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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Series review: Hannibal season 1

Take a seat, turn off the lights and enjoy the dark stories and graphic imagery of murder, cannibalism and psychological torment in the fantastic new TV series featuring Hannibal "the cannibal" Lecter.

We once again get to see our favorite psychopath Dr. Hannibal Lecter in a TV series taking place prior to the events of Red dragon. The story revolves around exploring the relationship between Hannibal and Will Graham, an FBI profiler who suffers from his ability to empathize with serial killers.

Hannibal is the darkest TV series I have ever seen - in just about every sense of the word. It is violent, graphic, psychologically ominous, with both a visual and auditory presence that amplifies the content and general atmosphere of the show.
This is one of Hannibal's greatest aspects. Because while it's almost never downright scary, it has an unpleasant ambiance to it.
Another great aspect is one of the main focuses of the entire story - the relationship between Will Graham and Hannibal Lecter, and the characters themselves, played by Mads Mikkelsen and Hugh Dancy.

Graham, Crawford, Hannibal
Mikkelsen does a great job as Hannibal. He adds a personal aura of mystique and coldness to an already established and intriguing character, and while he doesn't give us a portrayal as scary as Anthony Hopkins, he's just as good - or better, at seeming like a cold calculating psychopath.

Hugh Dancy's Will Graham is a more interesting character here than William Petersen's (Manhunter) and Edward Norton's (Red Dragon) rather generic versions. Here he's mentally crumbling as a side effect of his superior profiling abilities. This provides a character who keeps us invested episode after episode. He has believable 'give-and-take' traits, a good reason for a constant relationship with Hannibal, and offers a really interesting descent into mental instability.

Initially it was alarming that Hannibal would turn out to be a quite generic episodic series with a new killer in each episode with the main story taking the backseat - like most crime shows out there. And to a certain extent, that is how it plays out. A new killer appear in most episodes, but the main story certainly doesn't fall behind. In fact, its presence keeps on growing the further the series progress.

And what is the main story, you may ask? The relationship between Graham and Hannibal?
No. That's the show's main focus - not it's main story, there's a difference. The main story is the continuous ruination of Graham's psyche. And it's a good season-wide story, with twists and turns.

I am a tremendous fan of psychological horrors and thrillers, and Hannibal is among the best within this genre. I highly recommend it to other fans of this, as well as anyone who simply enjoys a great TV series.


The good:
Strong acting
The horror/thriller elements
Fitting visuals and auditory
Season-spanning stories & aspects

The bad:
Is a bit too much of a 'killer per week' series.


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    1. Liu, donning a large T-shirt, Hannibal the first season dvd explains that she did not just wake up and decide to give a tour. She is actually prepared for the next scene, in which Liu (as Dr. Watson) wakes up with "bed head," as she puts it, shocked to see Sherlock (Jonny Lee Miller) Hannibal season 1 dvd box set having a moment of reflection while staring at her sleeping.
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  2. i am a Hannibal season 1 dvd box set fan sure have a lot to, ahem, digest after the extravagant thriller's Season 1 finale, "Savoureux" — which certainly hit a high note for the series, leaving fans hungry already for Season 2 of Bryan Fuller's moody offering.and "I feel like everybody takes their level up 10 notches in the season finale," Kerry Washington told Access Hollywood of the finale, which will air on Thursday, at the ABC Upfronts in New York City. "Everybody gives, in my opinion, their best performance of the Scandal Season 2 dvd box set ... it's such a good episode."