Wednesday, September 2, 2015

084: Hannibal 3x13 "The Wrath of the Lamb" - Hannibal and the Wonderful, Fantastic, Murderous, Very Best Day Ever

None more artful. *sniff*

SPOILERS UP TO (and including) THE HANNIBAL SEASON 3 FINALE, as well as for the novels and movies Manhunter, Red Dragon, Silence of the Lambs and Hannibal.

In this episode:
  • Alright, wipe away your tears, time to start talkin’ bout, talkin’ bout the Hannibal finale
  • Vic joins us once again to discuss Hannibal 3x13 "The Wrath of the Lamb," including everything, and all of it happening so very, very much.
  • Running to the end of this season, we basically have a full exploration of Will’s character when it comes to the source material.
  • The article Fio references: Tracking Hannibal Lecter, from Manhunter to Red Dragon
  • Book purist reactions and the deviations from the source material that have been inherent in Fuller’s “remixing” strategy since the beginning.
  • Comparing and contrasting the various Dolarhyde stories, especially in reference to Reba’s story’s conclusion.
  • The problem of Jack becoming more of a side character this season as opposed to his more central role in previous seasons.
    • In her Aperitivo recap, Cleo actually gets deeper into the differing emotional ramifications of the show’s relationship between Hannibal and Crawford and the Book/Movie’s which we touch on only briefly here, but it’s good to mention.
  • Digesting the reaction to the Hannibal Finale (see what I did there?)
  • Is this really as close as we’re going to get to Hannigram Confirmed? 
  • Stay tuned in a couple of weeks for our series retrospective episode with Cleolinda Jones!
  • I got nothin', so here are the highlights from Fio's timestamps:
    • Hashtags are just stupid and funny. I don’t know why, but they are.
    • I don’t agree with Vic’s reading of Red Dragon / Silence of the Lambs / Hannibal in regards to Will Graham vs Clarice, but I think we got away from it before I could interject. In Red Dragon, Hannibal completely fucking destroys Will so bad he becomes nothing more than a footnote in someone else’s narrative by the end of it, but in Hannibal he acknowledges that he can’t even predict how what he did would change Clarice, so I think my reading of the books is kind of the opposite of what he was proposing.
    • Yes you do want to say “fall under Hannibal’s spell” admit it. ADMIT IT IAN
    • Will absolutely will not go to jail after the jailbreak because Murder Wizardry > Real world experience in this show. Every damn time.


  1. "There is some part of him that is genuinely [..] appreciates what Hannibal has risen up in him"
    1- You're totally right and it's half of of /why it is so upsetting/, 2- At the risk of being gauche I think there's at least a few parts that appreciate that Ian

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  2. Manhunter seems to do decent by Will Graham. The AV Club article comparing the three versions of the story (before the show) noted that he's the main focus of the story, while some of Dolarhyde's material is left out. On the show, he's not very convincing as a cop (or ex-cop). When the show started giving him some of his lines from the book in the Red Dragon arc, it sounded jarring from Dancy's version of the character. He's also not very good at his job on the show (this is related to Fuller's disinterest in the procedural aspects, which became increasingly perfunctory each season).

    I don't think Lecter's cell was "down in a dungeon" in the novel. It is attached to a corridor though (it also has metal bars with a nylon net behind it, rather than glass with airholes). He's also referred to in the past tense for most of his introductory scene (just not the bit about his eyes, or the description of his height).

    It's unfortunate Hannibal took over Harris' stories. I'd even be up for a completely separate novel, a la Black Sunday.

    My problem with Dolarhyde faking his death here is that there's no inciting incident. In the book it's partly because Graham shows up at Gateway looking for him (whereas the investigation was completely irrelevant in the show), but with Reba it's also because he sees her with someone else. That's part of why he complains about how he wished he could have trusted her. Since he knew very well that she'd try to run on the show, it rings hollow when he says that line. It also makes little sense that he'd break up with her, send her away when she visited, and then decide to kidnap her (only to let her go).

    Will did have a plan to catch Dolarhyde by faking Lecter's escape. But that was when they didn't know the Tooth Fairy's identity and were without leads. On the show this happens after he's already faked his death (and a full moon has passed), so they can just wait for someone to recognize him. Even though the plan was more necessary in the book, they still didn't go for it. Conclusion: Jack has brain damage on the show.

    Should the seaside house be called a "murder villa" if it hadn't actually been used for murder?

    Chilton wasn't in the first episode of the season. He pops up in the fourth, although it chronologically comes first.

    Dolarhyde wouldn't fail a Voight-Kampff test. He was a human, just one with serious mental issues. Hannibal isn't "a man with a freak on his back", he's Satan free of humanity. Though he probably knows enough about psychological tests to pass them.

  3. Jack was terribly handled this season. Once Will stated he tried to help Hannibal escape, the old version of Jack would have made sure he NEVER got near an investigation again. This one not only has him help out with the Dolarhyde case, but also meet with Hannibal and participate in a plan to relocate Hannibal and fake his escape! It's like Fuller just gave up on the character. The old version of Jack would also never have let a wounded & limping Hannibal escape because he "needed Will to get him". He was planning on killing the Ripper himself for his own reasons, but the character subordinated himself to Will for no apparent reason this season. And if Alana was uncomfortable with even pushing the Tooth Fairy toward suicide, why the hell would he announce his plans to orchestrate the murders of both him and the incarcerated Hannibal (whose life Alana had saved via insanity defense)? Just egregious writing. He was also badly handled in season 2 (to a lesser extent). He had Hannibal consulting despite him being under investigation andBloom being the one with a relevant background & history with the FBI (not to mention Graham's endorsement as a substitute for him in Apertif). We also (unlike Bloom) never see what made him change his mind about Hannibal. He goes right from thinking Chilton's guilty and claimng Will's denial is a result of being "played", to meeting w8th Will to entrap Hannibal at the beginning of the next episode.

    I don't think Will planned the attack on the convoy. He didn't know the details when he met with Dolarhyde. He and Jack are really equally responsible for that fuckup.

    As with Will, some book lines sounded strange from Mikkelsen's version of the character. Particularly when he's on the phone trying to get Will's address. It's not his fault he sounds distinctively non-American (or like a "Bob Greer"), but them's the breaks.

    Hannibal's letter to Will is not in Manhunter, but the material about Hobbs & Lounds does turn up in a phone call. Amusingly, you can actually see Petersen shift to a relaxed position after Hannibal tells him to.

  4. Using your train metaphor, I was left on the platform early this season.

    I don't know if the use of a pop song was an homage to Manhunter (which mixed such things with Rubini's score throughout). I'd say Dolarhyde coming to a glass window was to some extent, and the bloodstain wings under him in death was to a very large extent. For an artsy horror film more obviously making homage to Manhunter's music, I'd cite The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears.

    The deviation from the novel in making Will's institutionalization involuntary & unjustified undercuts his talk with his stepson. In this version, the kid has little reason (as far as he knows) to be worried about his stepfather's mental state.

    Will does NOT tap into Dolarhyde's psyche when he confronts him in the novel. He is completely taken out on first contact, and it's up to Molly to save her child from him. Fuller hated that bit of "pop psychology" in the movie.

    I don't think Fuller said Will & Hannibal would run off together to Argentina next season. When an interview said something along those lines, Fuller said it would be something more unexpected.

    If Bedelia is so smart, clever & terrified, why doesn't she fly immediately, particularly when contrasted with her fleeing with much less of a threat toward her early in season 2? Of course, it's also hard to reconcile that season 2 version of the character with one who waits around despite knowing that Hannibal is preparing her for the oven.

    The vulgar/cheeky dialogue has been more prominent this season than before. When you mentioned size, I recalled Lounds' line about the black box.