A Hannibal Community
Thursday 10:00 PM on NBC (Returning June 4, 2015)
In case you doubt my title, *SPOILERS* ensue.

So, in the emotional fallout of "Takiawase" (Episode 2.4) and the almost certain death of Beverly Katz, I went scavenging for morsels of Hannibal news to ease my despair, and I came across NBC's description of Episode 2.6 "Futamono".

TV.com and other sites print most of it, but (probably wisely) leave out the last very, very spoiler-y final statement:

When a city councilman's body is found in a parking lot, intertwined with a tree, the artistry and missing organs suggest the work of the Chesapeake Ripper. Jack and the team race against time to catch the Ripper while he's still on his killing spree. When Will suggests the possibility that the Ripper is filling his pantry with the victims' organs, Jack crashes Hannibal Lecter's dinner party to collect evidence and test the meat for human DNA. Jack's growing suspicions drive Alana even closer to Hannibal, believing he is the victim of a witch hunt. Meanwhile, clues from the tree man help the BAU zero in on a location they believe the Ripper used. There they discover the most shocking revelation of Jack Crawford's career: Miriam Lass alive.

Now, we all know that as a show Hannibal has been very liberal with what in any other show would be unequivocal spoilers, routinely revealing major plot points in descriptions, previews (none more so than this week's unmasking of the courtroom copycat), and promotional announcements in interviews and on social media. And, quite frankly, with little warning. Add to that the built-in spoilers intrinsic to their faithfulness to the Harris source material, and Hannibal is much less a show about what happens than it is how it happens. And it still manages to be a taut thriller that launches me on an emotional rollercoaster every week! So, I can hardly hold its spoilers against it.

And, I suppose, as it is so often wont to do, Hannibal hints early on that Lass, Jack Crawford's FBI trainee presumably killed by Lecter two years ago whose severed arm was discovered last season, could actually still be alive. In the conversation between Jack and Hannibal immediately following the discovery of Lass's arm in "Entrée" (Episode 1.6)—also on the heels of realizing that his wife is dying of cancer—prods this possibility. While it ultimately serves to dissipate the likelihood of her survival, it repeatedly teases it, raising again and again the possibility as it chips away at Jack's (and our) hope.
"What would be the benefit of making you believe your trainee was still alive?"
"Hope. The Ripper wanted to cloud my judgment with hope."
"It can sometimes be brave to allow yourself hope."
"Not the false kind."
This exchange later includes a startling admission, in a conversation that weirdly alternates and somewhat confuses Lass with Crawford's wife Bella: "Don't give up hope for your wife. Not yet.... I'm sorry about your wife, Jack. I truly am. I believe the world is a better place with her in it. I am sorry about your trainee." Hannibal doesn't often express regret, even if it is only for the circumstances that force his hand, and, I believe, it's an important detail common to some other victims.

The possibility that Miriam Lass is still alive raises the question of other Hannibal kills whose bodies have not been found, particularly those for whom Hannibal seemed to show admiration: Lass, of course; Abigail Hobbs; and perhaps now Beverly Katz.

We never see Abigail die. After realizing who Hannibal is and what he is responsible for in the final moments of "Relevés" (Episode 1.12), Abigail asks as Hannibal strokes her cheek, "Are you going to kill me?" Hannibal responds without answering, "I am so sorry, Abigail. I'm sorry I couldn't protect you in this life." The blood-soaked floor in "Savoureaux" (Episode 1.13) would make her survival unlikely, but in contrast to the ear mailed to Will in the courthouse, hers was taken from a living body. Like Lass, Abigail's "death" breaks the Ripper's pattern of theatricality and humiliation. And, of course, though Harris's novels cannot be taken as immutable scripture, as of Red Dragon Abigail Hobbs is still alive.

Lastly—and with full recognition that, like Jack, I may just really want Beverly to still be alive and am crippled with false hope—Beverly has undoubtedly earned Hannibal's respect. Since her presumed demise after—like both Miriam Lass and Abigail Hobbs—uncovering Lecter as a serial killer comes in the final moments of the most recent episode ("Takiawase," Episode 2.4), we cannot yet know whether her body will be found or how Hannibal will respond to her death/disappearance. However, given their similarities, I would suspect that if Miriam and Abigail share similar fates, Beverly would join them.

Two other possibly relevant *spoiler*-y notes: (1) Based on descriptions of Episode 2.5 ("Mukozuke"), it seems that Dr. Abel Gideon, who I had assumed died from the gunshot he received at Will Graham's hands, will be returning next week. Death, and presumed death, is a little more fluid in Hannibal than it often is. (2) Fuller has been adamant all season about the terrible fates of three characters we all love, but, to my knowledge at least, he has never announced the deaths of three characters. In a series as rife with horrors and torture and humiliation as Hannibal has proven itself to be, I believe those are important distinctions.

So, what you do you think? Also, how do you feel generally about Hannibal's spoilers?