Go to you mind palace.
Hannibal: Season 3: Episode 9: And the Woman Clothed with the Sun…: GRADE: A
One thing I think this episode really highlights so impeccably well is the masterful editing. That’s always been a high mark trait for the series and while I touch upon it, I never really gotten into it. One trait that’s always been evident in the works of Bryan Fuller is clever editing to really bring all the shots together to bring across his distinct style and and showcase how damn good his chosen directors are. The transitions, cuts, and and pacing all shine through the editing of Hannibal and this latest installment shows it.
The reason for all the editing is how we each see everyone slowly transition to their mind palace and how they truly see the situations going around them in their head. This episode is about the mindsets of those deeply involved in the Tooth Fairy case.
Will and Hannibal are now doing their dance. With two already superb adaptations of the story out there you know there is a standard that Hugh Dancy and Mads Mikkelsen have to live up to with William Petersen and Brian Cox and Edward Norton and Anthony Hopkins, but Dancy and Mikkelsen have far than proved themselves as capable as their predecessors and their scene is great as they seamlessly move from the hospital and moving about Hannibal’s office and even outside of the victim’s home from lat week. Their back and fourth again shines through.
The mind palace settings help to give insight on our characters this week rather than Will tapping into it for a crime scene, which I love, but I also loved it being used for character progression. We first enter Hannibal’s and see how his relationship with Abigail Hobbs progressed from the end of season one to the finale of last season. You know for a dead person, Abigail sure is still hanging around here a lot, yet they were interestingly compelling scenes that showed the grasp and dark influence Hannibal held over young Abigail. Telling her how they need to protect each other. It has a twinge of sadness that you might see that while Abigail was a pawn to Hannibal, he might have legitimately cared for her. I mean he’s nice enough to have Abigail slice the throat of her own father’s corpse, which would then become tragic as that is how she died by his hands.
Speaking of Hannibal and women, her scene with Alana just further highlights what a great change the character has undergone this season and its for the better. She’s an amazing standout among the cast now and is sharing Chilton’s role from the story, even being the one here to threaten Hannibal by taking away some of his privileges. Fuller’s desire for a bigger role for her has succeeded. The back and forth is great, even Hannibal getting in a sexual innuendo quip about Alana and Margot, who have a son by the way so congrats guys!
Will’s mind palace is for investigation purposes but it still works since we still get to see the things lurking under his mind, such as seeing himself as ruthless a killer as the Tooth Fairy is, but I found the scene where he enters the palace to vision himself next to Molly as they talk on the phone excellent. It shows how he’s really seeking her as a life preserver to make sure he’s not his old self. Also Freddie! Yes along the course of his investigation Will comes across Freddie and I was ever so delighted to see the return of Lara Jean Chorostecki. Her version of Freddie is still as shifty and clever as ever, able to have a sophisticated style to her inherent sleaziness. That’s what I admire about her interpretation and once again gets to have a back and forth with Hugh Dancy which is full of biting barbs and I love every second of it. I’m curious how she’s gonna be used here. I seriously hope this isn’t her only appearance this season.
The mind palace of Francis is briefly seen, but its a big thing shown of her around her grandmother’s place and the hugely significant part that plays into the creation of him as the Tooth Fairy, but its briefly seen and well I don’t wanna ruin the fun ahead of time.
Last week’s introduction showed us the Tooth Fairy, this week we are introduced to Francis Dolarhyde, the person. His humanity is of course brought out by the introduction of Reba McClane who is now played by Rutina Wesley of True Blood and she’s just damn good. She and Armitage play well off each other and they help bring the best out in each other. Francis seems to have found someone who can see him, which is ironic given that Reba is blind, but she loves that he doesn’t care. She hates the sympathy that’s given to her because of her blindness and thus she gives none to Francis for his speech impediment, which Armitage plays very well and gives his own distinct voice too which was a great highlight to the episode.
But we do still see the sick monster hiding inside Francis from Will’s POV in the investigation. Armitage already is standing out by giving this character the complexity that has made him so fascinating be it here or by Tom Noonan or Ralph Finnes, even the pages of Thomas Harris’ original novel. We feel how scary Francis is as we dive into how compliacted he is. He’s bringing a dark force to the show that hasn’t been felt and its making the last few weeks enjoyable.
Hannibal gears up its closing chapters by opening up more about Francis and showing how this is going to be the one thing that changes everything for everyone. I find this take interesting given that its the end rather than the beginning, but hey that’s what’s so great about Hannibal. It subverts your expectations and delivers what it is that’s truly needed.