Hannibal: Kō No Mono
May 10, 2014 12:03 AM - Season 2, Episode 11 - Subscribe

Jack and the BAU team discover the truth about Freddie Lounds' disappearance, and Will and Hannibal become further engaged with Margot and Mason. Mason thinks Margot plans to get pregnant to produce an heir that will usurp him.
posted by reductiondesign (151 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
 
Damn. Mikkelsen's performance during the scene where Hannibal and Will were talking about Abigail and Mischa was amazing. Someone who wasn't familiar with the show would probably have found it wooden, but if you know the character it was both eruptive and yet exquisitely subtle. Brilliant.

But the scene where Mason was having Margot operated on was almost nauseating. Yikes.
posted by homunculus at 12:49 AM on May 10, 2014 [3 favorites]


I knew Freddie had to be alive. I wasn't sure that she'd be whole, though.
posted by homunculus at 12:51 AM on May 10, 2014


Sepinwall's review

AV Club review

AV Club walkthrough with Bryan Fuller

Another episode that played with the original Harris material and bent it toward Bryan Fuller's design.

Wait, is Thomas Harris Hannibal and Bryan Fuller Will?
posted by crossoverman at 1:08 AM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


Frankly, I'm sorry that Freddie is alive. It was so chilling when Will went after her. I liked not knowing how bad he could go. I also liked not knowing what Jack and Alana were up to, and it's disappointing that they were apparently only up to the sweetest and nicest things. Couldn't someone have been up to no good? I get why the show had to get everything squared away for the finale, but solving all the mysteries took the wind out of the sails for me. Oh well, I'm sure I'll love it again next week when everyone gets back to fighting and killing again.
posted by rue72 at 1:23 AM on May 10, 2014


I don't know how you think a show could sustain itself if Will and Hannibal were murder husbands together. Freddie had to be alive, because turning Will into a cold-blooded murderer doesn't really bode well for the narrative or viewership or the ongoing series arc.

I loved the fact that the show played its cards so close to its chest that there was no real way of knowing what was up - most shows would have given hints to Will's innocence much earlier or tipped their hand more toward his collusion with Jack.

I think knowing the canon helps. But I think also knowing how TV works means it couldn't keep the "is Will a killer" tension up for too much longer. I could have happily gone another week without knowing, but I'm glad Freddie was revealed this week.

We've still yet to see whether Chilton is alive or not. And who knows that.
posted by crossoverman at 1:37 AM on May 10, 2014 [5 favorites]


I think it would have been interesting, because the show has done *so much* to make us care about Will and get "seduced" by Will, that if it turned out he were a murderer, I think that ironically, we'd get a good dose of the same medicine he got, from Hannibal, that started him on this journey to begin with. The audience probably would have felt sick and complicit, which is pretty much how he probably felt coughing up Abigail's ear. So I think it would have been really cool and interesting on a meta level.

It would also have meant that Hannibal was right about Will. Which I think would be a lot scarier now. Why is the show trying to soften Hannibal up so much? I hate that Will is apparently playing him for a fool. I'm rooting for Will and all, but when the big bad monster can get tricked by some pained expressions and faked dental records...I dunno, that takes some of the fun out of it for me. I keep wanting not to believe that he's tricked, but that's almost definitely wishful thinking on my part.

Will could have theoretically become a murderer and the show gone on, I think, because murderous protagonists are a dime a dozen on TV. The Sopranos was a bunch of murderers, Dexter was a serial killer, basically every character on any vampire drama or most supernatural dramas generally are spree killers with ludicrously high body counts, etc. I'm not surprised that this particular show decided not to go down that path, though, and I get it, and it was probably the right decision...but it's a little dull and tidy, I think. Not just that Will got exonerated this episode, but that everyone was pretty decisively labeled Black Hat or White Hat, and there weren't any surprises in who got labeled as what or any real complications. I would have preferred something a bit messier, personally. But no accounting for taste.
posted by rue72 at 1:58 AM on May 10, 2014


I'm rooting for Will and all, but when the big bad monster can get tricked by some pained expressions and faked dental records...

You're selling the deception way short. The dental thing was a feint (thank god) but the rest was terrifyingly real. Will killed someone. Yes, in self defense, but in a far more brutal manner than strictly speaking necessary. He then willingly mutilated the corpse to make a Hannibal-esque tableau and by all appearances ate some of him.

Even the Freddie feint was very compellingly constructed. Her screams in that phone call to Jack are real. That playing them for Hannibal was theater as was the couple meals between them since...

I dunno. Will has thank god not gone full dark, but he has seriously crossed a BUNCH of lines I kept thinking were tricks but were not. If he'd really killed Freddie, I'd not have abandoned the show I think, but I'd be seriously unhappy with Will's arc.

He's supposed to lose a piece if his soul (perhaps a big one), not all of it entirely.
posted by sparkletone at 2:48 AM on May 10, 2014 [9 favorites]


The audience probably would have felt sick and complicit, which is pretty much how he probably felt coughing up Abigail's ear. So I think it would have been really cool and interesting on a meta level.

I dunno. As you say with your other examples of bad-guy narratives, I don't think the audience really does feel that complicit when they are rooting for an evil protagonist. This show does make me feel uneasy about both Hannibal and Will's actions in a way that Dexter never did about that title character. And I think playing with Will's darkness is a great way for this show to get narrative drive that it wouldn't otherwise have; mostly the premise of the show has us waiting for Hannibal to get caught, so imbuing Will Graham with a fascinating character arc is what makes this show really amazing.
posted by crossoverman at 3:53 AM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


This show does make me feel uneasy about both Hannibal and Will's actions in a way that Dexter never did about that title character.

Hannibal and Dexter are both rather more sympathetic than your typical IRL serial killer because they both have standards which allow us to pretty effectively avoid ending up their victims, and they go around clearing the world of assholes to our ultimate benefit.

Of the two, Dexter is the much less believable character (I know, I know) because he's been carefully crafted to be sympathetic. He's portrayed as being torn between his irresistable drive to kill and his father's Code. The problem is that while real serial killers have demonstrated both the irresistable drive to kill and the high organization that makes it possible for them to keep a Code and amass Dexter's mad murder skillz, you don't see those traits in the same serial killer at the same time because they are really mutually exclusive.

Hannibal, by contrast, while he is an extreme high achiever has no such inner contradiction; he is perfectly consistent with IRL sociopaths who tend to self-actualize on their powers of dominance and control. They really do tend to think of themselves as little entitled gods and Hannibal, having perfected his mad murder skillz, has more justification for that attitude than most of his kind.

Will's basic problem is that while he is capable of entering a sociopathic mindset, he is not actually a sociopath himself. Will has those feelings sociopaths lack, in his case they just have ON/OFF switches. But even when Will is operating in sociopath mode he knows what is possible when those switches are flipped because he's felt normal human feelings.

Hannibal understands Will's Becoming as a transition from normal thought to Hannibal thought, with the acquisition of power and understanding that conveys. Because it's been so long since Hannibal felt normal human feelings (if he ever could; it's likely his sociopathy was already there when the Mischa soup incident occurred) he probably does not realize just what they mean to his murder fiance.
posted by localroger at 5:33 AM on May 10, 2014 [3 favorites]


The thing is, Season 1 was ultimately all about Will Graham finding his sense of self; his mantra by the end is "I know who I am." Even in S2, when Will admits he can hear Hannibal's voice in his head, he can still distinguish it from his own in the end. Hannibal, for his part, wants very badly to believe that he can shape anyone and that he has shaped Will successfully.

I don't know that anyone really found themselves exonerated here, though. Will has not only done some awful things to actual people while Jack looks the other way, he's done so while allowing Hannibal to go on mutilating and killing and manipulating others in rather dangerous ways. Margot Verger suffers permanent damage in this episode because Jack wants Hannibal as a trophy and Will wants to know the why of Hannibal's actions.

That this lets both Will and Jack pretend they're bringing Hannibal in "by the book" or "with real evidence" while ignoring every other rule they don't like suggests that Will has been turned by Hannibal -- not into a serial killer, but certainly into the kind of person who manipulates others and accepts or abets a lot of awful things out of intellectual vanity and mere curiosity. There's not a huge difference between Hannibal collecting church collapses and Jack collecting "evil minds," nor in Will happily anticipating the feeling of contempt much as Hannibal's murders are entirely about anticipating and then savoring his contempt for his victims.

Say what you will about Tony Soprano, driven by pragmatic concerns, or Dexter, driven by a compulsion that he channels into vigilantism; Will and Jack, like Hannibal, are or have become voluntary aesthetes of murder, metaphorical and literal cannibal gourmands without even the excuse of any meaningful pathology.
posted by kewb at 5:41 AM on May 10, 2014 [4 favorites]


The problem I have with people saying that will's approach has turned or contaminated him even without his becoming hannibal's disciple - it's that all other options have been closed off. He's tried every legit and above-board way to expose hannibal that he can, and look how that turned out.

I used to hate it when people called abigail "manipulative" when she had lived her life in a situation where all honest or direct paths were closed off to her, or at least she believed they were (she was a child and, by the time we meet her, a de facto helpless teenager even if technically at the age of majority).

We've seen Will try everything else, and now he's in this situation, it's hard to say he's become this or that when the given circumstances offer him no real options beyond what he's doing now. There are two things will could have done differently: he could have emulated Bedelia and left, or he could have shot hannibal in his kitchen. The first, he couldn't really do now i don't think, but he had a brief window of opportunity immediately on leaving jail just to leave the dogs in alana's care and disappear. I don't know how well he could have made it work in that situation but he would have had a decent chance, he's pretty wily by now. However, the window of opportunity closed very very quickly, if you assume that it's not OK to just knowingly let hannibal carry on as he is, with chilton in jail and traumatized and bodies piling up left and right. I don't think will could morally have just gotten out of dodge knowing that another person had been wrongfully imprisoned like he was, even if you chalk the rest of it up to "eh, the BAU like having a cannibal on staff, let them live their lives according to their values, I'm outta here".

The second, that wouldn't have worked either, not if you assume he should have killed hannibal to save the lives Hannibal has taken in the meantime. Because nobody else would have learned anything from it, they would have assumed they were right all along and just carried on as they were. Most likely it wouldn't even have saved any lives because they would have immediately recruited a new "real" ripper to take hannibal's place, just as they immediately recruited a new "scapegoat" ripper to take will's place as soon as he was released!

And that is just assuming that 1) wanting to protect Hannibal's future victims and 2) wanting to bring him to whatever form of justice, are nothing more than excuses. If you do take those notions seriously and not just as an excuse, again, will has no good choice except to carry on trying to walk that line.

I dunno, it's not that i disagree when people say that will is compromised now, but i haven't yet heard anyone propose anything better that he could be doing.
posted by tel3path at 7:59 AM on May 10, 2014 [2 favorites]


Yeah Will is utterly utterly trapped, the only way out is to be as pliable as possible, he even named it in the first season. Capture bonding. His show of seduction has to be so real it almost fools himself cause otherwise he's a dead man ( or and the threat that Hannibal would kill people he's close to first.)!
posted by The Whelk at 8:07 AM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


plus, for all Will knows, Hannibal could have even more people stashed away in pits like Miriam, so I can understand Will wanting to find out where all the bodies are buried (figuratively and literally) and then getting Hannibal locked up, rather than just shooting him.
posted by celestine at 8:25 AM on May 10, 2014 [2 favorites]


What does Will even have now, though? Jack apparently believed him way back when Chilton got shot. Freddie ended up believing him largely of her own doing, and then he staged her death to get her out. Alana is confused as hell. But it's not like now they've got this pile of extra evidence on Hannibal, he hasn't even killed anybody lately, only Will has. All this time and effort, it's just gotten Will bff with Hannibal, but not really anything else. I don't really know what they're hoping to get on Hannibal in order to bring him in, but whatever it is, they still don't have it.
posted by rue72 at 8:31 AM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


imbuing Will Graham with a fascinating character arc is what makes this show really amazing.

Has he had a character arc since he got released from the "hospital," though? Or did he just pretend to be tempted and to change for Hannibal? Because I interpreted the Jack reveal as he was just undercover and faking everything all along. Since he apparently doesn't feel much/any guilt about Randall, he wasn't even pushed further than he was willing to go.

That this lets both Will and Jack pretend they're bringing Hannibal in "by the book" or "with real evidence" while ignoring every other rule they don't like suggests that Will has been turned by Hannibal -- not into a serial killer, but certainly into the kind of person who manipulates others and accepts or abets a lot of awful things out of intellectual vanity and mere curiosity. There's not a huge difference between Hannibal collecting church collapses and Jack collecting "evil minds," nor in Will happily anticipating the feeling of contempt much as Hannibal's murders are entirely about anticipating and then savoring his contempt for his victims.

I agree that Will doesn't have any real moral high ground here, but it seems that this is just who he is and how he does. There's no reason to think there would be an inherent difference between him and Jack or Hannibal or anybody else, is there? If he thought there were some inherent difference, he probably wouldn't have been so intrigued as to why Hannibal was interested in him in the first place, because that difference would have been the obvious reason. It seems like this is just a cop-with-a-grudge story, and all we've seen has been the creation of that grudge. Maybe I'm missing something, though.
posted by rue72 at 9:20 AM on May 10, 2014


Man, Michael Pitt does batshit sociopath so well (see also Haeneke's American version of Funny Games) that I think I'd be afraid to meet him in real life. And that whole soaking up the tears and making a cocktail with them is somehow the most upsetting thing I've seen on this show so far, and that's saying something.
posted by dis_integration at 9:43 AM on May 10, 2014 [3 favorites]


Since he apparently doesn't feel much/any guilt about Randall

Disagree with this. Randall talked back to him when he empathed the murder tableau, I think Will definitely has some guilt over the situation. Even if he doesn't feel bad for killing him in self-defense, he clearly feels pretty bad about stringing him up like a spectacle.

I guess I also don't understand why it isn't a story arc for him just because some of the things he had to do were an act for somebody else - it still deeply affected him to do those things. He's Will Graham, remember? It deeply affects him to do anything.

It seems like this is just a cop-with-a-grudge story

That's a massive, incredible understatement of what's been going on with this show. I mean, first of all, he has the grudge because the dude fed him human meat, framed him for a bunch of horrific murders, drugged him into seizures, gaslit him about having encephalitis, murdered nearly everyone who believed him or cared about him... and then to bring the guy to justice, he eats more human remains, kills someone, pretends to murder more people, creates a crazy murder tableau, pretends to be his murder husband, has to be terrifyingly close to the guy who did all this stuff to him... That's a little above and beyond what you're characterizing as a cop grudge story.
posted by dialetheia at 11:25 AM on May 10, 2014 [4 favorites]


Will's been faking being Hannibal's murderhusband all along, but he has also felt the pull of the wendigo because of his 'empathy disorder'. The things he says about killing Garrett Jacob Hobbs were all true.

I am very glad they revealed their hand now, instead of letting us think Freddie was still dead for another episode (or through the break!). And not just because I've been saying in the other threads that it's all a huge ice fishing secret agents plan that's been in play since Will got out of jail.

Because as much as I like watching Hannibal get seduced by Will, I don't really want to watch a show that's all murderhusbands, all the time.
posted by lovecrafty at 11:53 AM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


Not without some tounge at least.
posted by The Whelk at 11:58 AM on May 10, 2014


They did basically make out when they were eating the ortolans, yeah?

And we might get a Judas kiss...
posted by lovecrafty at 12:01 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


You mean the scene where they were deliberately shown swallowing the hot juices gushing down their throats? Yeah.
posted by Justinian at 12:05 PM on May 10, 2014


Finally saw the first act. I know I shouldn't have spoiled myself ahead of time but i accidentally left the tab open overnight and i have no self control, so.

Class, who remembers what birds symbolize in Italian slang?

"After my first ortolan I was euphoric, power over life and death blah blah blah" really, hanni, did nobody teach you about safe ortolan?

"Traditionally we should shroud our faces, but i don't shroud my face from the guard..." Ah that explains it. BTW are we sure alana's not pregnant?
posted by tel3path at 12:17 PM on May 10, 2014


But of course hanni would think that practising safe ortolan is for the...

I'll get me coat.
posted by tel3path at 12:18 PM on May 10, 2014 [2 favorites]




UNPROTECTED ORTOLAN
posted by The Whelk at 12:21 PM on May 10, 2014


Just saw second act.

Jack isn't giving the Wtf do you guys need a room sideeye any more. Also is there a reason why fried!freddie's teeth were pristine? Should they be?

And, hanni was so totally in his own world with will there, i could believe all this whooshed right over his head.

That was some tender hearted stork reveal there between will and margot. Perhaps it's for the best that he won't have blood ties to the verger family for the rest of his life, eh.

Mason, you absolute shit. That btw was way, way, way more monstrous than showing or telling of him beating or molesting kids, btw.

That was some kind of smackdown when he handed alana the gun. She is still talking (in private) in terms of hannibal not being good for will. Now, why would you think that, alana dear? Surely hannibal can only influence others for good, so where could all these evil thoughts be coming from?
posted by tel3path at 12:32 PM on May 10, 2014


And that was a helluva lot of action to pack into one act. I do not get it about people saying there's a lot of "filler".
posted by tel3path at 12:32 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


The whole ortolan thing is messed up. They can't possibly taste THAT good, can they? I mean, they're one of those things decadent rich folks groove on just BECAUSE they're so rare and evil, right? Like fetal caracul wool or elephant ivory.
posted by lovecrafty at 12:34 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


"Traditionally we should shroud our faces, but i don't shroud my face from the guard..." Ah that explains it. BTW are we sure alana's not pregnant?

1) Shroud my face from God. The whole convo is about Hannibal's massive god complex.

2) Yes. The alternate pregnancy Martha referred to on twitter was the ravenstag birthing a Willdigo. Alana is just Alana and she's finally starting to KNOW.
posted by sparkletone at 12:38 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


On ortolans and whether or not they're actually tasty, here's Jeremy Clarkson sampling one.
posted by figurant at 12:45 PM on May 10, 2014


Interesting about Mason. We despise in others what we fear in ourselves. Mason is hannibal's bad taste twin from a mirror universe. No wonder he fucking hates him.

Hannibal does not have a moral code, only a code of taste and sentiment. An orphan brother harming his orphan sister goes beyond bad taste for our Hanni and is OFFENSIVE. And systematically harming orphans, like hanni used to be, well, hannibal perhaps can feel only his own pain, but that is his own pain right there.

Ooh Mason, you have actually met someone who is more powerful than you, do you get it?

Also "are you profiling me, Dr bloom?" As in, are you thinking in the manner expected of a forensic psychiatric consultant to the BAU, at last?

Bedelia noticed Hannibal's patterns by the second iteration. Bedelia does not, let's say, come across as a particularly warm fuzzy person, though her actions demonstrate a nonsentimental, principled love towards people she hasn't met yet.

With alana, the way to get her to recognize the pattern was to repeat it in someone else. She's finally getting analytical again.
posted by tel3path at 12:50 PM on May 10, 2014 [3 favorites]


I think ortolans are pretty painful to eat. Scalding and sharp.

Anyway, i was kidding about the shroud. Maybe I haven't been paying attention but i guess I was expecting martha de laurentiis to have the normal-guy opinion about all this, and i didn't realize she'd get a kick out of a wendigo birthing a wendigo. Guess wendigo should have paid attention to who was sponsoring last week's episode.
posted by tel3path at 12:53 PM on May 10, 2014


I'm glad they revealed Freddie is still alive quickly, since I never believed otherwise and having the show extend that game I'm not buying into any longer would've been tiring.

Didn't Red Dragon (the movie at least) also end with some teeth trickery and a burnt body that Frances Dolarhyde used to fake his death? At least that's the way I remember it, so when Lounds' body came up burnt and they identified her using the teeth I was just about 100 percent sure that Fuller was doing more remixing here and that Lounds was alive.
posted by john-a-dreams at 12:59 PM on May 10, 2014 [2 favorites]


I'm still totally on board with Denny's sponsoring S3 and episode titles being menu items....

MOON OVER MY HAMMY (the ham is people)...
posted by sparkletone at 1:00 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


Aww yuss! "A signal!" And dr bloom has finally bloomed into dr bloom! The clue phone rang, it was for her, she answered it.

Oh Hannibal, what a horrible guy you are "you saw part of her" and as for that thing about God being unmatched for wanton malice, weeellll, a counselor once told me that people are usually talking about themselves, and, there you were.
posted by tel3path at 1:04 PM on May 10, 2014 [2 favorites]


Isn't it funny nobody noticed the sparkly grin on that corpse, though, do they have to clean the teeth to identify them or what?
posted by tel3path at 1:05 PM on May 10, 2014


It's hard to rate on a scale how terrible most of the things Hannibal has done are, even just this season... But that line about Abigail has to rate as among the worst. It could not have been designed to more upset his murder husband....
posted by sparkletone at 1:06 PM on May 10, 2014 [2 favorites]


Are we allowed to talk about remixes of book canon up in here? It will be tough to talk about this particular series without it.
posted by tel3path at 1:07 PM on May 10, 2014


Stolen from another live-journal "Freddie Lounds lives in that conference room now. There's like a nest of sleeping bags and combs and discarded pizza boxes.
posted by The Whelk at 1:08 PM on May 10, 2014 [5 favorites]


That, i think, might just about legally qualify as "intentional infliction of emotional distress".

But i think actually the legal standard for that crime is even worse, so contemplate that for a moment.
posted by tel3path at 1:08 PM on May 10, 2014


Hannibal hears the snap of an afro pick as freddie treads on it in the darkness. Her cover is blown.
posted by tel3path at 1:09 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


Mason's actions are GREAT if you assume Hannibal was all "buwahaha I'll will subtly and careful plant the seed into his mind and then water it in my dark garden until he finally comes to the inevitable conclusion-" and then Mason just THROWS A CAR AT THE PROBLEM cause he's Mason Fucking Verger and he is NOT SUBTLE.
posted by The Whelk at 1:10 PM on May 10, 2014 [10 favorites]


It's so strange to have will and hannibal not employing their doublespeak. We're all primed for elegant metaphors and puns and now it's just "So hey why did you kill our Murder Daughter?"
posted by The Whelk at 1:14 PM on May 10, 2014


and then Mason just THROWS A CAR AT THE PROBLEM cause he's Mason Fucking Verger and he is NOT SUBTLE.

Yes, Hannibal is going to have to crack his knuckles and stoop a bit to reach Mason's level. I really think this is now a much better setup than Harris arranged in Hannibal; in the book Hannibal's motive for leaving Mason alive was always a bit thin, but now it's an elegant response to his mutilation of his sister, a thing Hannibal is likely to take personally because of his own distant sister problem. It also sets the stage for Margot to go sperm hunting for her future heiress-wife without making her a self-mutilating freak.
posted by localroger at 1:15 PM on May 10, 2014


Yup.

Oh hanni, flaunt that orange and blue.

Alana still thinks it's a good idea to ask direct questions of hannibal? Oy. Even blue eyeshadow now.

Caroline Dhavernas definitely looks pregnant, esp compared to the start of the season.
posted by tel3path at 1:17 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


Also Margot NEEDS to be in the room for her brother's facial.

Hell now I want her to do it.

OH GOD a MARGOT/HANNIBAL TEAM UP VS A WILL/MASON TEAM.

OH MY GOD.
posted by The Whelk at 1:18 PM on May 10, 2014


But that line about Abigail has to rate as among the worst. It could not have been designed to more upset his murder husband....

Wait, which line? Maybe I'm an eternal optimist, but I thought he was saying that once Will put his little broken teacup self back together again, that he could get the truth about what went down with Abigail?

It also sets the stage for Margot to go sperm hunting for her future heiress-wife without making her a self-mutilating freak.

Oh my fucking god, if Margot doesn't say screw the money at this point, she's an idiot. SUNK COST FALLACY MARGOT.

Obviously Mason just wants them to be creepily together no matter what, he's someone she should appease and/or kill, not someone threats work well with. Margot needs to talk about it with Will, he obviously knows that game well.
posted by rue72 at 1:19 PM on May 10, 2014


And then, right, alana says "i feel empty like i've given blood" yeah that is because your boyfriend is a vampire

"You've given much more than that" i don't feel good about how literally we ought to take that
posted by tel3path at 1:20 PM on May 10, 2014 [3 favorites]


Oh! Fun fact: The red surgeon's scrubs were (as noted in the other thread) evocative of Dead Ringers for sure, but ALSO: Star Trek. Whenever they had to do Serious Operations on Star Trek that didn't involve just waving a doohicky over someone, they wore blood red Dead Ringers-style scrubs. And guess who wrote for/co-produced on Star Trek (DS9 and Voyager flavors)?

Bryan Fuller.
posted by lovecrafty at 1:21 PM on May 10, 2014 [10 favorites]


No, the baby would be the new abigail reverse-reassembled like the teacup.
posted by tel3path at 1:21 PM on May 10, 2014


Hannibal was tipping off Mason to get rid of that baby as soon as Will said he would be a good father. Will tried to cover and say he wasn't attached, he was just anticipating attachment but OOPS TOO LATE. Hannibal already knew it would hurt him to get the zygote killed, so he did it. I think he figured the game would get strung out for longer than it did, but Mason's nothing if not gung ho.
posted by rue72 at 1:23 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


SUNK COSTS FALLACY MARGOT

I don't think saying "screw the money" is an option for Margot, because even defaced and paralyzed Mason will have operatives capable of tracking her down wherever she tries to hide. She will not risk using the cattle prod to harvest Mason until she is sure the next step will be his death because, as he explicitly threatens at that point in Hannibal, he will not let her win and will have her killed if he can should she try it.

And at that point, with Mason gone, there's no point to walking away from the estate if it can be secured, and lots of reasons both of the SCREW DAD and having never had to live like a normal non-rich person to go for it.
posted by localroger at 1:25 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


I don't think saying "screw the money" is an option for Margot, because even defaced and paralyzed Mason will have operatives capable of tracking her down wherever she tries to hide.

This is exactly why she needed to not ever waste time on this whole baby/money plot, though. Nine months of pregnancy resulting in a helpless infant is just ridiculous in terms of risk, there's honestly no way to hide something like that from Mason -- whether the pregnancy is Margot's or her gf's. Forget it -- kill him, pawn some crap, and get out. Greed is going to be the death of her, just like it's likely to be the death and/or destruction of him.
posted by rue72 at 1:28 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


she needed to not ever waste time on this whole baby/money plot

Yeah she didn't think that through completely. She may not have realized until just now how violet Mason is capable of being even toward her.

Greed is going to be the death of her

Actually I'm guessing it will work out quite well for her, although taking five or six years to do so. I tend to doubt Fuller will change that particular resolution too much because it's rather poetic, especially with the Newer Improved-er More Sympathetic Margot.
posted by localroger at 1:32 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


I KNEW I RECOGNIZED CARLO! IT'S DANIEL KASH OFF DUE SOUTH!!!

margot verger, do you know how many giraffes were killed so you could have those eyelashes?

Alana is now wearing green.

Good idea of will's pitting mason against hannibal.

Plus, what was the damning evidence? Oh I guess freddie had hold of it.
posted by tel3path at 1:36 PM on May 10, 2014


Actually that gets me thinking -- Will might still be hanging around in the Hannibal era here because he takes the place of Barney for Margot. I like the idea that Margot has to eventually decide whether to kill Will or buy him off with a satchel full of money.
posted by localroger at 1:37 PM on May 10, 2014


I think you guys might need to reconsider your assumption that the upcoming caviar dinner is not people.
posted by tel3path at 1:38 PM on May 10, 2014 [2 favorites]


THE CAVIAR IS HUMAN OVA?!?!?!
posted by localroger at 1:40 PM on May 10, 2014


No that's ...impossible they're too small?
posted by The Whelk at 2:01 PM on May 10, 2014


I don't think they are human ovum but not because they're too small, rather because they're...*cough* not period.

I think the human is in the aspic, just like it was probably in the consommé in the trout dinner. Maybe Hannibal is down to the dregs of his freezer, using up that old human stock he made months ago.
posted by rue72 at 2:04 PM on May 10, 2014 [3 favorites]


Class, who remembers what birds symbolize in Italian slang?

Fuller's walkthrough was fairly specific about the subtext:
The crunching of the bones is actually so sharp that it cuts up the inside of your mouth, so not only are you tasting your own blood but you’re tasting this beautiful songbird at the same time, and it just seems so wicked that it would be an appropriate communion wafer for Hannibal Lecter to offer up in that regard. The scene has a very bizarre sexuality to it, because it’s all of these close-up shots of things going in men’s mouths and then swallowing and eye rolling, so it’s hard not to think of the sexual subtext of what’s happening between these two guys at the same time. It felt like a lot was going on in the scene, not only just the communion but the exchange of body fluids, in a way, and swallowing for God’s sake.
(Also, I suspect "the one that I sort of gave a cursory read to was Hannibal Rising" is a polite way of noting "yeah, I hated that book too.")
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 4:47 PM on May 10, 2014 [2 favorites]


Will killed someone. Yes, in self defense, but in a far more brutal manner than strictly speaking necessary. He then willingly mutilated the corpse to make a Hannibal-esque tableau and by all appearances ate some of him.

Yes; he didn't kill Freddie but it's still very far from okay.

Although I suspect that what we weren't shown immediately after Will killed Randall was an awkward phone call: "hi Jack, yeah, Hannibal sent Randall Tier to my place and I, um, he's dead. I'm gonna take the body to Lecter and see what happens. It might get weird."

Rewatching the previous episode, in which the Tier tableau is unveiled and Hannibal and Will talk in guarded riddles about what it means: there's a couple of "oh, you guys" side-eyes from Jack that make me think he knows exactly what's going on.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 4:54 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


I think people overlook that Will has tried to kill three other people too (Hannibal, Abel Gideon, and that one social worker a couple episodes ago). In the second episode he could've shot to kill the Mushroom farmer, but didn't, so it feels like Hannibal has succeeded at least a little bit in molding Will.
posted by john-a-dreams at 6:16 PM on May 10, 2014


It's worth bearing in mind, once again, that the original tagline for Red Dragon was "Enter the mind of a serial killer and you might not come back." Still there on the IMDB page for the Manhunter movie, made before it became All About Hannibal. It was this inner conflict of Will's -- not the qeust to catch the Tooth Fairy -- which was the central and most important conflict in the book where Thomas Harris introduced these characters.

It's implied strongly that Will walked right up to that point of no return in the process of catching Hannibal, and possibly not just because Hannibal gutted him in the OMFG Wound Man scene. Will is afraid of a lot of things in Red Dragon, because he has a family to protect and he wants to be there for them, but most of all he is afraid of crossing that threshold again and not coming back.

I think Fuller's doing it justice.
posted by localroger at 6:25 PM on May 10, 2014 [3 favorites]


Who set up the Shiva effigy, Will or Hannibal? I didn't really see much evidence either way for who was responsible.
posted by dialetheia at 6:31 PM on May 10, 2014


Shiva could still go either way, but at the moment I'm guessing Will with the nodding consent of Jack & co. Hannibal would appreciate the show and he would enjoy knowing that his murder fiance is focused on his godlike Becoming.
posted by localroger at 6:34 PM on May 10, 2014


Will is afraid of a lot of things in Red Dragon, because he has a family to protect and he wants to be there for them, but most of all he is afraid of crossing that threshold again and not coming back.

Except that doesn't the episode last night imply that he was never in danger of crossing that threshold in the first place, that he's been in control this whole time? I thought that *was* his internal conflict, but then they seemed to just wipe it out.
posted by rue72 at 6:34 PM on May 10, 2014


Except that doesn't the episode last night imply that he was never in danger of crossing that threshold in the first place

I think we passed the point where Will was in serious danger of crossing the threshold back around S2E4. The big danger in this version of the tale was Will's encephalitis, which weakened his hold on his normal self. But at the moment instead of letting that door close he's holding a foot in it because it's useful to let Hannibal think he's still on the other side. He has to be an attractive enough lure for Jack to reel Hannibal in.
posted by localroger at 6:38 PM on May 10, 2014


Hannibal would appreciate the show

I thought that's what the flaming wheelchair was for though. Hannibal wasn't even there when they were examining the effigy, right? If it had been intended for Hannibal, it seems like they'd have shown us his reaction and he'd have been present in that scene, like he was for Roland Tier's tableau.
posted by dialetheia at 6:38 PM on May 10, 2014


Hmmmm I thought Hannibal was there for the flambe exam. If he wasn't then it very well could have been Hannibal doing an homage to his murder fiance's becoming. Like I said, we're still at the piont where that could go either way.

In any case it's clear that the alternate Hanniverse is a place where desecration of the dead is not regarded in quite the same way as it is in ours, and propping up a corpse like that (or like the Tier display) might just be normal Law Enforcement bait-setting in the service of catching Art Murderers.
posted by localroger at 6:43 PM on May 10, 2014 [2 favorites]


I think we passed the point where Will was in serious danger of crossing the threshold back around S2E4. The big danger in this version of the tale was Will's encephalitis, which weakened his hold on his normal self. But at the moment instead of letting that door close he's holding a foot in it because it's useful to let Hannibal think he's still on the other side.

I actually think we might have passed that point somewhere between the seasons, since he starts the season telling Hannibal to come visit him, which Bedelia warns is just a sign he wants to manipulate Hannibal. Which makes me feel like his character development stalled, at the latest, around S2E5. So what has been the point of the episodes since then, just Hannibal's character development? He's the only one who has had any, if Will was static, Alana was floating along in ignorance (apparently), and Jack started believing Will around then because of Chilton and has just been biding his time patiently since then (apparently). Has Will not even had an internal conflict for half the season or more? Do Alana and Jack not even have internal conflicts at all?
posted by rue72 at 6:44 PM on May 10, 2014


Oh the danger is there. And he did cross a number of thresholds--killing Tier with his bare hands, knowingly/willingly eating human flesh, cozying up to Hannibal like a good murderhusband when we really know he--how did he put it?--is a thousand light-years away from ever being Hannibal's friend.

The real threshold he has to watch out for is killing Hannibal. Man, he wants to do that. Doing that would feel really damned good. Remember the sweaty dream about tying Hannibal up and strangling him via elk.

He's come close. First with Matthew Brown, when Will was in jail and probable despairing of ever being able to stop Hannibal from hurting more people. Then when he went to Hannibal's house and held a gun on him. I think he was very much tempted to just shoot him and be done with it. Then with Clark Ingram, who was a Hannibal stand-in. (I think there's a good chance that was part of the act, though... since he waits and doesn't pull the trigger until after Hannibal's hand is on the gun, blocking the hammer. The temptation was there, though.)

But as much as he's tempted by the dark side, I think his real desire--to reveal Hannibal as the monster he is to the world--is stronger. Even in the sweaty elk strangulation dream, what he wants is for Hannibal to admit what he did.
posted by lovecrafty at 6:52 PM on May 10, 2014 [3 favorites]


It's so strange to have will and hannibal not employing their doublespeak

I very much enjoy watching with my teenager, because she's like DAMN, THIS ENTIRE SHOW IS IN SUBTWEETS.
posted by mothershock at 7:51 PM on May 10, 2014 [7 favorites]


Shiva was definitely Hannibal in my mind. Will had already done the #hotwheels.

there's a couple of "oh, you guys" side-eyes from Jack that make me think he knows exactly what's going on.

Yeah. It already played as a kind of disgust at how Will and Hannibal were bouncing off one another, but with the extra knowledge that he's very, very definitely in on the game.... He doesn't like watching Will do to himself what's needed to draw Hannibal out.
posted by sparkletone at 9:35 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


DAMN, THIS ENTIRE SHOW IS IN SUBTWEETS.

So amazingly true. Stealing this description.
posted by sparkletone at 9:37 PM on May 10, 2014


Shiva was definitely Hannibal in my mind. Will had already done the #hotwheels.

I wonder if Hannibal could tell it wasn't really Freddie.
posted by dialetheia at 9:56 PM on May 10, 2014 [1 favorite]


I wonder if Hannibal could tell it wasn't really Freddie.

I feel like this is probably what trips Will's plan up - that Hannibal knows that he might have been played w/r/t Freddie, because the body was a charred mess and dental records are east to "fake". Now, I think Hannibal buys that Will is turning to the darkside - because Will presented him with Randall Tier and then joined in on the murder tableau. But if Hannibal does suspect at any point that he's being played, I think the Freddie corpse is the key to unlocking that - if Fuller wants to go that way.

At some point Hannibal must realise they are on to him. How that plays out will be very interesting. And at this point, Will's plan has been executed perfectly. So I can't imagine that can go on. Hannibal won't be fooled into that jail cell. And he's still not giving anything away.
posted by crossoverman at 4:31 AM on May 11, 2014


Given the way the last episode ended, Hannibal's gonna know pretty much as soon as Mason comes for him.
posted by kewb at 5:35 AM on May 11, 2014


Hannibal already has twigged that they're on to him, although "they" at this point may only include Alana.
posted by tel3path at 5:37 AM on May 11, 2014


Yeah, it's irritating that even when she's finally getting the hint, Alana seems to think she can *scold* Hannibal and Will until they stop being sociopathic. The show has not served that character well, and this is a show that even serves corpses well.
posted by kewb at 5:45 AM on May 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


this is a show that even serves corpses well

I see what you did there.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 6:05 AM on May 11, 2014 [5 favorites]


I think she's a very realistic character if you look at her, and the show, in a certain frame. If the show is in many ways, "earthly" ways, about institutional betrayal and betrayal blindness then her character is the vehicle for showing us that. She is meant to be the audience avatar, experiencing the same thought process as an audience member would if they didn't know they were in a show called Hannibal, and considering how defensive a lot of fans are of her they seem to have succeeded to an extent.

They have also used her to refute the idea that it doesn't matter what you believe as long as you're sincere, because demonstrably it has mattered very much what alana has believed. If they're trying to convince us that everything alana's done - i talked about this in terms of the apa code of ethics and so on - is actually Hannibal's doing, I am going to be PISSED. Because no, you can't actually say that for example railroading Chilton was something that was done TO alana, because it was something she DID, and she did it TO someone else, not just herself. And she didn't do that "because" she believed hannibal, because innocently believing in hannibal doesn't force her to behave unethically, if she innocently believed in him she would continue to behave ethically regardless of if she believed hannibal was a hero, or the ripper, or whatever. (And it's so obvious to her when she thinks about it for so much as a minute, that she scornfully shuts Jack down when he tries to invoke the "evidence" against Chilton.)

I don't want to see Alana punished or anything, because the whole group is so effed up by now that if you prosecute one you prosecute them all (and that's rather like humans not supposed to judge each other because we're all so lousy with sin). And I do want to see these characters move from the kind of mercilessness that had them holding Abigail without charge or trial until she confessed, into the kind of grace that accepts confession and forgives. But i hope the confession is better than "hannibal fooled alana, hannibal made her do it" because that's just infantilizing the character. When we saw Alana start to think again this week (because as Will pointed out, the consequences of her actions were about to land on her when they've always landed on other people up to now; echoes of his "you're next" to Chilton) she switched back into being a professional, instead of the six- to nine-year-old girl she's been for most of this season. I don't want a grown, potentially powerful woman, to be treated like a child as the way of preserving a "positive" representation.

It's like the Buddha leaving the palace and going out into the world, you know? Seeing the corpses might be shocking, but as they said, transformation requires going through necessary suffering.
posted by tel3path at 6:08 AM on May 11, 2014 [2 favorites]


Oh, I'm very much with you on wanting to see Alana and the other character learn from all this. I've long since moved on from wanting my old "special druggy reserve" theory to be true.

The other side of viewing the show as a story about institutional betrayal and betrayal blindness, though, is precisely the theological turn. Institutions try to modify and manage behavior as if that's what matters, but the show pretty clearly sides with intentionalist morality rather than "behaviorism," to the point that the latter is a explicitly used as a polite term for Will's dark turn.

Because institutions stick to the behavioral model, then, they reward those whose behaviors fit into institutional logics, like Hannibal, and punish those whose behaviors do not, like Will and Abigail. (Remember, Abigail's sociopathy diagnosis is partly built on how undemonstrative her behavior is after all that happens to her.) Institutions have to find someone they can rationalize punishing in order to maintain the fiction of behaviorism against the actuality of moral intentionality.

Hannibal has long since learned to manipulate this by providing ready-made rationales that direct attention away from him, and more subtly, away from the very ideas of the dignity and agency of his pawns and victims. And of course his own proffered rationalization for his crimes is to reduce godliness to a set of observed behaviors, so that any ends or any concocted system of virtues can be substituted as long as you wield enough destructive and manipulative power. Godliness is about imitating divine means, not divine ends, to Hannibal, much as the show's version of the FBI is about preserving orderly means, and not achieving just ends.

This strikes me as part of why the show's narrative can never entirely let Will Graham lose track of his purpose and his basic sense of the dignity of life. To do so would be to remove thew sting of institutional betrayal and even of Hannibal's crimes entirely, at which point nothing is really at stake anymore in the narrative and life simply becomes a series of actions in bad faith, selected for their efficiency (Kade Purnell and arguably Jack Crawford), their ease (Alana Bloom), or their spectacularity (Hannibal Lecter).
posted by kewb at 6:34 AM on May 11, 2014 [7 favorites]


Well observed, kewb. This picks up on the error Mason is making in thinking he's training the pigs with Pavlovian behaviourism, when he's actually doing that other thing (what's the guy's name) where the pigs learn to figure things out and become smarter.

It is pretty clear, unfortunately, that Hannibal regards Alana as basically a show pig (and nothing about Hannibal should surprise or shock us any more, but wow, I have gotta say this is yet another thing about Hannibal that's worse than I thought) and it's also clear that now the behaviourism has trained her to think her way out of the maze, she's no good to him any more and is marked for slaughter.

(We interrupt this comment to bring you the following public service announcement: HANNIBAL YOU LITTLE SHIT, YOU ARE THE WORST, AND WE ARE GOING TO SLAP THAT GRIN RIGHT OFF YOUR SMUG REPTILIAN FACE.)

It's not Hannibal who's putting Alana through this kind of behaviourism, it's Will. When he says "I've given up good and evil for behaviourism" he means he's stopped trying to appeal to others' better nature and instead is leading them along a trail of breadcrumb-rewards (yeah mixed animal/duck metaphor there, whatevs). Knowing that Alana sticks to Hannibal because she does what is easiest and sees everything as relating to her own comfort, Will isn't wasting time trying to appeal to her better nature any more; instead, he - and catalystically Freddie, who bears the threat of disgrace - ramps up the tension to the point where sticking with Hannibal is no longer what is easiest. This is similar to his earlier tactic with Jack, where he points out that not only is the food people, it's the very people to whom they were supposed to bring justice. Now it's not simply that Jack is a wrongdoer, it's that the food's bad and Jack's pride is at stake.

What remains to be worried about, though, is what happens if Hannibal baits Jack with an even bigger counter threat to his pride, and what happens if Hannibal tempts Alana with the illusion that he is at the very least less difficult/uncomfortable/embarrassing than anything Team Will has to offer. The way they left it last episode, I'm not at all comfortable that Alana won't turn if Hannibal can convince her - if only for a moment, but if it's the right moment it could last forever - that he's the winning team so she might as well join him. I'm not at all comfortable that he won't use Jack's pride against him, especially in a situation where the intentions behind Jack's pride blowing up in his face would be the best possible ones (I think the morality aspect of the behavioural lesson has probably had much more time to sink in with Jack, as well). In fact, the fight we saw in the flash forward looks like it fits into that kind of scenario all too well. And worst of all, there is still the threat of Will choosing to do something that will put him firmly on the wrong side of humanity AND make him guilty. (I think what he did to Randall dropped him at least temporarily down into the realm of the inhuman, but I don't think it made him guilty, to make my position clear there.)
posted by tel3path at 7:35 AM on May 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


I'm amused that this show, with all the crazy murder-things going on, downplayed the fucked up cruelty of the traditional preparation for ortolans where the birds are blinded and force-fed. I expected Hannibal to expound on the cruelty part but I guess there are some things you can't do on TV, still?
posted by rmd1023 at 7:45 AM on May 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


Could that forced hysterectomy be the most fucked-up thing ever on network TV? I personally thought it was amazing(ly horrifying), but I can imagine a person who would put up with all the rest of the violence on this show and not that.
posted by showbiz_liz at 10:13 AM on May 11, 2014 [2 favorites]


Eh, there are already objections to it. I don't think there's any non problematic way to write a character like Margot Verger.

Submitting her to a forced hysterectomy is Good because it means she's not self-mutilating and self-loathing, but Bad because it takes away her agency and choice to do to herself what book!Margot did. Etc.
posted by tel3path at 10:15 AM on May 11, 2014


I actually think this development makes Mason's eventual fate, if it happens like in the books, so much more fitting and almost poetic, in a fucked-up way. I definitely think there are serious objections to be made along the lines of "hey, yet another woman is suffering horribly to drive the plot between these two men," but on the other hand, the show was always about the close relationship between these two men and also, Margot's story is by no means over. I want to see her take charge. I want to see Mason crippled to the point where she has some amount of control and safety, even if she does have to keep sucking up to him.
posted by showbiz_liz at 10:22 AM on May 11, 2014 [2 favorites]


Why I think the evil helpmate thing would be interesting and ... putting the events in order this way means Margot gets to relish how helpless and ...dependant Mason is going to become. While still having access to all the money.
posted by The Whelk at 10:24 AM on May 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


He won't be her child, but he'll be her charge.
posted by rue72 at 1:50 PM on May 11, 2014 [3 favorites]


Could that forced hysterectomy be the most fucked-up thing ever on network TV? I personally thought it was amazing(ly horrifying), but I can imagine a person who would put up with all the rest of the violence on this show and not that.

Yep. That's me. I watch all sorts of ultra violence, but I found that beyond the pale and had to hide behind a cushion while yelling NONONONONONO.

I mean, I'll still watch this show, but that was the most horrifying thing in it for me to date.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 2:43 PM on May 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


What is interesting to me here is that all Mason's wrongs ARE completely commonplace. Oh, you ripped out a lady's reproductive system to reassert control over her life? Must be Tuesday. I got a clear gut feeling of how monstrous he is when he was mean to that orphan, but even that is pretty much everyday oppression.

A lot of the wrongs done in this show are commonplace, they are everyday. All the Art Murders are extraordinary in form, but not necessarily in content. The fungus patch kids, the victimology and the use of them as a means to connect, I found that bizarre. But the beehive stuff and the lobotomies, that was a clear parallel to the nightmare psychiatry and the oppressive use of power over life and death that Hannibal (and Jack) had just exerted over Bella.

Mason is vulgar because he doesn't bother hiding himself behind recognized social scripts like Hannibal does! as kerb pointed out Hannibal always proffers a ready-made rationale that makes it easy not to bother taking a closer look. The bee lady was considered crazy because she was not only acting out of total conviction, she wasn't bothering to hide what she was doing or take the perspective of the rest of society, she was actually doing what more than one of the main cast was doing but doing so outside of any recognized social script. What Mason's doing is not bizarre enough or well executed enough to be called art, AND he doesn't even bother hiding behind social scripts not on any kind of principle but just because he's so bloody rich he doesn't need to care, not even for the purposes of deception.
posted by tel3path at 3:03 PM on May 11, 2014 [7 favorites]


You know I am not even going to bother trying to thwart autocorrect any more, I'll just type what I type and leith. Automated systems make whatever sense of it they choose.
posted by tel3path at 3:07 PM on May 11, 2014


I AM ALL YORE GRAMMAR YOU SHALL BOW BEFORE ME OR I WILL DELETE YOO
posted by localroger at 5:30 PM on May 11, 2014


I gotta say, Michael Pitt as Mason Verger is fucking epic. Totally makes up for The Dreamers. Almost.
posted by FelliniBlank at 5:35 PM on May 11, 2014


I gotta say, Michael Pitt as Mason Verger is fucking epic.

Agreed. It's kind of like Heath Ledger's Joker and Robert Walker in Strangers on a Train all mashed up together.

... and now I'm imagining this Mason Verger as the Joker's origin story. "Wanna know how I got these scars?"
posted by lovecrafty at 6:20 PM on May 11, 2014 [3 favorites]


Evil David Lynch almost.
posted by The Whelk at 6:35 PM on May 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


Agreed. It's kind of like Heath Ledger's Joker and Robert Walker in Strangers on a Train all mashed up together.

With a little bit of Ralphie from A Christmas Story thrown in for good measure.
posted by FelliniBlank at 6:41 PM on May 11, 2014


What noise do the piggies make, sweetie? Show me how the piggies eat. Who's mommy's little piggie? Who is?

(Yeah, I know Randy was mommy's little piggy, not Ralphie.)
posted by lovecrafty at 6:47 PM on May 11, 2014 [3 favorites]


Evil David Lynch almost.

I can't wait til he starts shaving mice and disassembling chickens.
posted by crossoverman at 6:50 PM on May 11, 2014


I think that Mason loves Margot. He told Hannibal he was scared of her (that when she was trying to stick the knife in, it wasn't just to test the depth of his skin), and every time she threatens him, he does something to try and stop the threat while keeping her closer than ever. I don't think he *wants* to kill her, I think that he's scared of her hurting him but he can't help wanting to cling tightly to her anyway. It's self-destructive, and both arrogant and pathetic/needy on his part, like someone who keeps a lion as a house-pet.

I'm not sure whether Margot loves Mason or not.

If she becomes his caretaker, I wonder how that would change both of them.

I wonder about Mason's connection with pigs, a domesticated animal. Save for Will's dogs, it seems like the point of animals on this show is their connection to nature. Maybe there's a parallel between Mason's pigs and Will's dogs, or maybe between Mason and Will or maybe it's supposed to harken back to how Hannibal fails to differentiate between human beings and livestock...? Just spitballing.

It's odd to have the pigs inserted into the story so early, though I'm happy they're there. And it's odd that Mason trains them to kill but also carries them around in little blankets and gives them names.
posted by rue72 at 6:57 PM on May 11, 2014


I think that Mason loves Margot.

Yes. Papa never actually taught him how to express love, so he thinks taking Margot's lady parts is a kind of gentlre rebuke.

I'm not sure whether Margot loves Mason or not.

If her hatred were made real it would be a quasar that would annihilate our entire galaxy.

If she becomes his caretaker, I wonder how that would change both of them.

This is pretty much the setup we get in the novel Hannibal, minus the bodybuilding and steroids. And it's incredibly fucked up. She can't let him die or the SBC gets the estate and (even ignoring the whole richer than God thing) her whole means of existence. It's not like she has a trade or career or would even know what to do with such things if she did.
posted by localroger at 7:12 PM on May 11, 2014 [2 favorites]


If her hatred were made real it would be a quasar that would annihilate our entire galaxy.

I'm not sure. I think that he might give her life meaning or define her in some way and so she can't quite leave him. Money doesn't seem like it would be enough to keep her there alone. She's intelligent and beautiful, and she could find some way to pay her way if she had to, especially if she's willing to fuck (ex: Will) or kill (ex: Mason) for a buck. When Will beat Mason to a pulp so easily, I also had to wonder how and why Margot's attempt to kill him failed, and why it was so long in coming in the first place, and why it's been so easy for Hannibal to persuade her to hold off on trying again, and why she was willing to make herself an even easier target and bring a poor infant into the mess in order to give herself a reason to hold off on killing him for at least nine months more. I think that she does hate him, but she must love him, too, or else she wouldn't need him so badly.
posted by rue72 at 7:51 PM on May 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


[A couple of comments removed; please discuss the episode here, and the page design of FanFare over here, in Metatalk. Thanks ]
posted by taz at 3:20 AM on May 12, 2014


When we first meet Margot she discusses her attempt on Mason's life with Hannibal. I am mixing up what all is said but I think Hannibal came to the same conclusion, Margot must love Mason on some level.

The 'have a baby and then kill Mason' plan wasn't a necessarily well thought out but it was the result of Hannibal's manipulation. Or at least that is what Will thinks. Though, really, the plan could have worked if Margot was more careful of the psychopaths in her life, which is another reoccurring situation on the show.

Margot does not strike me as physically powerful, though neither does Mason. Also Will has had law enforcement training and has been learning on the job (and as a hobby). This really helped him catch Mason unawares, lost in the noise music and pig torture. Mason is also very used to having Carlo around to watch his back.

I can see Will - the guy that beat Randall Tier in a monster suit - subduing a surprised Carlo. We haven't seen anything that would suggest that Margot could do the same, or even just surprise shooting them. She doesn't have the brutality/psychopathy of either Mason or Will.
posted by mountmccabe at 7:27 AM on May 12, 2014


subduing a surprised Carlo

That shot of Will sneaking up on Carlo was great. It would have been a classic jump scare if the roles had been reversed.
posted by sparklemotion at 8:54 AM on May 12, 2014


telepath: And then, right, alana says "i feel empty like i've given blood" yeah that is because your boyfriend is a vampire

Wouldn't be surprised if at some point Alana notices she's got surgical scars on her lower back.
posted by carsonb at 1:32 PM on May 12, 2014


Things he could have meant:

"You've given YOUR SOUL"

If it's not that... Anything else it could be probably doesn't bear thinking about.
posted by tel3path at 2:07 PM on May 12, 2014


Maybe Alana is carrying Margot's fetus? She's given her womb?
posted by ian1977 at 2:13 PM on May 12, 2014


Hannibal might be a Murder Wizard, but I don't think a fetus transplant is even possible. And if he tried to do that, even Alana would notice something.
posted by tel3path at 2:14 PM on May 12, 2014 [1 favorite]


So, Alana finds out she is pregnant, figures its Hannibal's. Mason thinks he is off the hook. Down the road a paternity test happens and more drama.

YOU DONT KNOW WHAT MURDER WIZARDS CAN DO!!!!!
posted by ian1977 at 2:16 PM on May 12, 2014 [1 favorite]


Okay googled. Fetus transplants totes impossible
posted by ian1977 at 2:17 PM on May 12, 2014


Maybe what Hannibal meant is that Alana has given her life - he simply hasn't cashed in the coupon for it yet.
posted by tel3path at 2:17 PM on May 12, 2014 [1 favorite]


Maybe he did take blood, but also took some cerebral spinal fluid for a congee or something.
posted by ian1977 at 2:25 PM on May 12, 2014 [1 favorite]


Okay googled. Fetus transplants totes impossible

They did it on Deep Space Nine!
posted by lovecrafty at 2:28 PM on May 12, 2014 [1 favorite]




I think Chilton has to be alive simply because of the lack of discussion in-show of his death or consequences for Miriam. At least I'm hoping, because like many I totally came around to the Chilton fanclub. Resentfully zips up sweater, indeed.
posted by neuromodulator at 9:48 PM on May 12, 2014


I think Chilton has to be alive simply because of the lack of discussion in-show of his death or consequences for Miriam.

Was he not shot in the head?
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 10:05 PM on May 12, 2014


Oh, I take it back, he was 'just' shot in the face. He might have made it. And Fuller's being cagey, saying only that "Serpico survived a bullet to the face".
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 10:08 PM on May 12, 2014


He was, to borrow a phrase from Battlestar Galatia fandom, shot in the cancer.

I am seriously he's too delightfully smug to get rid of.

But I want him getting seriously injured every season to be a thing.
posted by The Whelk at 10:11 PM on May 12, 2014 [1 favorite]


Someone did a careful analysis of the bullet trajectory showing that as long as it didn't hit his spine, the gunshot was plausibly survivable. Fuller's also since said less cagey things indicating that Chilton lives. I'm sure he'll be back next season with a cool new cheek scar assuming Esparza's available.
posted by sparkletone at 10:18 PM on May 12, 2014


I think that was actually on Fuller's Twitter? I'm most curious about who's subbing for him as head of the Baltimore State Hospital for the Criminal Insane at present. Both Mariam and Matthew Brown must be in there, if not some other old friends. I really thought that Alana would get tapped for the job, but nope.
posted by rue72 at 10:35 PM on May 12, 2014


I think that was actually on Fuller's Twitter?

AV Club post-mortem, a podcast he was on recently, a few other places. Seems to be his go-to line. He's been less cagey elsewhere. I forget what interview it was, but he's also said he thought about more blatantly killing him because that moment is the end of Chilton's arc in this season, but decided to make it plausibly survivable because Esparza is too much fun. Chilton lives.

Assuming we get there and he's still around, watching him torment Hannibal is going to be so delicious with these extra reasons for him to be a complete shit to Hannibal.
posted by sparkletone at 10:42 PM on May 12, 2014


PS. I'm not really clear on whether it's kosher to be discussing outside-the-show stuff like show runner twitter and stuff... But it's about past events and there's no certainty that he won't change his mind, so it doesn't feel spoilery to me? Feel free to flag and stuff if I'm in the wrong here. It's why the thread on the blue is still nice to have!
posted by sparkletone at 10:50 PM on May 12, 2014


Alana did refer to Chilton in the past tense, however, which made me think that he was - in fact - dead.
posted by rmd1023 at 9:12 AM on May 13, 2014


I think they hadn't decided by the time they filmed the episode. I'm guessing Esparza's availability would have had something to do with it, as well as audience reaction.
posted by tel3path at 9:27 AM on May 13, 2014


Also, if Jack changed his mind as early as Yakimono, which Word of God tells us he did, then he may have moved Chilton into protective custody while allowing it to be thought he was dead.

Which would be the only sensible thing to do, in the circumstances.
posted by tel3path at 9:28 AM on May 13, 2014 [2 favorites]


I think they hadn't decided by the time they filmed the episode. I'm guessing Esparza's availability would have had something to do with it, as well as audience reaction.

Now I'm picturing Mikkelson, Mariska Hargitay, and Neil Patrick Harris (as the personification of B'way) in a gory three-way deathmatch for custody of Esparza.
posted by FelliniBlank at 9:33 AM on May 13, 2014 [2 favorites]


he may have moved Chilton into protective custody

As we now know he did Freddie.

It's becoming apparent that Jack and Will have been playing a long game for at least 4 or 5 episodes, and that much of what Will has been up to with Hannibal has been an act. What is unclear is how many of the other principals are in on the game -- I'm guessing very few, which might by why Alana thinks Chilton is dead when he isn't.

The Freddie reveal was actually a big deal, because before that we really just had the one fishing scene (which might or might not have been real) to suggest that Jack and Will were going deep. Now that we know it places everything else that's happened in a different light. Remember that Will's dubious gift doesn't just make him interesting to Hannibal; it gives him insight into Hannibal himself. So Will knows Hannibal wants them to be murder husbands and he knows what he has to say and (at least appear to) do to put that across. And while Will is swimming back and forth in front of Hannibal, being the prettiest little lure a cannibal could ever see, Jack is waiting with the rod and reel.
posted by localroger at 9:41 AM on May 13, 2014 [2 favorites]


And Will is gonna know exactly what Hannibal will do next.
posted by tel3path at 9:56 AM on May 13, 2014


Now I'm picturing Mikkelson, Mariska Hargitay, and Neil Patrick Harris (as the personification of B'way) in a gory three-way deathmatch for custody of Esparza.

I would watch that cage match on pay-per-view. The problem is that NPH and Hargitay would team up because they've got common geography and could schedule around each other.
posted by rmd1023 at 10:26 AM on May 13, 2014


It's becoming apparent that Jack and Will have been playing a long game for at least 4 or 5 episodes, and that much of what Will has been up to with Hannibal has been an act.

But he *really did* kill one man, and nearly murdered another (Clark Ingram). That he killed someone for work or just as part of a game is despicable. It makes it so difficult for me to continue rooting for Will.

This was the plan, for Will to kill people on the off-chance that Hannibal would implicate himself in turn? That hasn't even been successful, Hannibal still hasn't outright implicated himself, let alone confessed, to anything much.
posted by rue72 at 10:30 AM on May 13, 2014 [1 favorite]


The only person Will has killed since getting over his encephalitis has been Randall Tier, who came after him and the doggies with a well-used cyborg murder-chomping suit. I'm not convinced that he went too far or even killed Tier with his bare hands when he could have done something else. Didn't he have a shotgun in hand when Tier burst into his house?

Of course he told Hannibal that killing Tier made him feel powerful, partly because maybe there's a bit of dirty truth to that but mostly because that's what he knows Hannibal wants to hear. You pretty much have to go back at least three episodes and consider that every word you've heard Will say to Hannibal is a straight up lie.

What Will did do was arrange the Saber Toothed Tier tableaux, which would be very tacky in the extreme in our world but I don't think all that much in the Hanniverse, where Art Murder appears to be a popular hobby with a large and appreciative fandom (serviced, incidentally, by Freddie). It is obvious now that Jack was in on that.

It's not at all like Will went out and found an innocent person to use as Hannibal-bait. He's playing a game of murderers, and his adversary is the best he's ever met. Like that game some other series is about, it's a game you either win or you die.
posted by localroger at 12:38 PM on May 13, 2014 [4 favorites]


He emptied the cartridges out of his shotgun while waiting for Tier to crash through the window.
posted by tel3path at 12:41 PM on May 13, 2014


Will certainly killed Cave Bearguy in self-defense and defense of puppies (although with excessive brutality and enjoyment). The minute I knew CB was out there, I said aloud, "Oh don't you dare let him near the dogs!" Had Will just called the cops, he'd have been ripped apart by the time they arrived. And I wonder if he just called Jack immediately afterward and said, "I've got a small problem here, but it could also be an opportunity."
posted by FelliniBlank at 12:41 PM on May 13, 2014


In the therapy session with Hannibal right after he failed to murder Clark Ingram, Will requested an opportunity to kill again in the same way he killed Garrett Jacob Hobbes so that he could feel powerful (and righteous) again. Hannibal followed through on that request by setting up Randall's attack so that it was a close echo of the GJH killing -- Will was killing to save "an innocent" pseudo-child (in this case, Buster instead of Abigail) and he was killing a man that he'd already profiled and made a connection with and knew was a killer himself.

Randall's attack didn't just happen, Will requested it and Hannibal made it happen. It also all likely went exactly according to (Will's) plan, since he emptied out his shotgun so that he would *have* to follow his plan of beating Randall to death. Randall didn't even put up a fight after Will kicked him away when they were against the wall, Will wasn't in an *unexpectedly* desperate situation.

Once Randall was dead, Will had to follow through on mutilating and eating his body, to make the death worth anything, so as nauseating as the visuals were, I didn't have an immense moral problem with that stuff in and of itself.

Will might justify killing Randall by telling himself Randall's death will draw Will closer to Hannibal or because he made use of every part of Randall or something, but -- how is that any better than what GJH was doing, killing girls "for" Abigail and "honoring" every part of them?
posted by rue72 at 1:13 PM on May 13, 2014 [1 favorite]


I think saying that definitely was baiting Hannibal, but I don't think Will knew precisely what Hannibal would do. His whole goal is to get Hannibal to reveal himself in a way that cannot be denied. He's been prodding and poking and trying things out. (Much like Hannibal does...)
posted by lovecrafty at 1:17 PM on May 13, 2014 [2 favorites]


If Will didn't honor every part of Randall, then killing him was just murder.
posted by infinitewindow at 1:38 PM on May 13, 2014


Randall Tier was definitely going to keep killing people so its not like Will was stalking innocent people to murder them for pleasure. To me that's way better than what GJH was doing.

Even if Will was certain Hannibal was going to send Randall Tier his way, it's not like Will was asking for a girl scout to knock on his door so he could kill her. He was putting his life at great risk to catch an unrepentant killer. If he'd just used the shotgun to kill Randall pretty much nobody would have batted an eye. Instead he put himself at even greater risk and used his hands instead of a gun to end Randall's life.

Now, where Will likely crossed the line was the point between when he had subdued Randall and when he kept going and beat him to death. He must have known that was a possible outcome when he emptied his shotgun, but he still had to go through with it.
posted by Green With You at 2:09 PM on May 13, 2014 [2 favorites]


I think that Will knew exactly that he was asking Hannibal to set up a situation in which he would be "allowed" to kill (Randall), because he hadn't been "allowed" to kill Clark -- and he couldn't have been shocked when Hannibal came through. Even while it was happening, Will wasn't surprised -- he emptied out his shotgun and carried on with his plan.

But Will and Hannibal aren't God and they aren't the law, they shouldn't get to decide whether someone "deserves" to live or die. Randall Tier was a human being who had an illness, he wasn't some demon walking the earth. Georgia Madchen likewise killed someone, and Will faced her, and he *knew* at that point that he couldn't just kill her -- he reached out and tried to connect with her instead. He fundamentally understands, or at least understood back then, that he doesn't have a license to kill and that these killers he goes after are *people* and not just monsters.

To me, it's much worse that he's just doing this as some sort of game and with a cool head. If Will truly thinks that it's OK to kill Randall, then why isn't it OK to kill Hannibal straightaway -- just because he wants him to cry uncle first? That's not a good enough reason to sacrifice other people's lives, I don't think.
posted by rue72 at 2:26 PM on May 13, 2014 [2 favorites]


I am hoping that when this is all over (if?) he ends up knowing that he did lose his humanity because of the fate he set up for Randall Tier. We had an inkling when the Randall Toothed Tiger reproached him, I am guessing that will loom larger and larger in his mind.

Because it's a fact of the narrative right now that the life a severely mentally ill man was sacrificed to a "greater cause" by the very system, including the very individuals, who were sworn to protect him - including from himself.

Right now we're nodding along and accepting that in the given circumstances it "had to be done" but if Will doesn't suffer from the clarity of it when (if?) Hannibal is caught, I am gonna be questioning this show's values. I've spoken before about the ableism of the Randall Tier episode, and my reasons for not assuming that it's the show's attitude even if the audience is getting lulled into going along with it for now.

Would I have felt better about it if Tier had been fully lucid, rather than insane? Undoubtedly.

It goes to show how the issues I have with the show - if, as it turns out, I have them - are not the same as the ones everyone else has.

Like this week, Word of God says Alana really has been ignorant and I don't know how to square that with her words and deeds, considering that she said out loud and in so many words that she was throwing in her lot with Hannibal because she couldn't deal with thinking about it. You can't really say that she "didn't know" when she's been warned 749 times already at the top of various people's lungs, and when the information has always been there and she did see it when she made the decision to think about it. Which decision she made because all the easier options had run out and there were no allegiances to form that would get her out of the situation.

My position on this is not about being harsh, even though there's no way to state it without sounding harsh. My objection is that Alana is at the top of the professional tree with a ton of power and responsibility, who genuinely has reason to be misled, but also genuinely had reason to do better. And yet the show runner seems to be saying, well, she wasn't to know and anyone in her position would have done the same.

See, Alana as written is a very distinctly feminine-coded woman. Pretty much all the characters on this show land on the feminine side of indeterminate. As rue72 has pointed out, Will has all these masculine hobbies and this masculine line of work but he himself isn't macho at all. Hannibal has these distinctly feminine coded tastes and interests and he is the manly man who could smash you into a million pieces without blinking. Jack is the most overtly aggressive and least nuanced person in the regular cast and yet he doesn't come across as particularly butch.

Alana is the one character who is coded all feminine, all the time. We only ever once see her in not-skirts, and that is the time she is wearing leggings while walking the dogs; the effect is gamine/principal boy, or would be if not for all that hair-tossing. She is overtly emotional, expressive, cries, relates to men in predominantly romantic terms, and has a stated mission of taking care of/nurturing/saving other people. She yells, for sure. She yells when she's trying to protect one of her patients. She yells when she's trying to protect her boyfriend (oh the irony). Until the very latest episode she only once expressed anger on her OWN behalf - which expression was factual and very mild, telling Will she had "dodged a bullet" when she had reason to believe he'd killed five people however unintentionally - and the fandom was all up in her grill for being "selfish". It's not a coincidence that Alana's admirers get upset and call her "selfish" when she departs from stereotypically feminine behaviour even for one brief moment, by getting angry on behalf of herself. Finally, she yells at Jack in Ko No Mono, because she's being lied to - but that is couched in so much crying - she's been crying all episode - and crying is stereotypically feminine.

And while all this is clearly upsetting to her, at least she switched allegiances in time to avoid the same outcomes happening to her as have happened to other people. She probably isn't going to end up like Will, because Will warned her that she would be discredited and ignored just like he was, and that lit a fire under her. She isn't going to go to jail like Will and Chilton did, she isn't going to be labelled crazy and end up in the care of a nightmare psychiatrist, she isn't going to lose her job or any earnings, and she's probably turned things around just in time to save her professional credibility too. And she hopefully will have enough police protection to escape with her life. So the only real injury here is to her feelings, which means she'll have gotten off lighter than anyone she was responsible for.

And then the show runner says it was all out of ignorance, and are we really genuinely supposed to take that at face value? That this professional adult woman is not responsible for her actions because feelings, and we are supposed to look at her crying like a little girl and decide that every mistake she made is solely Hannibal's fault? That's infantilising her.

I mean, are they serious, the show genuinely expects us to take as gospel an infantilised portrayal of the only stereotypically feminine woman in the cast, and say nothing more could have been expected of her, despite the fact she's a medical doctor with the highest level of professional and social power over others of anyone else in the cast?

Because if I accept that, and take the show runner at his word when he tells us that's how we're supposed to take it, it seems like I'd be accepting an awful lot of misogyny. And that could be averted by having the show hold Alana to her responsibilities in a nonemotional way. Alana filed a complaint against Jack, for example; if someone filed a complaint against her, and she took it with the same kind of grace and humility that he did, I'd think a lot more highly of her and of the way the character is written. I don't think she's incompletely written, I think she's completely and consistently written as an emotion-driven, irrational, stereotypically socially correct woman who strenuously follows every social script for how it's correct for women to behave and I hope we get a clear picture of her awakening and leaving that behind.

I want to know for sure that the female lead on the show has had her consciousness raised, is what I'm saying. Leaving her infantilised isn't gonna do it for me.
posted by tel3path at 2:31 PM on May 13, 2014 [4 favorites]


I don't really think Will expected Hannibal to come up with a victim for him; I think he was reading what his murderhusband wanted to hear and giving it to him. Will figured it out very quickly when Tier actually showed up and adapted to use the situation to his advantage, but I don't think he expected it and I think it instantly refactored his estimation of Hannibal.

None of these people really yet appreciate how quickly and effectively Hannibal can turn violent. Beverly got a very harsh lesson in that; before we saw him kill the lights and dodge off, had we ever seen him move like that on-screen? Yet he must have that kind of power to subdue and kill the people he does and to arrange the murder tableaux. I think Will has just realized, and Jack is just coming to realize, that of course the Ripper is a very dangerous dude and if Hannibal is the Ripper, then OMFG Hannibal is also a very dangerous dude.
posted by localroger at 3:07 PM on May 13, 2014 [6 favorites]


Oh, to answer myself: We have seen Hannibal move like that on-screen, exactly once: In the twelve-week flash forward of the fight between him and Jack.
posted by localroger at 3:09 PM on May 13, 2014


You know that scene from Peanuts where Lucy gets mad and smashes Schroeder's bust of Beethoven? And Schroeder calmly gets up, walks over to a closet full of identical busts of Beethoven, and sets a new one on his piano?

I disagree with you, localroger, that Will was unaware of how dangerous Hannibal was. I think he's keenly aware of it.

However, I don't think he had any idea that Hannibal could, as soon as Will snapped his fingers, just go right over to his toy box of former patients and pick out the perfect fodder for his Will-conversion machine. I think Will thought he'd have a lot more time to insert himself into that process than he did.

This was just about at the point when Will was beginning to ask "How many have there been?"
posted by tel3path at 3:13 PM on May 13, 2014 [2 favorites]


I'd agree that Will might have expected Hannibal to eventually try to arrange something, but remember even as Jack and Will are investigating Tier, they do not know Tier was Hannibal's patient or that he encouraged Tier's obsession. Will probably thought he was asking for permission, not the immediate creation of an opportunity. He now has to re-evaluate everything he's told Hannibal to ask if he's left any other similar doors open.

Although we now know there has been a lot of subterfuge as Will uses his talent to scope out Hannibal and shape himself the best possible lure, it's a safe bet that he's having to stretch to do this and that he is only now figuring out just how deep Hannibal's rabbit hole leads. Before this the deepest threat Will had ever dared study empathically was Garrett Jacob Hobbs, and Hannibal makes Hobbs look like Mother Theresa.
posted by localroger at 3:21 PM on May 13, 2014 [3 favorites]


Will probably thought he was asking for permission, not the immediate creation of an opportunity.

Will knows that Hannibal created the "opportunity" for him to kill GJH in the first place, though, with the phone call. Why wouldn't he assume that Hannibal would do the same thing again, and trigger the same kind of scenario?

I agree that he probably didn't expect it to happen within the next day or two, but he also seemed to key into what was going on almost immediately, which is why he dropped the cartridges out of his gun and then took Randall's body to Hannibal. He apparently has learned to estimate Hannibal's reaction times better since then, seeing as he moved much faster with Freddie.

The speed at which Hannibal set things up only seemed to surprise him in the way that the speed at which Mason attacked Margot for the pregnancy seemed to surprise Hannibal. I don't think it was a major shock, just a startling "oh, we're REALLY playing now I guess!" kind of thing.

I also am not sure how Will felt about killing Randall. Randall Tooth Tiger called him out for being narcissistic and he's been having those night sweats and things again, but he didn't seem to feel especially bad or guilty. Honestly, I do think he should feel pretty damn guilty. That was a hair's breadth from premeditated murder as far as I'm concerned, seeing as he provoked Hannibal into setting up the scenario and then chose to use lethal force against Randall despite Randall barely fighting back once he was actually in the house. Seeing Will lie about how he felt about "murdering" Freddie made me think that he was lying when he talked about killing Randall, but since it also lined up with what he apparently had actually felt when killing GJH, I'm not sure, or at least, I'm not sure *how much* he was lying.

I disagree with you, localroger, that Will was unaware of how dangerous Hannibal was. I think he's keenly aware of it.

Yes, I agree with that. I think that Will has long realized how dangerous Hannibal is. Hannibal was the one who was stuffing Abigail's ear into Will's stomach and who thinks that an attempted murder is a love note and who has inserted mutilated bodies into all these crime scenes and served the Will and Jack flesh from the people they were trying to protect. Will also saw Georgia's immolated body and Beverly sliced up, and he's not an idiot -- he knows those are the people who saw Hannibal's face and that he could be next.
posted by rue72 at 3:57 PM on May 13, 2014


I think that Will has long realized how dangerous Hannibal is.

Oh, I don't think anybody realizes just how dangerous Hannibal really is. Even though Will and jack are able to rationally entertain the possibility that Hannibal is the Ripper, they do not realize how deep his powers go -- he of the future nurse attack where his heart rate never rises, and other fun trivia.

After all he's an urbane fellow who dresses sharp and loves fine wine, good cooking, and classical music. Even when you are intellectually entertaining the possibility that he is dangerous, that's not the same as really grokking that he could flash instantly to Super Serial Killer mode and, without his heart rate going up, kill the lights and dodge your gunfire and make it to you on your fourth shot and then calmly strangle you in the dark without breaking a sweat.

Or that he has a box of Super Serial Killer Toys ready to deploy should you ask nicely to play.
posted by localroger at 4:32 PM on May 13, 2014 [2 favorites]


If Will didn't realize that about Hannibal, why would he even be bothering with this elaborate "game"? He's got other issues going on where he's feeling "betrayed" by Hannibal, and maybe he's even having some trouble not being seduced a bit by him even now, but I think he certainly does understand that Hannibal is very dangerous and that's why he's even in this mess (I think that's what the "recovered" memories at the start of the season were about, him realizing how dangerous Hannibal actually is). I'm not sure if Jack is seeing Hannibal that way yet or not, though, and I'm sure that Alana, Freddie, Margot and Mason aren't.

It's funny that Will gives Freddie the creeps and always has, but Hannibal really doesn't seem to bother her at all. Same thing for Alana, actually, she's always found Will unsettling and I don't remember her ever flipping out and yelling at him the way she has Hannibal (or Jack). Even now that she thinks Hannibal is at least involved in murders if not puppeteering them himself, she's sharing a glass of wine with him with gun powder all over her hands, making out with him, and only seeming vaguely uncomfortable. Dunno what that's about.

Also, I'm not sure about physicality on this show in general. Hannibal, Jack, and Will all seem to have superhuman strength and speed. Will punched his way through a cave-bear skull and literally dodged Freddie's bullet, Jack lifted a semi-conscious and wet Hannibal like he was a grocery sack, and Hannibal went after Beverly at practically the speed of light. I'm not sure what to make of any of that.
posted by rue72 at 5:07 PM on May 13, 2014


It's funny that Will gives Freddie the creeps and always has, but Hannibal really doesn't seem to bother her at all.

Never known an actual sociopath, have you? This is characteristic. They are capable of radiating normalcy until the switch flips and then it's like a whole different person is in the room. It can happen totally without warning, for no reason apparent to you, and with devastating consequences. I've been on the wrong end of that transformation (though not with serial killer class sociopaths thank the FSM) three times. As a normal human you will never get used to it.

In the dreamworld Hanniverse there are subtle but distinctly supernatural powers that don't exist in our world, particularly in the service of Murder Wizardry. Will has powers but they aren't particularly physical. Jack's powers are mostly persuasive. Hannibal, standing in for the Devil and partaking of the flesh of all of us, has the whole package -- his superpowers are physical, mental, and charismatic. I suspect it is shaping up to take the entire team -- apparently with lots of casualties -- to bring him down, because he is simply too good in too many areas to be taken by any single person. I expect Alana to occupy a critical and possibly surprising role in this too.

The people who are in on the Hannisecret know he's dangerous but they don't know how dangerous, and as I once wrote about the actual Thomas Harris book Hannibal we're definitely in comic book territory here. Everyone knows a little corner of how dangerous Hannibal might be but nobody has put the whole picture together.

Forget the Hanniverse and just think of what Harris wrote; Hannibal is a person who will escape from a maximum security cell with a pen clip he's been hiding in his mouth for years, and from the area by using the face of one of his guards as a mask. This is before the fandom hijacked Clarice and he wrote the fuck-you note of Hannibal. I think only after the Tier attack is Will beginning to suspect just how dangerous Hannibal really is, and the others have no idea, like the guards who get bested by him in SOTL.
posted by localroger at 6:22 PM on May 13, 2014 [7 favorites]


Right now we're nodding along and accepting that in the given circumstances it "had to be done" but if Will doesn't suffer from the clarity of it when (if?) Hannibal is caught, I am gonna be questioning this show's values.

Wait, haven't the show's values always been pretty dodgy and disturbing, what with the constant display of elaborate visually stunning corpse porn and all? I mean, it's not anywhere near as objectionable as something like The Following, which is just gratuitously empty and corrosive, and it doesn't revel in lovingly lingering on victims suffering like the hideous Criminal Minds, but still, really not my go-to source for moral centering.
posted by FelliniBlank at 6:53 PM on May 13, 2014


Oh, to answer myself: We have seen Hannibal move like that on-screen, exactly once: In the twelve-week flash forward of the fight between him and Jack.

Twice - there was that awesome fight scene with cello dude.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 7:22 PM on May 13, 2014 [3 favorites]


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