The Cancelled Hannibal


Jordanna Frazer, Sting Reporter

Hannibal, the TV show, came out back in 2013 on NBC. The show is a mixture of crime fiction and psychological horror. The TV show is based on the book, The Red Dragon, written by Thomas Harris. The show is centered around the relationship of Will Graham, a teacher turned FBI agent, and Hannibal Lecter, a well-respected psychiatrist. Hannibal can be found on Hulu and Amazon Prime Video. The show is overall a great watch for someone who is interested in crime and horror, but not so much for people who cannot stand any gore.
Hannibal Lector comes off as charming and sophisticated, but behind closed doors, he’s a diabolical serial killer and cannibal. The audience finds this out in the first episode when Lector is shown enjoying a piece of meat that is alluded to be human. Will Graham is a forensics teacher at the FBI academy, but soon starts a job as an FBI investigator. The reason Will Graham is so interesting is that he has empathetic powers. This means he is so empathetic that he’s able to relive crime scenes as if he were there doing the killing. This is both a blessing and a curse. He can use his empathetic powers to find out information about the killer and what their motive was which aids the FBI with catching the real killer. In the first season, Will is overwhelmed by his abilities, and his mental health deteriorates more and more as the season goes on. This is where Hannibal and Will’s relationship begins. Hannibal is ordered to be Will’s psychiatrist by Will’s boss, Jack. Hannibal is supposed to be helping Will, but what he is doing is covering his tracks and actively working against Will’s health. We see this happening until Hannibal decides to frame Will for all his murders. Hannibal soon realizes he misses Will and then works to free him. However, at this time, Will knows that Hannibal is the killer and is doing everything to convince everyone what he knows. Of course, no one believes him as Hannibal is well disguised. This is the basics of the first season. The second season has more to do with Will catching Hannibal. Will tries to trap Hannibal by using his obsession with Will against him. He convinces Hannibal that he has come to the dark side and has welcomed Hannibal’s lifestyle, meaning Will now acts like a cannibalistic killer. The third season is about Will moving on from Hannibal and then coming back to work to catch a new serial killer called the Tooth Fairy.
The show is at the top of many people’s lists. It mixes my favorite genres crime and horror into one great masterpiece. The creator eventually meant Will and Hannibal to be in a romantic relationship, which sounds weird considering Hannibal is a cannibal and framed Will for his murders. A full romance never actually happened due to the show being canceled after its third season. Although if one looks hard enough, there are some romantic elements in the show like the creator wanted. The show could have worked completely without the romantic touches, but many fans prefer it. The show has one on the edge of one’s seat. There are so many twists and turns, one won’t be sure what will happen next. Sometimes one can feel like some things don’t make sense or that something is missing when watching a show. This is not the case with this TV show. Somehow even with all those unexpected twists, one can hold on to the plot. The ending was absolutely amazing and completely unexpected. The ending tied up everything but somehow left one wanting more story and more of the crazy pair of Hannibal Lector and Will Graham. There has been talk of a comeback, but after about nine years it just doesn’t seem like it’s happening.
There are a couple of faults in the show, one of which is the writing. Sometimes one might feel like they need a dictionary to understand the conversations between Hannibal and Will. As expected, Hannibal talks very elegantly, and Will usually follows this due to his empathetic nature. Most of the script comes word for word out of the book, so maybe they should have dumbed the book down so the script for the show wasn’t so hard to understand at times. Another fault would be the intro. It is just so bright and a bit weird. One couldn’t watch this show at night in the dark because they would just get blinded. It’s a bit weird because it doesn’t match the vibe of the show. The show is very elegant and dark; meanwhile the intro is bright with faces forming out of the mysterious red liquid. They might have meant the red liquid to look like blood, but it honestly kind of looks like a red Kool-Aid. It just doesn’t match the show at all. I think most people would prefer a not-so-blinding, more poised type of intro, maybe with classical music as it comes up in the show quite a bit.
Overall, the show is great, although it may not be everyone’s cup of tea. It can get quite gory in some episodes. For example, the first episode of season two shows a man ripping his skin off trying to get unstuck from a human mural. There’s no way to not cringe at something like that, and most of the audience would probably agree. It’s a good show, and anyone into crime or horror genres should give it a watch. Though it’s probably not a great recommendation to people sensitive to gore and dark topics.