03/12/2013 05:41 am ET Updated Mar 12, 2013

'The Following': One Of Joe Carroll's Followers Sacrifices Himself To Make Up For His Failure (VIDEO)

The depths of the disturbing devotion Joe Carroll's followers have came into focus this week on "The Following" when they failed yet again to bring his wife Claire to him. She'd been put into witness relocation, and only one agent knew where she was. Fortunately for the followers, he was the one they managed to kidnap, but he denied knowing anything. He looked ready to die to keep the secret, but Ryan's timely arrival helped him avoid that.

Ryan not only saved the agent, but he took out five of Joe's followers. The survivors made their way back to the small town Joe is holed up in, where one of them offered himself up in ritual sacrifice.

"This is my gift. My apology," he told Joe. He kept saying that he wanted his life to mean something, so apparently dying for failing to secure Claire would do that. At least in his mind, it would. And Joe granted his wish, embracing him and stabbing him in the gut.

"You will always matter" were Joe's final words to him.

Critics certainly reacted to the tense scene. TVLine described it as "highly erotic," and more than a bit bizarre. BuddyTV felt it was "the most heartbreaking, disturbing, yet beautiful scene of the series."

Things will surely get even more fanatical as "The Following" continues on Mondays at 9 p.m. EST on Fox.

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