In some ways, Hannibal could finish here; plot-lines are resolved, old scores are settled, balance is restored, closure is achieved. But it can’t finish here; in fact, it’s hardly begun. Though this episode, Digestivo, ends with Will Graham alive and free, and Hannibal caged, that’s not the end of the relationship. It’s merely the beginning.
At the end of the last episode, Will and Jack had been captured by Hannibal, who was about to open up Will’s skull; the blood was flying when we cut to a scene of Will and Hannibal hanging upside-down in a meat wagon, the prisoners of Mason Verger. How the hell did we get there?
As we had predicted, the solution lay with the crooked Italian cop who had questioned Bedelia. She had sold Hannibal out, in time for the cops to burst onto the scene, overpower Hannibal and capture him and Will, with the intention of turning the two over to Mason Verger for the reward. Jack Crawford, they didn’t need, and were just about to kill when loyal Chiyoh put a couple of well-placed bullets into them.
Her concern was of course not for Crawford, but for the captured Hannibal; but she accepts Jack’s help in finding Mason Verger.
Verger, of course, is in his element, looking forward to feasting on Hannibal and feeding the remains to his pigs – but what plan does he have for Will? Oh, he’s going to have crazy Doctor Cordell transplant Will’s face onto the ruins of his own. Nicely perverse. No wonder Will goes a bit tonto, and takes a bite out of Cordell’s face.
But Mason hasn’t counted on Alana and Margot, one determined to save Will, the other determined to revenge herself on Mason. When Mason goads his sister by telling her he’s implanted her fertilised eggs into a surrogate, we immediately realise he’s not talking about a human – yes, the embryo’s developing in one of his prize pigs. Margot’s suitably horrified. The embryo hasn’t survived anyway, but she is still determined to retain the Verger fortune after the death of Mason, by producing her own heir using his sperm. Yucky.
The scene’s set for a bloody finale in which Alana and Margot free Hannibal, who slaughters Cordell and the guards, with the help of Chiyoh; Alana and Margot finish off Mason, having harvested his sperm while he was unconscious. That image alone is enough to have you choking on your muesli, so thanks for sparing us that; in comparison we can almost tolerate the image of Mason’s death by choking on an eel, certainly not what he had in mind as his final meal.
So, Will, having survived having his skull cut open and his face sliced into, recovers in his own home, under the care of Hannibal. Why doesn’t Hannibal now want to kill Will? Perhaps because Will says he no longer intends to pursue Hannibal. “I don’t have your appetite,” he says, although he admits that the two are “identically different”.
Hannibal and Chiyoh disappear, so when Jack and the FBI turn up too late, it looks like it’s all over; but then Hannibal turns himself in. If Will isn’t going to chase him, he’s going to stay still.
So, closure perhaps for Alana, who now accepts that she could never have understood Hannibal; for Margot, who gets to kill Mason as Hannibal advised she should; for Crawford, who gets to see Hannibal caged; and for Chiyoh, who gets Hannibal to admit that he did eat Mischa – though he didn’t kill her. But, no closure for poor old Will, who now owes his life to Hannibal, again. When he says he doesn’t want to think of Hannibal any more, we know that’s an impossibility. Hannibal hasn’t finished with him.
Though the episode could act as a mid-season hiatus, there isn’t one; we know that we are now going to plunge into the Red Dragon story arc. How long will it take for Will to give in to his magnetic attraction to Hannibal? We reckon about twelve minutes into the next episode.
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