After months of anticipation and an extraordinary viral marketing campaign, Kevin Williamson's serial killer thriller "The Following" debuted on Monday night on FOX. The dark, haunting drama brings Kevin Bacon to the small screen in his first television role, as former FBI agent Ryan Hardy. He's an alcoholic, a loner, and an expert on serial killer and cult leader Joe Carroll (James Purefoy).
Former lit professor Carroll, on death row for murdering 14 college women nearly a decade ago, has used his considerable charm and seductive charisma to prey on some weak, disturbed individuals and create his own network of devoted killers outside the prison walls.
In the pilot episode, Carroll escapes just long enough to finish the job he began nine years ago, before Hardy caught him. His idol, Edgar Allan Poe, never finished his final work, but Carroll is intent on besting him. With the help of "Billy" and "Will", two men who have been posing for years as a trustworthy gay couple, Carroll reunites with Sarah Fuller (Maggie Grace), the only victim he injured, but didn't slaughter in his Winslow bloodbath.