First, a big congratulations to Bryan Fuller, David Slade and all the cast of Hannibal on the news of a Season 3. On the heels of the renewal announcement comes perhaps the best episode of the entire season. Not only did we get a peek at Will (Hugh Dancy) and Jack’s (Laurence Fishburne) hand, but Bryan Fuller and Co. threw at us the mother of all plot twists, one that I’m still reeling from.
After the Dr. Chilton death shocker in “Yakimono,” we all should have been prepared for anything and certainly shouldn’t have expected the television series to follow the novels as some sort of Bible. So, when the promo for last night’s episode featured a burning body in a wheelchair, we all should have paused before jumping to the conclusion that it had to be Freddie Lounds (Lara Jean Chorostecki), and somehow, someway, our Will has morphed into a sadistic killer that even Dr. Lecter (Mads Mikkelsen) would be proud of. I will be the first to admit that I fell for the entire thing, hook, line and sinker. Now, I was a little confused and worried about what this would mean in terms of Will officially going to the dark side, but at the same time I was intrigued with how they gave Lounds the same gruesome death, but at the hand of another serial killer. Little did I know that this little plot twist would pale compared to the real one the writers had in store for us at the end of the episode.
As I said in my review from last week, my initial guess was that the good Will Graham never really left us, and he was working with Jack on a brilliant con to lure Dr. Lecter in.
Â Â Â I’m a good fisherman, Jack — Will
Â Â You hook them, I’ll land them — Jack
This quote from “Su-zakana” was a fairly subtle reference to a pact to snare Dr. Lecter in his own trap, but it was nothing more than a hint — until last night’s jaw-dropping ending. After being cornered by Dr. Bloom (Caroline Dhavernas), Jack finally had to lay everything out on the table, including the fact that Freddie Lounds was very much alive. Of course, I was stunned like everyone else, but I was in complete awe with some of the ramifications of this reveal. Will had to find a corpse whose body type resembled Freddie’s (and who knows where he got the cadaver). He had to make a perfect mold of Freddie’s teeth. More importantly, he had to faux-kill Freddie in a way that would appear to be authentic and believable to Dr. Lecter. And, let’s not forget that Will had to sell the entire thing to Freddie before he even began. I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall to hear that conversation! Regardless, we all can breathe easier now knowing that the good Will Graham is still good, and with both Jack Crawford and Dr. Bloom convinced now of Dr. Lecter’s guilt, we can safely bet that the big Jack and Hannibal fight scene is not far off.
In terms of plot, the #BackFromTheFred twist was the crown jewel of the episode — but Mason Verger (Michael Pitt) was a close second. Someone said earlier this week on Twitter that Michael Pitt might be the first actor who ever looked at a Gary Oldman performance and thought, “I could go bigger.”Â And, wow, did he ever. Â In the Hannibal Lecter mythology, Mason Verger thought of himself as a kind of God and that everyone else in the world were bugs just waiting to be squashed. And, Pitt depicted this perfectly. I loved how he walked into Dr. Lecter’s office for his first therapy session and just immediately started talking about himself as if everyone must be right on the edge of their seat in anticipation to hear his life story (not Dr. Lecter though — did you see the disgust on his face!). But the one scene that truly depicted the level of his psychosis came at the very end when Will showed up ready to kill him for murdering his unborn child and for horrifically taking Margot’s (Katherine Isabelle) ability to have a child. Will is about to throw him into the pig pit and when he decides against that, points a gun to his head, but the guy doesn’t even flinch and just laughs like a hyena. Heck, even Dr. Lecter flinched when Will pretended like he was going to shoot him, but not Mason Verger. He has absolutely no fear, and I honestly believe he thinks that no one can possibly hurt him. I have a feeling he’s going to get a rude awakening fairly soon.
The episode ends with Will giving Mason the lowdown of what is really going on. Mason may have thought he was in control of everything and everyone, but Will quickly bursts that bubble. Dr. Lecter is the one who gave Margot the idea about an heir. Once that chess piece was in place, it was Dr. Lecter who dropped the hint to Mason that “biology” may provide him with another heir. And, just like a monkey, Mason did exactly what Dr. Lecter had planned and stripped Margot of her motherhood, leading Will once again on a mission to kill another monster. We saw how Mason reacted when he realized that Margot was trying to manipulate him. I wonder what he will do now knowing that Dr. Lecter is just using him like a puppet in some freak show.
Just like all of the other episodes this season, this was another stellar one. I tweeted Bryan Fuller last night after the episode aired that I thought he was a genius with the whole twist within a twist Freddie Lounds storyline, and I still stand by that. I have always thought that the original Hannibal Lecter material was very good and I’ve been a fan for years, but Fuller, Slade, and all of the writers have taken it to a whole new level. They have taken something that was already very good and have truly made it great. And, we still have two episodes left in the season. I can’t wait to see what surprises they still have in store for us.
Hannibal airs on Fridays at 10/9c on NBC.
Most memorable quotes
- Freddie Lounds had to burn. She was fuel. Fire destroys and it creates. It is mythical. She won’t rise from the ahses, but her killer will — Will to Jack and Dr. Bloom
- Maybe they don’t want you anymore. Maybe there’s something wrong with you — Mason Verger to Franklin
- Your father’s dead. A boy’s illusions are no basis for a man’s life — Dr. Lecter to Mason
- He has a benefactor that is admiring his destruction. Shiva was both a benefactor and a destroyer — Will
- Theyâ€™re going to find something wrong with your lady parts, Margot. Or so the record will state. The doctor will advise me that itâ€™s best to take everything. The only person youâ€™ll be celebrating Motherâ€™s Day with â€¦ is me.Â — Mason to Margot
- You must be the baby daddy. Excuse me if I donâ€™t offer you a cigar. –Â Mason to Will
- So, how was my funeral?Â — Freddie to Dr. Bloom
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