The Following Premiere Recap: Say It Ain't Joe! -- Plus: Double Talk from a New Cast Member

The Following Season 2 PremiereFox’s The Following opened Season 2 on Sunday night by promptly tending to one piece of grisly, unfinished business.

Picking up where Season 1 left off, FBI Agent Ryan Hardy’s “Carroller” neighbor Molly stabbed not just him but lady love Winona Claire, as well. Yet while Ryan survived, we learn that Claire did not.

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Jumping ahead a year, Ryan is living in New York City, teaching criminology at a college and hanging with his NYPD specialist niece Max (90210‘s Jessica Stroup). Five months sober, he has Keith Carradine for a kung fu mentor an AA sponsor. Claire’s son Joey (“Joey?!?!”) is in WITSEC with grandma. When a trio of men wearing (quite nifty) Joe Carroll masks assault several passengers on a subway car — on the anniversary of Joe’s death, and on the No. 6 train, of course — both Ryan and FBI Agent Mike Weston (suspended until review of Ryan’s shooting of the Carroller who taunted them after Parker’s burial alive) are pulled into the case by FBI Agent Ken Phillips (NYPD Blue‘s James McDaniel). Lily Gray (Boss’ Connie Nielsen), a survivor of the subway slayings, reports that the masked men chanted, “Joe Carroll is alive! Ryan Hardy can’t stop us! The resurrection is coming!” But Ryan renders himself useless: “It’s over for me,” he tells a disappointed/suspect Mike.

And yet… it is far from over for Ryan. For it is revealed that a locked room of his apartment is dedicated to the hunt for Joe Carroll, and that Max (somewhat begrudgingly) abets him. Following a lead, Ryan tracks one of the known surviving Carrollers, Carlos, and beats him into confirming that Joe did indeed survive the boathouse explosion. Elsewhere, we see that Emma is currently living in New Jersey (and with a very new ‘do), and was caught off guard by Carlos’ subway stunt.

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Meanwhile, we meet an enigmatic young man named Luke (Dexter‘s Sam Underwood), who flirts with, confronts and then apparently strangles a young blonde. And then he cuddles with her. And dances with her. And sings to her. And primps her. When it comes time to move her body, Luke solicits a helping hand… from his twin, Mark. They pose the corpse across the street, dressed as the Claire-like character in Carroll’s book — in what is considered a “specific message” for Ryan.

Later, the twins meet up with Giselle (Last Resort‘s Camille De Pazzis), and they punish Carlos by stabbing him again and again making him stand in a corner. As the episode draws to a close, we cut to a remote cabin, where a woman named Judy (everything‘s Carrie Preston) has just turned a trick, while a young girl (Southland‘s Tiffany Boone) spies a news broadcast about the subway attack. The lass beckons for “Darryl” outside, and as he lumbers in, we discover that beneath this man’s bushy beard is Joe. And he appears quite pleased to see Ryan on the telly.

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What did you think of The Following‘s Season 2 opener?TheFollowing_SamUnderwood (The next episode airs Monday, Jan. 27 at 9/8c.) Vote in our poll below, after reading our brief chat with new cast member Sam Underwood, who was surprised to find himself pulling “double” duty.

TVLINE | I assume that you knew that it was two roles going in…?
Honestly, no. When I went in for the screen test, it was revealed to me, but at first I was told it was one guy with “many different personalities.”

TVLINE | How are you and the show defining these two guys? What’s different about them?
I really think that [series creator] Kevin Williamson has done an amazing job of not just having these two be crazy, psychopath twin serial killers. You really find out over the course of this season so far, and I’m sure more so in the future, their individual character arcs. They’re not joined at the hip like Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee, in that kind of sense.

TVLINE | Well, at first blush, it looks like Luke’s a bit more unhinged.
There is definitely a different quality about them, and what’s interesting is that, a twin relationship thing… Shawn Ashmore (who plays Mike Weston) is actually a twin so I was asking him about that. Luke is definitely the alpha male in personality, but he always checks in with his brother for permission, like, “Can I do this?” So as Mark, I never feel like I’m kind of being led, I always feel like I am leading as well. But we have a different language, different strengths as individuals.

TVLINE | Mark seems much more quiet.
Yeah, yeah, yeah, he’s definitely a lot more reserved publicly in speaking to people than Luke is. Luke’s more of an extrovert in that way.

TVLINE | What’s their respective relationship with the new girl, Giselle (Last Resort‘s Camille De Pazzis)?
Luke and Mark have a very, very strong relationship with her — and you’ll find out more about what that is. But I can’t give too much away.