Season 1 Episode 1


Aired Saturday 10:00 PM Apr 04, 2013 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (9)

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  • A Good Place to Start (Pilot and Book Spoilers for Red Dragon ahead)

    I have to say I was a bit skeptical about this show hearing of its inception. I am a huge Thomas Harris fan. I've read all of his books and think Silence of the Lambs is one of the best thrillers of modern cinema. So hearing that TV genius Bryan Fuller (Pushing Daisies) is moving in to develop the years before the events of Red Dragon (the book/film) where Dr. Lecter and Will Graham worked together I was intrigued. I was hopeful that they could pull it off and I was correct. I think Hannibal Lecter is one of the most intriguing characters in film and Will Graham is a rare gem and one of my favorite characters in literature with his ability to see and empathize with killers he investigates (such as in Red Dragon). The premiere surely delivers and while there is an obvious ending of everyong finding out who and what Dr. Lecter actually does before he gets locked up, there's still a lot of great directions this show can go. For instance, seeing the troubled Graham (Hugh Dancy) and his supervisor Jack Crawford (Lawrence Fishburne) has some great chemistry and the kidnapping plot was very enthralling which was helped immensely by David Slade's direction of the pilot episode. He has directed other high concept pilots before (Awake) and his visual style and the score aid us in getting into Will's mind as he investigates the crimes around him. The problem with prequels of course if that they're future motives and where they end up is already known. That being said, Hannibal's character is so nebulous and intriguing I can see much being mined out of this show by Mads Mikkelsen's subdued psychotic performance as he beautifully cooks a girl's lungs over his stove. Also since Will Graham is only present in Red Dragon it isn't like making a TV series about the beginnings of Clarice Starling because after Red Dragon Will doesn't really factor into the equation. The real gem to this chemistry that Fuller taps into in his writing is how blind Graham is to Lecter who he "doesn't find very interesting" and yet ends up catching him in the end much like Hank and Walter White in the 5 season of Breaking Bad and Hank never suspecting a thing that he is in fact the very drug kingpin he's looking for. But seeing the show throw curveballs such as Hannibal calling the man who they know to be the killer ahead of time telling him that "they know" which results in him killing his wife and daughter leads to a seed being planted of how much he can match wits in a future cat and mouse game with Will. But since in the books we're told how many victims Lecter took (13 if memory serves) they have to careful with how they proceed. I don't see this running for more than a few season but it should be enjoyable enough and I will certainly enjoy watching it if Fuller stays on as showrunner and he can keep the dynamic between Lecter and Graham intact as well as giving us convincing and beautifully macabre imagery that runs through Graham's head as we voyeuristically look in on his point of view. Also, the whole callback to Lacter's vivid imaginary constructs and his great memory detail when Crawford sees his drawings of one his childhood homes a great shout out to those who had read the books.