Hannibal Review: Pleasurable Killing

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"Amuse-Bouche" delved into the idea of murder becoming pleasurable, while also introducing the intrepid blogger Freddie Lounds.

The Mushroom Killer

Intrepid might be too strong and positive of a word at this juncture for Freddie. There’s really not much there right now aside from bringing the graphic crime scenes Will and BAU investigate out into the world, and with so much going on, and so much to mull over, it’s harder to visualize where Freddie is going to go or how she will progress in the short term as Hannibal Season 1 continues.

In the long term, the idea of copycat killers (that was alluded to tonight) is very intriguing for Freddie and how Lecter could manipulate that aspect to his advantage. The busier these copycats can keep the BAU, the better off Lecter is.

The gift of time also allows Lecter to look further into Will’s emotional state and dealing with his job; it provides a longer the opportunity for Lecter to pull Will into his own line of thinking and to really sell him on the pleasure of murder. One line from Lecter really caught my attention:

It's the inevitability of there being a man so bad that killing him felt good. | permalink

Not only is it possible foreshadowing, but it’s also heading back to a theme set up in "Aperitif:" getting into the headspace of murder. During each investigation, Will puts his own emotional status on the line as he thinks like the killer would, and Will killing Hobbs pulls him out of the theoretical and into reality. Will isn’t so much worried that he’s killed a man; he’s worried of this slippery slope down to finding pleasure (as Lecter does) in killing bad men.

Jack is slightly better compared to where we last left him. At times last week it felt like he was trying too hard. Now that he has Will on his team, and not actively trying to court him, I like the protector role he’s beginning to slip in to. It contrasts so nicely with his growing friendship with Lecter.

What did you think? Will you be sticking around for the season?

A Few More Thoughts:

  • All finely prepared food now makes me wonder if it’s human.
  • I’m always surprised at how creative television is with death and bodies.
  • Gretchen Speck is clearly Hillary’s cover name when she’s not in Seattle on Kyle XY.
  • Did we really need the body to come alive or the face to peel off?


Editor Rating: 4.2 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (61 Votes)

OK, this was a dumb MOTW episode for me. The FBI comes in all commando to a neighborhood drugstore looking for a possible killer pharmacist (gasp!), but no one thinks to cover the back door of the store and he just slips away? Riiight...so convenient. And this is supposed to be a "smart" crime drama? I'm quickly losing my patience here - I guess after just watching shows such as "Homeland", "True Detective", "Fargo" and "The Americans" my expectations for tight scriptwriting, direction and acting is rather high. Not to say there aren't flaws where ever you go, but as a viewer when you see a certain level of excellence you want other highly hyped shows to live up to those in which they're compared.


Hannibal is looking like an excellent crime drama, and I'm only at episode 2. It succeeds because it slowly, transparently reveals itself, without a hint of trying too hard - the mistake that dooms so many pseudo-clever tv shows (the new SyFy show Defiance comes to mind). Then, once you realize that it is not tugging at your sleeve for you to like it, what it reveals is complex, truly creative, beautifully shot, and engaging in a fresh, unique way, somehow slipping beyond the standard tv crime drama cliches as if it didn't even know them. The director, set designer and DP especially deserve commendation. Oh, and the casting director. And of course, the writer(s), who have managed to create a younger Hannibal who speaks just like a younger Dr. Lecter from the movies might, before he is quite so powerful and accomplished. It is encouraging to see quality tv produced with such a blend of elegance and, as they say, red meat.


I thoroughly enjoyed this. I just have to say - it's brilliant how they make the visuals simultaneously beautiful and disturbing. The mushroom garden - my goodness. I love Graham. The pilot had me fearing that he would be sort of one-dimensional, tortured with nothing else going on. He's turning out to be quite layered. He's unbelievable tortured, but at the same time he's not so tortured and broken that he can't have a somewhat light conversation with a friend (Alana in the hospital room). I'm also really pleased with what they're doing with Jack. Dr Lecter is so freakin intriguing. Also - Freddie Lounds as a woman - I didn't see that coming, but I don't hate it.


I love this show for its storyline, goriness, darkness, and psychological thrill. I don't know if Hannibal could have made it if it didn't have the movies as some "background" to the show. I know the those are unrelated but they do give an insight to Hannibal and his cleverness. The way I see it, I think Hannibal is turning Graham into his disciple. It will be interesting how the series finale will be and hopefully it will continue. I have to say that I never watch this show when I am snacking and I am glad I am a vegetarian. ;-)

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Hannibal Season 1 Episode 2 Quotes

It's the inevitability of there being a man so bad that killing him felt good.


I believe Will knows exactly what's going on his head.