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Sunday, June 7, 2015

Hannibal, Antipasto: Review

This, unlike any other show that's ever aired, doesn't give a single f**k about what you think. It's going to do what it wants, when it wants to. It's going to blare an out of tune pipe organ in your ear while a woman passes out after pulling the entire length of her arm from a dead man's throat.

This is a bizarre, violent, show that follows more of a nightmare dream logic than a real story structure. This season it's decided to completely reinvent itself after last season's "get out of contract free" cliffhanger that left nearly every single main character bleeding out in Hannibal's mansion. Hannibal has coerced Bedelia (his former therapist and now "wife") into being his European camouflage. As he murders his way into a respectable position curating an Italian art exhibit. He straight up sits in his competition's office feasting on the man's liver so he can give that man's wife a cute little shock.

There hasn't been a horror film in years with this kind goofy, yet enthralling, kind of sadism. This is the one-of-a-kind folded steel carving knife to SAW's blunted cleaver. It makes sumptuous visual high art out of a mumble core penny dreadful script. And thankfully, IMDB tells me everyone's contract renewed, so the core cast will show up... eventually.

Not before Hannibal showed us that they totally could have built a show around just the two of them and part of me wishes they had. Settling into life with a possessive monster has a lot to do with bath tub based dream sequences and trips to unsettling, and fancy, Italian butcher shops. How come our butcher shops don't have rabbits and game hens hung up to bleed? Thanks, FDA.

Antipasto is a day in the life. All story threads that seem to lead to further intrigue are surgically dealt with by Hannibal's indiscriminate and defensive hand. It's a short film rather than an episode, capped off with Bedelia staring longingly at a train station security camera. Screaming for help on the inside. There's even a film within a film and it's some of the best character work in the series to date. Did you think Hannibal made Eddie Izzard just eat his own leg and then killed him? No. No he didn't. It's the greatest character send off I think I've ever seen. It's slow, horrific, and hypnotizing.

Apparently the Red Dragon is going to feature this season too, but to be honest... I'm already stuffed.

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