What happens when a pretty convincing Hannibal Lecter impersonation crosses roads with Kevin Bacon attempting to be guilty and angry at the same time? “The Following.” This is an unfairly denigrating way to start a review but if you’ve seen the first two episodes of the new FOX drama, you know I’m in the right ballpark.

The Following

“Chapter Two”

The key is playing to your strengths, focusing on the two leading men whose performances add volatility to an otherwise-straightforward plotline.

“Chapter Two” didn’t do that. Instead, we get spoon-fed some ridiculously cheesy background info about the members of the cult Dr. Joe Carroll put together while in the clink. Don’t get me wrong — the series is called “The Following” for a reason. All of the mystique surrounding Carroll’s superhuman ability to convince sane individuals to start gouging out eyes needs to be addressed. The cultists need to be further developed as stand-alone characters.

Having Jordy jump out of the ceiling is not the way. Yes, the creepy Edgar Allen Poe masks finally make an appearance, but, like the rest of the episode, elicit more laughs than shrieks.

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