The Following Recap: Another Acolyte Revealed!

The Following Season 2 RecapRyan Hardy, do you have a secret Cray-Date profile we don’t know about or something?

How else do you keep getting so cozy with these minions of your mortal nemesis, these lovely ladies who slink past all of your law-enforcement training and instincts to set up shop in your head and/or bed?

Though Molly seemed like an outlier last season, it appears she was the first in a trend – because, as this week’s Following episode reveals, your latest crush Lily also is hopelessly devoted to Joe Carroll. And if that isn’t enough, you let her get away! (For anyone keeping score, that’s nefarious law-breaking: a million, Hardy “wins”: 0.)

In related news, Joe’s old team meets his new team, and the man himself finds a surprising new follower just before he hits the road. Read on for what took place in “Trust Me.”

RELATED | The Following‘s Tiffany Boone Talks Mandy’s Shocking Choice

BUSTED | A noise in his apartment wakes Ryan up in the middle of the night, and when he tiptoes into the living room with his gun drawn, a clean-shaven Joe is there to greet him. Ryan fires multiple times into the serial killer’s chest, but it doesn’t faze him. “If I die, you die,” Carroll growls… just as Ryan wakes up from the nightmare. Phew. Oh no wait! There’s someone in a Joe mask right outside his door! Oh no wait again! He’s just nodded off at the FBI, where he’s about to get his tush handed to him.

Mendez and Weston have surveillance footage of Carlos returning to his house during the events of the pilot, which means they also have footage of Ryan following him (and getting hit by a cab, which made me laugh the first time I saw it. I had the same reaction this time. Between that and the way I emotionally handle something we’ll get to later in the episode, I fear that my moral compass is a bit dented.) The FBI lets Ryan go but plans to track both him and his online activity for the foreseeable future.

However, Weston has another plan. He busts into Ryan’s apartment and finds the Carroll Cubby. When Ryan encounters him here, Weston vaguely threatens to turn Max in for helping her uncle, then demands Hardy spill what he knows. “It’s just a theory. It’s a lunatic’s conspiracy theory,” Ryan says, eventually coughing up that he believes Roderick’s men went to England, killed Joe’s half-brother, engineered a lab break-in and swapped DNA samples so everyone would think the remains found in the boathouse wreckage belonged to the good professor.

“Claire’s dead. Deborah’s dead, and so is Joe Carroll,” Mike tells his old pal before taking Ryan’s ill-gotten evidence back to the FBI and promising he won’t mention anything to Mendez.

RELATED | The Following‘s Kevin Bacon: ‘I Like All of Ryan’s F#@%-Ups’ – But Season 2 Gives Him More Wins

MURDEROUS MEET-UP | Meanwhile, Mark is intrigued by the idea of Emma, so he has Carlos lure her via phone to an abandoned construction site. Even though the place looks like every place a Carroll follower killed someone last season, she enters and winds up talking with Luke’s less-styled twin. (Helpful tip: If there’s plastic sheeting hanging all over the place, there’s a 90 percent chance you won’t escape with your life.) During their chat, Mark mentions that he can’t feel fear, but he’s intrigued by it. Then he brings Emma home to meet the family.

What neither of them know is that the FBI is – at that very moment! — raiding Emma’s hovel of hair dye in New Jersey. Most of her fellow followerfugees are gunned down; one survives and is taken into custody. Emma doesn’t find out what happened until she and Mark are back at the hotel where, upon deciding that he likes Joe’s former “right-hand man,” Luke determines that Emma can stay… then abruptly stabs Carlos in the neck, killing him and ticking off Gisele, who’d been so looking forward to doing the deed. (Forget Manic Panic, Ems; you might want to try some actual panic at finding a group of crazies who makes you look balanced in comparison.)

Not long after, the twins get a call that makes them, Gisele and Emma abandon the hotel room for good. What could make them bug out so quickly, you ask?

LILY’S A LIAR | After Mendez finds Ryan skulking around Emma’s place just after the raid, she orders him away from everything involving the investigation – including Lily Gray. But he just can’t leave the gallery owner alone, and she doesn’t want him to. However, something about her story of the subway attack just doesn’t sit right with Hardy, and with Weston’s help, he realizes what it is. Despite saying she was in a hurry to get home the night she was stabbed, cameras in the station show her letting an express train come and go – odd behavior for someone in a rush. (Side note: Though not odd at all if the doors open and some foul stench hits you in the face like a lead-lined two-by-four, which is wont to happen, am I right fellow New Yorkers?)

Here’s the part I don’t get: The moment Ryan realizes this, he stalks Lily around the gallery as she’s showing some of the art. They make eye contact a few times, and then she bolts for the basement, wounds (kills?) an FBI agent she runs into, dons a wig and sunglasses and slips out the door. Pretty soon, she’s gone. How hard would it have been to sit on your dawning suspicion until, I don’t know, you had her within arms’ length, Ryan?!

So yes, Lily is a follower. (Props to Matt Mitovich.) And, as we learn when Luke picks her up, she’s also the twins’ mother. (Additional props to TVLine reader Amy, who brought up that theory during discussion of last week’s episode.) While I’m doling out pats on the head, I should note that I’m happily surprised the show offered up this reveal this early in the season. Good Lily was boring; the real Lily looks like she knows how to have fun. Also interesting: During her goodbye call to Ryan, Lily mentions that his death was to have been her gift to Joe and “now I’ll have to show up empty handed” – giving Hardy even more inclination to believe that Carroll lives.

TWO FOR THE ROAD | Many red states away, Judy comes home to find Joe (still furry) and Mandy trying how to best dispose of Rev. Glenn’s body. Joe looks pleasantly surprised when Mandy – without prompting – suggests rolling the corpse in a rug and dragging it out to the barn. But Judy is horrified that the serial killer she thought she “fixed” is off the wagon once more, and she knows he probably won’t just drive off and leave them as witnesses, so she tries to shoot him when his back is turned. (Too bad Joe already nabbed all her bullets.)

He duct-tapes her to a chair and goes searching for his knife, which Mandy grabs first. Judy pleads with her daughter to kill their hellacious houseguest. No such luck! The teen can’t imagine a life stuck in Arkansas without her surrogate daddy, so she guts her mom like the catch of the day and then eagerly helps Joe set fire to both cabins.

“Thanks for taking me. I won’t disappoint you,” Mandy tells him, chattering away in her happiness at leaving. “I’m very resourceful.” He’s touched, and kisses her on the head. This is what I meant earlier – I was touched by the scene, too, which is beyond messed-up. I’m actively rooting for the murderer and the warped adolescent, everyone. Can we chalk it up to James Purefoy and Tiffany Boone doing a really excellent job in these scenes (and perhaps not delve too deeply into what this all may say about me?) Allrighty then!

Now it’s your turn. What did you think of the episode? Sound off in the comments!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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41 Comments
  1. GuessWhat says:

    What we already learned LAST season — you have to suspect that EVERYONE is in the cult. So there you have it. Can’t actually act shocked when they reveal another member.

    • I don’t know why I still watch this show. Everyone is a member, and if they aren’t, they are the worst FBI agents in the history of tv. Claire is alive, you all know that. And it’s totally not a shocker. The worst part. I think Mike Weston is the biggest ringleader of Joe’s cult. I called that after the first episode.

    • Didn’t we ALL pick up on Lily being a cult follower, though? I mean from the start? It was hardly a stretch. Personally, I think she’s doing it for revenge against Carroll, though, as the previews for next week seemed to suggest. That would be switching things up for this show. Lily-is-a-bad-guy is predictable in this world. And yeah, for all the “oh, it’s different this season!” talk, I don’t see ANY sign of that.

  2. AGB says:

    So another character is revealed to be a follower? SHOCKER!!!!!!!

    God, I swear this show couldn’t get any dumber, even if It tried. I miss Sleepy Hollow.

    • GuessWhat says:

      agreed — they think they are being so SHOCKING. and we are sitting here saying, “Saw this already!” same stuff from last season just recycled.

      • AGB says:

        Yep. I actually don’t watch this show anymore, but I read the recaps/reviews and it’s a lot more fun than the actual show.

        The AV club reviews are hilarious.

    • RS says:

      It’s kinda like the dark side Sleepy Hollow….old white guy with a British accent, long presumed dead, pines for his wife who’s in some sort of holding pattern (because we know Claire is alive) hooks up with an eager African-American “true believer” chick. Instead of fighting evil, they are evil. ….???

  3. Jess says:

    Claire’s alive, right? /sigh

  4. Matt says:

    This show is just utterly disappointing in so many ways. Someone has to remove Kevin Williamson from this show and give it a fresh revamp. The pilot was just too good and the rest has been such crap. I am continue to watch this show in the hope that Scream pops up out of nowhere.

  5. Cub says:

    I feel like my problem with this show is that 70% of the cast is a psycho killer. How do you relate to characters or comprehend their motives when it just comes down to them being a psycho? It just feels kinda ridiculous. They’d have to reveal EVERY follower’s back story for me to really make me believe what’s going on. Otherwise, WTF is their purpose? Other than trying to please their messiah, Joe.

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  7. V says:

    I really liked tonight’s epsiode. With this show, you’ve gotta suspend nearly all belief, which is what makes it fun. The music really made me want to see next week’s episode. Loving the cover songs of some classic songs!

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  9. spignejr says:

    Totally called Lily when she was the sole survivor of the train attack. If she were innocent, she would have been killed. Followers don’t generally have mercy.

    I am really intrigued by the Joe/Mandy thing. I am interested in seeing where that goes. I like seeing how someone BECOMES a Follower, after seeing so many that are ALREADY Followers.

    Where the hell was Max?! Missed me some Jessica Stroup.

    Oh and does anyone think Mendez looks a little WAY TOO MUCH like Debra? Like sometimes I forget it’s not Debra and she got killed by being dumb last season and finding herself trapped in a box. Though, something equally as likely will happen to Mendez I’m sure.

    • Dave says:

      Yes! All I kept thinking was how much Mendez resembles Debra! I wasn’t shocked that Lily was an acolyte – she was way too calm after the subway attack – but I wasn’t expecting her to be Luke & Mark’s mom. I’m also looking forward to an Emma & Giselle brawl.

  10. MC says:

    Good recap. It seems that lots of people want this show to be “Lost” for the serial killer set instead of accepting it on its own terms. I wonder how many criminology majors are watching this show because the Carroll cult does present some parallels to the Manson cult. I agree that Ryan should not have made eye contact with Lily so soon, but it’s great to have Connie Nielsen around as a villainess. I’ve always liked her as an actress. There’s a great group of actors on this show. Valorie Curry is very underrated.

  11. Kavyn says:

    I’m so tired of everyone working for Joe. I saw the Lily twist coming, but I would have enjoyed it so much more if she led her own cult. She’s a pretty great character on her own and really sneaky, which I like. But as soon as she mentioned the “I wanted to bring you in as a gift to Joe” line, I lost her.

    Can someone please defy Joe and do their own thing? I’m so tired of it, and his storyline is completely useless right now. He should have been killed off.

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  13. enri says:

    I gave up after last episode. Doesn’t sound like I missed anything. I enjoyed the characters last season…not enjoying the new season 2 characters at all.

  14. Aprilcot says:

    I can’t understand why so many people watch this show (and take it seriously!) and a brilliant show like Hannibal is barely hanging on. Admittedly, I watch both, but with The Following it’s mostly for the camp. Almost everything past the pilot has been ridiculous!

  15. Libby says:

    suspend belief, and stop watching, it is stupid…there couldn’t possibly be a more foolish man then Ryan. He bumbles and fumbles. so much for the promised changes, I have stopped watching, one of the most idiotic programs available.

  16. K. says:

    I wouldn’t mind seeing Lilly and her crazy boys actually just trying to lure Joe out so they can try and kill him….Like one bunch of psychos against another bunch of psychos…And Ryan actually have to help Joe in some way!!

    • kavyn says:

      I really hope so, simply because Joe has gotten really stale for me this season. It feels like they revived him because he was popular.

  17. I knew Lilly was bad by her 1. surviving the attack 2. Her demeanor was too calm 3. How she “took” to Ryan 4. When she mentioned Claire and 5. She had french art in her gallery (and knew she was the mother of the twins).
    And the Mandy/Joe plot makes me sick… yet is interesting, but sick, but interesting.

  18. Sebastian says:

    What’s a theseminion? Also, how does anyone watch this? It’s crap. You’d have to be blind and deaf to not hate it, and that still wouldn’t put you anywhere towards liking it.

  19. Anna says:

    Come on guys, I think you’re being a bit too harsh now. You all knew what you were getting into after the first half of season one, you cannot be surprised that nothing really changed. Everyone and their mom (literally) is still a follower, and the FBI still sucks. A lot. But that’s just the way it is! I gotta say I’m a little proud of the FBI that they found six followers in one episode – that wouldn’t have been possible last season (even though they really wanted to get Emma and screwed that up)! Also, the music is awesome this season!

  20. Malarcus says:

    Lily as follower was obvious from the beginning. Known actors who are sole survivors of something or other are never what they seem. The number one problem I have with the show is the obligatory “One Stupid Thing per Episode” committed by Ryan. Without fail, and at some crucial moment, Ryan will do something that completely goes against any training or knowledge he should be expected to have. It drives me effing nuts. Then there’s this bit I’m watching now where she’s a half block ahead of him but magically Laguna one to two blocks on him while he’s chasing her and she’s at a moderately fast walk. There’s no way he should have lost her. Of course there’s no way he should’ve fallen for her in the first place but whatevs.

  21. Rusty says:

    After last nights show, I am done with it. Knew Lilly was one of them, surprised it took him so long to figure it out. I had high hope for the show. It started out good last season but when everyone was a follower and they all had such fantastic skills as computer super minds, ninjas, masters of disguise etc. I hung in there till the end. Knew Joe wasn’t dead. They had to keep him alive for another season. Love the two main actors Kevin and James (he was great in Rome) But they can’t keep my attention to this crappy show. Wish them well and I’ll follow the articles just to see what happens, but my DVR now has an hour free.

  22. Amy says:

    Even though I have seen some of the plot twists coming, I am still liking this show and look forward to it every week. I don’t take my tv seriously and just let myself be entertained. Plus, I am love-love-loving those crazy twins and their French sidekick!

  23. sarah says:

    I don’t think Claire is really dead. Do we know this 100%??

  24. Sue says:

    For someone who is usually turned off by serial killer material, the Following isn’t pushing all the buttons which usually make me not watch.

    But I love James Purefoy so I will watch and enjoy his performance, he is the only thing remotely scary about this show.

    I do hope Lily, the twins and that utterly annoying Gisele die long before the season ends. I thought some of the Followers in season 1 were ridiculous? Nothing compared to these four. They’re not scaring or unsettling, only annoying. For me to call out bad guys (I usually miss that), it is unfortunate.

  25. Mikael says:

    I always suspect everyone on the show to be a Follower except Hardy. I’m disappointed that Emma joined the twins, because I liked the idea of rival cults. I find it hard to believe that such a massive cult wouldn’t have factions vying to be Joe’s #1. Lily was obvious from day 1, but I don’t think it was supposed to be a surprise. Hardy staring her down was stupid. But I don’t watch the show because I’m expecting a documentary about the FBI and cults. It’s fun.

  26. tossingfrogs@yahoo.com says:

    I was thinking the twins were hunting Joe – not because they wanted to join the cult, but rather because they want to kill or study him. They’re not part of the cult. They’ve read about Joe, Ryan, and Emma and are intrigued by them. But I think they may be sinister in more of a Dexter way. Killing Ryan would have been a way of drawing Joe out…which is what they are trying to do.

  27. NancyLeeIL says:

    I’m going to say it up front even if to some it makes me an idiot…I like this show. I read just about every serial killer novel out there, so I am familiar with the genre. One of the things that is intriguing about the famous character Hannibal is the layers of the whys and hows of how he bacame who he was, I’m hoping the writers are going to unpeel a few of Joe’s layers this season. Like did Joe kill before he met Claire and put in on the back burner for Claire? Anyone else wondering, if Lily is Joe’s type since she seems very Claire-like, that maybe they had a fling way back in the day and the twins are his (they did seem to have Daddy/family issues). I guess what I am saying is pretty much in any ”thriller”, we see what the main character does not….yet. I was suspicious of Lily because she seemed to be grooming rather than befriending. But it was a surprise to me that she was the boys Mom. What did give me that odd feeling in my gut this week was what I saw as the weak link brewing in Emma and the not-Luke twin. I see the main Storm…Three leaders: Joe, Emma, Lily Will “not Luke” jump ship on Mama for Emma? I’m also wondering if Hardy’s niece is going to get involved with Weston. I know a lot of people think he’s the biggest cult follower of Joe’s..and he could be but I hope not or at least he grows to respect Hardy so much he turns on Joe. I already am guessing the end of the series. For whatever reason, Hardy has to go into witness protection and Mike tells him to get into the car and he drives to some beach town and there is Claire playing on the beach with Joey and Ryan smiles at Weston…gets out…and walks toward them. Hardy realizes that everything he has done wasn’t just obsession, he also was ultimately saving Claire and Joey. I think the series and characters need a chance to let it unravel more of who Joe is (like Hannibal) before a final decision is made on whether it was worth watching or not. It might be a diamond in the rough, Just my two cents.

  28. RS says:

    Has anyone thought that Joe might be the father of the twins?

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