night, grit my teeth and watch it. What’s my problem with “The Following”? I am up to my eyeballs in suspension of disbelief. I am happy to suspend my disbelief — this is TV after all — but my disbelief has suspended its disbelief. The show’s creators and writers took a very awesome thriller idea — an ex-FBI agent chasing a cult-crazed serial killer — and made it dumb. Here’s how. Keep reading »