It's not rare for shows and films to come in twos or threes. Deep Impact and Armageddon. No Strings Attached and Friends with Benefits. The Addams Family and The Munsters. Although it's too early to firmly place Fox's The Following and The CW's Cult in the same camp, the similarities, superficial or not, are hard to ignore.
Even harder when those that watched the second episode of the former, from Scream's Kevin Williamson and starring Kevin Bacon, had the word cult drilled into their heads about a dozen times. So how does Cult differentiate itself enough to inspire viewers to watch another series that seems so similar? Or could it ride the coattails of the television cult-killing 'trend' and attract viewers that way?
The advertising seems to be all over the map with one teaser mimicking the American Horror Story-esque approach of attracting viewers by bombarding the audience with ambiguous and grotesque imagery, being more concerned about creating the mood or atmosphere than relaying any kind of narrative thrust. And then the next 'series preview' concentrates almost solely on the story and characters, asking "Who is Billy Grimm?" and his following. Yes, the spot does say following.
So, not much more is revealed about the Billy Grimm character except that Robert Knepper is effortlessly creepy, a lesson already learned from his stint on Prison Break. And anything else he's appeared in. The preview does focus a bit more on the tech based side of the series and how sunglasses, a reality television show and some kind of hacker network play into the titular cult even tough it's still completely unclear as to how that is happening. Obviously, that's for our leads Alona Tal, Matthew Davis and Jessica Lucas to find out.
For another look at how Grimm operates, the network also released a brief clip featuring a train and asking, "who's on board?"
Well, it doesn't seem like Billy has recruited as many willing participants as James Purefoy's acolytes in The Following. If you coerce people into the acts through is it really a cult? The whole point is that nobody is supposed to have to hold a gun to your head, you just swig back that koolaid, right? Cult premieres Tuesday, February 19 at 9 p.m. ET on The CW.