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'Hannibal' recap: The transformation of a killer

Season 2 | Episode 8 | “Su-Zakana” | Aired Apr 18, 2014

Greetings Fannibals, and welcome back to another episode of Hannibal — where every time you think you’ve seen the craziest thing ever, you’re proven wrong the following week. Tonight’s theme is transformation and, because I feel like we need to start adding the hashtag of the week, I’ve added it to the tags on this post.

Let’s get recapping!

After the events of last week, one thing is clear in the opening moments: Jack Crawford is back in Will’s corner and, even though Frederick Chilton was arrested and subsequently shot in the face, Hannibal is, once again, the elusive fish to catch.

Which means it’s time to make nice with Hannibal again. Will’s playing the begrudging apologist, Crawford the stern but apologetic father figure, and Hannibal … well, Hannibal’s the gracious and forgiving soul, so glad this is all behind them so they can move on.

Ain’t Hannibal a peach?

As for the case of the week, well, let me just warn you: If you’re a horse lover, you may want to get a pillow to cry into, because we take a trip to a farm where a mare who gave birth two days ago is clearly in distress and, even though she gave birth naturally, she has a stitched incision on her seemingly still pregnant belly. What could it be? Let’s find out. Cue the close-up of stitches cut and horse intestine being removed to get further into the body and … oh, look! The baby is a human body!

I’m sure PETA is gonna love this episode. I think I’m gonna puke, because I’m an idiot and I was eating while watching.

Hannibal joins Jack at the farm and is consulting on the case. Here’s what we know: Sarah, the victim, was dead before she was placed inside the horse. While it may look like some sort of pagan ritual sacrifice, Hannibal defines the horse more as a cocoon. This was a transformation. Death to life for our killer. But who and why remain to be seen. Crawford asks Hannibal how they’ll catch this killer. Hannibal says they need an out-of-the-box thinker.

Hmmmm, too bad they don’t know one of those.

Speaking of out-of-the-box thinkers, we cut to a fish tank, which turns out to be a pretty cool sort of table, but there’s not time to admire it because a woman is forced onto it and, as the assailant speaks, we get a name: Margot. He gathers her tears with a small piece of paper and then drops that into a martini glass. Before he raises it to sip, and we see a signet ring. Who is this masochist, and who is the woman?

We find her in Hannibal’s office, and we discover that man who attacked her was her brother. It seems she tried to “put him down” like the mad dog he is. Hannibal certainly doesn’t dissuade her from trying again. After all, she’s only protecting herself.

Let’s head back to the lab with Team Science. On tonight’s episode, we perform an autopsy and discover a beating heart in a dead body. We go up close with the rib spreader and uncover a mystery. What makes the heart beat? A bird*! Bird is in the heart.

starling3Will’s back in the field, or shall we say the barn, and imagining the kill. Here’s what we discover: The killer knows horses. Knew that the horse in question was dying. Was comfortable in the barn, with these horses. He works there or is familiar there. While not a vet, he considers himself a healer and, in a sense, was trying to give the victim new life. It wasn’t murder. It was grief, says Will.

This means it’s time to find the who, and that means Crawford and Will pull up to another farm where the barn is full of many different types of caged animals, and a man named Peter Bernardone (Jeremy Davies) who is definitely a little … off. When told about Sarah’s death and the bird in her heart, he asks if the bird is alive and who’s taking care of it. So, dead body, no big deal. Bird being safe, that’s important. Peter says he didn’t know Sarah. To clarify, he knew who she was but didn’t know her. Still, when Crawford asks him to look at a picture, he’s very reticent, and we get emotional shaky cam when he does look.

Will recognizes Peter’s behaviors and asks if he was kicked in the head by a horse (he was), and tells Jack that Peter’s reactions seem to indicate stress. Crawford asks Peter if he’s been under stress. Peter says yes, because he’s worried about the bird. He’s sad for the horse, but he can only help the bird. So, worried about the bird, sad about the horse and no interest in Sarah.

The summation: If he’s the killer, he didn’t mean to do it, and if he isn’t, he knows who is.

Ooooh, now this is interesting. We join Will in therapy with Hannibal and, while they begin by discussing the case, it comes back to Will and his certainty that Hannibal is a killer. Remember a couple of episodes back when Will said Hannibal’s true goal is to make Will his friend? And now there’s been all this talk about lures and bait and catching the one that got away? I think Will Graham has set his plan in motion. He tells Hannibal that he knows what he’s done; when Hannibal starts to mourn that Will can’t seem to let it go, Will tells him to stop right there. He knows that Hannibal can’t admit to the killings, but he wants no more lies. He prefers sins of omission over outright lies. Hannibal asks for the truth in return. Why did Will resume his therapy? We know Will’s lying, but he skillfully manages to say that he talks to Hannibal because he can’t talk to “just anyone” about his thoughts. Hannibal asks if Will still fantasizes about killing him. Will says yes. Hannibal asks how Will would do it, and Will calmly returns, “With my hands.”

Hannibal suggests that Will learned something about himself when he tried to have Hannibal killed. The same thing he said to Margot earlier regarding her attempt on her brother: “Doing bad things to bad people makes you feel good.” What I found interesting was that, in one sentence, Hannibal Lecter just confirmed that he is, indeed, the bad person Will thinks he is — and explained his motives for killing at the same time. He and Will are alike. So he asks Will if he intends to try to kill him again, and Will — oh, this is beautiful — says, “I don’t want to kill you anymore, Dr. Lecter. Not now that I finally find you interesting.”

We have a new crime scene. The big takeaways: Zeller apologizes to Will for thinking he’s the killer, and 15 graves have been found. One was Sarah’s now-empty grave, which means whoever dug her up knows about the other graves.

In our other storyline, Margot has come to see Hannibal again. It seems her family has forgiven her brother and they think she’s the weird one. This must be one heck of a family. Hannibal empathizes. He also suggests that, if she wants her brother dead, she needs to figure out how to do it or have someone do it for her. Isn’t he just so helpful?

Will has brought the bird back to Peter. Keeping the bird as the topic of conversation, Will discovers that Peter isn’t the killer. He couldn’t save her, and he wanted to give her beauty as a grieving mechanism. Above all, Peter wanted them to find him because if they found him, they could find “him.” But Peter’s afraid to tell because this killer will make sure no one believes him. Will promises he’ll make sure they do.

Which raises the question, who is “he”? Well, we’re privy to a conversation between Alana and Peter’s new social worker, Clark Ingram (Chris Diamantopoulos) and, wouldn’t you know, he’s not only quite miffed that Peter would even suggest he might be the killer, but he’s describing Peter as the likely suspect. Alana is playing the understanding card. When she takes his hands, he pulls them back in an unavoidable reflex. Crawford, Will and Hannibal observe the interview (how cozy!) and note that he’s displaying classic psychopathic behavior; however, there’s no proof Ingram is the killer, which means they have to let him go.

Peter returns to his barn to find that all of his animals have been taken and a horse has been slaughtered. He’s obviously upset and as he’s crying over the horse, Ingram appears with a sledgehammer. Like ya do.

Photo by: Brooke Palmer/NBC

Ingram lays it all out. Peter is distressed. Pushed to the edge. The dead horse is the horse that kicked him in the head. He’s prone to extremes of emotion. Everyone should have seen this coming. The self-defense story.

Except there’s a problem: When Will and Hannibal arrive at Peter Beradone’s, they find Peter sewing up the horse, and Will Graham gets the line of the night: “Peter, is your social worker in that horse?” Yes, yes he is.

Poor Peter is so upset. He doesn’t know how to feel. He never thought he could hurt something, but he feels like Ingram deserves to die because of what he did. Will understands. He envies Peter his hate because it makes it easier when you know how to feel. Peter wonders what hate makes easier, and Will says “Killing them.” Peter looks confused and tells Will that he didn’t kill Ingram.

Wait, what?

Nope. Peter didn’t kill him. He put Ingram inside the horse so he could understand what it was like to suffocate and know what his victims experienced. He’s not dead.

Wait, WHAT?

I … I just … you gotta just watch it.

One final word before I go because, in truth, I need a drink or some fresh air or something, ’cause wow.

Is it me, or did Hannibal just look at Will Graham with the most love we’ve ever seen him show anyone?

Yeah, meditate on that and say it with me:

Damn you, Bryan Fuller.


*The bird in the heart? It was a starling.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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