The culinary delights of french cuisine is a strange overtone for this first season of Hannibal but I have to say I love its inclusion. “Amuse Bouche” translates into ‘mouth amuser’ and defy anyone with a dry sense of humour not to smile when considering each episodes title. Then again as a TV show that is all about implications, perception and hidden meanings everything in Hannibal seems to have a double meaning or an overtone of deception.
This second episode builds in a few more of the reoccurring cast members and the development of the relationship between Dr. Lecter and Will Graham. The Hobbs case from “Aperitif” is again an influence in this episode but has to share the spotlight with a case of stark experimentation; growing fungi on humans in a diabetic coma.
Wolf in sheep’s clothing
Hannibal Lecter’s demeanour is one of a cool, calm and collected psychiatrist who acts as a rudder for Will Graham while he deals with being active as a special agent. But as we know, and the foresight we share, Hannibal is a far greater beast than that. Some of what lies beneath the mask is revealed, in a more direct way in this episode, during one phone call. If you blink you could easily miss it.
I don’t think Hannibal will be the show that allows us privy to the identity of Lecter’s own psychiatrist (I’m thinking back here to The Sopranos and the parallel to reality, that was highlighted later in the show, that all practising psychiatrists have to have their own therapy). In a future season it possibly could be worked in as an interesting spin on what is currently developing between Hannibal and Graham. I just can’t see that happening this early in.
Watching Hannibal I do have to remind myself that this show is titled after that particular villain. This does go against my own personal view of how the show is developing a couple of episodes in. Both Hannibal and Graham share screen-time and only a few of the scenes in these episodes have they appeared apart from each other. Could there really be one without the other?
These two central characters are dancing to a dangerous tune that outsiders have not yet begun to unravel. We of course are allowed to see some of what is happening but there is certainly much more that is yet to be explained or revealed. That, I believe, is the beauty of a great TV show in the making.
Those of you that are considering picking up a copy of Hannibal season 1 boxset here’s a little bit of friendly advice…get it on Blu-Ray if you can.There are some very striking visuals in the show and the filmography is of a consistent excellent standard. I have found the vocal track a little low at times and have had to resort to turning on the subtitles but that is only a minor concern.
We paid for our own copy of Hannibal season 1 box set.