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'Hannibal' recap: Shattered expectations

Season 2 | Episode 11 | “Ko No Mono” | Aired May 9, 2014

I have no idea how Bryan Fuller made me like Freddy Lounds to the point that I spent this week discussing scenarios in my head in which she’s alive and well. No offense to Stephen Lang or Phillip Seymour Hoffman, but I never felt bad for a cinematic Lounds before. Book Lounds, sure, but that was more about pity than actual caring. Wow. I’m a terrible person.

Okay, recap time!

We are witness to a great becoming. The episode opens with The Stagman standing proud as a mighty stag falls and, like the horse in “Su-zakana,” begins to give birth. It is a great becoming, and we are ants in the afterbirth as The GrahamStag is born.

Dreaming Will is dreaming.

In his waking state, Will has been invited to dinner and Hannibal is serving Ortolan. We are treated to the sensuous and disturbing enjoyment of the meal. Tiny birds placed into open mouths, beaks up, as the lips close and the crunching starts (I did a little Google searching to see how food stylist Janice Poon cooked them up*, and I’m drooling). Hannibal muses that he was euphoric after his first Ortolan, stimulated by the reminder of his power. Will says he felt euphoric while killing Freddie Lounds.

Hannibal tells Will that blood and breath are only elements to fuel his radiance. Just as the source of light is burning. Oooh, Bryan Fuller, you sneaky creature. You’re pulling Francis Dolarhyde’s inner dialogue about the Red Dragon and giving it to Hannibal. Intriguing. You invoke Red Dragon frequently these days.

Oh, I take that back. Maybe it’s Manhunter, because we just scene-changed to a parking garage.

Could this be what we think it is?


Who is it? Well, it just parked itself in Freddie Lounds’ parking space.

Please don’t let it be Freddie. Pleasepleasepleaseplease.

Team Science says it’s Freddie. Orthodontics proves it.

OK, I’m going on record right now as saying that I think this is a huge fake-out, and Freddie’s alive and Team Science made all of this up in cahoots with Jack and Will, and Freddie’s off in Napa at a spa or something. If I’m right, someone owes me a cookie. If not … damn you, Bryan Fuller!

Either way, the examination is on as Will, Hannibal and Jack Crawford observe. Freddie wanted to be noticed. She got noticed. The body is missing the psoas muscles. Looks like they were cut out. Why was it burned? Well, Freddie sure burned a lot of people along the way. No, fire was rebirth, in this case. Will says she won’t rise from the ashes, but her killer will. Hannibal looks so pleased.

This better be a fake-out. Or Will is just bonkers.

Speaking of bonkers, Margot’s pregnant. Will’s the father. Just another day in therapy with Hannibal. Poor Will. Seriously, I mean that. The guy is already mentally and emotionally extended, and he finds out he’s a dad? On top of which, Margot pretty much tells him that while he’s basically a sperm donor, he’s welcome to be a “male influence” in her child’s life, because Mason’s not good with children.

Boy howdy, he sure isn’t. Mason’s the kind of guy who isolates one little boy from a group touring his stables and proceeds to make him cry just to collect his tears for a martini. What a charmer.

Of course, Will may not be any better. He’s woken from a dream of a flaming wheelchair by Alana, who’s come by to ask him if he was responsible for the Freddie flambé. Alana is obviously worried. Will’s something else. Angry, maybe? He reminds her that no one believed him when he said Hannibal was a killer. He likes the idea that no one would believe her if she said Will was a killer. Alana says she’s afraid for him and really thinks Will’s relationship with Hannibal is destructive. Will counters that Hannibal is good enough for her. But he adds that she should be afraid.

He also has something for her: a 9mm handgun. He tells her to buy ammo, go to a range and practice.

We check back in with Hannibal, and Mason Verger has taken him up on the offer of therapy. Which is good because it gives us some of Mason’s backstory — and let’s face it, he needs therapy. The details: Mason’s father maintained a camp on Lake Michigan and paid for all 125 campers. “Unfortunates,” as Mason puts it. Mason carries on the practice. He “took advantage” of the situation and the kids and, while he avoided the charges, he got 500 hours of community service. He also got court-ordered therapy and then manipulated the doctor into something unethical so he could get out of therapy. In the end, Mason’s just showing Hannibal what a bad boy he is.

Hannibal sees the ploy: Mason’s trying to control the conversation. Can’t have that. So Hannibal quite deftly gets control back by dropping a hint about Margot’s pregnancy.

We join Freddie Lounds’ funeral in progress. Alana is watching from a distance, and Will joins her. They discuss things, but it’s really more about the “is Will a killer” question than anything else.

Will’s fatherhood is also a topic of conversation between Will and Hannibal. More specifically: parenthood, how it changes a man, and how quickly it can happen. Which leads Will to ask if Hannibal has ever been a father, and we hear about Misha for the first time. (Book readers likely just made a little noise. I know I did.)

Misha was Hannibal’s sister. She’s dead, he tells Will. It’s clear how much he loved her. He talks about how much Misha taught him about himself. The pain is evident even as he talks about how much Abigail reminded him of her. Actually, the pain is evident in both of them, and you realize that this is a discussion about lives taken and souls broken by loss. If the death of Abigail and Misha could unhappen in time, like a shattered teacup coming back together, how much about these two men would be different today?

Speaking of things getting put back together, someone has exhumed the body of Freddie Lounds and turned her into a very good impression of the Shiva**, using pieces of other bodies from the graveyard.

Just as we had Will and Hannibal having an entendre-filled conversation over Randall Tier’s body, this time we have Alana and Will discussing why the killer would display the body this way. Reverence? Showing off for his Benefactor? Or maybe, Alana posits, the Benefactor did this. It’s a courtship.

You know she’s got to be freaking out that she’s had strong feelings for both of the men she thinks may have done this. But hey, Bryan Fuller leaves no mind unscathed, and Alana Bloom wanted to dance with the devil, so I don’t feel too bad for her.

Hannibal - Season 2

Margot, on the other hand, I do feel bad for. Because Mason has decided he wants to talk little Verger babies, and he’s discussing the bloom on Margot’s cheeks. This just can’t be good. Mason Verger sees himself in his father, and he’s just as unhappy as his father that Margot seems to have found a loophole in the will that may leave her part of the Verger fortune.

When you think about the fact that Will Graham, Mason Verger and Margot Verger all have the same therapist, don’t you want to call an ethics board? I know I do. But they just let the man go on practicing, and Alana Bloom is still confiding in him — so while she’s not his client, we’ve left boundaries in the dust.

But when you realize that Hannibal is the big juicy spider sitting in the center of the web, it makes more sense. He thinks he’s in control of all of it. That all he has to do is respond when one of his captured morsels moves. But what happens if one of them gets loose?

He senses something off about Alana, even as she looks for comfort. When he smells gunpowder residue on her hand (it seems she took Will’s advice), his predator instincts seem to kick in.

Predator instincts that sense when prey is ready to run. Just like Mason knew Margot would run and sent Carlo to crash a truck into her car.

Oh God. I think I’m gonna puke because, if there’s a scene that everyone is going to be talking about tomorrow, we just got to it.

Margot wakes up to a very bright light and Mason dressed in crimson scrubs. My brain is screaming NO right now, but it’s what I think it is, and Mason spells it out in even more horrifying detail than I expected. He’s not just going to abort this baby. He’s going to make sure Margot is damaged in a way that will result in a hysterectomy***.

Thankfully, it’s not the end of the episode, or I would be a complete mess. We cut to Alana and Jack Crawford. Alana has had a moment of clarity. She wants to know what Jack is up to, because she’s really starting to get tired of all the lies. She’s frazzled, and it shows. So much so that Jack says he has something to show her.

Oh, please, was I right? Was I?

Jack leads her into another office, and Freddie stands up and asks Alana how the funeral was.

Give me a cookie!

Okay, Fuller, you get a little bit of slack for that. But I’m still pissed at you about Margot.

Apparently, Will is too. He’s at the hospital and looks ready to kill someone as Hannibal walks in. Head explosion. Hannibal set this up. I just connected it. He tipped off Mason so Mason would hurt Margot so Will would hurt Mason.

Oh my God, it gets better! Will’s figured out the same thing! He says as much to Mason! I was wondering about this because the books definitely set up that Mason wants to kill Hannibal, but I couldn’t see how that was going to happen.

Wow. Just. Wow.

Anyone else need a drink?

i can't

*She’ll have a write-up on her blog, Feeding Hannibal, but her interview revealed they were marzipan and nuts for that crunch. I looooooove marzipan, so now I’m hoping someone will make them.

**My first thought was Kali, but Shiva is both benefactor and destroyer, so that makes more sense here.

***Oooohhhh, man. I swear, I’m not one to drop politics into this, but I’m really going to be watching to see what people think about this choice. In the books, Margot’s infertility was due to her use of steroids. In the end, it was her choice. This is something that was done to her. Mr. Fuller is going to upset some people, and unless Margot gets some major payback, some people won’t forgive him.

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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