HANNIBAL Recap: “Takiawase”

     March 22, 2014


“Takiawase” finally finds Will readying for battle in his war against Hannibal.  It was also an episode full of swirling aesthetics and deeply emotional moments — it’s unsurprising maybe that Scott Nimerfro co-wrote the episode, he being of the late Pushing Daisies.  “Takiawase” was full of Daisy-esque turns, from the bees (reminiscent of the Season Two opener “Bzzzzzz!”) as well as the animation peppered throughout.  Will, too, seems to have woken up from his catatonia, and was incredibly punchy with Chilton and Beverly.  As he continues to mount his campaign against Hannibal though, his biggest ally may not have properly heeded his warnings.  Hit the jump for why it’s ok to look into the sun if you don’t have any eyes (or a brain).

hannibal-hassun-mads-mikkelsenLast week, Hannibal reset things by keeping Will off of death row (for now), and establishing that he means enough to him to keep around.  The game, it seems, is afoot.  Will wasted no time in directing Beverly to where and how she could find clues to implicate Hannibal in the crimes, though, starting with the color palette killer.  Naturally, Beverly decides to invite Hannibal along for the autopsy.  Was it so necessary to do it in that moment that she couldn’t wait for her other cohorts to return from the bee man case?  When there’s even a shadow of suspicion that Hannibal could be the perpetrator, why involve him further and taunt him?  You won’t win that game.  Look at the man’s suits.  He will not be mocked.

It’s unfortunate that Beverly, who started out as such as strong and outspoken character, so quickly became reduced to Will’s parrot.  She couldn’t speak to Jack of Hannibal or anyone about the facts she was consulting Will on, without them calling her out on her repetition.  Without any original ideas to speak of, one wonders about her place on the team in the first place.  What happened to the promising character from Season One?  Worse, she now apparently lacks all common sense, breaking into a potentially extremely deadly killer’s house and — having clearly never watched a horror film in her life — goes into his basement of death, lingering around his horror show long enough for him to appear, shuffling away in the darkness with something sharp as she shoots into the void.  Bye, Beverly.

hannibal-season-2-hugh-dancyAssuming Beverly is dead, it looks like Will has lost not only his voice in the current cases (and his knowledge of the crimes, which helps him pin the blame on Hannibal), but also someone willing to look into it.  On the other hand, Beverly’s demotion to a character without much sense made her a lacking ally moving forward.  Where’s Alana when you need her?

Will also challenged Chilton about Hannibal’s methods in treating him, but surely Will had to know Chilton would report back to Hannibal?  Chilton seems as suspicious of Hannibal as is deserved, but since the two are in cahoots, he chooses to suggest a pact of silence.  He knows who to keep as a friend.  Will doesn’t make that cut when he’s up against Hannibal, who is currently at his most powerful as puppeteer of this play.

Meanwhile, Hannibal continues to cultivate other allies.  By bringing Bella back from her suicide attempt (what a painful scene that was, yet such a powerful set of interactions between them), he has secured Jack’s trust and support (for now).  Advantage: Hannibal.

As for the rest of “Takiawase,” it incorporated just enough of Will’s mind palace — from fishing lessons with Abigail to the strobe-light remembrances of Hannibal’s treatment of him — without going overboard.  Continuing to incorporate Abigail Hobbs has been one of the series’ strongest feats of continuity, as she acts as a driving point for both Will and Hannibal, forever binding them together.

hannibal-season-2-mads-mikkelsen-laurence-fisburneOf course, Hannibal wouldn’t be Hannibal without some grotesque corpse on display.  “Takiawase” gave us two: one dead, and one who wishes he was.  The Case of the Week didn’t seem to function for much beyond aesthetics; the B Team took the lead on it, which was fine since the perpetrator openly admitted to her crimes of “quieting” the mind.  It was suitably creepy, and led to some of the best animation and chills of the hour, but it didn’t connect with the rest of the episode like the palette killer or the “Will is innocent” killings around the courtroom last week.  Still, it gets point for style.

One of the most frustrating things last season was seeing Will lose his mind, and viewers knowing he couldn’t fight back, and that no one could fight for him.  Now, finally, Will seems to be taking control.  According to the previews, he even attempts to put a hit on Hannibal.  Can their friendship handle that?  What of his murderous love letters to you, Will?

“Takiawase” was a much richer episode than “Hassun,” but it didn’t connect as well.  On the other hand, it set up so much, and did it so beautifully, that it’s hard to fault it.  What the episode really showed was Hannibal‘s ability to be so many things at once — like Hannibal Lecter himself — and to present itself in such a unique way.  There’s a difference between stalking and luring, and Hannibal got the balance right in “Takiawase.”

hannibal-season-2-mads-mikkelsen-laurence-fisburneEpisode Rating: A-

Musings and Miscellanea:

— The scene transitions, the animations … everything was beautiful and nothing hurt.  Oh, except the eyeless man.  Luckily I saw a preview of the bee man on Twitter earlier, so didn’t feel the need to close-up on him twice …

— No one but Hugh Dancy could say “he’s … eating them?!” without sound completely ridiculous.  He was flawless.

— The scenes with Bella were difficult, but Hannibal is no Kevorkian it seems (at least, the coin decided he wasn’t).

— Seriously, don’t you know better than to go into a killer’s basement?  Get out and get a search warrant!

— Jimmy’s bee ejaculation facts were enlightening.

— Nice little trick there by making Amanda Plummer, Pulp Fiction‘s Honey Bunny, a honey-obsessed “quieter” of minds.

— “When you’re gone, he’ll feel your silence like a draft” – Hannibal.  Beautiful writing there.