The Following "Whips and Regret" Review: A Few Whips, More Regrets

The Following S01E11: "Whips and Regrets"

After plunging to new depths last week with "Guilt," it's difficult not to fall into the trap of only seeing The Following's imbecilic plot points and ignoring everything else. It's difficult because, in the darkness of the show's storytelling, the writers make it hard to see anything good that's happening and, like Parker tripping over the dead SWAT bodies, they seem to have all the stupid stuff just lying around.

That being said, "Whips and Regret" leveled off to a normal level of ridiculousness, relative to last week's clown show. Yes, there was a BDSM club with an owner hellbent on turning every part of the initial interview into some soft of flogging innuendo. Sure, there was that really stupid two-thirds-o-a-Mexican-standoff. And, of course, Parker was back to being completely useless after her "let's move the mouse around a little" breakthrough last week. But it wasn't all terrible, comparatively speaking.

For instance, the writers made with their weekly knowing wink early in the episode. There seems to always be something that nods to the stupidity of the previous week or a meta-genre reference that lets us know that they know we know. Last week it was the tires being slashed on Ryan's gas-guzzler, as Parker should've done earlier in the season. This week it was Carroll bringing up that Ryan's inconsistent "drinking problem" is a character-development cliche. Because it is.

But taking Ryan back to the apartment, to where we saw him before all this started, wasn't a bad thing. Losing Joey (because Ryan's coworkers are fools) and Claire (because Claire is a damn fool) while slipping helplessly deeper into Carroll's intricate scheme hasn't been easy on a guy already burdened by a self-imposed death curse and Lindsay Lohan's elite skill of "hiding" vodka (which—why is he doing that anyway? Everyone seems to be in on him being a drunky). It would make sense for Hardy to need to regroup after so many successive failures, and falling inside the bottle is about par for the course. Parker's pep talk was a tad sappy, but she said as much, which steals my thunder for criticizing. At least she knows.

Another thing we can appreciate to come out of this episode is the obvious schism that may lead to the fall of the House of Murder. Even though most things seem to be going Carroll's way at the moment, the FBI seems to be stumbling toward the compound, and that's on Roderick. It could be easy to make Carroll the end-all of leadership in the community, particularly since he supposedly so dang charming, but complicating it with Roderick's ambition and his being constantly demeaned by Carroll's superiority means we have a situation where the house will eat itself.

Can Roderick be blamed for things that happen due to unexpected circumstances? While his plan is in a holding pattern due to Carroll not giving the word, can't we assume that some of these follies could be prevented if the missions were being conducted in a flurry of "the plan," or at least escalating so there aren't a bunch idle murderers in the house? You get the feeling that Roderick is right about needing to move forward and that Carroll is putting his self-interest before the grander scheme. It's not surprising. That's just the way it is. And I hope Roderick leads an uprising.

But with that said, even with this week's narrative improvements, there were plenty of pitfalls.

The detectives on Law and Order: SVU always seem to run into proprietors of shady and/or fringe establishments who insist on being the stereotype of that place. How many times have you seen Benson and Stabler show up in a swingers club or a sex dungeon only to be asked to play or have the manager flirt with one or both of them? I know that cooperation is a boring thing to portray (and, generally, it's elided when a store owner does comply) but can't these people turn it off for a few minutes while dealing with some real-world issues?

There was a hint of that with Haley Mercury, owner of Whips and Regrets, from the "oh honey" face she gave Parker after Parker had the gall, the mainstream-prude-puritan nerve, to suggest that Haley and Vince had dated to the rundown of the codeword/safeword. I give credit that she wasn't always like those cheesy club owners on Law and Order, that, at some points, she was respectful and professional, but that only made the eyerolling moments that much more stark.

More eyerolling occurred when Claire sat down to dinner with Joe. I can't fault Natalie Zea for any of it, but the demands to see her son just fell flat and read silly to me. You can rationalize that any mother would be obsessed with getting her child back from a convicted madman, but—and maybe this is my general distaste for Claire—she sounded ridiculous making demands and then trying to seduce him and then trying to storm out of the room. Almost as stupid as Carroll trying to go in for the kiss when she was on her way out. No means no, Joe. But nice try? No, it wasn't even a nice try.

Then, in an odd turn, Carroll turned the boy over to his mother despite saying just a few minutes earlier that the kiddo was the only trump card he had. The play seems to be that, as long as he threatens his wife, she can't see his softer side. So by surrendering Joey to Claire, he was demonstrating that he has a heart beating under that monomaniacal need to kill (though he hasn't really killed anyone since being out of jail except Sad Charlie). Meanwhile, Hardy's essentially been on a spree.

The reason I bring this up is that, yes, it can seem like this is a play for sympathy from the audience, and a story-motivated ploy to win Claire over. But to me, and I would have to suspect a suspicious and careful character like Carroll would come to this conclusion, it felt like, as soon as Joey and Claire were reunited, mother and son would bond over the history of violence committed by Father and, by their forces combined, escape the Murder House. Then I realized that, even though Joey might just have the wit to do it, Claire is basically the wet blanket of good ideas so they're going to be there forever.

But none of that awkward dinner compared to the Big Stupid of the night.

When you're someone who's charged to uphold the law, something you can't really do is sacrifice, for all intents and purposes, an innocent civilian just because there's a good chance she'll get kidnapped and taken back to some murderer's lair. You can't just offer people up as bait and not at least tell them about it first. And yet, this was Hardy when faced with such a situation:

Hardy: Let's let this play out.
Parker: He just shoved her against a car and she's screaming "red."
Hardy: Still fine. She's fine.
Parker: And now he's pulled a gun. She's saying "red" in sign language.
Hardy: He won't shoot her.
Parker: Now he's pantsed her and he's making her do a chicken dance. She's clucking "red."
Hardy: She's a tough kid. She'll make it.
Parker: Now she's stuffed in the back seat and being driven away to a secret location full of, in the best case scenario, a small army of bloodthirsty psychopaths.
Hardy: Fingers crossed.
Parker: Well, obviously, you're the boss. Who am I to say boo?

And scene. Basically, they just facilitated the traumatization of an innocent young woman. We're just going to let that happen. And why isn't Parker standing up to Ryan by saying that's against protocol/human decency and letting the guys with guns take him down? Is she so ineffectual a leader that she can't even stand firm against a guy with a bum ticker? Granted, he's pretty willing to shoot anything that moves a little funny. But still.

Then, while listening to the world's strongest wire (because not even the close-range walkies worked down in the bowels of the armory later), Ryan continued to wait. They couldn't see her. They weren't close enough to help her if she was in trouble. But they sat in the car. I'm not sure what Ryan was waiting for here. He knew they were't near Carroll (Carroll isn't going to live in a bunker). But it didn't matter because she as discovered for cooperating with the FBI and then got worked over before being handed to the authorities as an obstacle impeding them from stopping his getaway. As if the FBI would be able to stop one man.

After that it was a nearly indiscernible pile of failures as agents and SWAT wandered the dark halls of the armory by themselves, allowed more bodies to pile up, but got the big win of uncovering the cult's "training" facility. It was a big enough success that Roderick got a smack to the face.

I'm trying not to be too negative while managing my expectations. But the show keeps baiting us. "Whips and Regret" (which I'm really hoping isn't a misguided literary reference to whips and bridles from Purgatorio) wasn't as puerile as last week's circus. Just more of what we've come to expect from The Following: slivers of well-intentioned plot surrounded by crutches, hyperbole, and one man with an itchy trigger finger.


NOTES

— It's a seriously itchy trigger finger. Let's do a quick body count. Hardy dropped the five red shirts at Fake Fight Club, Rick went down after a couple blasts. Hank was a quick decision and a surprisingly easy kill. And then, presumably, there was Marsden, the officer protecting Emma. I don't think that Ryan killed anyone at Ty's house, so these two new bodies make 10. Carroll, in his career, is accused of killing 14, which put him in the slammer. Roderick admitted to killing two of those girls, so that takes Carroll down to 12. Then he also killed Sarah Fuller (finishing the job) and poor, stupid Charlie in an act of seppuku. Based on the information we have so far, Carroll is up to 14. The score is 10-14. Help me with my math if I'm off. Update: I forgot about Warren, Carroll's lawyer. Carroll's score is 15. Thanks, Rebu2007!

— There are people being whipped and regretted that early in the morning? How do they support their bondage habits?

— Is part of killer training becoming a low talker? When Jacob was talking with Claire in the bedroom, I thought he was going to ask her to wear a pirate shirt.

— Why does Molly have such a hard-on to kill Ryan herself? Just to impress Carroll? Because Molly is actually Jenny's twin sister and is out to get revenge on everyone she holds dear through bullying and subterfuge and OMG IT'S GROWN UP PRETTY LITTLE LIARS.

— Obligatory Lost reference: Meal with a frightening killer. Killer picks the dress. Woman in question is a prisoner. Ben and Kate having breakfast? Come on, son.

Comments (46)
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-RED you jackass MOTHER FUDGIN REDDDDDDDDDDDD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ahem, pardon me. That, that right there had me seeing red while I was watching it. Are you kidding me? Are they for real? Scratch that, I know they are, which is part of the reason why I want to choke my television while watching the show, and also while I still feel compelled to watch it anyway, because this show is a comedy right? Like a really dark, twisted comedy? Because that's how I watch it. Or like a cheesy horror film...yeah, that. It's not quite a hate watching like with Revolution, but it's maybe a cousin to that? I don't know. Anyhoo, that part pissed me off this week. Who does that? It's a good thing she didn't end up dead. I mean really? and they just dismissed it like it was nothing, and maybe to them it wasn't, and I was just too far gone with that one.
-And then there is Claire. Why is this woman a catch? she's like the protagonist in most of those teenage para-romance novels where all the guys love her and she doesn't know that all the guys love her, and she doesn't understand why all the guys lover her, and we don't understand either because as a character she basically sucks, and you spent equal parts wanting to smack her repeatedly and shake her repeatedly because...my goodness a character should never be so stupid or pathetic or stupid, mostly stupid. Claire is that. Times infinity. So if I were Ryan I would have gave her a Scotch on the rocks salute and found something interesting to watch on the tube. Where is his incentive to save a dumb broad who doesn't act as though she wants to be saved? Whatever. God speed. May little Joey find a moment to run as fast as his little legs can carry him, and may he not end up dumb like his mother or a psychopath like his father. God speed Joey. May the force that is common sense be with you, dear little soul.
-Oh Claire you ignorant dolt. I agree about her asking for her son etc. Like she was all over the place. Duh woman! This is a psychologically mindgame. You gotta slow play this. You aren't just going to get in and out of this within seconds. This is going to take some time. So for the love of God, woman, invest and use the sense that God gave a gnat! Slow playing it. Slow playing it. Ideally, he's banking on Stockholm Syndrome. Give him freaking Stockholm syndrome in its stages, you don't try seducing the guy after demanding to see your son, threatening him, and not hiding your disgust, because gee, by golly, he probably won't believe it! Imagine that! Claire better invest in playing a mind game with this man for the next couple of months or until the Feds get to her to rescue her (ROFL) or she formulates a reasonable plan to escape at the most opportune time (LMAO!).
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Still no closer to a second season for me and I doubt the next 3 weeks will change that.
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Imagine what it would be like if this show's FBI and 24's CTU would switching places -> in 24, America would be destroyed by the end of day 1 because of the authorities' incompetence and The Following would end after episode one because Jack Bauer would have finished the job in no-time...
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Correct me if I'm wrong but, hadn't the FBI (finally) reviewed the viedotapes of the people who had visited Carroll in jail a few episodes ago? And, didn't they see Molly??
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Technically, Hardy is not FBI, he is a consultant; also, he may not have seen the tapes, and all those people are using fake names, either when they go to see Carroll, or in their respective ruses. Also, its The Following, the FBI are idiots.
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The "dinner with a killer" scene also brings to mind Pirates of the Caribbean.
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This show would be much more enjoyable if not all the good guys were total morons, constantly making the dumbest decisions…
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The more I see of the show the more I love it.
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Another episode with highly trained tactical agents getting split up and going it alone. This time in an armory full of guns, no lighting and essentially a maze of tunnels.
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the murders of the Texas prosecutors by the Aryan Brotherhood the last month made me think that Joe's Plan could be that each of the Followers would kill their own Prosecutor/Law Enforcement nemesis all on the same day. that would blow the identities of all the Followers, but I don't think they care. It certainly fits the 'write your own story as part of a larger story' theme
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LOL @Vicky ... Damn I can't stand Claire either. God, she's so annoying. They spend 10 episodes protecting that woman. Only for her to voluntarily go to Carrol .. *take me to my son*. 'I want to see my son*. Yes, we get it, woman. Now just please die ..

PS I never want to be an informant for the FBI. They'll just let me be kidnapped and possibly killed and make me wear a 1980's style wire, which looked at least a foot long.
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The best part of the show is Ryan shooting people---they all deserved to die and he saved the taxpayers money that can be spent training FBI agents. I realize one person shouldn't be judge-jury-executioner but if he didn't shoot them then these murderers would have gotten away. Plus if the show has all government agencies as bumbling fools then we need people like Ryan to take the law into their own hands.

Both Ryan and Joe are idiots for loving Claire. I want her to die but then I'm scared she will end up on Justified full time.

Roderick is interesting. I want him to kill Joe but I know that won't happen. I'm sure Joe would of "ok'd" the run but since it went wrong it is now Roderick's fault--total scapegoat. Roderick comes off as a smart sociopath but he is a follower and not a leader (unless he kills Joe). He questions Joe's decisions and so I don't think he has long left on the show. He really needs to let his sociopath loose on Joe who comes off as the dreamy or delusional sociopath.
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In Hardy's death count what about 5 followers when they are trying to save charlie and Louise the blonde follower. That would make Hardy's count 15. And Joe also killed his Lawyer so that would bring his count to 15. SO I think they are tied.
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Hardy letting Haley get kidnapped wasn't as bad as *Parker* letting Haley get kidnapped. He's just a consultant. She's the FBI agent in charge of that specific operation. She could get fired or something. But I suppose that if they didn't fire her after the farm house incident, they're not ever going to do it.
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Whips and Regrets..(Sounds like this shows motto?!) had 3 things I enjoyed last night(rare for this show) (1) The scenes in the tunnels had a bit of bite.*If the psychos only had faked like they were prisoners until they got out of the fight club* (2) Jacob will be the definition of Kray Kray whren this is over (3)Roderick officially now the wild card.. after last weeks SLOG...I felt improvement this week..(fingers crossed for the future)
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You forgot about the lady lawyer that Joe killed after she helped him escape.
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You're right! Hardy 10-15 Carroll .
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I generally like this show, because I don't expect it to be as good as cable shows. Just watch it for what it is, a bit of mindless gore. However the one thing that annoyed me last night was the wire that they gave that girl. Here, wear a wire. By the way, it is literally a wire, so it can easily be discovered. So stupid.
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what gore?
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I was thinking during that episode and the last one that this is actually a great show for Kevin Bacon and James Purefoy to star in, because it showcases their respective actor's skills brilliantly.You know the song's line,"if I can make it here, I can make it anywhere" from "New York, New York"; well it applies here.
So, apparently, Carroll wants to unite as many serial killers out there into some kind of frat for psychos and is providing them with a curriculum in serial murder. Since no university would go for such a thing ( gee why not with all the other useless diplomas given out there), he has decided he's going to do it himself.Come and join, we're going to teach you all there is to know about serial murder and mayhem.
Obviously, someone out there is bankrolling the. project. I mean even if the officers under Roderick are so incompetent not to have noticed anything weird, the money trail would have led the FBI to them sooner than later. The castle they are staying in had to be paid someway, and cash is excluded at this level of financing. The cars had to be bought and the gas to make them run, the electricity, phone and internet bills etc...... would have to be legal to some extent not to bring about the curiosity of the firms which provides them.
Other than that, the odds between Carroll and Roderick is more serious than one would expect and we had been told way earlier that the latter had brought in a lot of the followers; and we have to assume that they would be loyal to him to at least the extent that they would question the rift.
One has to realize that Carroll is the very illustration of the control freak taken to its extreme. It would be a mistake to see the killing as his main character; it is a byline of what he is. He has managed to make everyone in Ryan's and Claire's lives one of his followers. Charlie was shown as her follower to have extensively stalked her and Molly was sent as Ryan's "lover" and eventual executioner.No one should be surprised that he would be a peeping tom on Molly's and Ryan's intercourse.

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After being a faithful follower for the entire series, I literally slapped my forehead last night when Ryan sat in his car and let a girl who trusted him with her life be kidnapped by a cult member so he could possibly get a good lead on Carroll and the rest of the cult which only ended up getting a lot of people killed, good guys and bad guys. But the even dumber part is that Parker let him! She's supposed to be the responsible one since she's the official FBI agent and everything, but apparently her "need" of Ryan extends beyond in a professional capacity. However, I did love Carroll calling up Ryan to see how his morning was going. And then after Ryan hung up on him, Carroll just called right back like nothing ever happened.
Viva la Revolucion de Roderick! He's getting to the point of not taking anyone's crap anymore, even Carroll's.
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the show gets better and better. Stop the hate!!!!
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"As if the FBI would be able to stop one man" hehe. the guy making the `frightening` noise in the sn m club behinds the barred window was hilarious, at times it felt like a real life episode of the simpsons.
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I think I have finally figured out the secret of the show. Unbeknownst to everyone. Hardy went to Carroll in prison. They came to an agreement and a gentlemen's wager. They wanted to see which of their side they could rack up the most deaths and whose side was dumber. Hardy goes after the psychos, Carroll goes after the Feds. And he who racks up the most kills gets Claire.

But seriously, I think Carroll has a man crush on Hardy. Because watching Hardy and Molly get it on. Was a whole new level, and his obsession and love might not just be for Claire and Joey.

The psychology is starting to fray. And putting all of those personalities in the house is going to start to be problematic. The idea that they are a cult is starting to be separated out as well. Each person has a desire to kill for their own reason. And Molly, being a "mercy" killer isn't going to just jump over to killing Hardy. However, the tension between all of them as Roderick is starting to show is going to come to a boiling point. The Feds might be inept, but Carroll has left a huge backdoor open for his own people to cause him harm.

I also can't wait for Claire vs Emma. That actually is going to be fun.
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I agree Carroll watching Hardy have sex, was very obsessive
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Something pretty cool I noticed though, was when the flogging informant, hehe, told psycho paranoid dude, "If you really care about me, then you'll let me go"

And paranoid psycho says, almost confused or baffled by the question, "No, that doesn't make any sense. If you love someone, you never let them go."

Joe Carroll's brainwashing philosophy learned during the education phase of this "training" they got going on? OR did Joe Carroll align himself with an, already established, group of survivalist militants to help him accomplish his goals, as long as he helps (Roderick) accomplish his goals, which I'm guessing is domestic terrorism, which Joe probably has no interest in, and will kill Roderick to consolidate his power over the recruits that Roderick did all the hard work for. More devious deception have taken place in real life, for example Cesare Borgia's methods of compelling Romagna to unite with Italy by sending a sadistic general to subjugate them by any means necessary, which he did and would have caused Cesare to become "odious" and hated by the denizens of Romagna, so he publicly condemned the general that he intentionally chose for the mission and executed him in public as well, both instilling fear and a sense of manipulated admiration, or adulation, by the people for exacting justice for the people by killing the gut for doing what he told him to do.. Very elaborate, very cunning, very brilliant and effective. It was impressive enough to persuade Niccolo Machiavelli to center his book, or Treatise, "The Prince" around Cesare's methods of attaining and sustaining power in the midst of chaos, since it was constant civil war during this time (1497) Renaissance Italy, and if his name wasn't synonymous with Satin in most of Italy, he'd be a person known for doing what had to be done to survive in a world where he was hated for simply being part of an already hated and envied family. He protected his family, with ruthless savagery.. Thanks for reading.. I was able to burn up 30 minutes of my work day!!! Awesome!! And hopefully you enjoyed this historical tale of duplicity, treachery, cunning, deceit, and corruption with lecherous depravity!
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Ya, I can see the points everyone is making about the ridiculousness of the show, but James Purefoy and Kevin Bacon are doing amazing jobs with what they have to work with. Joe Carroll would be a terrifying person when you saw his real side, and as far as the, "brilliant genius mastermind manipulative charming psychopathic killer with a monomaniacal need to kill" Purefoy is doing a great job since he could easily fall victim to critics as rehashing Hannibal Lector or any of the several rip offs of fictitious psychopaths. But people like him do exist, 10% of the population based on the only studies they've been able to conduct, BUT a plan this elaborate flaws in that there are way too many contingencies to have secondary and tertiary solutions for... On the other hand, I find it very easy to enjoy the show when I turn the skeptical critic part of me off and enjoy it as a fantasy that could be realistically attempted, but idealistically executed to this extreme. But, without seeing what all else is involved and who all else it doing what for whichever reason, the gradation of ridiculousness is still uncertain, but there is certainly a level of ridiculousness, but it doesn't necessarily have to be ridiculed if you enjoy it, even it you have to pretend your IQ is about 20 points lower than it is, which I think the writers are kind of hoping that we do.
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Are Hardy and Parker supposed to be cheap knockoffs of Jack Bauer and Renee Walker? Walker seemed to admire Jack which made her too smart for the FBI, Parker is just plain dumb which makes her right at home.
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I too thought of Jack Bauer in this episode, because risking that woman's life in an attempt to save many is something he would totally do. And he's also not reluctant to pull the trigger. But Parker didn't make me think of Renee. I just thought that it was a good thing that she was killed off from Person of Interest before we saw this nonsense. It would have been impossible to see her as a badass spy/assassin if we had seen The Following first.
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We were big fans in the beginning, but lately the following seems to be faltering.

http://satinthenewsavior.wordpress.com/2013/04/02/follow-the-following-falter/
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This is seriously the most inept FBI ever portrayed on television. I feel bad for every one of them. Hey let's walk into this dark underground vault, hey let's send this girl in with a wire and stay a half mile away from her, hey let's split up in dark rooms, hey let's let these people we don't know out of these cells.... They ALL deserve to die!
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So they make it a point for us to know that the character - kidnapper/IT guy - was extremely paranoid. Yet he misses the 70yr old guy in the plaid shirt at the bar in the S/M club? This show..... That old FBI dude is in on every operation! They wanted Lance Reddick and instead got his dad to play that part and it is perfect. It was great, he was sticking out in that scene like a sore thumb. Loved how the villian knocked on every door and gave a shout out to the club patrons as he went down the hall to get to the server room. Did he just run into that club thinking, "Screw low profile!"

Loved when they were questioning the woman who runs the S/M club, before putting her life in peril - they see bomb components 2 ft away from her computer and they just buy the - "I have no idea what that is about. Not my s*@t" excuse. How plot convenient that she was being honest and the FBI believed her.

OK - so they follow dude to the military bunker and don't assess and cover the exits before sending in every available agent. There couldn't have been that many exits to cover - they knew where he was going and how he was going to get back to his car. Dumb da dumb dumb. Cue BENNY HILL MUSIC.

The actor playing "Roderick" is train-wreck bad. Is it that the character is bi-polar or that the actor just has no idea where to go with any scene he is in and the director just lets him go wherever he wants?

Jacob stretching his passive agressive muscles in this episode. 'Joe said if I keep that face pretty I can beats ya all I want!!!' Just randomly flipping his and Emma's personalities may have been a stroke of genius. Nobody is putting Jacob in a corner anymore. He's menacing now and it is hilarious.

Still the best unintentional comedy on television.
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There's probably more 70-year old guys in plaid shirts at BDSM clubs than you might think...

What confuses me is the organizational structure here. Turner is a US Marshal, but he seems to be employing SWAT guys, who don't belong to... anyone specifically. But then they call in the FBI. Yes, there are joint operations, but I tend to get a headache trying to work out who is working for who is in charge at ny given moment of an ongonig investigation.
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Thats right old guy is Federal Marshall not FBI. So he is exactly who IT guy should be worried most about because he is a fugitive. But unfortunately Turner couldn't even keep Claire from busting out of the house before. Why exactly would he still be around?
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Ryan should investigate every person he met since he caught Joe. Stupid, he isn't thinking in big picture.
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Lone Wolf's, I mean Ryan's big stupid was still more manageable than the rest of the FBI/Cult put together, hell, I could've swore they borrowed Andrea off the Walking Dead the way Parker was tripping over things. Part of my problem was Lone Wolf, er, Ryan had to know that the bad guy wasn't going to lead them back to Joe, he didn't seem that eager to go home to a grumpy Roderick (who is probably still sad his girlfriend got iced by Lone Wolf, dammit, I mean Ryan).

Also, if the Cult is full of eager to please types, where did they all go, did the budget only have enough to get extras to show up for the big Welcome Home Joe scene and then "oops, forgot we gave it all to the writers, sorry, maybe next season the house will look full again."

As for the Poe theme, was that just a one time gig, the website aside, or will they try to play that card again? What would be next, Lovecraft?

Oh well, at least Ryan's making sure he's getting his killing quota in, I think he's getting close to Jack Bauer's record from all the seasons combined of 24, next stop, Rambo!
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Also, the first screen shot should be something along the lines of "Okay, today's lesson, how to shoot someone in five seconds or less of meeting them."
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Again this week i'm rooting for Joe - he so suave

But firstly "There are people being whipped and regretted that early in the morning? How do they support their bondage habits?" - shift workers, duh. i think its great that people on shift work can support their hobbies straight from work

So to recap Ryan this week - woke up drunk, almost got an informer killed (and seemed oblivious to the fact that his inaction may get her killed), killed a few people who had been going through deprivation training and was hooking up with his ex by the end of the episode( what?Caire who?)

Meanwhile in Awsome Joe Manor - Joe gets his family back,
he has moulded Jacob out of wimp form into a trusted lieutenant
Is wisely going over THE PLAN!!!!!! while Hot Rod wants to charge ahead (dumbass)
Has tried to have a reconciliation dinner with his ex
Re united a mother and son
And put Roderick in his place WITH A BOOK!!!
He ended his day watching Ryans shoddy amateur sex tape with a glass of wine - he took no pleasure from this. It was merely so he could help Ryan with his technique. The next episode will start with a phone call from Joe with some hints and tips.

So...
Ryan - drunk, bad cop, killer, sexually promiscuous, bad in bed

Joe Carroll - family man,team leader, strategist, party planner, family therapist, bad ass librarian, sex therapist and hopefully your next President of the United States!!!

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I'm not sure Jacob can be trusted. Carroll told him to work with Emma, and he's really not... Not a good idea to tell a psycho to bury the hatchet with a co-worker.
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We all have co workers we dont get along with. Its a testament to Joe's awesomeness and managerial abilities that Jacob is willing to stay and work with Emma in any capacity.
And Jacob may be Joe's actual hatchet man when corporate restructuring happens - Emma and Roderick may lose their positions after their performance reviews

Joe Carroll - family man,team leader, strategist, party planner, family therapist, bad ass librarian, sex therapist, corporate giant and hopefully your next President of the United States!!!
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I don't think anyone in the FBI has killed anyone at all. Parker punched the guy instead of shooting. As far as the episode, it was good. However, the dumbest thing was not just putting a GPS tracker in Vince's car and following him to the compound. There is no need to put a wire on the poor girl.
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Yeah, what the heck was the point of the SWAT guys searching Vince's car while he was inside the club? "Wasn't my left rear door locked and my sunscreen visor up when I left my car two minutes ago...?"
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Ya, Hardy left the girl dangling for too long, and the fact that a paranoid psycho didn't think it was weird that she was saying "red" in every way she could think of, but instead wanted to take her to the training facility, which in fact DID lead Hardy and Idiot to the facility, but it wasn't Jack Bauer type Machiavellian style that he used, more like extremely lucky it got them somewhere, and even more lucky he didn't kill her, and the reason he didn't kill her was actually brilliant... she doesn't know anything more than the FBI knows now so they don't need her but they have to tend to her safety, rather than saying, "She's dead!" and moving on...
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Vince's plan would have made more sense if he had stabbed her in the gut or something. Since he didn't really do anything to her other than that punch, they didn't have to spend any significant amount of time helping her.
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Ya, very true... that didn't cross my mind... with his knowledge, he could have severed a main artery giving the FBI a short window of time to help her, but you're right, all they had to do was remove some duct tape..
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