One of the most anticipated (for me at least) new series of the winter HAS to be Fox’s new serial killer drama, The Following, which premiered last night. A serial killer drama from Scream mastermind Kevin Williamson starring Kevin Bacon? Sign me up! And the serial killer is obsessed with romantic writers like Thoreau, Emerson and especially Edgar Allan Poe?? And then he inspires a cult of followers and gets them to do his bidding from prison?
No, seriously, WHEN DOES THIS AIR AND PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE BE GOOD.
I am pleased to report that The Following lives up to the hype…at least the pilot does anyway.
Is the violence shocking? Yes, for a network show. I’m sure it’s much worse on shows like Dexter, which I have never gotten into, (I KNOW, LEAVE ME ALONE I REALLY TRIED TO OKAY?) but many of the images are quite disturbing. I imagine that it has given standards and practices quite a nightmare. This is a serial killer that likes to stab out EYES after all. So if you have an eye thing…um, maybe don’t watch. Unless you are a masochist and enjoy torturing yourself. And like I said in the title of this post, I am glad that I opted to DVR both Bones and The Following, as I have learned after 7.5 seasons of Bones never to eat during it.
After the success that his wife Kyra Sedgwick had on The Closer, I am surprised that it has taken Kevin Bacon this long to get on a network series. I’m sure he was just “looking for the right project” and boy, this is the right one for him. He brings the same world-weary haggardness that Kiefer Sutherland brought to Jack Bauer in 24. But yet behind all the torment and obvious addiction (he drinks vodka out of a water bottle, y’all. Either he is an alcoholic or he really knows how to party. Or both.) you can see the bad ass agent beneath it. The first time Bacon’s Ryan Hardy pursued and eventually caught James Purefoy’s Joe Carroll obviously took a toll on Hardy and eventually destroyed his life. The pilot does a good job in flashing between both the pursuit that landed Carroll in prison and the manhunt after he escapes. And the chemistry between Bacon and Purefoy? Amazing. And if you didn’t know, it resulted in this at the winter TCA conference:
I don’t to give too much away about more of the plot except to say the episode ended with me definitely wanting MORE. And that’s always a good thing. Will it end up like last year’s Alcatraz, that started off promising but then quickly devolved into snooze inducing TV? I hope not. And I am not sure this premise could go beyond one season, but we’ll see. I trust Kevin Williamson. He did create Dawson’s Creek after all.
Let’s check in on The Following‘s time slot partner Bones, shall we? Last night’s episode which featured the return of big bad Pelant was EXCELLENT. It was full of the gore we have come to expect from Bones and the intensity was upped by the fact that it was our Jeffersonian Team were the ones being targeted. I love the episodes where all the team truly comes together and works with urgency (Season Two’s “Aliens in a Spaceship” is forever the benchmark for those kind of stories).
That opening scene with Angela and Hodgins coming to after being gassed with a freaking BODY strung up over their bed?? That the reason they came too was because blood was freaking dripping on them?? And baby Micheal Vincent screaming in the background and Angela discovering that Pelant had dipped flower petals in blood and arranged them around the baby??
It was in that moment that I started to question the fact that I choose to live alone. And don’t EVEN get me started on the final image of the episode.
Here’s the thing with Bones. When it is good, it is freaking amazing. The show doesn’t get enough credit for how good it can be. Yes, it took them about a season too long to get Booth and Brennan together for real. Yes, many fans still have not forgiven Hart Hanson and Company for the Gormagon storyline in season three, that in my opinion was botched/resolved too quickly thanks to the writer’s strike. But the chemistry between the cast (TJ Thyne’s Jack Hodgins forever remains King of the Lab and the MVP of the show) and especially David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel has never wavered. And the fact that the show was invigorated creatively AFTER Booth and Brennan got together shows that the infamous Moonlighting curse that many of these shows are so afraid of can be avoided.
Though I never will forgive Hart Hanson for not showing us the first time they hooked up. WE WAITED SIX SEASONS (and a movie? #sorry #canthelpmyself) FOR THAT YOU BASTARD. And no. Seeing Brennan and Booth doing it on the washing machine this season does not make up for it.
I mean. It helps a bit.