Now we’re cooking with gas! Okay, maybe that’s the punny choice of words since “Hannibal” features so many food-centric scenes but still, I stick by it! Last night’s episode “Naka-Choko” really took things in a fresh direction that I honestly didn’t see coming. Ever since Dr. Chilton was shot in the head, things have been straying a bit from the original Thomas Harris story canon. And honestly, that is fine by me!
The relationship between Hannibal Lecter and Will Graham is really blooming (callback!) into something absurdly creepy and wonderful. Bryan Fuller is leading us down this road that will have the viewers believe Graham is slowly turning into a cannibal killer, a true student to Dr. Lecter. However, I still feel like Will Graham is playing true to his fisherman roots. That conversation with Jack Crawford while ice fishing some episodes back still is still ringing in my head. So with that in mind, it’s still difficult to accept the bath*t nuttiness that is unfolding on screen. That doesn’t mean it ain’t enjoyable!
At the end of last week’s episode, we found Will Graham offering up the body of Randall to Dr. Lecter as a sort-of truce. In “Naka-Choko” we pick up exactly from that point. In the back and forth between the two, and with the corpse of Lecter’s former patient in the background, Will opens up to Hannibal.
I’ve never felt as alive as I did when I was killing him.
Well, sure. And in the scene that plays out showing the murder, we see what Will Graham is seeing and that is Hannibal Lecter on the receiving end of his fists. In an interesting twist, the murder scene that Jack Crawford is called to next is that of poor man-best killer/victim Randall. The deceased is found displayed on the skeleton of a dinosaur (?) at the museum he worked at and I have to say, the visuals were freaking awesome. And when Graham did his introspective mind work, we get the confirmation we all knew was coming – this is actually his design.
Hannibal Lecter and Will Graham both play off one another as they deduce who the killer is. They’re like a psychopathic Batman and Robin, or something. So when Margot Verger pays Graham another visit and it leads to a sensual game of ‘Show me yours and I’ll show you mine’, of course the sex scene that plays out turns into a dream-like threesome involving Lecter, Graham and Dr. Bloom. Sexy, kinda?
Speaking of Margot, we finally are introduced to Mason Verger (played by Michael Pitt). The scenes between the Vergers inform the bigger story at hand and there’s nothing quite as gross as watching a maze full of pigs heading to feed on a dead body while being trained to feed on live ones. It may have been done in “Deadwood” but here, there’s a distinct method to the obvious madness and I cannot wait to see the flaming wheelchair in the coming episodes. When we get to the scene where Verger and Hannibal finally meet, the topic of pig farming is brought up by Lecter which very well may be another nod to Silence of the Lambs. No complaint here!
Finally, we need to discuss Ms Freddie Lounds. It seems she is the only logical one among the group of characters thus far and is onto Will and Lecter. Unfortunately for her, she may have snooped the wrong man’s barn as she finds some very incriminating evidence and then comes face to face with Will Graham. At this point, the juxtaposition of the characters play out very similarly to the scene when Beverly Katz found Hannibal in his kill room.
From what looks like Lounds last scene ever, we move to a dinner scene between Dr. Hannibal Lecter and Will Graham. Will supplies the ingredients which he later says is “long pig”. Upon enjoying their meal, Hannibal imparts some wisdom upon his student suggesting that the meat tastes bitter due to panic before the kill. We end on Will Graham savoring the bite of animal (human?) protein in his mouth and are left wondering if this was really “long pig” or part of a really “long con”.
What are your thoughts on last night’s episode? There are only 3 episodes left and as I said at the beginning of this article, things seem to be up in the air since Chilton’s untimely demise. Is Will baiting Hannibal Lecter for Jack to catch or has he truly turned to the dark side (May the 4th be with you?). Tell me your thoughts in the comments below!
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