Last week on Hannibal, the former victims of our favorite cannibal doctor were forming their own little teams. Alana and Mason Verger were working together with the intent of trapping Hannibal and feeding him to the pigs. Will and his mysterious sidekick, Chiyo were on their way to find Hannibal and exact their own vengeance. Doctor Chilton was working in the background, manipulating events, Jack was searching for Will and Inspector Pazzi was still on the lookout for the one that got away. So what will our “heroes” be doing this week? And does Hannibal even care that they’re coming for him? ‘Contorno’ answers these questions and does it with one of the best episodes we’ve seen this season.
On one side of the world, Will and Chiyo travel by train on their way to find Hannibal. Chiyo tells Will a story or two about her past, including some of how she first met Hannibal. They’re both serious victims of Hannibal’s sanity-twisting games and it’s hard to get a handle on what either of them will do once they find the good doctor, but killing him seems like a very likely option. Will is quite concerned that if he doesn’t kill his former friend that he will end up becoming little more than a copy of him.
But something in Chiyo doesn’t want Will to accomplish his task. They have a nice little chat on the back of the train when, out of nowhere, Chiyo pushes Will off, leaving him stranded in the countryside. Why does she want him out of the way? Is she looking to find and kill Hannibal herself? Is this some sort of vengeance for when Will forced her into killing her prisoner? Or is she somehow defending Hannibal?
Meanwhile, half-way around the world, Alana Bloom is teaching the psychopathic pedophile, Mason Verger, how to track Hannibal. As it turns out, she finds the perfect way to do it. Hannibal has rarefied tastes when it comes to his eating habits. So Alana figures out where in the world certain things are being purchased and eventually deciphers the riddle of her enemy’s whereabouts.
But the real meat-and-bones of the story revolves around Hannibal, Jack Crawford and Inspector Pazzi. Jack’s been hanging out in Florence and discussing the Hannibal conundrum with Pazzi. They both want to catch Hannibal, though Pazzi’s motives are questionable. When Jack tells him that Hannibal is indeed the person who he’s been searching for all these years, Pazzi goes to have a look and confirm his suspicions. And, as it turns out, Pazzi is also looking to collect on that $3 million reward that Mason Verger is offering for a captured-yet-still-living Doctor Lecter.
When Verger demands a fingerprint from Pazzi before he’ll send some of the money, the Inspector heads out to retrieve one. Of course, Hannibal knows damn well what Pazzi is up to. They have a nice little chat and then, before you know it, Pazzi is waking up bound to a chair with Hannibal lurking over him. Needless to say, things don’t end well for the Inspector.
Unfortunately for Hannibal, Jack becomes suspicious when Pazzi doesn’t show up for dinner at the usual time. So he heads to where he knows the Inspector will be going – after Hannibal. He also happens to show up at the exact time Hannibal is pushing poor Pazzi out the window and to his death. Then it turns into Hannibal versus Jack – Round 2.
This time, however, Jack gets the upper hand. He pounds the living crap out of Hannibal, smashes him through glass panes, rips a hole in him with a meat hook and more. And he does it all while wearing a look of pure joy across his face. Finally Jack has his revenge. But there are still plenty of episodes left this season, so don’t expect that Hannibal’s life ended there. After a spill out of a window, a very battered and very bloody Doctor Lecter escapes into the darkness.
I would have to say that this has been my favorite episode of season 3 so far. Now that the hunter has become the hunted and all his victims have turned into wolves, circling Hannibal and waiting for their chance to make a kill, the tension has really skyrocketed. I like seeing Hannibal on the defensive and it offers a fresh perspective into how his mind works. Even though the enemy is coming for him, he still stays put in Florence and waits. He wants a chance to see Will again and I would wager that even a beating from Jack and the threat of Verger’s bounty won’t chase him away that easily.
So now the series has become a game of who will reach Hannibal first, who will die first, who will best Hannibal, what Hannibal will do to each of his former victims and whether or not Will will have the privilege of catching/killing Hannibal before someone else does. It’s a beautiful game of cat-and-mouse-and-cat that will likely play out for the rest of the season and promises some very interesting conflicts and resolutions. Kudos to the writers and to Bryan Fuller for bringing this all together.
Another thing that I loved about this episode was the vengeance beating that Jack gave to Hannibal. It was ugly, brutal, bloody and done in a very realistic way. We got to see Jack get some of his revenge against Hannibal without losing the titular character before the time is right. And we also were given a chance to look into the eyes of the vicious killer that Jack has turned into due to his former relations with the good doctor.
The big question is – Who’s next?
Next week, ‘Dolce’ may answer that question. Jack and Will look to be getting back together again. Chiyo has her own agenda, one that seems to involve putting a bullet in Hannibal’s head. And two old friends will meet again, if only to have a nice chat before they commence to trying to kill each other. Check out the trailer for that one below.