Has your heart stopped racing yet? Because seriously. What. Just. Happened?!?
“The Following” did not hold anything back on Monday (Feb. 24) night. With bad guys dying left and right, and the heroes throwing caution to the wind, it was a nonstop thrill ride that allowed everyone to bring out their true selves. For Joe, that meant ditching Lily and her “International House of Pyschopaths” (great phrase, Joe) and hitting the road with Emma and Mandy. For Lily, that meant doing anything to save her family, even betraying Joe. And for Mike, that meant beating the crap out of Luke.
It’s definitely time to start worrying about Mike (Shawn Ashmore). So far in Season 2, it’s been pretty clear that he’s still struggling with the events that happened a year ago, i.e. Debra Parker’s death. But aside from being a little more abrasive and passive aggressive than usual, he’s still been the same Mike Weston, determined to bring justice to criminals. Until “Sacrifice,” when Mike finally let his demons out, and his passive aggression became full fledged aggression.
When Mike captured Luke with Ryan and Max, he pulled no punches, and just let absolutely loose on the guy. He hit him in the head with a 2×4 — twice — punched him over and over again for saying some crude, necrophiliac things to Max, stabbed him twice as a warning, shot him twice, and beat his face into a pulp. He would have killed him with his bare hands if Max didn’t stop him before it was too late. His expression after beating Luke up was almost reminiscent of when Joe killed the reverend earlier this season: Like it was some kind of cathartic release.
Ryan and Max realized that Mike’s more messed up than they thought, but they’re stuck with him now: After going rogue, both Mike and Max lost their jobs on the force. Now they’re on the Hardy dream team. #Hardydreamteam
While this trio is definitely going to get things done efficiently now that they’re not held back by any red tape (and they all know the Joe is really still alive), Mike is definitely a loose canon. Will he go too far next time if Max isn’t there to hold him back?
Speaking of Max, there is definitely something going on between Max and Mike. Their romantic spark that viewers saw in their short interrogation scene bloomed into full-on sexual tension in this episode. As soon as Mike let Max go through the door first, their back-and-forth just clicked. And then Mike defended Max’s honor when Luke was saying some pretty gross things to her. It’s a messed-up courtship, but hey — we’re on board. Even vigilantes need some lovin’ every now and again. Ryan, time to wingman that.
The biggest loser of the night is definitely Lily. She lost another three children in just a few short hours. Joe killed one of her daughters while escaping with Emma and Mandy, Ryan killed one of her sons storming the house, and Mike hurt Luke so bad that even though the FBI has him in custody and in ICU, they’re not sure he’s going to make it.
It’s interesting that “The Following” pulled a Weasley with the twins. Definitely didn’t see that one coming. How is Mark going to deal with losing his brother and his crush (Emma)? At the end of the hour, he was the one comforting Lily while she had a breakdown realizing that she lost everything just to be betrayed by Joe. Will he continue to be her rock? Doubt it. He is a pyschopath with extreme issues, after all.
Big shout out to Agent Gina Mendez for telling Mike earlier that his suspicions of a mole in the FBI weren’t likely, and the screwups with Joe’s case was more due to the agency’s incompetence. That’s fantastically meta, seeing as how that was the biggest criticism of Season 1. Props to you, “The Following” writers. Especially seeing as how Gina’s ex is the one feeding Joe all the info he needs to stay one step ahead of the FBI.
“Sacrifice” was an extremely strong hour, and is the best episode of Season 2 yet. The whole dynamic of the show has changed, with each character in new circumstances. There’s no telling where this show is going next … and that’s just how we like it.
“The Following” airs Mondays at 9 p.m. ET on FOX.