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      The Following - Season 1 Review

      The Following

      The first season of Fox's serial killer TV show The Following, has come to an uninspiring and tedious close this week. Kevin Bacon is the show's incredibly cliched hero Ryan Hardy; the ex FBI agent, now a drunk, who is brought in to investigate an escaped serial killer, who he happens to have written a book on. Oh and he slept with the killer's wife. The killer in question is Joe Carroll (James Purefoy) the, again cliched 'baddie with a British accent', desperately wanting to have Hannibal Lecter's charm and The Joker's menace, whilst roping in his cult following to kill people, in the style of works by Edgar Allen Poe. Simple.

      The show's titular 'following' is ultimately its downfall. Flashbacks reveal Carroll being visited by manipulatable pledges and fans who are each given a job in his master plan; simply kidnap Carroll's own son and ex wife and all live happily ever after.

      Ultimately the writing is uninspired; the story itself doesn't have enough weight. Ryan Hardy MIGHT die every episode, but who cares, we don't relate to him at all. It seems the show's creators built up this complex network of followers to write themselves out of any situation; most new characters double cross Hardy, because they are a 'follower' and they too have a bit of serial killer in them. How convenient.

      Season 2 will need to come up with something more gripping than Hardy sieging another building, by himself, lowering his gun at every stand off, and ultimately letting the perp get away, to keep anyone's attention. Oh and the final scene twist - predictable.

      The Following wants to be a smarter, more literary, cat-and-mouse version of Dexter. It misses.

      The Following airs on Sky Atlantic, and season 1 is available on Sky Go now.