Hannibal “Contorno” Review (3×05)

2 Jul


“If you don’t kill him, you’re afraid you’ll become him.”

The Hannibal Lecter-Will Graham dynamic is one of the most fascinating dynamics on television, and what’s impressive about this show is its ability to develop their relationship through the use of other characters. Last week, we witnessed an episode all about the long-lasting impact Hannibal’s had on a plethora of people, and this week, it all explodes in a truly masterful final sequence. Even though the show’s two main characters aren’t physically by each other–the passionate sex that inevitably will ensue is more of a finale event–the writers still take care to note just how close they are. We see just how tightly the two are entwined, and it only makes the upcoming reunion even more intriguing as a result.

In this particular episode, the idea of reciprocity seems to reign supreme. As Bedelia tells Hannibal: “Will’s en route to kill you, while you lie in wait to kill him”. The show’s built upon the push and pull foundation between those two characters, and the idea of reciprocity there is really fascinating…especially when you consider that within the context of show theme staples like forgiveness, love, and betrayal. The past plays such an important role in this show, and the idea of reciprocity can stem from pain or desire for revenge or love. And even more interesting, here’s the definition of reciprocity: “the practice of exchanging things with others for mutual benefit”. Mutual benefit is key here, as you’d normally think of killing someone as far from the most mutually beneficial action in the world. But Hannibal‘s more complex than that, and it has its own layered ideas about death and morality and reciprocity.

Throughout the episode, we also see past events catching up to our characters, and you could read it as a dark form of reciprocity in a way. Alana and Hannibal talk once again, Pazzi’s corpse is a recreation of Francesco de Pazzi’s death, and of course, Jack delivers the beating of a lifetime onto Hannibal. The final sequence is exciting, satisfying, and plain brilliant, and it marks a significant turn in the third season. Even though Hannibal is able to pick himself up and simply walk away from that brutal fight, there’s no doubt that the people around him are catching up.



– “Spitters are quitters, and you don’t strike me as a quitter.” Oh, how I love Mason Verger, and how I love Joe Anderson’s performance.

-I’m a bit disappointed we didn’t get more out of the Pazzi storyline, but it was still well done.

-I know it’s only been a few episodes with her so far, but I’m really not feeling Chiyoh this season. She’s fairly interesting, but she hasn’t quite clicked with me yet. Nevertheless, I do find the conversation they have on the train fairly intriguing. Will mentions that “we are different [at night] than who we are in the day”, and Chiyoh goes on to say that nighttime is “when life is most like a dream”. The night-day contrast has been one of the show’s motifs thus far, and “dreamlike” is a perfect way to describe the show’s mood.

-Will is pushed off a train. Pazzi is pushed out the window. Hannibal is pushed out the window. Next up: Mason Verger pushed off of the Eiffel Tower!

-And so, next week marks the beginning of the “Stuff Everything In the Same Time Slot” summer Thursdays. I’ve been getting these reviews up fairly quickly recently, but seeing as Rectify premieres next week, I might experience some delays.

Photo credit: NBC, Hannibal


2 Responses to “Hannibal “Contorno” Review (3×05)”

  1. Matthew Thompson July 5, 2015 at 10:52 am #

    I can’t say I have been digging this season as much as the last one, but this was a really good one. The fight at the end was really satisfying even though obviously Hannibal was going to get away. Seeing him get knocked around was still fun. I remember that Pazzi death from the movie so it was neat to see how it would play out here. I like seeing this new side to Alana this season as well. Her and Mason together has been an interesting pairing. Will and Chiyoh’s stuff this episode was eh though.

    • polarbears16 July 5, 2015 at 11:03 am #

      Yeah I’m really liking Alana this season as well. I agree about Will and Chiyoh though; I definitely haven’t been drawn in to their dynamic, which explains why I wasn’t a huge fan of the third episode.

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