‘The Following’: STUDENT VS EDITOR


Staff Writer

With a cult of followers behind a serial killer obsessed with Edgar Allen Poe, a love triangle and Kevin Bacon in the lead role, Fox’s new show “The Following” has viewers on the edge of their seats. Bacon may seem like he is the main protagonist of the show, but I think otherwise. 

Bacon plays former FBI agent Ryan Hardy, who helped the FBI capture a college professor turned serial killer, Joe Carroll. Carroll’s character, played by James Purefoy, murdered 14 young women in 2003. 

The show does pay a lot of attention to Hardy, but Carroll actually has the most impact on the story.

In early episodes of “The Following,” Hardy and other FBI agents interrogate Carroll when he is caught after a prison escape. They then go to him often for information when some of Carroll’s followers kidnap his son and when they need a new lead on a follower as they try to stop the anonymous criminals from killing innocent people.

Carroll strikes me as an important and main character in the show because without his help, the police would most likely be more lost than they already are.

Yes, Carroll does come off as completely insane, but is he really?

Behind completely secured walls and doors, Carroll was able to form a cult like no other that has the FBI on their toes every minute, not knowing what will happen next or who to trust.

Hardy is trying to once again crack the killer, but now Carroll has a personal vendetta against him. It seems like every good guy needs a bad guy to help him see the light in not only in everyday situations, but in himself.



A&E Editor

Danger, disaster and plain insanity make for a thrilling new show for viewers of Fox’s “The Following.” 

The main focal point of the show is the clever work of  serial killer Joe Carroll, who escaped from prison and was caught, but escaped again while under custody of the FBI during a prisoner transport. 

Carroll character is an Edgar Allen Poe-obsessed criminal mastermind who is somehow able to create a massive cult following from his prison cell, then have them carry out some heinous crimes. 

However intriguing Carroll’s character, played by James Purefoy, makes the story line, the shining star of the show is Ryan Hardy. 

Hardy, played by the cool, blue-eyed Kevin Bacon, is even more complex than Carroll because Carroll knows exactly what is happening at all times, but Hardy has to take the hits as they come. 

By keeping Hardy in the dark, the writers have created a character who must break and bend himself over and over again to save everyone else. 

Though he caught Carroll the first time, Hardy’s relationship with Carroll is more complex than any other characters know. 

And as anyone with a love for police-style dramas knows, when an agent gets too close to the criminal, things cab get quite dicey. 

When Carroll’s followers kidnap Carroll’s son and try to abduct his ex-wife, we find out just how involved Hardy really is with the family. 

With the addition of a love triangle comes a gritty theme of vengeance for Carroll and one of heartache for Hardy. 

And even Carroll recognizes Hardy as the driving force behind the story as Carroll claims he is only doing all of these horrible things to bring Hardy back to his full potential.