Joe wants out in this week’s episode of The Following – and like Lola, whatever Joe wants, Joe intimidates, schemes and murders to get. (I might be remembering the song wrong.) Meanwhile, little Joey proves the smartest and most effective player in either camp and Ryan winds up shooting at a getaway vehicle to absolutely zero effect. Again. Let’s review the major developments of “Let Me Go.”
DON’T LET THE DOOR HIT YOU IN THE… | Claire is supremely unhappy that her son is still missing. Debra is supremely unhappy that Claire got into a car with one of Joe’s followers, and asks whether she can count on her not to do so again. “No, you can’t,” Joe’s ex pops off. “Not any more than I can count on you to find my son.” I’d give that an ouch, but she’s totally right! Meanwhile at the prison, with ol’ eight-fingered lawyer Olivia in tow, Joe requests a transfer so he can escape the “injustices that have been inflicted upon” him – like when Ryan broke three of his fingers in the pilot. The warden is all too happy to sign off on the move and – in what, in retrospect, is a real ballsy move – makes sure to let Hardy know that the transfer is his fault.
So Joe is trussed up and locked in a van, which follows and is followed by support vehicles and tailed by a helicopter. Unfortunately, no one in any of those vehicles (or anyone in the building, really) has seen the 2001 remake of Ocean’s Eleven. If they had, they’d realize far earlier than they do that Charlie has messed with the surveillance feed to make it look like Joe was in the transport vehicle… when really, he was in Olivia’s trunk. (People, I feel like this is a teachable moment: My love for the Clooney doesn’t just keep me warm at night, it teaches me useful things. No felon/nattily dressed vault caper gang will ever get the jump on this girl. What could your love for the Clooney teach you? The more you know…)
Ryan and Mike realize that the warden’s college-age daughter has been missing for two days; they surmise Joe must be using the girl as leverage to get the transfer signed. (Note to the warden: Your cover was blown the second Ryan and Mike mentioned your daughter’s disappearance, and you said you’d “look into it” like it was an employee complaint about someone repeatedly burning popcorn in the office microwave.) Ryan has the transport stopped right around the time the warden is sobbing and being taken into custody, but Joe is nowhere to be found.
THANKS FOR NOTHING | Joe changes into the suit Olivia’s brought him and then asks her to do one more thing: Call Ryan Hardy and tell him that Joe is killing her, and it’s Ryan’s fault. She’s like, “Yep, I’m here with Joe, yep he’s terrible, wait, what do you want me to-” and then Carroll wraps his hands around her neck and snuffs out her little legal light. Boo. I liked Renee Elise Goldsberry in the role. Ryan gasps and tells Caroll to kill him instead and makes a mental note to buy a slightly scratchier hairshirt the next time he’s at Penitents R Us. (Side note: With all of the “this is your fault” going on in this episode and the series at large, Ryan’s going to need one heck of a Robin Williams therapy hug when all is said and done.)
Mike and Ryan, via FBI cell-phone pingology, find Olivia dead in her car and track Joe into a nearby office building, where he’s met up with followers David and Louise. Ryan (once again) is thisclose to getting his man when he loses his gun (and he worked so hard to get it back!), which Joe trains on him while delivering a James Bond villain-esque speech about how it’s not the time for Joe to die. Joe escapes to a helicopter waiting on the roof; Ryan regains his sidearm and shoots David in the leg, bounding up the stairs just in time to watch his target fly away – much like Emma drove away last week.
Debra lets Ryan torture David for a few minutes to get info that helps the FBI find the warden’s daughter. (More on that in a minute.) When next Hardy sees Claire, she’s being taken into protective custody — and she’s not pleased.
AND THE CHILD SHALL LEAD THEM | I decided tonight that Joey is my favorite character in this show. He’s known for a while that something about Denisemma ain’t kosher. He fully understands that hanging out in a grungy auto garage with a screamy tattooed guy named Bo probably isn’t the kind of extracurricular activity of which his mother would approve. And he’s pretty sure that the fact that Bo has a girl chained up in a cage in the back room is a terrible thing. So he does a super-brave thing and nicks the keys, steals into the room and calmly introduces himself to the girl, Dana, and tells her that he’s going to get her out. (Maybe he picked that up from Ryan in the last episode? Except Joey actually closes the deal. Too harsh?) She flees just as Bo realizes what happened; a just-arrived Charlie catches her, and soon she’s back in the cage. Emma and Bo also aren’t getting along great – but she seems to settle a little when Charlie informs her that Bo’s not a true follower, just someone who does tasks for them here and there.
Joey feels Charlie out about the whole messed-up situation. Charlie correctly interprets the kid’s questions as a well-controlled freakout and gives Joey his word that no harm will come to Dana. So when it’s time for them to leave, Charlie takes Bo into the back room and kills him, leaving him with a very much alive Dana, whom the FBI finds later.
Charlie, Emma and Joey wind up at a huge home filled with other followers, all of whom spill out the front door when Joe and Louise arrive. Emma runs into Joe’s arms, weeping, but he’s only got eyes for his son – who won’t approach him. So Carroll instead walks to the boy, who correctly identifies him as his father. Joe blinks back a total breakdown as he verifies that yes, that’s true.
Now it’s your turn. Did you fear for a moment that Charlie would kill Dana in front of little Joey? (I certainly did.) Are you still jumping at moments like when Bo drags Joey out from under the car? (Despite knowing they’re going to happen, I cannot control my eek! reflex.) Don’t you wish the FBI would look like it’s on top of the situation at least once in the next few episodes? And are you missing the currently bi-curious former gaybors? I sure am! Sound off in the comments!Follow @kimroots