Ever since Hannibal started airing last year viewers have had the pleasure of seeing how show creator Brian Fuller manages to keep Hannibal Lecter at the forefront without conclusively revealing him as the cannibal everybody has been searching for. Hannibal Lecter almost resembles Superman, in that he is gifted beyond just luck and wields his alternate persona without having to go to any great lengths to change himself. Slowly however, the show is moving to the point where Hannibal will be revealed as the mass murdering serial killer with a taste for the finer people. Brian Fuller isn’t one to endlessly deny the audience the pleasure of seeing Hannibal incarcerated, as the fun will only begin when he is. As foretold by the season opening, by the end of the season we will all be as giddy as Lois Lane when she finds out Clark Kent is Superman.
Dinner Party To Go
Crawford confronts Graham (Hugh Dancy) about setting the orderly Matthew Brown on Lecter, and Graham denies it but tries to make Crawford see that Lecter is the Chesapeake Ripper by explaining to him why he only kills in lots of three or four: he has to eat the meat he takes before it spoils. Graham assures Crawford that if the Ripper is killing again, Lecter will be throwing a dinner party. Sure enough, Lecter (Mads Mikkelsen) soon invites Crawford to a gathering he is hosting. Meanwhile, local city councilor Sheldon Isley is found surgically grafted onto a tree in a parking lot (for which Isley brokered the development deal and in the process destroyed the habitat of some rare songbirds), his chest cavity emptied of all organs except his lungs and stuffed with poisonous flowers. The autopsy reveals a number of Ripper tell-tale signs and that Isley was drowned. Price and Zeller determine from the water in his lungs that he was killed within a fifty mile radius.
Chilton records Abel Gideon confessing to Graham that he was in Lecter’s home, but Gideon denies this when questioned by Crawford. Gideon is beaten by a pair of guards and put in the infirmary. Lecter throws his dinner party and Crawford takes a few samples of the food to Price and Zeller to be tested. Alana (Caroline Dhavernas) and Lecter sleep together and Lecter kidnaps Gideon from the infirmary while she is sleeping (help by a drugged glass of wine). The infirmary guard is killed and strung up with fishing lines. Though they do not find any human meat in the samples of Lecter’s food, they do find body materials in the fishing lures used on the infirmary guard from Ripper victims like the judge, James Gray, Miriam Lass, all the way back to Marissa Schur. They also find a piece of rare tree bark, which Crawford (Laurence Fishburne) traces to an abandoned farmhouse in the initial search area, where he finds Miriam Lass still alive.
This episode is perhaps not the strongest of the season. However, I still consider it among the best TV you could have watched recently. Hannibal has up until now hedged around showing Dr. Lecter as human who does his deeds because of his past, but it never showed him as completely cold or remorseless either. Most of the time his victims deserved what was coming to them. Nonetheless the story is slowly opening up the possibility that Hannibal can at least be partly human, which will make him an interesting character to last beyond his inevitable incarceration.
Futamono was relatively light on drama as compared to previous weeks, only Crawford had to deal with his increasing suspicions that Lecter is indeed the Chesapeake Ripper. As such Laurence Fishburne can finally turn a page and play the Jack Crawford that we have learned to love from previous Hannibal Lecter novels and movies. As this is only the 6th episode of the season and with 7 more to go it can be confidently concluded that with Crawford’s circumspect testing of Lecter’s food as well as Lecter sleeping with Alana and Miriam Lass’s return that Crawford will remain distracted away from Dr. Lecter. My opinion of Able Gideon’s fate is less positive, Lecter’s ability to easily spring him free from hospital jail is turning him into someone with superpowers. Lecter’s relationship with Alana clearly serves as a mind-fuck for Will Graham now that Lecter has assured his release. The show thus manages to keep the audience guessing despite the inevitable ending that has been foreshadowed.
Score; 8.8 / 10. A brilliant episode of Hannibal but some parts were just too convenient.