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Moment of Goodness

Moment of Goodness: Joe and Emma [SPOILER], The Following “Family Affair” 

Photo Credit: Sarah Shatz/FOX
Photo Credit: Sarah Shatz/FOX

In season one, Emma was cold, calculating and ruthless, but without Joe to lead her in season two, she’s been meek, uncertain and seemingly lost. She may have spent the past year living with other Followers, but believing that Joe was dead, her life had no real purpose and she was merely a shell of her former self. Honestly, it jars me just to think back to how terrifying Emma once was. (True Story: A friend once saw her in a local coffee shop and was scared to even walk past her…and I couldn’t blame him, just seeing her would’ve given me the chills last year.) However, tonight’s reunion with Joe gave me hope that we may see the old Emma once again.

As soon as she answered the phone and heard Joe’s voice, I saw that spark of life behind her eyes that has been missing this season. It was like she found her true north again. Her emotions were so raw and so real that you could feel her sense of loss…not for a maniacal serial killer, but for the only mentor and essentially father figure she’s ever known. And those emotions were only confirmed when she saw him in the cemetery. Honestly, this moment played just as I’d hoped. Yes, she should be thrilled to see Joe alive, but she’s an emotional (and often not very forgiving) person and I would never expect her to instantly forgive Joe for keeping her in the dark. So to see first her genuine excitement at coming face to face with Joe, followed by her anger at him for leaving her felt so authentic. And Joe handled her so well.

Photo Credit: David Giesbrecht/FOX
Photo Credit: David Giesbrecht/FOX

I’ve always sort of questioned Joe’s feelings toward and relationship with his Followers. Last season, we watched as his Followers revered him and obeyed his every command, but I also got the sense that many of them truly loved Joe. However, I was never quite sure if that sentiment was mutual. Joe’s feelings always seemed to be focused on Claire or Joey or Ryan. Sure he connected with each of his Followers and took them under his wing, but I could never be certain if it was a genuine connection or if he was merely using them as his pawns. That being said, I’m still not quite sure, but when Emma ran to Joe in the cemetery, he definitely knew what to expect and what kind of comfort she would need. So regardless if he’s using her or actually cares for her, he’s won her back and regained another ally that he knows he can trust.

And let’s be honest, Emma isn’t going anywhere. She would do anything for Joe. But now that she has found herself back under Joe’s wing, will we see a shift in her confidence and character as she reverts to the old Emma? Sure, she told Joe that “it was safe” with Lily and the twins, but I couldn’t help but see something more behind her eyes…perhaps the beginnings of a mischievous and insidious plan? And how will she feel about Lily’s gussying up and sinking her claws in to Joe? Well, according to next week’s promo, a newly blonde (apparently the pink hair is only necessary when mourning) Emma attempts to convince Joe that their new friends are “crazy…all crazy,” which gives me hope that cold and calculating Emma is still in there and she’s ready to return. And if she’s going to play crazy Emma, I want full out, gloves-off, Jacob-throat-slashing crazy. She may have scared the bajeezus out of me in season one, but that’s part of what made her character oh so good.

The Following airs Mondays at 9/8c on FOX.

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