Serial killer Joe Carroll (played by James Purefoy) has escaped from death row. Carroll is a dangerous man who killed fourteen young women who were students at the Virginia college where he taught English Literature. Desperate, the FBI asks former agent Ryan Hardy (played by Kevin Bacon) to help them on the case. Hardy has secluded himself since working on the case involving the capture of Carroll in 2003. They have asked him because Hardy knows everything there is to know about Carroll and is probably the only one who is his intellectual equal. The problem is that Hardy is a shell of the man he used to be as he was injured both mentally and physically while working on the Carroll case. Hardy has not worked in the field in a long time. This opportunity offers him a chance at redemption.
Episode 1: Pilot: Infamous serial killer Joe Carroll has escaped from prison and the FBI asks former agent Ryan Hardy to consult on the case. Ryan soon finds out that Carroll has enlisted a group of followers to help him out.
Episode 2: Chapter Two: The search for Carroll’s missing son is stepped up. Special Agent Debra Parker, an expert in alternative religions, joins the team.
Episode 3: The Poet’s Fire: Flashbacks show us how Ryan and Carroll first met. Carroll sends new follower, Rick Kester (played by Michael Drayer), on a mission.
Episode 4: Mad Love: Flashbacks shows us Ryan and Claire’s (played by Natalie Zea) relationship. Maggie (played by Virginia Kull) goes after Ryan.
Episode 5: The Siege: Emma (played by Valorie Curry), Paul (played by Adan Canto) and Jacob (played by Nico Tortorella) find out that the FBI are on to them and prepare to move. Carroll gets his former lawyer (played by Renée Elise Goldsberry) to deliver a message on his behalf.
Episode 6: The Fall: Ryan attempts to turn Emma, Jacob and Paul against one another. Emma makes a decision that affects the other two.
Episode 7: Let Me Go: Ryan becomes suspicious when Carroll arranges for his transfer to a different facility. Emma and Joey (played by Kyle Catlett) meet another of Roderick’s men.
Episode 8: Welcome Home: After Carroll’s escape the FBI bring in a new agent to direct the hunt for him. Carroll meets up with one of his followers.
Episode 9: Love Hurts: Carroll turns to someone unexpected to try to help locate Claire. Ryan and Parker attempt to go around Nick (played by Mike Colter) to try and find out who organized the shooting of Mike (played by Shawn Ashmore).
Episode 10: Guilt: Ryan tries to rescue Claire. He turns to someone from his past for help.
Episode 11: Whips and Regret: Carroll’s people get to Claire and kidnap her. Claire has to know come to terms with her new life.
Episode 12: The Curse: The FBI gets close to a follower who might lead them to Carroll. Mike, recovered from his injuries, returns to duty.
Episode 13: Havenport: Roderick (played by Warren Kole) goes out on his own and takes Joey as his bargaining chip. After he is captured Ryan tries to gain his trust to find out where Joey is.
Episode 14: The End is Near: Ryan and the team ready themselves to raid the manor. Carroll finds out their plan and sends his followers out as a distraction to conceal his escape.
Episode 15: The Final Chapter: Ryan attempts to put a spoke in the wheels of Carroll’s plans. Carroll takes Claire somewhere special for their final rendez-vous.
Special Features: From a Dark Place: Maximum Episode Mode of Extended Pilot, The Thrill of Horror: The Creator Behind The Following, The Followers’ Den, The Cult of Joe Carroll: Inside the Followers, The Following Production Chronicles, Two Additional Mini Featurettes, Audio Commentary – finale episode, Deleted Scenes