Hannibal Season Three: Ep. 2 – Primavera

In the last episode, we got caught up with Hannibal’s activities since the night of the Red Dinner. In this episode, we find out what Will Graham has been doing, as one of the survivors of that night.

All throughout season two, we’ve been getting strong “hints and allegations” that Hannibal and Will have an intense (and dangerous) attraction to each other. This season the subtext has definitely become text, as it’s flat-out stated by both of them, what feelings they have for each other, and exactly how far into the abyss Will Graham fell, in his efforts to bring Hannibal to justice. At the beginning of this season, Will sets out to find and re-engage with Hannibal again, seemingly not having learned his lesson from that night.

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We open almost immediately after the Red Dinner, with Will in the hospital recovering from his wounds, reliving the events of that night, and  imagining that Abigail has survived. Actually this imagining of her isn’t any different from his previous thoughts about Abigail. Will has an idealized view of Abigail, as the perfect daughter and companion, an image that Hannibal well knew, and used against him. In the real world,  he and Abigail weren’t  that close, and she certainly didn’t feel about him the way he felt about her, although since this Abigail argues with, and castigates him for his actions last season, this is probably a much truer version of her than we’ve seen from Will before.

This is something a lot of fans of the show forget. That Will and Abigail didn’t interact that much in the real world, beyond season one, and on those occasions when they were together, she was just as unforthcoming, duplicitous, and manipulative with Will, as she was with everyone else, so I was immediately suspect of this image of her. And the show  plays coy with the idea that she survived that night, until near the end of the episode.

One of the  clues, that maybe she didn’t survive, is that Abigail asks Will questions about things she couldn’t possibly know about, unless Hannibal discussed these things with her, and  I don’t believe he did. Also notice that Abigail wears the same hunting jacket that Will has imagined her wearing before, but in a dried blood color,  we’ve never seen. Her body language, and attitude, are the same as when he imagined talking with her, when he was in prison last season.

So keep in mind that Abigail did not survive that night, and Will’s discussions with her, are just Will castigating himself for being stupid.

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Will also has an image of the stag, for the last time, as it dies on Hannibal’s kitchen floor.  The Stag doesn’t represent Hannibal, (as he knows Hannibal isn’t dead), and when Will is hunting for Hannibal in Europe, the Stag  is reborn. There has been a lot of discussion about what the Stag means, but my theory is that this is an avatar of  Will. This isn’t the RavenStag, which is an avatar of Hannibal the Killer. This is just The Stag that Will imagines whenever the darker side of his nature begins to assert itself.

Will  has an image of himself, and Abigail, drowning in a lake of blood. I’ve written before, that images of drowning represent  someone’s belief that they have gotten in over the heads, or into a situation that has overwhelmed them, or that they can’t control. Bedelia has such dreams in the last episode. These dreams of drowning are Will’s though, and are tied to the knowledge that he totally underestimated Hannibal’s will to survive, and his spiteful nature.

Will’s hallucinations and images are jumbled with Hannibal’s images of the breaking teacup, that reverses itself, and becomes un-shattered. I think  this represents Will, and the reversal of its breakage represents the turning back of time, and the resurrection of their previous relationship, which is something Hannibal deeply misses, even in his anger at Will’s betrayal. It’s something that Will longs for too, as he deeply regrets the decisions he made leading up to the night Abigail died. So both men are in the same place emotionally, saddened. missing each other, and regretting what they did to each other.

Will sets out in his boat to look for Hannibal in Europe, based on conversations had during Will’s therapy sessions. On arrival, eight months later, still accompanied by the ghost of Abigail, he goes to the Norman Chapel in Palermo, Italy that Hannibal mentioned, and finds a murder investigation in progress.

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The Norman Chapel  is an actual place, which is also part of Hannibal’s Memory Palace. It’s  real, although, the skeleton on the floor isn’t actually there. That was placed in post-production by Fuller, and i think it indicates indicates Hannibal’s placation to Will. It is an image of Hannibal’s forgiveness, or perhaps, he is praying to Will for forgiveness..



One of the images of Hannibal’s forgiveness is the Vetruvian Man origami from the first episode, and the mutilation sculpture of Dimmond’s body by Hannibal. He folded Dimmond’s body into the shape of a heart, pierced it with upside down swords, and placed it in the Chapel’s foyer. Will doesn’t actually get to see the body, though. He is met at the Chapel by a Rinaldo Pazzi, a detective in the city, who has been reading of Will’s attempts to capture The Chesapeake Ripper. Pazzi shows WIll a photograph of the crime scene, and believes it is linked to Will’s arrival in the city.

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Pazzi believes that Dimmond was killed by a serial killer that he calls Il Mostro, who managed to escape capture many years ago, by framing another man for his murders. He believes Il mostro, and The Chesapeake Ripper, are one and  the same, and that Il Mostro left Dimmond’s body as a message for Will, which it is. After learning from Bedelia that Will is still alive, and has traveled to Italy to find him, Will is much on his mind. Even if Hannibal may not recognize his feelings as a form of love, Bedelia does. (I mentioned in season one, that every show needs a truth-teller, a person who sees things more clearly than the main character/s around whom the story revolves. Bedelia’s role is to say what the outsider (us, the viewer) has observed.)

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Pazzi recalls the case that set him against Il Mostro. He found the bodies of two people designed to emulate the 1482 painting, La Primavera by Boticelli, which hangs in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.

Primavera or Allegory of Spring by Sandro Botticelli

http://www.uffizi.org/artworks/la-primavera-allegory-of-spring-by-sandro-botticelli/

Hannibal was obsessed with the painting. Sitting for hours, and drawing the painting over and over, and his last murder in Italy was a reenactment of Zephyrus chasing Flora (to the right in the painting). Pazzi recognizes Hannibal’s style in the killings of the Chesapeake Ripper and believes Hannibal has returned to Italy. He thinks Will may have some insight into Il Mostro’s nature.

https://hannibalfannibals.com/2015/06/17/hannibal-the-history-of-il-mostro-fact-vs-fiction/

But Will is not helpful, as he grapples with his darker self. Will is torn between wanting to join Hannibal, and wanting to capture him. Whenever he feels he is getting too emotionally involved, too close to Hannibal, he becomes afraid that he will lose himself, (hence his dreams about drowning), and feeling a need to reassert his better self (as an agent of the law), he  tries to capture him instead. He seems to go through this cycle of longing and destruction at least twice a season.

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Observe that while contemplating Hannibal’s crime scene, Will doesn’t use his pendulum system to ease into the killer’s mindset. He knows Hannibal so well that he doesn’t need it, and he seamlessly moves back and forth between his own mind, and Hannibal’s. He hallucinates (or dreams) of the Dimmond heart, and in one of this series most grotesque scenes, it comes to life, unfolds itself into the shape of the Stag, and stalks him across the chapel floor. My theory is that this is the rebirth of Will’s murderous avatar. Just being in a place Hannibal has been, has awakened the darker parts of his nature, a part of himself he thought was destroyed that night in Hannibal’s kitchen, when Abigail died.

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Will and Pazzi descend into the catacombs underneath the Chapel. Will is searching for Hannibal, believing he can feel him nearby. Will warns Pazzi to not be so trusting, because he may harm him. Will knows that his distress will attract Hannibal and killing Pazzi might bring draw him for sure. And Hannibal is there, so he hears Will’s quiet assertion that he is forgiven. But what is Will forgiving him for? Running away and leaving him? Trying to kill him? Killing Abigail? All three? Does it matter?

 

Of Note:

Will’s mention of the church ceiling falling in is something mentioned by Hannibal, in the movie Silence of the Lambs, where he says he likes to collect church collapses.

Abigail stares at one of the priests in the chapel, and he stares back as if he can see her, as if he can see this dark spectre following Will around.

 

Posts & Articles

https://www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2015/10/the-moral-universe-of-hannibal

http://www.vulture.com/2013/06/seitz-on-hannibal-its-a-dream-and-it-hurts.html

http://www.vulture.com/2015/08/hannibal-redefined-how-we-tell-stories-on-tv.html

Hannibal Season One: Roti/Releves

Roti

I’m going to combine these two episodes into one long review because they both deal with themes covered in previous episodes from another angle, they are  both Abel Gideon intensive, and I’m eager to review the finale.

These particular episodes both deal in foreshadowing, meaning they contain elements that will come back to haunt us and the characters in season two and beyond. As I write these re- watch/reviews, I’ll be throwing in a lot of  spoilers for seasons two and three. I don’t recommend you read these without having watched all three seasons, as what I’m trying to do is thematically connect all three seasons into a kind of overview of the entire series.

Roti deals with the aftermath of Dr. Chilton’s Psychic Driving of Abel Gideon. There are parallels and echoes all over this show and in and through all the characters. Abel Gideon’s story is an echo of Will Graham’s story, about the mental manipulation between a therapist and their patient. All season long, Bryan Fuller has been introducing various concepts and themes that will play out through the next two seasons,  without a basic understanding of these concepts, it will be  difficult to understand the characters motivations later. So what happens in seasons two and three shouldn’t be a surprise for us if we closely watch the story arcs of other characters.

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Abel Gideon, while on his way to court, to testify against Chilton for mentally manipulating him into killing people, (from now on I’m going to call “Psychic Driving”, “Mental Manipulation” and “Gaslighting”. I looked up the definition and what Chilton and Lecter are doing isn’t actually Psychic Driving, which is more like  brainwashing. What they’re doing seems more like Planting/Suggestion), escapes custody and seeks revenge on all the therapists he felt manipulated or abused him somehow.  Actually, his motivations are not entirely clear, as  another one of his reasons for escaping custody was to find out if he is the Chesapeake Ripper, by drawing out the real Ripper.

This is foreshadowing for Will Graham’s  story line of seeking revenge on Lecter for what Will thinks was done to him. The difference between the two is that, in season two, Will knows exactly who he is and what he’s doing.

Chilton, while having dinner with Lecter, admits that he manipulated Gideon for narcissistic reasons. Lecter tells Chilton that his approach was too heavy handed. That once the victim knows what has happened to them, they will rebel against their programming, so Gideon’s enmity towards him is to be expected. Lecter should know this as he has done an excellent job on Will Graham. In season two, seemingly forgetting this conversation with Chilton, he will express a certain amount of puzzlement over Will’s anger at him. At some point he is convinced that he means Will no harm, and wants what’s best for him.

Chilton doesn’t seem to know enough to ask the question of how Lecter knows all this, and who he’s done it to, until well into season two. With the exception of Bedelia, most of the characters never bother to ask Lecter follow up questions about any of his assertions. Many of the things Lecter says, provide insight into his motives and mindset, even when he is discussing seemingly unrelated subjects.

Will dreams of breaking glaciers. Of some strong and stable thing breaking down. Could this be Lecter’s programming?  Does this represent Will’s mind? He has many images and daydreams of water and drowning in this episode. He feels like he’s melting, blurring into something or someone else. At least part of this is because he’s deeply ill and feverish throughout most of the episode.

Will and Alana confront Chilton about what he did to Gideon and his escape. To avoid blame, Chilton turns the discussion into what Alana did to Gideon instead, which pisses her off. During the briefing to capture Gideon, Will hallucinates that the room is full of antlers and that Jack is screaming at him. He looks ill. When Jack asks him about it,  he says its just a cold or flu. Later, he tells Lecter what happened at the briefing in a rather poetic way, which sounds lovely, but anyone hearing him say it would think he was just speaking gibberish. (I know I did.) Lecter’s breakdown of Will Graham is almost complete, as he offers himself as Will’s  mental gauge of stability, the way Jack did once.

Gideon kills two of his old Doctors by lobotomizing them. Alana is also on his list of therapists. Jack provides her with an FBI protection detail.

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Freddie Lounds gets a call from Gideon masquerading as one of his old Doctors. He tells her he wants an interview and where to meet him. She arrives at the Doctor’s office to find Dr. Carruthers is already dead, having been given a “Colombian Necktie’ by Abel Gideon.  The Corte Corbata, as it was called was practiced by the Colombian cartels, to psychologically terrorize during the political uprising period of what became know as La Violencia, during the Guatemalan Civil War, from 1978-1984. But I don’t think Gideon is making a political statement here. I think he chose this method because he thought the doctor flapped his tongue too much.

Gideon takes Lounds hostage and goes hunting for his next victim, Dr. Frederick Chilton.

Will is doing that thing where he talks to the corpse in the voice of the killer, when they find Dr. Carruther’s body. This time none of his colleagues blink an eye. I guess they’ve gotten used to him doing that. They also discover that Lounds has written about the murder before its discovery and know that Lounds is in danger.

Gideon kills Dr. Carson (Why do all the last names of the  doctors he’s after,  begin with the letter “C”?) and removes his arm. This is a message for Jack telling him where to be found. Or Lecter kills Dr. Carson. I’m unsure on that point, but the Doctor’s arm is missing, and the last place Jack saw an arm was when he found Miriam Lass’ arm at the observatory.

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Gideon has, by this time, found and kidnapped Chilton, who he intends to surgically reduce by several pounds, with Lounds as nurse and witness. He begins removing Chilton’s internal organs, starting with his kidney.

At the observatory, Will starts to follow Jack and his team, but is distracted by The Stag, standing in the forest outside. For some reason, he follows it into the woods and finds Abel Gideon. He is hallucinating badly and believes Gideon is Garrett Jacob Hobbes.

Jack and the team find Freddie Lounds alone, barely keeping Chilton alive, as he holds his innards in his arms.

Gideon is confused to be captured by Will Graham, as he was expecting The Ripper.Will takes Gideon to Lecter’s home, to confirm that its Hobbes. Lecter is somewhat nonplussed to see Will at his door with Gideon. He wants Gideon but he wasn’t expecting this. He tells Will there’s no one there because Will is totally unpredictable. If he tells Will its Hobbes, Will may shoot him, and Lecter can’t have the FBI investigating a murder in the home of The Chesapeake Ripper. The alternatives  are: Tell Will that no one is there and disarm him and get them both away, kill Will if he shoots Gideon and then hide both bodies, or tell Will its Abel Gideon and get the first result again.

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One of the most heartbreaking moments is Will pleading with Lecter not to lie to him while Lecter lies to him. Lecter has no choice if he is going to protect his interests, which always come first. I’ve noticed that Lecter most often touches Will in his most vulnerable moments, as if to reinforce his calm authority over him., in the midst of some crisis. He touches Will’s face and hands far more often than Will touches anyone in the show, except Alana.

Lecter has a few choice questions for Gideon, who has a few questions of his own. He tells Gideon where to find Alana and sends him after her. He lies to Will about going to check on Alana, while leaving Will with his car keys and his gun. There! He’s gotten both Will and Gideon away from his home, and if Will is as good as Hannibal thinks he is, Gideon will soon be dead.

Will catches up to Gideon outside Alana’s home and shoots him, which Alana witnesses. She calls for help and Will and Gideon are taken to the hospital. Jack finds Lecter sitting at Will’s bedside and he gives Jack the official diagnosis of extreme fever. Lecter believes Will is recovering well but he still asks Jack to take away Will’s licence to carry firearms. Jack disagrees with this direct request, so Lecter tries something more oblique, planting the idea in Jack’s mind, that Will is mentally unstable.

Bedelia, ever the Truth Teller, believes Lecter is more interested in how Will’s mind works than in Will as a person. She cautions him again about becoming emotionally entangled with Will. She is starting to suspect something.

 

 

Releves

 

Its been a few days and Will is visiting Georgia Madchen in the same hospital. She looks better, healthier and so does he. This is not the first time the two of them have spoken. Will can’t seem to help collecting strays, dogs or people. She is pessimistic about her recovery and his. She thinks she dreamed the death of Dr. Sutcliffe, but can’t remember the face of the person who did it, although she believes it was Will. I would say, she shouldn’t remember Will’s face, but he’s been coming to talk to her for several days, and she probably recognizes him by now.

Lecter brings Will Chicken Soup. (Remember when we talked about “Courtship Feeding” among predatory animals.) Will passingly mentions that Georgia doesn’t want to remember what happened. This is the same discussion that other characters will have about Will, in season two, about his lack of memory for his crimes.

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That evening Georgia, still in her oxygen chamber finds a plastic comb. Having taken off her grounding bracelet, she begins to comb her hair, which causes a static charge resulting in one of the more horrific deaths this season, and that’s saying something, in a season full of awful deaths. The forensic team can’t figure out what caused the fire and think its suicide but Will knows it wasn’t. Will’s compulsion to emotionally connect with the killers he captures,  is something that Will come back to bite him in the ass, in season two.

Oh look, there’s another Abigail scene I’d like to ignore, but can’t, because it might be important later. Abigail discusses her book deal with Freddie. I think Freddie suspects  Abigail might have killed Nicholas Boyle. Freddie isn’t dumb and her instincts are often very good. They just point in the wrong direction sometimes. Every time Abigail  shows up, I feel like she’s a distraction from the “real” plot. Everything slows down so we can deal with her emotional issues. I know I’m supposed to care about this traumatized young woman but the feeling  just isn’t there. (We can argue about whether or not I’m a psychopath after this review.)

Will dreams about Georgia. His dream connects her death to Hannibal Lecter, when The RavenStag impales her on its horns, after she bursts into flames. One of the most striking visuals this season, is the sight of the RavenStag, shaking the fire off its antlers.

Will prematurely checks himself out of the hospital just to confront Jack about Georgia’s death, insistent that it was not a suicide ,and that she is a victim of the Copycat Killer. Yes, she suffered from mental illness, but that doesn’t mean the forensic team should slack off and dismiss her death as part of her illness. Now that his fever has broken, and his head is relatively clear, Will’s empathy superpower seems to be working overtime to catch up to Lecter. (I sometimes think of Will’s pendulum as a kind of Geiger Counter, that oscillates faster and faster, the closer he gets to the answers to his questions, or the perpetrator of a crime.)

Jack is worried about Will’s mental state. Worries that have been planted by Lecter over time. He goes to Lecter to discuss it and Lecter is greatly interested in Will’s new theory that all the Copycat Killers are one person. Will has picked up Lecter’s scent but doesn’t know it yet. Jack thinks Abigail killed Nicholas Boyle and that Will is covering for her.  Apparently,  all the acting Abigail did, when she went to view Boyle’s body, didn’t impress Jack. Unsatisfied with Lecter’s vague answers, Jack goes to speak to Bedelia. (And can I just Squeeee! quietly here for just a moment. Its Lawrence Fishburne and Gillian Anderson in the same scene! How awesome is that!)

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Jack is beginning to question why Lecter seems to have so many complicated relationships with his patients. Something is starting to form in his mind about Lecter but it is in its nascent stages and unclear. Jack tells his forensic team to go over the Hobbes case again, looking  for every tiny detail.

Will talks to Abigail about her father…NOPE! I still don’t care about her and must resist the urge to fast forward through all of her scenes. Will says he needs her help to catch the Copycat.

Lecter and Bedelia discuss Jack’s meeting with her. Lecter insists he’s just trying to be Will’s friend and Bedelia tells him he can’t be friends when he doesn’t know what that means or with someone else who doesn’t either. This sounds unnecessarily harsh but she is right. I don’t think Lecter’s  ever had a friend. What a profoundly lonely creature. I think he’s seen other people be friends, admires it, is curious about it, and wants it. Unfortunately, he has no idea how to be friends or what that entails. I think, as he begins to learn what it means, it  changes him, but this feeling is in its infancy. His  transformation (and Will’s too) won’t reach its full flower until season three.

Will figures out that when Georgia witnessed Sutcliffe’s murder, she was framed for it, but the killer was really there to frame Will for it, and if that is true, then the killer is someone who works for the Bureau. Lecter needs to discredit Will as quickly as possible.

Will takes Abigail back to Minnesota to start at the beginning, with the phone call to Hobbes.

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A number of pieces begin to fall into place for jack too. He discovers Abigail’s secret and that Will spirited her out of the hospital. Jack  is primed by Hannibal to think of Will as dangerous to Abigail when he plays a recording of Will reconstructing Marissa Schurr’s murder.

 

At the cabin in Minnesota, Abigail gets scared and runs away from Will, believing him to be sick. Will finds himself on a plane back home having lost more time. He doesn’t know where Abigail has gone. Abigail runs into the arms of Hannibal and correctly guesses that he is the instigator of all these events, the caller on the phone ,the killer of Cassie Boyle, Marissa Schurr and the orchestrator of Nicholas Boyle’s death.

He says he did all of these things, and more, because he was curious about what would happen. For the first time, Lecter opens his ” meticulously constructed “person suit” so we can glimpse the face underneath, which is deeply terrifying. He is so dispassionate about the things he’s done, its like looking into the eyes of a giant predatory insect.

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I’m reminded of a quote from the 1986 version of The Fly:

Seth Brundle: You have to leave now, and never come back here. Have you ever heard of insect politics? Neither have I. Insects… don’t have politics. They’re very… brutal. No compassion, no compromise. We can’t trust the insect. I’d like to become the first… insect politician. Y’see, I’d like to, but… I’m afraid, uh…

Ronnie: I don’t know what you’re trying to say.

Seth Brundle: I’m saying… I’m saying I – I’m an insect who dreamed he was a man…but now the insect is awake…

 

MUSIC:

Roti – Debussy’s Les Sons Et Les Parfums Tourment Dans L’air Du Soir

Releves – Beethoven’s Ghost Trio Op. 70 No.1

 

SPOTLIGHT:  Bedelia Du’Maurier

 

Bedelia is entirely original to the series. I like to call Bedelia “The Truth Teller, as she is the only character, at least in the first season, who is capable of telling Hannibal the truth about himself, to his face, saying that he is  wearing a “people suit”. She is the only character, outside of Will Graham who”sees” into the nature of the creature she is dealing with, on her own, and is fearless enough to confront Hannibal about it.

It’s interesting that she is one of the few characters that Lecter looks up to. He mimics her behavior at times, wishes to be her friend, and attempts to be as honest as possible with her. She is beautiful, graceful and sophisticated and  I believe he covets her, like a rare vintage of wine or a piece of fine jewelry. The only time he directly intends to harm her is in the second season, when he believes her  to be a threat to his freedom, but his threats are  implied long before that, and Bedelia is smart enough to run from him. For a while.

She is not smart enough to remain entirely out of Lecter’s clutches indefinitely, and soon finds herself back in his orbit in season three. Lecter holds her to him using a combination of coercion, professional curiosity and overt threat. She is mart enough to never completely let down her guard around him, although like most people who wind up under Lecter’s power, she comes to regret it.

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In season two, she finally admits the hold Lecter has over her, and in return for immunity from prosecution, confesses to Jack that she killed one of Lecter’s patients, when he tried to attack her. She falls even further into the rabbit hole in season three, when she becomes complicit in Lecter’s crimes, while gallivanting around Europe, posing as his wife.

Gillian Anderson is absolute perfection as Bedelia. She says everything in the slow, measured tones of someone who is thinking deeply about what she is about to say, and by season three she has reached such a pure level of sophisticated camp that its unbearable. One of the most hilarious moments is when she’s speaking to the police after Lecter has fled, thoroughly maxxed out on a drug cocktail of heroin and other pharmaceuticals.

Her excuse for staying with Lecter is that he has kept her drugged and she know longer knows who she is. I didn’t think it was possible for her to speak more slowly, or be more languid than she was before. One of the highlights of season three is watching her and Will bickering at each other like a couple of Lecter’s ex-wives. She calls the two of them “The Brides of Hannibal” and the highest form of insult she can give to Will Graham, after he tells her to prepare to be eaten by Lecter, is that he is a “righteous, reckless, twitchy, little man”.

I really did love this character. It  seems like she’s in another, more Hitchcockian series, than everyone else, and its easy to see why Lecter would be reluctant to kill her.

His world is a much more interesting place with her in it.

But for the record, that is Bedelia ready to eat her own leg in the epilogue  of season three and the dinner table is set for three. So,you make of that what you can.

 

 

Hannibal Season One : Fromage/Tru Normand

 

Fromage:

The theme of Fromage is Friendship: Who has it? Who needs it? Who wants it? There’s the culmination of Lecter’s meeting with Tobias Budge, and a further deterioration of Will Graham’s mental state. This is one of my favorite episodes because we start to get some idea of what it is that Lecter wants from Will. Lecter begins to articulate his feelings for Will , but they are in a nascent stage and don’t stop him from experimenting with Will.

Will has now added auditory hallucinations to his repertoire. While engaged in his safety project (fixing boat motors) at home, he hears a dog in distress. (Will collects stray dogs and lives with a pack of them.) The sound of a hurt animal  could be Will’s subconscious warning him that he is in distress and needs help. All of Will’s hallucinations and dreams seem to have meaning.

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Tobias Budge is making violin strings, from people intestines, in the opening credits. He murders the trombonist in the local symphony and turns the man into a musical instrument by shoving a cello down his throat. He does this as a kind of love letter or invitation to Lecter, although Lecter tells Will the letter is to him.

Will enlists Alana to help him find the animal he heard earlier that day, but of course they can’t find it. The two of them discuss the possibility of starting a relationship. This is a conversation that seems to linger in Alana’s mind for some time afterwards.

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In Franklyn’s next session with Lecter, he wants to discuss his friend Tobias. Its interesting watching Franklyn progression into Lecterhood. (Its especially noticeable in his clothing choices.) Franklyn wants to diagnose Tobias as a psychopath but Lecter refuses to analyze him, although he says Franklyn may be attracted to them. The unspoken question after that sentence should be, “Are you a psychopath?” because Franklyn is clearly attracted to Hannibal.

Jack calls Will to reconstruct the trombonist’s murder. He continues to ask Will, in his own gruff way, if he’s okay with what he’s doing and Will keeps refusing to tell him that anything is wrong. At one point during the forensic examination of the body, Will directly addresses the body, as if he were the killer, and the team stares at him in puzzlement. Will is always a strange creature to them but this is new. The killers, whose minds he inhabits, are starting to bleed into all areas of his self. His forts are gradually being destroyed by the encephalitis and Lecter’s manipulations.

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Lecter and Bedelia talk about Franklyn. Their conversation closely echoes the conversations between Lecter and Franklyn about friendship. Lecter says he feels protective of her after one of her patients attacked her. Patients resenting and attacking their therapists is not uncommon. Its also a theme that will play to Lecter’s benefit in the second season. Bedelia has to remind Hannibal they are not friends. I would say  they, technically,  never actually become friends throughout the entire series. Lecter certainly likes her alive for the moment, although the threat that he will kill and eat her is always present. Lecter Likes her but she doesn’t get the same level of indulgence that Will gets. Bedelia is no more than a beautiful, but compromised asset.

Will and Lecter discuss the murder, determining that the murder is a serenade to another killer. Will is constantly being asked what he sees. For Will, the focus of the show is on “sight”. One of the first messages we get about Will’s ability, or inability to see, is from Garrett Jacob Hobbes, in the first episode when he asks Will, with his dying breath, if Will can “see”.

The show is all about the senses, not just for us but for the characters too. The entire plot hinges on Will’s ability to see things other people can’t, with an extraordinary sense that no one seems able to understand. Lecter is the most sensual creature on the show, reveling in all his heightened senses.  His job as a therapist requires intense listening (hearing), he has the most acute sense of smell of anyone on the show, he delights in the act of killing (touch), the presentation (sight) and eating of  his victims (taste). I think Lecter is fascinated by Will because Lecter is a sensory creature and Will’s superpower is the one sense he doesn’t seem to have. Lecter may revel in his senses, but Will only seems to have the one sense and its destroying him.

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Franklyn believes Tobias is a psychopathic killer and confesses this suspicion to Hannibal. Tobias said certain things to him, because he knew Franklyn would tell Lecter. Again, Franklyn fails to put 2 and 2 together, like why does Lecter need to know this, if the killings are a serenade to another killer.

Lecter visits Tobias’ music shop and they discuss music and killing  in an oblique manner. Lecter is curious but uncommitted. He invites Tobias over for dinner and Tobias accepts.

Will is hallucinating animals in his chimney ,when Alana stops by. They resume their conversation about dating,  and Will kisses her. She has to reject his advances though because she says Will is not good for her, or she for him. She’s a therapist with a professional interest in Will’s abilities, and she believes he is mentally unstable, as evidenced by the fact that Will has torn up his house while looking for phantom animals.

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Tobias says he agreed to Lecter’s invitation because he wanted to kill him. Lecter says the same. They’re like two apex predators slowly circling each other. Tobias offers to team-up but I don’t think this town is big enough for the two of them, and Lecter doesn’t want his friendship. After all only so many predators can prey in one area, and  this particular version of Baltimore already seems to have an inordinate number of them.

Their meal is interrupted by Will, who bursts in and excitedly tells Lecter that he kissed Alana. Watch Lecter’s face during this exchange. At first he seems mildly annoyed that Will interrupted his dinner, and then he  reaches some conclusion as he tells Will to investigate Tobias.  Often Lecter is very compulsive in his behavior. Its as if he can’t help himself. Given an opportunity to create chaos, he feels compelled to step into that space and make it happen. He can’t seem to NOT do it. He heard Tobias promise to kill anyone who came after him and yet, in a fit of pique (probably for kissing Alana), he sends Will directly to him. It isn’t until much later that he thinks maybe that was a bad idea.

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Will is like a little child at Christmas. I’m not exactly sure what he’s thinking but he seems euphoric that he kissed Alana. Even Lecter is somewhat taken aback at his excitement, and probably a little puzzled too,  as he tells Will that he must be happy about it because he drove an hour in the snow to come tell him that.

Speaking of which, I know the people in this world have phones, but we almost never see anyone using them. No one ever simply calls someone and when people do, its usually to set off some plot fireworks, like Lecter calling Hobbes and Miriam Lass’ phone calls to Jack. In fact,  there is a curious lack of technology in this alternate world. Freddie Lounds has a website, people have and use computers, and there are surveillance cameras, but we almost never see televisions in the background. (Of course Lecter would never be so gauche as to own one of those, I think.) No one texts anyone. Abigail doesn’t seem have a phone, for example, and what teenage girl doesn’t have a phone. Will doesn’t seem to have one, either, nor does Lecter. . Its like they’re all living in some kind of 90s limbo, where people can only speak to each other face to face. The only time we ever see anyone using technology is to advance the plot and cause mischief.

Hannibal is talking to Bedelia about the possibility of friendship with Will Graham. She doesn’t encourage him to but doesn’t discourage him either.

Will visits Tobias’ shop but is saved from Tobias’ initial attack by the sound of a dog being hit by a car. He wanders outside while Tobias eviscerates the two cops who accompanied him. The auditory hallucinations acting as a kind of spidey-sense, for Will. He goes back into the shop, finds the bodies of the cops, and fights with Tobias, who escapes.

Tobias goes directly to Lecter’s office, where Franklyn is in the middle of his last session. Franklyn, seeing Tobias covered in blood tries to talk him down out of whatever blood-fever he is in, using some pathetic airplane analogies, until Lecter gets tired of listening to his inane patter, and snaps his neck. I suspect he’d been wanting to do that for some time, (most especially after Franklyn came in one day and took his therapist chair.)

Tobias says he just killed two cops and you can just see the faint look of pearl clutching that crosses Lecter’s face. (*gasp* Will!)

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With Franklyn down, the apex predators face off. We know there’s no real doubt about who is going to win this because Lecter needs to survive long enough to be imprisoned later, but nevertheless, the fight is very suspenseful. Lecter finishes off Tobias by bashing his head in with the Stag statue, which is entirely appropriate, as that’s the figure that’s been haunting Will since the two of them met.

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Later, Will walks in with Jack, and the look of sheer relief on Lecter’s face is priceless. He tells Will  he was worried about him and they share awkward smiles. Lecter tells Jack that Tobias killed Franklyn and then attacked him. Lecter says he thought it was just a case of “poor choice of friends”.

Lecter’s next session with Bedelia occurs a several days after Tobias’ attack. He tells Bedelia he’s ready to resume his duties as a therapist. It’s interesting that Bedelia has a dead patient in her past too. Lecter asks if she feels responsible for that. Bedelia says she doesn’t.

 

 

Tru Normand:

 

Every week Will seems to add new symptoms to his repertoire of mental instability, but losing time is not a symptom of encephalitis, so there must be some other force at work on his mental condition. This episode the theme seems to be legacies, the things we leave behind.

Abigail Hobbes is confronting her father’s legacy. He left behind a daughter who now has to deal with the decision he made to kill other girls in her name, and her legacy of guilt for having aided and abetted her father’s killings.

Will Graham is called by Jack to a rocky beach in Virginia ,where a peculiar totem made of human bodies has been erected. The bodies at the bottom are all but skeletons but there is one body, perched at the top that is freshly killed. Surrounding the totem are seven holes where the bodies had been removed. Will goes into his headspace and discerns that the killer is celebrating what he’s done. He wants the world to know about it and that the body at the top is his crowning achievement.

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Will comes to awareness in Lecter’s waiting room. He doesn’t know how he got there or in what condition he drove the three hours it would’ve taken to reach the office. For the record, losing time like that is NOT one of the symptoms of encephalitis. This is something physical, and Will tries to reach that space, but Lecter keeps derailing him by making it about Will’s mental trauma. Lecter is also engaging in “psychic driving” when he introduces the idea to Will that he could hurt himself, or someone else. That’s what professional “psychic driving” looks like. Lecter is a lot more subtle with his mental manipulation than the rather ham-handed, Chilton.

Notice how Fuller introduces these concepts to us in the previous episodes so that we will recognize it when we see it in later episodes. Lecter isn’t the only person who is good at psychic driving.

Abigail finds that because of her father, she is now destitute. She owns nothing but what’s in her hospital room. This is what gives her the idea that Freddie Lounds should write a book about her. Lounds says that would and should  be her legacy. Lounds is an opportunist but she isn’t uncaring. She cares about Abigail, up to a point.

Will Graham goes to Jack and apologizes for his behavior the other day, but Jack hadn’t noticed anything different about him. Jack, puzzled by Will’s statements orders him to tell him if there’s anything wrong, but Will  says nothing. Jack keeps giving him opportunities to quit but Will won’t take them. Is it because he doesn’t want to displease Jack or himself?

Later, Alana interrupts a lecture Will is giving to an empty room, about the Body Totem. He has been hallucinating the entire time. She wants to talk about their relationship and how she’s of two minds about it, but errs on the side of caution. I think she knows Will has been hallucinating, because she asks him if he feels unstable. Will tearfully says yes and she comforts him with a hug. After a moment, Will allows himself to be comforted.

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The next day Will and Hannibal visit Abigail. They don’t like the idea of her writing a book with Freddie Lounds. Initially she is rebellious towards the two of them and resentful of Will’s interference in her decision, but Lecter manages to sooth her. You can see the family dynamic asserting itself in their interactions. Will, the mom, is trying to talk some sense into his rebellious daughter, while the calm father (Lecter) tries to be logical, while smoothing over everyone’s hurt feelings.

Will Graham is often coded as stereotypically feminine in a lot of his interactions with other women. As a mother figure to Abigail, in a bitchy rivalry with Lounds, or according to Bedelia in season three, as one of Lecter’s ex-wives. Alana is the only woman with which  he doesn’t seem to have a contentious relationship.

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Jack’s forensic team figures out the identity of the Totem Pole killer, but the denouement is anti-climactic. Played by Lance Henriksen (Sqeeee!), Lawrence Wells takes full responsibility for what he’s done, and he’s too old to put up any kind of a fight.  He thinks he’s leaving something incredible behind. It turns out that he actually killed any legacy he had. The body at the top of the Totem is his own son, who he thought was the son of a man he killed for cheating with his wife, over twenty years ago.

Jack comes to a Will with the news that Nicholas Boyle’s body has been found and he wants Abigail to identify him. Everyone is against the idea, except Hannibal, who has the most to lose if Abigail isn’t strong enough to withstand Jacks interrogation.

Abigail survives Jacks questioning but Lecter tells her that in digging up Boyle’s body, she jeopardized both their lives.

Will, alone with Nicholas Boyle, sees himself kill him and sees Abigail’s face. He confronts Lecter with his knowledge and Lecter confesses what he and Abigail did. He convinces Will to keep their secret for Abigail’s sake. This is often how Lecter cements his ties to people. Like Lucifer, he simply offers them what they most want, their fondest wishes. They don’t understand that it’s a devil’s bargain and that ultimately, any relationship with Lecter, is only to Lecter’s  benefit. Including Will. Lecter wants a friend who can understand him and accept him for who he is, and sets about molding Will into the perfect friend he needs. Wills desire to save Abigail is useful to Lecter and as a result so is Abigail.

Lecter, Will, and Freddie meet with Abigail for dinner to talk about the book. It turns out the Freddie is a vegetarian. Contrast  her vegetarianism with the way she dresses and you understand why I said Freddie’s wardrobe is just camouflage to make others think she’s dangerous. In a world full of serial killers, Freddie only masquerades as a predator.

They all agree they want what’s best for Abigail, but Freddie doesn’t seem to notice all the heavy eyeballing going on between the other three guests. Later, Lecter confesses to Abigail that Will knows about what happened between the two of them and that he’ll keep their secret. Abigail finally confesses what she’s been holding back for months.

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She knew what her father was doing and helped him to choose his victims. Later, her explanation for following Lecter is, she didn’t know what else to do , so she simply did what he told her to do.

What an unfortunate character, who survives one psychopath, only  to fall into the clutches of another.

 

 

Hannibal Season One : Potage and Ceuf

I’m reviewing these two episodes together because the second is largely a continuation of the theme from the first. The episode after these two will begin a new theme to be addressed this season and all of the themes introduced in the first half will culminate in the final four episodes.

Up til now, I haven’t really discussed the relationship between Will Graham and Hannibal Lecter. As the season continues though, things start to come into a bit more focus regarding what exactly is it that Hannibal wants from Will, why he wants it, and how Will Graham Will cope with it.

Most of these themes aren’t explicitly stated but implied by  things the characters say to to each other, usually regarding some topic other than themselves. For example, we know Hannibal is the Chesapeake Ripper, so we can infer that anything Hannibal has to say about the Ripper is really about himself. Will being empathic makes anything he says about the Ripper, about Hannibal, and most of the things he says about Garrett Jacob Hobbes can  be applied to himself, since that’s the killer, right now, with whom he most identifies. Since Will is losing his sense of self to his mental version of Garrett Hobbes,  and slowly being guided by Lecter into the Ripper’s mindset, he begins to speak less and less of how he actually feels and more  often begins to speak for Hannibal or the killers he hunts, sometimes even voicing the killer’s  thoughts out loud.

Its not that Will isn’t speaking for himself. He is. But who he is has become  blurred, although he doesn’t seem  to become aware of this until season two. Once again those “Forts he keeps building, in the bone area of his skull”, aren’t being built fast enough to contain his perceptions, and his perceptions are bleeding into who he is and what he feels.  Hannibal is fascinated with Will Graham, not just because of Will’s unique disorder, but because he can look at Will and talk to a potential reflection of himself.

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The theme in these episodes  is Family, and its one of the first episodes where the focus is almost entirely on the relationships we see unfolding, and not on the the homicide case being studied.  In this episode ,Will and Hannibal attempt to provide closure to Abigail Hobbes, for the trauma of nearly being killed by her father. The cases are  still important but now the characters are starting to speak for themselves rather than only the  murders being stand-ins for their thoughts and feelings.

This episode is also very Abigail-centric, and I hesitate to discuss this character because I find her to be one of the least compelling characters in the show. I recognize her importance to the narrative and that often discussions about, to, and around her are often stand ins for Will and Hannibal’s feelings for each other. Nevertheless, I have a really difficult time paying attention to her scenes.

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I’m not sure if its because Abigail is so much  younger than me, if its the actress, the writing, or because I just don’t identify or understand character’s like her. She’s difficult for me to see clearly, so I only partially understand her  motivations for doing anything. This character has struck some deep chords in the fandom but I seem to be immune. As a result there’s a lot about Abigail, even after repeated viewings of these episodes, I just don’t see, and as a result, can’t speak on. If you have a better understanding of her than I do please feel free to leave a comment. I welcome discussion. (These posts might appear to be me proclamating from on high, but it’s really just me thinking out loud.)

The episode opens with a dream sequence  of Abigail and her father hunting, where Garret tries to impress upon Abigail the importance of using the whole animal. That not doing so is basically murder. Hunting is a motif that works its way into every relationship and conversation on this show. Abigail, Will, Lecter and Jack are all “Hunters”, and what they hunt are people, who also hunt other people. Abigail helped her father lure  his female victims to their deaths, although this is an accusation she manages to sidestep through most of the season. Will hunts serial killers. Later, in season two, Lecter refers to Will as Jack’s Bloodhound.  And, of course, Hannibal is the ultimate predator, killing and eating his victims with impunity, but unlike Hobbes, he doesn’t honor his victims. Unlike Hobbes, Lecter believes the sole purpose of his victim’s lives are to serve his own desires.

This is often reflected in the character clothing choices, early in the season, as Hannibal wears jackets with a hunting style to them and Abigail wears outdoorsy, hunting style jackets with a more feminine silhouette. Will dresses not unlike a fisherman or dock worker.

(“Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” – Matthew 4:19)

 

Will is advised against going to see Abigail. Alana says the first person Abigail should see when waking from her coma, is NOT the person who was present during her trauma. Alana goes to meet Abigail and finds her manipulative and evasive. Jack  insists that Abigail aided and abetted her father in his murders and he wants Will to speak to her instead. There is nothing wrong with Jack’s instincts, generally. But Will is compromised by his empathy. As with Hannibal, he is too close to the subject to see things clearly. Will’s empathy becomes an endless mirror. Looking into another’s head only reinforces that reflection in his own, until he ends up in a fun-house of images that reflect everyone but him. As he starts to blur his sense of self with that of the killers he hunts,  he ends up staring into his own mind, too close to it to  see his own face.

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Will and Hannibal interrupt Freddie Lounds unsuccessful interview of Abigail, who manages to get information out of Freddie without giving her anything in return. Freddie gives Abigail Will Graham’s name and tells Abby that Will is insane. Abigail tells Will she remembers him shooting her Dad and Will accepts that with some difficulty. You can already see Will’s and Lecter’s fatherly dynamic begin to assert itself as Lecter intervenes whenever Abigail rebuffs Will’s  overtures. In this dynamic, Will is the mother-figure attempting to bond with his angry daughter and Lecter is the indulgent father figure, stepping between the two of them to keep the peace, protecting his daughter’s secrets, offering solace and stability, and remaining  neutral in their arguments, while offering support to them both.

After the meeting with Abigail, Lounds attempts to bargain with the two of them and Will delivers one of my favorite quotes: “Its not very smart to piss off a guy who thinks about killing people for a living.” And later gets chastised for this remark by Jack Crawford, while Will sits sullenly in front of his desk as if he’d just been called to the principle’s office.

Abigail expresses a wish to visit her home and Jack grants her request. Alana in her role as the Protector of everyone is often cast the part of the Naysayer. She is often “noping” someone’s ideas of what to do  or how to behave. This is probably the reason I identify with her so much. Having often been the sole arbiter of caution for  my younger siblings, I got to say “No”, a lot.

Freddie Lounds meets with Nicholas Boyle, the brother of Cassie Boyle, the victim of the copycat “field kabuki” killer. She alerts Nicholas that Abigail has awakened from her coma. Nicholas Boyle decides to swing into action. (Freddie Lounds likes to engage in, what’s known as, “shit stirring”.)

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Back at Abigail’s home, she wants to reenact the crime and alerts Hannibal to the fact that she knows he was the man on the phone. How she deduced  that is unclear, but there is a domino effect where she also determines Lecter is a serial killer when Will tells her the phone call her father received, was likely from the copycat. Watch Lecter’s face while Will makes that connection. He looks at Will with smug pride.

Abigail asks if “crazy” is contagious. Alana explains “Folie A Deux”, which is a word I recognize mostly from re-runs of the X-Files, and means “madness shared by two people”. I know that the writers are talking about Will and Hannibal and not Abigail and her father. I think the idea of folie a deux is one of the things that fascinates Lecter about Will. If he can share his madness with Will, than that makes Lecter not mad, possibly even  normalizes him and he wouldn’t be so alone.

Abigail and Will discuss what its like to kill someone. He tells her its the worse thing in the world. You can almost feel Lecter’s exasperation with Will whenever he expresses such feelings. His job now is to supplant Will’s disgust with killing, with his own feelings of power and euphoria. Just when he thinks Will is truly beginning to understand him, Will asserts himself and expresses his own actual feelings, and that’s frustrating for Lecter.

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While home, Abigail is visited by her friend, Marissa Schurr. They are both confronted by Nicholas Boyle. When Marissa hits Nicholas with a stone, Abigail witnesses Lecter hide the rock in a pile of leaves. Marissa’s mother appears and she and Marissa fight over visiting with Abigail. I get the distinct impression that Lecter chooses to kill Marissa  not just because she’s Abigail’s friend but because he found Marissa’s public, family fighting to be rude and  distasteful. In Lecter’s mind, this is not proper family behavior, at all.

That night we get our first clear glimpse of Will’s nightmare Dire RavenStag, which is an amalgamation of the deer’s head and the  crows found with the body of the copycat victim, Cassie Boyle. Most people do not see The RavenStag as a benign creature, but I’ve come across some people who do. They feel that the Stag represents Will, and is trying to safeguard him from Hannibal, but I respectfully disagree.

The next day, at Hobbes cabin, Abigail figures out that her dad was feeding the victims to her and using the victims body parts for various household items (like the serial killer,  Ed Gein). The four of them find the body of Marissa Schurr, impaled on antlers, like Cassie Boyle. Lecter attempts to deflect blame to Nicholas Boyle for Marissa’s murder, and suggests Abigail might be his future victim. This is not the first time we will see Lecter do this. He is a master of deflection.

 

 

Back at her own house again and  overcome with grief, Abigail discovers a pillow full of matted hair, and is  confronted again by Nicholas Boyle, whom she stabs with a hunting knife. Lecter advises her to cover up Nicholas’ murder and helps her hide the evidence and bury the body. So now they’re beholden to each other by their secrets, Lecter’s secret warning to Garrett Hobbes and Abigail’s murder of Nicholas.

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This is a tactic that works very well for Lecter throughout the series, compromising his accomplices (Abigail and Bedelia) through a combination of murderous activities, coercion, lies and implication that he might harm them.

 

 

Oeuf or Ceuf

The theme of this episode is also Family, continuing from  the episode Potage. We watch as Lecter works to create a family dynamic between him, Will Graham and Abigail Hobbes. Once again, using a combination of transference, assertions, and suggestions to Will and Abigail to accept him as their emotional stability. In their latest session, Will talks about his home as his emotional safety net. We will see Hannibal transferring Will’s sense of safety in his home, to himself, and more blatantly in the case of Abigail.

 

The murderer this time is a woman who kidnaps children and coerces them into accepting her as their mother,  and killing their old family, which is a surface description of what Hannibal is doing this episode, destroying Abigail’s and Will’s old associations and supplanting them with his own. He wants to become their entire focus. I think Lecter is a man who is deeply, deeply lonely, but doesn’t seem to realize it until he meets Will Graham and Abigail Hobbes.

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Abigail and Alana have another session. Alana suggests Abigail  join a support group. She tells Abigail to find someone to relate to about her experience, but unknown to her, Abigail has already chosen Lecter. Alana meets with Lecter that evening and they discuss Abigail’s case, which gives Hannibal the idea for what he does with Abigail later in the episode.

Lecter visits Will’s house, feeds his dogs and finishes one of Will’s fishing lures. One can see this as an act of dominance over Will and his pack. He is invading all of Will’s safe spaces, although later we find that, like a vampire, Lecter was invited. Later, Will and Lecter discuss their families and Will confesses that he never  really understood the concept. Lecter also neglects to mention he had a sister, telling Will he was an orphan. Will is ambivalent about forming a family dynamic with Abigail while Lecter becomes more certain that’s what he wants. Is this another of Lecter’s experiments?

Crawford and his forensic crew do some basic  detection work and Crawford invites Will to another crime scene, another dead family. They discuss why someone would turn on their own family, for their kidnapper and Will mentions The Capture-Bond, also known as Stockholm Syndrome wherein hostages often develop positive feelings for their captors, often empathizing, and sympathizing with them as a means of survival, sometimes so much, they refuse to leave them.

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This may be the case between Abigail and her father. Last episode she came to the horrifying realization that her father was killing victims in lieu of her and came to the conclusion that if he’d just killed her, there would’ve been no others, although that’s not necessarily true. Could her father have, at some point, implied he would kill her if she didn’t comply with his wishes? She lured these women to her father’s clutches. On some level, she had to know she could be next, for whatever her father was doing to the girls. I think she at least suspected, if not outright knew, what her father was doing. This would explain the massive weight of guilt that Alana senses underneath Abigail’s manipulative exterior.

In their next session, Will is exasperated with himself because he bought Abigail a Christmas gift of fishing lures (a gift that’s much too appropriate for her), although Will rethinks this. Technically,she’s been a fisherman for her murderous father. Will s angry that he can’t save the children on his new case.

Abigail expresses a lot of deep concern for her murder of Nicholas Boyle, but I think this guilt is standing in for helping her father choose his victims. Lecter spirits her away from her therapy house, takes her to his home, cooks breakfast and gives her powerful drugs. This happens just after Will’s discussion of the Capture-Bond, so we know what’s happening here between Abigail and Lecter, and by the time Alana shows up to scold him for kidnapping her patient, his plan is well under way. Alana is just in time to be the stand in for Abigail’s mother.

Shoutout to:

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The excellent Molly Shannon, of SNL fame, as the serial killer/kidnapper in this episode. She manages not to come across as a diabolical villain, seeming completely rational and motherly, (the kind of mom anyone would want) which is much more terrifying than maniacal laughter. Bryan Fuller has a way of getting the audience to, much like Will, identify completely with the killers on the show.

Actually we become complicit in the crimes we witness. The killer’s  motivations and artistry are given to us and beautiful and understandable things, like Lecter’s cooking. Like Will, we are meant to understand Lecter from his point of view occasionally pulling back from that identification to realize the horror of what we’ve just seen, or what we know. Every time we watch Lecter fix some gorgeous, delicious looking dish, we are meant to see the world as he does. Just like Will, we sometimes have to stop and reassert our sense of self, realizing that it’s people,  and that its a bad thing. Unlike Will, we can compartmentalize. We can shut off that identification with Lecter.

We can build forts in our skulls.

This is Bryan’s design.

Costumes:

Alana wears a lot of wrap dresses until season three when she switches to pantsuits.

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Apparently, on TV, if you want to depict a man as having a working class background, plaid is the way to go. Lecter also wears lots of plaid, but it’s much more subtle than what Will wears, until season two when Will starts wearing darker, more subtly patterned clothes.

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Will starts to adopt Lecter’s sense of style with a taller, slimmer silhouette,  more sweater/jacket combos and more blue, grey and black, in season two.  Contrast that with the lighter, rumpled beiges and plaids, from first season. I think the blue he wears later in  season two is just a callback to the blue jumpsuit he wears at the beginning of the season.  He also starts covering his neck more, with lots of scarves or high collared jackets. Is that a reference to  Abigail? Hannibal-Season-2-Episode-10-Will-3

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Lecter never seems to adopt any of  Will’s sense of style. He’s still the dominant influence in this relationship, so we don’t see Lecter in more informal attire until season three, when we finally get to see him in leather jackets and white jumpsuits. He’s much more relaxed around her. She gets to see his true face, the creature underneath what she called his “person suit”.

 

Music:

There’s no classical music associated with Potage.

Oeuf : Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring

Chopin’s Nocturne in B Major Op.32, No. 1

Andante’s Nocturne in E-Flat Major Op.9, No. 2

 

Interesting Tidbit:

When the show was set to air was somewhere around the time of the bombings in Boston  and the shootings in CT. Out of concern for some of the content, Bryan Fuller pulled the entire episode, but then made a free,  edited, Molly Shannon absent version, for Hulu and iTunes.