This week’s episode of Hannibal begins with an unappetizing scene. Though, sadly, this time it’s not one of Doctor Hannibal Lecter’s fine-plated gourmet tartars from the Rolodex of preserved human meat he keeps handy. Instead it’s a gruesome scene in a barn where there’s a dead horse with a dead woman inside of it. Fair warning: There are plenty of squeamish moments involving animals in this episode. (However no horse or sheep were injured.)
A mystery is unraveling and the Three Musketeers, Dr. Lecter, Will, and Jack are at the front of the haystack. Who’s responsible? Is it Hannibal? A copycat? Oh, and who’s Margot?
If you haven’t been keeping up-to-date with the rising body count on NBC’s Season 2 of Hannibal, allow me to give you a quick run-down on this action-horror series from out producer Bryan Fuller: Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) is an FBI Special Agent with a unique set of skills. He can empathize with a killer, therefore seeing inside their minds and visualizing their crimes with incredible accuracy and insight. He’s been investigating the Chesapeake Ripper, a serial killer who’s more than crawled inside of Will’s head. To remedy this unnerving situation, an expert psychiatrist is introduced to Will, Doctor Hannibal Lecter (Mads Mikkelsen).
Here, an obsession is stirred between the two, with Hannibal holding all the knives, swaying the investigation in one direction while he continues to kill, eat, and preserve his victims — wining and dining everyone around him into believing that his intelligence is warm and inviting, not calculating and deceptive, like we the audience can so clearly unveil. That is, until Will begins to unthread the needle and the stitches, so to speak. Lecter sets up Will for murder, Will is charged, his case goes to trial, and he sits alone with no foreseeable resolve, in a tiny prison cell at Baltimore State Hospital for the Criminally Insane. He is sensationalized into a front-page media monster but continues to maintain his innocence, utilizing the one thing he’s got: a keen imagination and a deep clairvoyance for seeing and understanding crimes and their killers’ minds. Basically, he’s a shoe-in for that reality crime show, Sensing Murder. I’d watch.
There in the pitfalls of Will’s crazy-making world in his lonesome cell and the small spaces he’s locked up to greet guests, a face mask iconic of the Hannibal image across his face for public occasion, he finds the support of a few people who are willing to search for the truth. The archway between the two seasons brings us into the thick of a triangular throw-down between Will, Hannibal and the FBI Special Agent-In-Charge, Jack Crawford (Laurence Fishburne). Jack is a seasoned FBI agent who knows how to play his cards without stirring the pot and getting himself into trouble.
By now, Will has been cleared and is no longer eating mystery meat on a tray, he’s instead having identifiable fish at the dining room table of Hannibal’s home with the doctor and Jack — an ironic and weird twist of fate. Hannibal is back to providing therapy for Will, which is wild because Will totally still has it in for Hannibal. Here that saying, “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer,” has never been truer. But he’s not Hannibal’s only patient in the books for the week.
“You should have taken the chocolate, Margot.”
We’re introduced to the girl Red Dragon fans have been awaiting Margot Verner, also known as Katharine Isabelle, the scream queen from one of my favorite B-horrors, Ginger Snaps. Her therapy wardrobe looks like Cruella de Vil and Bette Porter made a lovechild. She’s working through years of trauma at the hands of her twin brother, Mason, who’s tortured her and DRANK HER TEARS. Word has it he’ll be played by the handsome Michael Pitt.
The guest roles on Hannibal are noteworthy to say the least: Gillian Anderson, Cynthia Nixon, Eddie Izzard, and the most important one, Anna Chlumsky from My Girl, as the kidnapped and rescued Miriam who we saw just a few episodes back (right after the honeycomb murders, which truly assures me that Hannibal Lecter killed Thomas J.)
If you’re familiar with the Red Dragon character of Margot, you already know she’s a lesbian. And apparently back in January, Bryan Fuller tweeted out a little bit of reassurance that Margot will remain LGBT-centric in the series. Frankly, I’m relieved, since other rumors will have it that Margot and Will end up together. But ugh—that would just play out like a Blair Waldorf and Dan Humphrey drama. We didn’t come here to make friends; we came here to watch Ginger Snaps and Michael Pitt square off. We also came here to watch that last little gem of a scene between Hannibal and Will. I just know they’re hot for each other. That space between them. There are songs written about that tender space.
The queer tension is so thick you can’t even cut it with a sharpened sashimi knife from Doctor Hannibal Lecter’s kitchen block. I could binge watch this show all day, but thankfully we’ll have next Friday to see what our newest TV drama lez, Margot has in store.