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Hannibal S02E09: "Shiizakana"

During my time as a student, both undergraduate and graduate, I ended up taking two classes concerned with horror films, despite not really being a fan of horror films. One was devoted entirely to the genre, and the other placed horror under the umbrella of body genres. That latter class was centered on an essay that, in addition to horror, covered melodrama and pornography and questioned how audiences respond to those respective genres. While I'm still not fond of many of horror's sub-genres, particularly the so-called "torture porn" films that became popular around the turn of the century, the classes gave me a significant amount of appreciation for them that I generally lacked previously.

Among the many takeaways was the pleasure to be found in horror, and, more importantly, where that pleasure comes from. The general idea is that we return to horror not only to be scared out of our minds in a safe environment, but because horror films provide a release valve of sorts. Writing about horror in Danse Macabre, Stephen King argues that horror "...is an invitation to indulge in deviant, antisocial behavior by proxy—to commit gratuitous acts of violence, to indulge in our puerile dreams of power, to give in to our most craven fears. Perhaps more than anything else, the horror story says it's okay to join the mob, to become the total tribal being, to destroy the outsider." And then you put down the book or leave the multiplex or turn off the TV and go back to your life as a normal person, the pleasure of violating social mores through vicarious killing having been satisfied.


At this point, you may be asking what in the world any of this has to do with Hannibal, beyond the obvious notion that the show operates within the framework of the horror genre, and as such, we may get to experience the similar pleasures of enacting violence against others in a safe way. Certainly "Shiizakana" encouraged this, as the camera allowed us to assume Randall Tier's perspective in a manner similar to how the camera allows us to assume the perspective of Michael Myers in the Halloween films, when we watch and experience the world through the eye holes of Myers' mask. Hannibal didn't go all the way in this regard, as "Shiizakana" often cut away from Tier's perspective so as to see his beastly mechanical jaws at work, but that sort of perspective switch isn't uncommon to the genre, either.

Anyway, the reason I bring all this up is that Will Graham is living in a horror movie, and he's working through the identity fluctuations that we as audiences are able to let go of once the story is over. Season 1 saw Will assuming the position of the killer/monster of the week, and explored the way he dealt with the trauma of that experience. There wasn't any pleasure to be had in it for Will. However, after being labeled a killer/monster himself by the season's end, and having remained so for much of this season, Will is struggling to reconcile his desire to kill Hannibal, and in doing so, to become a killer/monster (the image of Will as a stag creature returned this week after an absence that lasted a few episodes). At the same time, Hannibal is priming Will to become just a killer/monster. He wants for Will to never have a resolution to the traditional horror story, where the audience gets to leave after the monster is vanquished or contained (until the sequel). Essentially, he wants Will to always be behind Michael Myers' mask.


This is Hannibal's design, and it's one he's been building over the years, apparently. He never discouraged young Randall Tier's animal identity crisis, and instead it seemed likely that he subtly taught Tier to construct himself a person suit until he was ready to construct his animal suit. There was a definite sense of pride as Hannibal said, "You've come so very far, Randall." He's practicing it again with Margot in his encouragement of her desire to kill her brother, he's been practicing it with Will for a while now, and it seems increasingly likely that Du Maurier was another attempt at this same goal. (Didn't you just love the very subtle but noticeable shift in Mikkelsen's body and voice as Will brought up Du Maurier? I don't think I've ever seen Hannibal quite so annoyed.)

That Hannibal has plans is why is he's generally considered among the scariest of horror's villains/monsters/killers/whatever. Sure, the cannibalism provides an additional sense of fright, but it's that Hannibal's a monster that thinks. Many horror monsters are seemingly supernatural forces seem nearly unstoppable but have no other insight into human nature and behavior than the uncanny ability to predict exactly which door a victim is going to open. Hannibal, as a psychiatrist, understands others, knows what makes them tick. Like a zombie, he's attempting to make copies of himself, monsters that walk around wearing people suits, but where the zombie acts on an instinct and thus doesn't care that it is making more zombies, Hannibal is fully aware of what he's doing. It's a conscious act, not an unconscious one.


The downside for Hannibal is that the same thing that sets him apart from his fellow monsters, is the same thing that sets his would-be victims apart from their peers. Instead of running and screaming, hiding in closets or in basements, his victims talk and think, both back at him and now to one another, and with tumblers of whiskey no less. Will and Margot comparing notes on Hannibal may have been the highlight of the episode, not only for its staging—Will's den is arranged, and the scene is shot, like a much more intimate version of Hannibal's office—but for they're both struggling with what Hannibal is offering them:

Will: I tried to murder Dr. Lecter. 
Margot: Did he have it coming? 
Will: What do you think? 
Margot: I can’t say that I know. 
Will: Neither can I.

Like us engaging in a horror story, Margot and Will are weighing the pleasure they would take in becoming killers/monsters. It may satisfy particular urges—killing Mason and killing Hannibal, respectively—but satisfying those urges in a physical way is different than doing it vicariously through a horror story, and with more lasting repercussions, especially if we treat these murders as tipping points. Will already knows that killing feels good as it felt good to kill Garret Jacob Hobbs and I imagine we'll find the he thought it felt good to apparently kill Randall Tier. The trick to all this is that Tier's death doesn't actually satisfy that urge to kill Hannibal (as killing Peter's social worker last week might have accomplished on some level), and thus it allows Hannibal to keep priming Will to become a killer/monster himself.



À LA CARTE

– To answer maybe your most pressing question: Yes, I watched porn in a classroom and read academic articles about it, including essays on pornography from a Marxist perspective. Yes, such things exist.

– To answer your second most pressing question: No, I don't think that the only reason we watch horror is for a vicarious thrill of killing. The problem with this particular approach to assuming pleasure is that it's based in psychoanalytic theory, which generally assumes if you can explain one person, it applies to everyone, regardless of culture and experience. For what it's worth, I've never seen the theory applied in a way that suggests we're all going to start murdering people, just that we're generally responding to a cultural norm that tells us killing is, exceptions aside, immoral and wrong, and so we revel in some safe taboo-breaking. No harm, no foul.

– Hannibal's hat is AMAZING.

– "Typhoid and swans. It all comes from the same place."

– "I'd say this makes us even. I sent someone to kill you. You sent someone to kill me. Even Steven."

– The music this week was a bit of a repeat. It was, again, from Gabriel Fauré's Requiem, except this time it was the first movement, "Introit et Kyrie."


How did "Shiizakana" taste?


Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 8/29/2015

Season 3 : Episode 13

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Anyone else think Hannibal looks a lot like Vladimir Putin in that hat above?
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Wonder why the smallish Buster had to run out towards the beast... even when Will went out with a gun, the other dogs didn't flinch from their place.
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This show is disturbing. Feels like porn. I had to delete the series from my DVR.
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Wow Wow Wow. I really love this show!!!! It needs a season 3 now!
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Can someone please explain that last act to me? Did Will really kill the guy? What was that all about?
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"Fuller plans for the show to run for seven seasons: the first three consisting of original material, the fourth covering Red Dragon, the fifth The Silence of the Lambs, the sixth Hannibal, and the seventh an original storyline resolving Hannibal's ending. He wants to include other characters from the book series (such as Jame Gumb and Clarice Starling) provided that he can get the rights to them from MGM. Franklin Froideveaux and Tobias Budge were created because Fuller could not secure the rights to The Silence of the Lambs characters Benjamin Raspail and Jame Gumb. Fuller has also stated that even though they tried to get the rights to Barney Matthews, an orderly at the Baltimore State Hospital, they were denied usage rights."

EXCELLENT, hope we get all seven, I've heard it might get dropped :-(

Is murder immoral? I like fiction that explores such questions. Like HG Wells The Invisible Man - do we only act or not act because of the consequences? And if we were invisible, and could act free from liability, is there anything we wouldn't be willing to do, in other words, would our morals disappear too?

I like programmes that ask questions like these, and have interesting characters make observations about life and morals etc. Which is why True Detectives was good. Matthew McConaughey's characters came out with some interesting and deep shit, not the usual boring Desperate Housewives crap about babies and relationships. Hannibal is the same, and it's very artistic and creative.
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I'm not sure how that's going to work given that a lot has already happened that happened in Hannibal. Matteo and the Sardinians specifically, but there's a lot that is double ups. If they do the whole spread as you've described, they're going to be doing similar scenes again.
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I don't understand how you get permission to use the characters Hannibal Lecter, Will Graham, and Jack Crawford but not get the rights to Barney Mathews, Raspail, and Gumb.
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MGM controls the rights to any and all characters that first appeared in the Silence of the Lambs novel. Another example would be Kade Purnell, who floated around at the start of the season. Fuller wanted to use Paul Krendler for that role, but couldn't since Krendler first popped up in SoL. (You'll note that Kade Purnell is a scramble of Paul Krendler.)

So, stickily, the De Laurentiises own the rights to the character Hannibal Lecter as a whole, as well as characters that first appear in Red Dragon, Hannibal, and Hannibal Raising. They, in fact, allowed Orion Pictures to use Hannibal for free in their Silence of the Lambs movie.
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I have faith that Will isn't actually losing it. I think this is just a fisherman doing what he knows will get his prey to come to him.
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Agreed. Nice 1. I thought that myself, I was sure that fishing scene was significant.
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Nicely done Mr. Kirkpatrick.

I'm really enjoying the character dynamics and the variety of shifts that have (and continue to) happen. Will and Hannibal, Jack and Will, Jack and Hannibal...drop in a "psycho of the week" and a little Beverly Katz and rarely are you not watching a fascinating character exchange on screen. My favourite at the moment though is seeing Will and Margot.

The Lord taketh away and the Lord giveth. No sooner does Beverly stick her head up her own ass and shun my man will do we meet Margot, who might have a better understanding of Will, than maybe even Will. Romance or no romance, I like Will having a friend, a true friend, to do nothing else but shoot the shit. Everybody else in his life wants something from him. Margot, while also looking to learn a little about Hannibal, seems to be the most genuine person Will's met in some time. I dig it.

I can't help but feel that this is all Will's design, or at least since his release. I'm just not buying that he's giving in to his inner stag and becoming a killer/monster. I am however buying into that's what he wants Hannibal to think. And unlike Carrie and Saul's "gotcha, this was our plan the whole time", this seems much more organic and natural and not cheating.

If that's the case, I'm pretty sure things will have ended better for Saul than they will for Jack, since...well...you know...WE ALREADY KNOW HE DISCOVERS THE TRUTH AND GET INTO IT WITH HANNIBAL AT THE END OF THE SEASON!!!

Sorry, but I really can't stand the whole flash forward thing.
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Is it just me or does Katharine Isabelle make every show she appears in better? She was 'Being Human's' final season savior, without her that show would have just gone off into the abyss and been forgotten, and her appearance here has been the kick needed to start moving this story that will end with the promised showdown between Lecter and Crawford. The scenes with 'Margot' and 'Will Graham' were fantastic. When she found his house and asked to come in to speak - of course Will's going to let her in! The fact that they want to arrive at the actual truth about Lecter together because of shared experience and that they have similar questions about the good doctor is working very well. She has to be Will's soul mate; right? You know you cast a part correctly when the actor just seems to slip into the cast seamlessly as has been the case here. This character was a welcome addition. Will needed to find someone better, less therapeutic, than Alana Bloom to go through his experience anyway. (Seriously though, when the truth becomes known fact, Dr. Bloom is going to be unredeemable and in the context of the story, her career would be over as well, so she has an enormous motive to keep Hannibal a secret even when she does figure it out and that could be a lot of fun. Liking the 'crazy' decision to make them lovers. Just don't make her 'stunned' when Lecter's mask is pulled back cause that would make Dr. Bloom much less interesting.)
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Fascinating review, Noel! Thanks for the insight!
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I was waiting lycanthropy to be mentioned and it wasn't, which I found was strange as they are quite keen on the psychological in the series.
The photography and sound are so seamless that sometimes I forget how great a contribution they are to the excellence of this series.
Now the really interesting aspect of that episode is the " homo homini lupus" motif. and there is a great stress being made to the philosophy of Thomas Hobbes that runs through the series. Last episode we saw the passive use of this sentiment as the animal being the victim of man's animality and here we see the active side of this relationship. We know that the limbic system is the paleomammalian brain that guides strong emotions, especially anger; and some neurologists had in the past regarded this as the seat of our more basic animal behavior. Nowadays, this idea is being demoted, as stating that we are all animals somewhere is not the trend these days.
As weird as will sound, using and taking the time to perfect his Haute Cuisine to eat his fellow human beings is a form of respect to Hannibal. Seeing his sister being eaten by the Nazis, made him into a cannibal, but his motivation to himself is love. This is why the surface homoerotic relationship he has with Will is so important to the series and its allusions so under-toned. By wanting to make Will turn into something like himself is the only way that the latter can survive if and when Hannibal will admit to himself that he is gay.
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i thought i was a mythological creature come true who can embrace any possibility, but your comment has me reading it over and over.

the only question i have is whether or not hannibal's sister being eaten by nazis is canon or apocryphal from hannibal rising which is one of two hannibal movies i just cannot bring myself to endure. the time i would spend watching both of those movies is time that i could never retrieve again in this life.
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If it's the novel and the movie, that makes it cannon as far as its mythology is concerned. Now, whether this is the case in the series I cannot tell you. They have changed the mythology in making Chilton dead, so no one can say how far TPTB will take this. Hannibal's sister will have to come up some time, so let's just wait and see. BTW, just to be clear, every text written by Harris is canon, it's Brian Fuller et al, who are apocryphal.
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I just logged in to say I loved the insightful analysis about how the show utilises the concept of horror but I would also like to point out an (apparently not-so)obvious reference in this episode: the Big Nowhere, by James Ellroy. I don't know if I missed someone mentioning it in the comment section but it's the first thing that came to mind while watching Shiizakana. I think it is the only crime story I've read where the killer is wearing animal teeth in order to maul his victims, due to some deep-seated psychosis regarding carnivorous animals. I read and loved Thomas Harris' Red Dragon but I am a huge fan of Ellroy so I appreciated the huge nod.

Also, the scene where the murderer charged into Will's cabin through the window in slow motion surely has to be a callback to Francis Dollarhyde's similar entrance at the end of Manhunter?
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your know your stuffs!!! :) #tipsmyhat
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Ok, so Hannibal has a "how to accept you are a murderer" class. I can live with that it kinda makes sense cause he likes to manipulate people and loves his way of living but how much does he charge his patients? and how many of them does he have? I mean, he has such elite tastes and apparently so few patients mmm
I like Margot she seems like a really interesting character, she just can't help but distrust Hannibal and that is a cool move.
Oh Will you've done it so what now? How much it's an act how much of your behaviour is real?
Was I the only one who thought "Thank god the dog is ok"?
How can Jack still eat at Hannibals? I will totally say " er ...I'm going vegetarian have any veggies"?
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when Hannibal is counseling will and the camera angle is pointed towards Hannibal lips are so creepy so I am confounded Will is not the Clarice character? I thought they adapted the roles when is Da maurier returning her allure is satisfying .I think the show is losing its realistic appeal will's supernatural empathy and the killer snatching the truck driver up come on folks
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Great review once again, you pick up on so many (deeper) things from the show it's almost like you're a psychiatrist yourself.
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Willdigo scared the shit out of me and Buster would've totally ripped Randall to shreds!!
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I watched porn in a classroom once too. In high-school.I was a voluntary test subject for two girls doing biology experiment. I was some really awful german porn. They didn't get any measurements from me. They thought I had fallen asleep.

I much prefer Crawfords hat.

I'm glad that Hannibal and Will, seem to, have agreed to resolve their 'issues' without resorting to violence again.
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Just need to say- I think I read the same porn articles. Glad to know my uni isn't the only one.
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Hannibal is such a good cook. why was he frying that liver with a fork? it just won't do, so mundane. was he pissed with something? he sure had a nasty scar. maybe he was angry he couldn't serve human flesh to the fbi anymore, and maybe that's why Jack ate those innards with eggs placidly. what the hell is going on? should I stop taking notes?
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Am I alone in the thought that the scene with Hannibal tied to the tree by the rope pulley rig in the fantasy sequence was a small "nod" to a similar scene in the less awesome Hannibal Rising (though a stag instead of a horse, and Will not biting away the cheeks)?
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I'll take your word for this as I never ever want to watch Hannibal Rising.
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Its not bad really.
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I remember that scene, youre probably right. Some parts of HR certainly were difficult to stomach. If someone ate my little sister I'd set half the world on fire
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my little sister was like dee from what's happening. if someone had eaten her i'd cover half the world in clover.
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This episode made me realize that Baltimore has a never-ending supply of loose serial killers. I don't mind suspending my disbelief a little to account for all these maniacs, but jeez, it's like the regular citizens of the show never pick up a newspaper.
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Lots more snow in the mid atlantic area than I realized too.
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cannot stop laughing. i will definitely not be vacationing in baltimore anytime soon. the splendor of harbor place be damned. being eviscerated is not worth a few crab cakes.
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Baltimore , home to Edgar Allan Poe. Hannibal is a Balt, you know? It's normal he would want to move to Baltimore when he stettled in the USA.
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Did you ever watch Dexter? Miami is quite the hotbed for serial killers as well. Or how about Murder, She Wrote? over 10 seasons of killers EVERYWHERE she went!
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you know, i never really appreciated how unsafe it was in cabot cove. thanks for pointing that out.
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Jessica Fletcher is the worlds worst serial killer. She makes people kill (with out knowing it) then she finds them.
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y'all are on fire. i never thought about that either. which came first jessica fletcher or the killers?
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hahahahahaha
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did u all watch The Following... there is a cult of serial killers...
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i cannot lie. after seeing gorgeous james purefoy in his birthday suit in hbo's rome, i gotta admit i would join his cult as well.
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It's a 180 from Homicide when it had the Friday 10pm slot. I can't help comparing the two as they are both set in Baltimore. Maybe Bayliss could connect Lecter and Adena Watson killer?
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Hannibal's going about this all wrong. If he would just stick to killing drug dealers with a double tap and dump the body, no one would ever figure him out.

Wonder what Hannibal would have made of Omar? Besides dinner.
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Generally, I'm just annoyed by Freudian attempts to insert romantic subtext ("shipping") onto every last human relationship in every TV show. But does it still qualify as mere subtext when Hannibal is tossing out words like "beloved"?
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my ears certainly perked up. i was imploring will to go ahead and tell hannibal that he reluctantly has a small place in his heart for his tormentor before he popped his head off like a toy.
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It's Will's subconscious putting the words, "beloved" and "love" in Hannibal's mouth, as well as the Freudian *ahem* geyser.
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***don't tempt my tummy with the taste of nutz & honey***

suddenly thinking: does anyone still remember blaine and antoine from men on film?
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Will lives in a cabin in the middle of nowhere. I wonder who still lives like that in or near a big city. That seems very exotic to me.
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All I can say is: Where can I get a hat like that, because...dayam.
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I feel like this is the first time we've seen Hannibal in a hat. And according to Fuller's tweets, it largely because it just super super super cold that day so Mikkelsen needed a hat.
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And he is a Dane. go figure.
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I didn't buy the technicalities of this weeks murderers, the "design" surely was interesting and of course it was another patient of Dr Lecter but the accelerating dynamic between Will and Hannibal is a pure joy to watch.
Is Hannibal truly buying it? Is it Will playing the bait - or Hannibal?
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I'm not really believing this Will wants to kill thing. I can believe that he may have an inner darkness, but I think he's playing it up for Hannibal's sake. I think it's part of his act with Hannibal. Last week Will and Jack talked about baiting and catching Hannibal. Will knows what Hannibal wants, he wants will to be his friend. He wants Will to be a killer. So what better way for Will to bait Hannibal into a false sense of security than by continuing to talk about how much he wants to kill him, how much he wanted to kill the social worker, and how great he feels for killing Randall and Garrett. All of that leads Hannibal into a belief that Will is turning to the dark side and just needs more nudging. Once Hannibal believes that Will has turned to the dark side, I think he will become far more likely to reveal his true nature and once he does..........I'm Jack will be waiting in the wings. Isn't that what Will wants? I think Will is using his inner darkness as a lure to catch Hannibal.
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Yes will is manipulating Hannibal to trust him which is unlikely since psychopaths never trust or are attached to anyone I think will is trying to get evidence because jack is so blind damn these bureaucrats!
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The kicker here is going to be if we actually see this murder reported as self defense. I mean...what happens next? So, Will shows big daddy his kill, like a cat who brought in the dead thing it killed with pride, and what? Do they bury the body together while mumbling happy little secret killer mumbles, or is it reported? How the hell is that one explained? Oh - the case Will just happens to be working on finds Will as target suddenly? LONG SHOT bro.

I can semi-dig the idea of this being Will's "see I'm just like you daddy" ploy, but dude, he just killed this guy - I mean, that is still KILLING duh. Gotta tell ya, if I killed someone, I'd be a freakin' mental case afterwards...killing is killing, it's gotta be massively traumatizing and Will looked pretty damned 'even steven-y' for someone who just took another's life. I couldn't do that. I mean...what human being can just FAKE digging killing? Ya just can't. You either like it or ya don't. Will killed someone and looked fairly confident afterwards. That would be one HELL of an elaborate scheme to snare Lecter.

There is always the chance that Will really is a killer...
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i dunno will killed the manimal in self-defense and in so-called real life people kill all the time and do not seem to be the least traumatized. in fact, gleeful seems to be the response of some real life killers.***yes, george zimmerman i am pointing at you.***
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I live in Florida and anyone breaking thru your window wearing some kind of animal contraption is in for a surprise... I would think Will and the writers would be more subtle with Will informing Lecter, maybe the set of claws or the head of the creature. Let's not go to crazy.
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Yes, Will did kill Randall but we have to remember that it was in self defense and he has had to kill in defense before, ie Garrett Jacob Hobbs. Besides we dont know how much time elapsed between the time the attack happened and when he showed up at Hannibals time. He may have had time to have his freak out session and then compose himself for his performance with Hannibal. Or he have his freak out session later in private after his performance with Hannibal. We also don't know if Will has or intends to tell Jack about this incident.

Also, last season Will's mind was weak mostly due to the encephalitis and Hannibal's psychic driving. This season he no longer has either of those and he is armed with the full knowledge of who Hannibal is and what he can and will try to do. His mind is much stronger this season, so being able to compartmentalize is probably a lot easier for him now. I think Will does have what it takes to fake it, he know what Hannibal wants he knows the words to say. Besides, we do all know that will does have a dark side, that's why he's able to do what he does as a consultant. I think he playing up his dark side for Hannibal's benefit.
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is will seducing hannibal with a murderous facade?
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that's what I think.
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I totally agree with you. As much as Will would want Hannibal dead, he's not a killer and never will be "for pleasure". I think he's luring Hannibal into getting comfortable around the idea he is still molding Will to be a killer. Apart from that, he may have an unsuspected witness of Hannibal's "therapeutic methods" in Margot.

Drawing on Noel's notes on the classes he attended, I do believe Will's dreams are as cathartic to him as going to a movie or watching a horror film on TV to the rest of us. He doesn't have the real need to murder, just to play it in his head as a "release" from all he's been through and the enormous task of catching Hannibal that he has ahead.

Regarding Jack and the opening scene of the season, I just think that Jack is giving Will a free pass to handle the situation with Hannibal as he sees fit. He doesn't know everything Will is doing but, at this point, he doesn't really have a clue to whom the Chesapeake bay ripper is so, one way or another, he's waiting for the outcome of this battle of minds, which by the way, is marvelous to watch.
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you know, i remember reading something where stephen king opined that everyone needs the catharsis of horror to restrain latent murderous impulseks, but when i watch horror movies and i do not watch them often, i am rooting for the victims to survive. when i saw carrie, a sixteen year old girl doused in blood by cruel classmates, i was not fist bumping because the poor girl had been humiliated. the reason i could never watch the saw or hostel movies is because i felt bad seeing people killed for sport.

don't get me wrong i have met some people who the thought of them being buried alive would not cause me tears, but overall if i never saw a horror movie i would not feel like i was missing anything. horror porn has never done it for me. i guess i like the old fashioned porn where people are naked and sweaty and not eviscerated.

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A free pass doesn't mean that Will may kill to lure someone!

but Will is willing to travel the distance and become a killer to just prove a point makes him as bad as anyone he catches.

I didn't want to see Will as a killer. although, this might be a self defence but he didn't report it and he took the body to Dr Lecter!
or did he reported but Will and Jack agreed to pursue a some sort of "plan" that include mutilation of a body!
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Will did not go out to hunt the guy, just to get his dog. I do like Will telling Lecter they are even now. Wonder what Bloom would say about that.
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I said "a free pass to handle the situation" meaning the liberty to use his own methods to investigate, lure, trap Hannibal. In no way I implied that Will is willing to kill to prove his point or than Jack would condone it! :)

There's no doubt that Will is putting his own sanity on the line but we have yet to see how strong his mind is to stand ground against Hannibal and finally catching him.
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OK, there is just no way in my mind that I can believe that a serious FBI agent (like Jack) would go 'off book' to such a degree that they would allow a killing and conspire to conceal it. The Feds don't work like that. I'm not trying to be naive, and I'm sure there are some seriously dubious agents out there, but being FBI is not a joke to those who are in the bureau. These people don't just get together to allow things to be gotten away with - the whole point is to catch the bad guy, not promote a secret society of covert bad guys who get to kill without being reported.

Unless, I get to eat my words next week. Who knows.
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Remember when Will's dogs let everybody and their mama break into Will's house and lurk under his bed and stuff ears down his throat in a pornographic fashion without making so much as a peep?

Biggest transformation of the series!

Speaking of B&E. Hannibal and Will should really think about robbing some banks or a museum. Possibly open a two-man moving company. Their catbugularly skills are ridic. They just break into places like it ain't no thang and they move large, heavy items, like dead bodies, OR setups, and complete butcher shops seemingly without so much as a pick-up truck between them. And they do it, dressed to the nines. Classy ass ninjas.

The case of the week. So heavy handed. At least Randall got to go out the way he would have wanted, like Ole Yeller.

Oh man. When Will went off on his, "How dare there be previous Butterflies! How many were there? Talked to the new girl you're metamorphosing behind my back. We've been comparing notes and drinking whiskey, we're on to your games. FYI: Dr. Du Maurier believed me. By the way, did you happen to eat her? Might want to give her a call."

I was like, "Shhhh, Will, don't make connections OUT LOUD, and in front of the psycho in question. Hannibal is gonna kill you, bb." Then Hannibal dropped the ominous anvil, "Maybe my two favorite murderflies should meet." I'd like to think Will picked up the implicit threat and planned accordingly.

The closing, "Even Steven" tribute scene was immense. Will, uh, buried the hatchet, made himself the most appealing lure, transformed some more, brought Hannibal meat and dinner *wink*, made himself vulnerable to being sent back to prison by providing Hannibal with ample evidence against him, Hannibal is further smitten, etc. etc.

I'm ready for my next serving.
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I do think Will should have put the cherry on top of the 'even steven' and given Hannibal the bill for Buster's veterinary needs. That would be both righteous and ballsy.
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"Classy ass ninjas" I am cracking up right now
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Oh my god I think I'm here now just to read and comment on your posts.
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*blushes* Glad my stream of consciousness yammering works for you and a few others, lol.
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"Yes, I watched porn in a classroom and read academic articles about it, including essays on pornography from a Marxist perspective." = Thank you for ruining porn for the rest of us Noel!.
I don't know when I'll be able to watch it again because of this.
........
I must now spend the weekend re-sensitizing, myself to porn!
I had plans Noel, and you've ruined them!

Speaking of ruining things, I must stock up on tissues.

Good day sir!
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I'm sure the prof received a number of evaluations for the class with comments exactly like this. Though, seriously, there's nothing more awkward than watching a scene from Pirates in class...except for maybe silent-era French stag films in a dark screening room with the rest of your classmates. By the way, there's been Three Musketeers porn since at least the 1920s.
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there's nothing more awkward than watching a scene from Pirates in class - I can top that!
In a sociology class taught by a nun, somehow the topic of sexual deviance dominated the discussion.
I'll never forget the look on Sister Barbara's face when BDSM was brought up.
It was the definition of mortified.
And she never looked at us the same again.
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Yeah. Okay. You win. I always always forget about nuns teaching classes. Always forget that.
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I never will.....
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Excellent article Noel. Kudos.

I too have sit in similar classes. Though I always found the reactions of my fellow classmates far more interesting than the content itself. But hey, Psychologist rather than a film student.

Though this wasn't really my favorite episode of this season. It still pushed forward the overall plot of the season. Which is essentially the transformation of Will and the inevitable capture of Hannibal. But the dance that is leading up to that inevitability is fantastic.

I am still conflicted as to whether if this is Jack and Will's ploy to catch Hannibal. Mostly because of the way Jack fought Hannibal in the beginning and some other things. And one of those things is the death of Tier. Now I can buy Jack acting feeble minded. Allowing Alana to interview Chilton would be fine if they were trying to build trust with Alana and thusly Hannibal in that they got their man. However the incompetence of letting Miriam in the observation room to kill or severely injure Chilton is too much, same with the death of Tier. So if we are to believe that this is the plan of Will and Jack, then that is two deaths at their hands that didn't have to occur in order to simply capture Hannibal. It is either their intention or it is their incompetence and I am not certain which. If it is their intention, then it is going to be found out and could compromise their prosecution of Hannibal in the long run.

Now as for Margot and Will, that was a phenomenal conversation.


Tier felt sloppy. The orderly was by far more adequate in their little dust up than Tier was. Plus Tier just felt off. If Tier really fancied himself as an animal then he wouldn't have let Will back into his house. He would have attacked Will while he was attending to the dog. That was sloppy. I know that they wanted to show how Will had changed and how he comfortable he was in the combing fight. But I don't think they should have done it at the lowering of what Tier was supposed to be. And we know he was lowered, that is why Hannibal likely stopped focusing on him. Hannibal likely saw him as a waste of time. Too enamored with his thoughts of being an animal to ever achieve what Will, DuMarier and now Margot likely will be able to achieve. But to set him on Will just seemed sloppy for him. Granted it was more to turn Will into what he wants to turn Will into but I have to wonder if it was at the cost of Hannibal's mythos.

Either way it was an entreating episode and the visuals were once again stunning.

Again, great article Noel.
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I think that Jack is very much aware of Will's plan to capture Hannibal -- it's what their conversation at the fishing hole was about, and in a completely roundabout way. Jack's just play acting that he thinks Will is still off his rocker about Hannibal being a killer. The thing that the show isn't addressing with this is that Jack's essentially repeating his past mistake: He's letting Will get too close again, but they need some evidence first, and Hannibal's very good about not supplying any.
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A good point. And that may very well be the case. However if it is, then whatever Will does to the body of Tier in the next episode he is then also complicit in.

Whether Jack is in on it or not. I know that this is Will's plan. But I agree that he might be getting too close. The whole scene where he empathized the kill near the bon fire was pretty intense. But even with that I am not sure. In both the dream and in when he viewed the crime scene he seems very much in control of his stag. Both were very interesting scenes in that regard.

I agree if they want to prosecute Hannibal they need way more evidence that I am not sure Hannibal is going to provide, this is the second episode in a row where Hannibal hasn't killed anyone.
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The ravenstag sequence there was really interesting, wasn't it? It starts off with Will commanding that darker impulse before it took control of him.
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Your time at college sounds incredibly fascinating, but can we focus on the show? I don't get this review. How come you didn't talk about Will's transformation? How come you didn't talk about the fact that he killed a man? What about Margot? There so much this review did NOT cover. Very disappointing.

Anyway, since the reviewer did such a poor job at reviewing the episode, I'd like to share some of my thoughts.

- I love Margot, and I'd like to see more of her. Also, I loved the dynamic she had going with Will.

- If Will is playing Hannibal, why would he kill a man? Now, I'm very confused about this. If Will is "baiting" Hannibal, he wouldn't randomly just kill a man. I'd like to think that Will is changing because that makes more sense than him just pretending to be like Hannibal. I'd be disgusted if that's the case. "Oh look Will killed a guy but it's okay because he's just pretending ... " *le sigh*

I smell wonky writing.

- There was no Jack/Will scene this week?!!? Also, Jack still dines at Hannibal's place? He knows that Hannibal is serving him people, right? Why does Jack still go there to eat !?!? *very confused*

- I like that Will has a friend now ...

- NO ALANA! YES!
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I find it odd you don't think that was about Will's transformation considering it's entirely about transformation and changes in perspective as our protagonist is trying not to become a monster even though becoming a monster feels good. It's a more macro level look at this idea of transformation and horror, but still grounded within the events of the episode. I just took what the episode was about and connected it to a larger discussion abut what we get out of horror.

What do you want to talk about with Will killing a man? He's killed one before. It felt good. Now he's killed another in self-defense, a man sent to kill him on behalf of Hannibal. The question of whether this killing felt good and made him feel powerful is part of the transformation, and something to continuously think about, not just limited to the frame of a single episode, but within the scope of the show and what the show is about.

I think where you're smelling wonky writing may just be an issue of interpreting events. He didn't randomly kill Randall Tier. Randall Tier was there to kill him. Hardly random. It's not a matter of "pretending" to be like Hannibal; he's attempting to draw Hannibal in so as to catch Hannibal. But it's a slippery slope because to lure in Hannibal there's a need to engage in this little game that Hannibal is playing, which is exploiting the darkness in Will that likes the killing. So it's not okay for Will to kill someone because it pushes him that much closer to becoming a monster himself which is exactly what Hannibal wants from Will. And from Margot for that matter.

Both Margot and Will have a desire to kill, to become monsters. They're just not sure if they should.

In any case, send me a rubric of what you want discussed each week, and I'll send you a personalized review. This isn't sarcasm.
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I don't know. *shrugs*

Perhaps the things you find interesting about the show are not the things I'm interested in. I just felt like you didn't go over some of the most important moments. Sorry, if my comment came off too harsh. &

Not going to touch the self-defense argument. I don't buy it. And I don't feel like arguing. I guess I'm a bit disappointed by the turn of events and how little we know. Will is supposed to be the moral hero of the story, no? (I never read the books, so forgive my ignorance)

How does anything of what's happening is supposed to make me root for Will?

Anyway, the whole "baiting" thing could have and should have played out differently. I'm just not okay with this.

/peace
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what if will'ls moral dilemma is that it is almost impossible to compete with a monster like hannibal while still trying to be a boys scout? i understand your qualms with will's moral ambiguity, but what is a good man supposed to do when all the alternatives are not so great either? just allow hannibal to go on his merry way? even if hannibal was not killing people he encourages other unbalanced pysches to kill in his practice privy.
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cut jack some slack. you have not tasted delectable roasted testicles until you've had them served to you on exquisite china from a silver platter by the world's most grotesque chef.

yes, not seeing she who shall ever be nameless was my own brand of porn although i do like the regular kind as well.***regular kind, porn? that is sorta oxymoronic.***

i think will was not so much randomly killing a man as he was being the avenging angel to a damaged soul more troubled than will is. will needs to be someone's champion and if killing a man who killed dozens of women was his conduit as well as an attractive lure for hannibal so much the better.

i am apprehensive about both of will's potential new friends. neither one of them is particular stable and the last thing will needs is more unstable influences.

i wish will could get in touch with dr. dumarier. she would be a wealth of information for him on hannibal, but i fear that bringing dr. dumarier back will lead to her demise and i am still grieving the death of beverly. what i wish is that i could gleefully dance on the grave of the nameless one, but i gotta feeling that fish ain't gonna go belly up anytime soon.
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But he didn't randomly kill a man. Will thwarted his own murder. He retreated to his home and though he was prepared to fight, it was up to Randall to provoke it. I don't know what the laws are in Maryland, but in Texas, you don't even have to be fully all the way over someone's threshhold before they can blow your face off for unlawful entry and perceived intent to do harm. Oh, and in the general public space really.

If Will had called the cops after the fact, he wouldn't be facing any charges for his actions. Will didn't invite the guy over for a game of murder. Now, that he's moved the body and presented him to Lecter as if an offering, well...

I think Will knew Hannibal was going to try to murder him via surrogate, so the questions are 1) whether or not he was waiting to kill his assassin whenever the hit transpired 2) did he inform Jack before or after the events and did they agree to a macabre ruse because Randall was a waste of space 3) or is Will slipping and he decided to show his superiority and love above all others to Hannibal by displaying his kill like an overly affectionate cat.

Jack Crawford is a cannibal! But there wasn't anything human in that dish, lol.
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I wonder if it's a dream sequence with him bringing the body and not some other part of Randall.
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Tiny nit to pick: Will lives in Virginia, in the DC suburbs (Yeah right, there's a farm in the middle of nowhere near Dulles, give me a break). Pretty sure both Maryland and Virginia are Castle Doctrine, but this would fall under self-defense regardless, I think.

Now, I don't think Will knew Hannibal was going to sic Randall on him until events actually started coming down at his house. I don't think Will would have been surprised if Hannibal had killed Tier on his own, but I don't think he thought Hannibal would pit him directly against Tier for all the marbles.
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Will killed in self-defense.
Jack may believe Hannibal is a killer but not a cannibal.
Yay! No Alana!
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you are singing my song. ***no nameless one.***
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lol
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This is the first review I read for this show, so I am not sure how you guys are usually approaching it. But there wasn't much about the actual episode in the review, was there. Very good article nevertheless.

I haven't read the books and I keep to myself regarding this show, so I have so far been alone with my thoughts. To me, this season is about Will Graham catching Hannibal and nothing else. Of course I could be wrong, but it would be boring if this was all still about Will becoming a monster. Although the struggle that Noel explained (not killing Lecter and actually becoming the monster) is there and it is a valuable piece, no doubt. Anyways - I have seen the preview for next week and how the show announces the transformation of Will as almost complete. And here I was watching a completely different show in which Will Graham is tricking Hannibal into turning himself up. Oh well.
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To me this season is about Will's revenge. It is all about transformation. The councilman was transformed into a tree, the bodies in the horses were meant to be transformed into new life. Randall was trying to transform himself into a killer beast. Hannibal is trying to transform both Margot and Will into killers modeled after himself. Will has changed, his experiences have changed him. Jack said that Will was primarily driven by fear. Will was haunted by Garret Jacob Hobbs and he feared he would become him. He was pushed to the edge and forced to face his greatest fear, his own inner darkness, his inner demons. Peter Bernardone was an extreme mirror of who Will used to be, a reclusive animal collector, sociophobic, brilliant but misunderstood. Will has a new confidence, dresses better, and has become more aggressive and calculating. He has embraced his inner demons, but he still had his moral center in Hannibal's kitchen and in the stable where he resisted his urge to kill even though he thought the killing was justified. Will killing Randall change that, and bring him closer to the killer Hannibal wants him to be?
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yes, this is very well summarized (somehow what I would have expected to read in the review above, actually). This should be the QUESTION - Will killing Randall change something? Who will carry the prize in this game this time, Hannibal or Will? For me the answer, with the current information, is still leaning towards Will for all that we have seen. If the game is going to change, it will have to be seen next week when we can examine Will's shown reactions to killing (and those symbolic representations that play so much in the show). Although I think the bluff will still be on and everything happening will still be a trick from Will's part. From the outside, it feels as if Hannibal is too smart to fall into this, but then again, Will fell for the same last season, despite being such a huge empath and all.
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Like will said in Red Dragon, he caught Lecter because he had an advantage, "Lecter is insane". I see Will in a very black and white state, maybe with PTSD. He sees what's going around him, but he is focused on Lecter. He is no longer naive.
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Welp, this is the 2nd week in a row that the review had nothing to do with the show.

As for the rest, I'm sure the writers think that it's "clever" to lead us on and make us believe that Will's changing. It's all a cheap trick imo.
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I'd say the point should be to make us doubt if Will is actually changing or if he's playing Hannibal. I just don't know, for me there is no way that Will is changing, after what we have been presented with. Yet, the show keeps talking about that transformation, but only on the previews. So I'm going to call it a cheap trick too, really.
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Faure again! And thanks for noticing.
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I don't usually catch these things, so fun fact: Tier is German for animal.

Hannibal gets more and more poetic every episode.
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So, who else think that Will is playing Hannibal?? I mean when Margo came to Will saying that Hannibal wanted her to kill her brother. I think, this gave Will the idea or the confirmation he needed that Hannibal is trying to create mini-Hannibals through his patients. And he decided to kill Randall Tier, not with a gun, but with his hands as according to Hannibal it should feel personal when killing someone. Will has made himself into an irresistible, live bait needed to reel in a fish that has escaped once before.

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i gotta admit: scrubbed up will donned in designer duds is a rather fetching sight. i've noticed ole hannibal giving will the hairy eyeball. all it's gonna take is for will to slip into one more savile row suit and hannibal will be kicking the nameless one out of his bed like five-day old trout.
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Yes I think so too. Will is playing the role that he knows Hannibal wants him to in order to catch him. It's dangerous, and I think Will is opening himself up to parts of himself that he would rather not, but I also think he is completely in control.

At least for now.
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Jack and Will were baiting a trap to catch Hannibal. They knew he would be wily. Jack is playing the part of the total convert at this point, but Will has the most dangerous part since he is the lure dangling on the end of the hook trying to trap Hannibal. Unfortunately, the bait is often sacrificed in the capture. It is difficult to tell at this point how much Will is feigning and how much is Hannibal's influence. Will must know Hannibal would try again to influence and control him, but how does Will counteract his innate empathy to reisist that influence and save himself from his demons. He was only able to resist last year because he was able to keep his identity intact. His identity is under seige now, how much longer can he last.
Will Margot be a stabilizing force, or are their mutually damaged psyches going to get in the way. Margot did show some ingenuity in tracking Will down to his house and approaching him to compare notes about Hannibal.
Jack lost Miriam and almost lost Will to Hannibal before, and Beverly was killed. What will Jack have to do to save Will before Hannibal takes the bait.
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excellent points, but i do not trust margot. since i have not read the books i am also puzzled as to why a wealthy woman sticks around the manse being tortured by her twisted siibling instead of grabbing her platinum trust fund and migrating to the nearest caribbean paradise. the same bucks she's depositing into dr. lecter's lucrative practice she could be funneling into her own private jet.
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What grown woman her age is living at home with her parents and grown ass sibling, who isn't a broke millennial, really? She did say she wasn't the heir due to having a vagina and loving vagina. I assume she has no money to her name once she leaves the stranglehold of her family and we haven't been shown yet that she's bothered to get a degree in anything useful. She can't afford those super fly duds on a cashier's salary I imagine.
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great observations. i think margot and her brother represent a whole different kind of demented crazy that i may not be psychically ready. the horse murders the week before and the manimal attacks a couple of days ago have stretched me to the limit.
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I hope Will and Margot get more scenes together. Hannibal must feel like they are his monster children. I'm worried for Du Maurier's safety now, but maybe Hannibal won't have time to track her down anytime soon. I can't decide if she was one of his monster babies or not.

I do feel like Will is still playing Hannibal, but also that this might be too much for him. It is a very dangerous game. Hannibal has been at it for years now.
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hey, hannibal can break into a secured facility, stage an elaborate murder, kidnap someone, amputate their leg, fry it up gourmet style and still find time to make breakfast for his latest willing victim in all but a couple of hours. tracking down dr. dumarier would probably only take about five minutes given the reality this show has created.

i love will, but i do think it was classless and thoughtless of him to dangle dr. dumarier's safety in front of hannibal just to score a couple of minor points.
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I agree that this episode finally solidified why the name of the show is Hannibal. Up until now the focus has been on Will. Hannibal was this figure orchestrating everything but somehow in the background. Suddenly his conversations with Will put him completely in the drivers seat. But is Will really devolving into a serial killer or setting him up. Even though the show runner has said that Hannibal will eventually be caught I can't help but think that he will only be caught if he wants to be. Everything he does is for a reason.
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I don't think I agree with your statement about Hannibal being caught only if he wants to. I think he will do everything to can to not get caught but I don't think he gives a shit if he does get caught. Whatever situation he is in he will try to use it to his advantage.
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Yep....on reading your comment I thought about it....it would be all part of the game..
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So, So true!
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By the way, great article, Noel. I've been enjoying all of your posts and I want to thank you very much for them. Great conversation starters and always well written.
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Glad you're enjoying them!
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Off the top without going into much detail, I have to say I was disappointed. 1, because the procedural was the focus, (yes, I know we need the procedural) 2, because the coincidence btwn the perp and Dr. Lecter was way beyond the suspension of belief, and 3, because even though the boys are playing hardball now (which should make for some very exciting future shows) what Lecter did was unforgivable - bloodying up Buster really knocked points off my I Love You Hannibal scale.

Outside of that, I LOVE Margot, love her acting, her delivery. The way she said, "Angry" last week made me an instant fan. Good to see an interesting female on board again. I also loved the Hanni-Will dynamic during therapy sessions. Next week looks like murder-husbands in love. Can't wait.

And the opening fantasy? Will desires to squeeze Hannibal so hard that his head pops off and sprays everywhere? Hmm, I wonder what Freud would have to say about that. (not wondering too hard, mind you.)
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I'm loving this...how would you describe it?....saturated monochrome in Will's dreams? They're not black and white, there's too much texture, but it's still without much in the way of colors that aren't black or white. Until the blood geyser.
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was there an allusion to will squeezing hannibal's bulbous head until it popped and sprayed goo everywhere...lol?
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I finally got a sense of why the show is named Hannibal, he is the main focus of the show and the "monster" that is trying to seduce everyone -through their proclivities - to being part of his tribe.

Loved the scene at the beginning, I haven't however figured who the black-painted stag person is, I've always thought that the black one is the representation of Hannibal's true self -well the killer self- or is it that it's Will -and by proxy - everyone who has those urges to kill. I don't know. Anyway other thing from this episode, and the preview for next week is the extent of Will's playing Hannibal, because although he wants to uncover his crimes he is quite vulnerable in the sense that I do think that Hannibal, being a psychiatris and all, chooses to be this dark person with selected patients, by this I mean patients with proclivities to killing, in a way to satisfy their needs ("Killing bad people makes you feel good...") rather than for other purposes.

Margot visiting Will, yay, best scene, only compared to the white contrast of the female being killed on the snow and that last one of Randall's jumping through Will's window. Margot arc is very promising, and it was good that they compared notes, of a sort, but the medical person in me doesn't think patients on their psychiatrist office should meet or interact, that generates conflict on my part but well it's a show.

Again, thanks for the review and well I must say that I can't wait for next week's episode, that looks, promising.

PD. OMG Dr Du Maurier is SO DEAD!! Mads is such a great actor, Hannibal was so subtetly pissed that she had gone to Will and oh I don't want Gillian Anderson not to be a recurrent part of the show, but she is definitely on the menu now, or not? Let's see how that's played out. I definitely enjoy everything that happens on the show, how past moments like Bedelia visiting Will, are retaken.
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margot and will is a bad match. margot already has sibling issues and hannibal is a horrible parent. even though he sent the deranged manimal after will, we all know that will is hannibal's favorite son. margot wants desperately to be a parent's favorite child. finding out that will is hannibal's favorite child is only going to cause margot to paint a target on will's forehead. mark my words: margot spells trouble for will's plans for hannibal. she cannot be trusted. she's too needy for parental love.
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If Will was the favorite son he would not have sent Randall to kill him. Lecter is feeling threatened, maybe exposed and Will is getting close. Will is driven and will only stop if killed.
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Hadn't thought about that, but I don't believe Hannibal intended for them to meet, did he? And if so, it might be to spark that killing-desire in Margot as per your base of her wanting the one (favorite daughter). At this moment I find Margot interesting, it puts in the notion of others and of hannibal's therapy, that at the end he puts as "Not being afraid of finding who you are".
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The stag man is actually a wendigo. Wendigo is a Native American demon that is associated with cannibalism. You should look it up on Wikipedia if you want more info.
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Yes, the pissed doc is definitely going on the hunt now for DuMaurier...but will we actually see this? I'm not sure.
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Let's see how this season turns out, however knowing that Jack is going to be attacked on the last episode... makes it all a bit, uncertain, as to how things are going to develop so fastly.
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i so do not want to see dr. dumarier die. i am in love with gillian anderson and i still am recovering from her being brutally raped and beaten in the movie closure and that was almost a decade ago.

the last thing i want to see is the gruesome retribution that hannibal will level against her because she confided in will. i love will but that was a prick move for him to out dr. dumarier that way to hannibal.
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OMG I don't think I ever completely watched Gillian's character attack on Closure, that was a pretty strong movie. I most definitely don't want Dr Du Maurier to die, but as Deee mentions we might not see anything because of the series being chosen. Anyways I'd be happy with the notion of her scaping, loved the character as portrayed by Gillian.
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You would think that all the gore and violence would make Hannibal (the show) terrifying but to me it is way more terrifying that there is a Hannibal (the psychiatrist) out there efficiently coaching people (inc. children) with identity disorders to become well adjusted psychopaths with a penchant for violence. Hannibal's years long commitment to nurture Randalls and Wills is what made this episode chilling...
  • I really hope Margo's visit was her idea and not Hannibal's design
  • Phew Buster survived! I do not think I'd have taken that well. Noel, any idea why the death of animals in this show appears to be more affecting than that of humans (other than Beverley Katz's). I am also worried about Peter's new mouse friend
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Reminded me very much of The Green Mile, that scene. Del and Mr. Jingles the mouse.
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It's like because Bryan Fuller likes animals more than he likes people. ;)

More seriously, while Fuller has said that, there's something generally interesting about the show's treatment of animals and treatment of men that kind of started last week and obviously continues this week that's worth thinking about more. (One other class I took was about posthumanism and animals, and it may be worth me revisiting some of those books...if I weren't already re-reading some a thick book on television style.)
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It's the treatment of animals that made me give Hannibal a chance. After all the shows in recent years that felt they needed to kill an animal (mostly dogs, occasionally a horse) in the first episode or two to show off how 'edgy' they are, watching Will rescue Winston and add him to the pack was a breath of fresh air.

PS - I took a college course on horror novels. And my project for the course was 'The Island of Dr. Moreau'. I picked up some strains of that story in this episode.
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That makes sense... I feel a little less of a misanthrope now. Luckily no (young) children in this show for Hannibal to harm. That's even more unwatchable.
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Man. Them introducing little kids to this show would be horrible.
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I'm afraid for Will. I don't know if he is still playing or being played. Can someone please ask him this question and tell him that he is Will Graham and not whatever Hannibal wants him to be
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I think Will has a new resentment to hold against Hannibal, and that will be all about how much he hates him for making him into a monster - even though being a monster 'feels good.'
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I hope you're right!
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I think Will is "playing" Hannibal but he does have these dark thoughts/urges (mainly toward Hannibal) so that makes it easier for him. Yes he will get "dark" but his ultimate goal is to "get" Hannibal. Maybe both views are correct: he is transforming and becoming more like a serial killer but he is doing so in order to fool Hannibal so he can "trap" him. It's a role that just requires Will to explore his "dark" side and I have faith that he will be able to pull back from it once Hannibal it caught. I really think that ice fishing scene from an earlier episode is very important.

I was hoping we would meet Mason this episode, so I was a bit disappointed that we didn't meet him. However I still enjoyed this episode!
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You might be right. I still have to question the fight scene. That was emotional rather than methodical on Jack's part. Unless Hannibal discovers that and somehow turns it around on them.
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Giving you a redacted time on when we meet Mason, in case some folks want to be surprised: We meet him next week, according to the press release.

They've also released the first image of Mason, a photo taken by David Slade, if you want to look at it.
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Does he have Hannibal style lips ?
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All in all a sub-par episode for me, given Hannibal's standards, of course.

Obviously, the notion that Hannibal has been psycho-driving (was that what they called it?) many of his patients for many years has been played out well, yet the parallels to the killer of the week were weak because the killer of the week himself was just not that interesting or enigmatic.
The episode also took a lot of time to show Randall mauling folks which was kind of boring this week.
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You can study porn? Sign me up!
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Plenty of people dropped the class, actually, after the first session. Part of this is because it was listed a class devoted to musicals in the online class registry and it was very much not that.
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musical porn? sign me up. dancing ding-a-lings and jingling mammaries. what's not to love?
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Will is Hannibal's design. I love that notion; what a great way to describe their relationship, Noel.
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Thank you.
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It was nice to see Jeremy Davis back again, I really wish this is something the series would do with guest-star characters often.

I wonder what the sentence is for sewing your social worker inside a horse?
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The blood spraying in this episode was amazing.
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If Will is playing Hannibal, which personally I think he is, it's brilliant. Will is becoming the live worm to be irresistible to Hannibal. Hannibal still wants Will to be his friend, and what better way for them to become friends than by bonding over the intimacy of the killl. Hannibal can't resist the lure (pun intended), but he also can't take the bait (oh look I did it again!) without revealing himself to Will.

This show keeps getting better and better and keeps be guessing. I really hope it gets renewed for a third season.

Did you all notice the nod to Silence of the Lambs when Hannibal is explaining Randall's psychosis to Jack? He aspired to transform by building his suit, just like Buffalo Bill. Were there any other nods to the books or the movies I missed?
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I think of a lot this season is driven by Harris's novel in that those novels are all about transformation on various levels. While there's always been a transformative aspect to the murders on the show since the first season, this season has played up the notion of people themselves transforming, becoming something new.
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But is Will playing Hannibal at this stage? I know it has been his intention to, but the question is whether or not Will would go as far to kill a man to catch Hannibal? And whether or not Hannibal is much a master manipulator that he now has Will doing what he wants, albeit subconsciously.

I'd like to think not, but at the same time, the idea that Will essentially has to become his own version of 'Hannibal' in order to stop him holds such wonderful promise. This season had yet to grab me on an as much of an emotional level as the first, but after this episode, and the potential the rest of the season now has, I'm as excited as ever.

On Hannibal revealing himself to Will, while he may not have explicitly told Will he's a murderer it's gotten to the point that throughout their conversations it's obvious Will knows that Hannibal is, and that Hannibal knows that Will knows he is. I don't think its a matter of revealing himself to Will, but rather ensuring that Will legitimately trusts and understands him, and won't try to kill him again, so that they can truly be friends.
More +
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will will not truly be hannibal until he starts his own gourmet kitchen with human body parts in the fridge. i still would prefer not to have so-called friends who send maniacal manimals to my secluded home who wound my dogs and crash my living room decor.
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I think that's exactly what the show wants us to be wondering. Is Will still playing Hannibal, or is Hannibal playing Will? My two cents are, yes, Will is still playing his grand design but is also affected by Hannibal's mind games. A two way street, if you will.
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It's getting excessively murky. There are time when it's clear that Will has a great deal of control -- some his therapy session where he mentions Margot and Du Maurier, for instances -- but he's struggling with keeping that control against his desire for revenge, to kill the monster.
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I think Du Maurier is perfectly safe since I don't think Hannibal could actually leave to go hunting for her without folks going and poking around his house again, like poor Beverly.

Of course, should Du Maurier return for some ill-advised reason, well, then all bets are probably off.
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i was hoping that will mentioning dr. dumarier was an accident. will definitely loses points with me for carelessly putting dr. dumarier at risk when she gave him hope when everyone including the nameless sl..., er, nameless one, had abandoned him.
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Based entirely on the previews, I hope Frankie is correct that Will is still playing Hannibal.

I must say, I had a thought at the view of Will's house came into view that, huh, maybe this is where they might catch up with the book and Will landing in the hospital almost disemboweled is what sets Jack off. But no Will, you aren't even. You kind of really pissed Hannibal off in that last session.

That Will and Margot dynamic is interesting....
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gee, that's what i have to look forward--will being disemboweled. i gotta make sure i order gourmet pizza that night with human ingredients.
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Well, they are so off from the book, I doubt we are heading in that direction anymore (plus he lives there is a whole lot more story before Hannibal is in jail). Plus by introducing Margot and her brother, I think we might be in a whole other book. Like a book past it.
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i am kinda of scared of margot and her brother. i see some tandem gruesomeness coming up that i may be so unprepared for.
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