• Network:
  • Series Premiere Date: Jan 21, 2013
Season #: 1, 2, 3
Metascore
62

Generally favorable reviews - based on 35 Critics What's this?

User Score
5.8

Mixed or average reviews- based on 399 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Retired FBI agent Ryan Hardy (Kevin Bacon) is pulled back into service to find escaped serial killer Joe Carroll (James Purefoy).
  • Genre(s): Drama, Action & Adventure, Suspense
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 35
  2. Negative: 4 out of 35
  1. Reviewed by: Robert Bianco
    Jan 21, 2013
    88
    Some plot twists seem implausible at best, others are overdone or gratuitous. But some implausibility comes with the horror/suspense genre, and there's no question Williamson has mastered it--just as there's no question that the match of wills between the wounded Bacon and malevolent Purefoy is exceedingly well played.
  2. Reviewed by: David Hinckley
    Jan 21, 2013
    80
    If you can make it through Monday's first episode of Fox's much-anticipated new suspense drama 'The Following,' you have some intense, but high-quality, television ahead.
  3. Reviewed by: Curt Wagner
    Jan 21, 2013
    75
    [Purefoy's and Bacon's] performances--and scenes that focus on Carroll's killer minions that I won't talk about lest I spoil things for readers--are the strongest parts of the series and overshadow the weaknesses. Those include numerous plot holes and some sketchy logic, plus Williamson's annoying habit of beating us over the head with the Poe references.
  4. Reviewed by: Ed Bark
    Jan 18, 2013
    67
    This is a genuinely scary and unsettling series.
  5. 60
    Nothing in this pilot promises how fascinating the show will ultimately become, and unfortunately, the show is more efficient than truly good. ... The first four episodes contain no aesthetically pleasing shots or sequences, just tedious coverage of talk and action, and too many of its 'shocking' moments are dependent on visual/aural shortcuts. ... Nevertheless, The Following fascinates, thanks to soulful lead performances by Bacon and Justified's Natalie Zea (as Carroll's ex-wife) and the nervy way it develops and sustains its central flourish.
  6. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    Jan 18, 2013
    58
    The Following is a bummer of significant proportions. Not that it's bad--it's not--but it's bleak, sordid, blood-spattered and creepy (though not necessarily always "creepy" in a good way, like "The Walking Dead").
  7. Reviewed by: Hank Stuever
    Jan 21, 2013
    10
    Despite its dour atmospherics and some attempts at higher-caliber acting from Kevin Bacon and a large ensemble cast, The Following is a trite, gratuitously violent exercise in still more stylishly imagined American horror stories. It is filled with melodramatic sleuthing that you've seen over and over. Enough is enough, isn't it?

See all 35 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 56 out of 153
  2. Negative: 79 out of 153
  1. Mar 1, 2013
    10
    Great Show, completely under rated. I don't understand a lot of the negative reviews...Are we watching the same show?? Fast paced, actionGreat Show, completely under rated. I don't understand a lot of the negative reviews...Are we watching the same show?? Fast paced, action packed and full of twists. I think the cast is great, Kevin Bacon was a great choice as a lead and James Purefoy nails the intellectual psychopath down to a tee. I think people are much to quick to write of shows before they've even had a chance to bloom. As i said, i don't understand all the negative reviews. Maybe it's just the "twilight" generation, so used to mediocrity when they see something with some actual merit they automatically write it off. Expand
  2. Mar 26, 2013
    9
    I LOVE THIS SHOW!!!! Every episode I'm left with my mouth to the floor. I'm obsessed with this show!!!! It's right up there with the walkingI LOVE THIS SHOW!!!! Every episode I'm left with my mouth to the floor. I'm obsessed with this show!!!! It's right up there with the walking dead, true blood & board walk empire. Please don't ever get rid of this show!!! Expand
  3. Apr 11, 2013
    8
    like a certain vaughan 1138 ,i find "the following" more than interesting!!! Not perfectlike a certain vaughan 1138 ,i find "the following" more than interesting!!! Not perfect of course but what is i can't believe what i am reading about this show ,seen by tv buffs or teenagers, as "unrealistic" .the same people that give good score to "the arrow" or any other "kid writen ,poorly played ,violent show" It 's almost like nobody seems to remembers,for example ,that the Sopranos were real /unreal, poetic logical but with a rythme and strong scenes vivid, full of life on a human level .
    And, by the way, stop saying that you know anything about what an F B I agent should or shouldn't' do, taking examples with jack bauer or saying you know what killers should do ,
    stop doubting a killer could be inspiring people ,I for example may be the first frenchman to have seen Manhunter in 1986 in the U-S :ALMOST THIRTY YEARS OF SERIAL KILLER LATER ,YOU DOUBT people are fascinated (tell this to the women who want to marry a killer in prison (and thePOE's masks are scary because people kill, with them on) ;

    The Following is a writer's invention mixed with great actors;, close to the clock timeline,and the plot is strongly but reasonably shown ;
    This show may in fact, reflect our occidental future, when people through the Net will be bored so much with bad TV shows that they shall start a whole new kind of "game"(,"the most dangerous one" dedicated to the serial killer buff in his living room) killing people"....... with followers.......!
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  4. Mar 5, 2013
    3
    How stupid naive do the writers think people are Nobody would do the things shown in this series. Common sense is totally missing by all lawHow stupid naive do the writers think people are Nobody would do the things shown in this series. Common sense is totally missing by all law enforcement personnel. I find myself embarrassed for the characters actions at myself for watching this long. Expand
  5. Apr 24, 2013
    2
    Bacon works as hard as he can to save this show, but ultimately the writers are to blame. It moves from one clunky, contrived twist to theBacon works as hard as he can to save this show, but ultimately the writers are to blame. It moves from one clunky, contrived twist to the next, constantly insulting the viewers’ intelligence. Do they seriously expect us to believe that the FBI, especially post-911, would operate with such ineptitude?

    And it seems that every episode was written with the aim of engineering a scene where one or two of the show’s good guys end up on their own in the dark, being stalked by some random knife-wielding maniac. You can probably glean a small amount of entertainment, as I have, from approaching the show as a comedy.
    Expand
  6. Apr 10, 2013
    1
    I gave the show an honest chance but it's just too ridiculous. As others have mentioned the FBI agents in the show are ridiculously foolish,I gave the show an honest chance but it's just too ridiculous. As others have mentioned the FBI agents in the show are ridiculously foolish, and as someone involved in law enforcement I can see all the procedural mistakes that really shouldn't be made. Basically for Carroll and his cult to succeed it requires everyone working for the FBI to be dumb. Plus I'm not seeing exactly what it is about Carroll that has caused so many people to join his cult of killers. Sure, James Purefoy is a charismatic actor and one I normally like, but there is nothing about his character that is so compelling that it seems realistic for all these people to suddenly go "Hey, I think I'll kill people now for him." It just feels like the writers of the show are so impressed with their villain that they've written everything to automatically work for him, instead of really thinking through their premise to make it plausible. In other words, the whole thing is filled with plot holes that are too noticeable for me to be able to enjoy the show, and a villain who wins simply because he's the villain and that's what the writers want. Expand
  7. May 7, 2014
    0
    ADHD TV. With the series "24" started it all. Series where each second / minute a new surprising twist occurs.

    It is believed "X" as an
    ADHD TV. With the series "24" started it all. Series where each second / minute a new surprising twist occurs.

    It is believed "X" as an accomplice. But it is not. Not yet. Later maybe, but think about it then again different. At the end she turns he / she might still by, or is the / the smartest, the even pulling the strings.
    Anything can happen. Every moment. Just horrible. Unbearable illogical.
    Example: The poor kidnapped child would be totally stupid already, not to remember what happened. Alone dese fact is unreasonable for the spectator.

    Kevon Bacon overtakes my opinion the same fate as Christopher Lambert. A good movie (Lambert: Highlander 1) in the filmography, the rest then scrap. Which was actually the only good movie with Kevin Bacon? It does not matter.

    The Following is outstanding bad. Can be useful in the Film Academy, as a cautionary example of how not to do it.
    Expand

See all 153 User Reviews

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