“I never feel guilty eating anything.”

Season two is finally under way after the finale of season one saw Will Graham thrown in jail and suspected of as many as five murders, each actually committed by Hannibal Lecter. What a turn of events that was, as we’re used to seeing it the other way around, and what’s worse, Lecter is now assisting the FBI on a new case, standing in for Will. Will is of course protesting his innocence and trying to recover his memories thanks to spending much of season one in a trance induced by Lecter.

The season two pilot begins with something we’re destined to see twelve-weeks from now, with Jack Crawford and Lecter fighting a bloody battle. It’s all done in slow-motion, with Lecter preparing food (as usual) and Jack watching on with a look of dawning realisation, then they attack each other with Jack getting the upperhand then Lecter stabbing him in the neck with broken glass, but no clear winner in sight.

Created by
Bryan Fuller
Hugh Dancy, Mads Mikkelsen, Laurence Fishburne, Caroline Dhavernas
Episode Release Date
28 February 2014
Ed’s Grade: A

We then come back to the present where Jack is once again being fed something fancy by Lecter, telling Hannibal he feels guilty eating such a beautifully presented meal, and Hannibal replying, “I never feel guilty eating anything.” As with most of this episode, the main topic of discussion is Will Graham and his sanity, but Lecter is still obsessed with Will, which is pointed out during one of two sessions Lecter has with his psychiatrist, Dr. Bedelia Du Maurier (played by Gillian Anderson, who may play a larger role this season, going by next week’s trailer).

Will is locked up in the Baltimore State loony bin under the infamous Dr. Frederick Chilton, with Chilton spying on Will and listening to every meeting he has with his ex fellow FBI buddies. We even see Chilton being wined and dined by Lecter and listen as he complains that Will won’t talk to him, but tells Lecter that he’s the main topic of conversation when he does talk. I’m sure Chilton doing all this is highly illegal but we do know he eventually get his comeuppance at the hands of Lecter, as witnessed at the end of The Silence of the Lambs.

This week also sees a new gruesome case that needs to be solved, which involves a serial killer who has dumped six bodies in a river. The bodies have all been coated in a resin to preserve them. Lecter is called in by Jack to assist and right away Lecter is asking pertinent questions, telling Jack the bodies that have been recovered are the killer’s mistakes, as he’s clearly been practicing his technique. This leads to another question; where are the bodies the killer has kept, and what’s he doing with them?

Lab tech Beverly Katz decides to take all the evidence to Will Graham and see what he makes of the bodies they’ve found, with Will noticing something quickly. The killer has been choosing a color palette. We see the killer selecting a man, after telling the man he has nice skin. The man eventually wakes up naked, glued to someone next to him, and he’s surrounded by loads of dead bodies with him in the middle of a crazy tableaux of death.

The opening episode of season two has been good, reminding me just how much I missed Hannibal. Chilton being included this season may prove to be interesting, plus having Lecter’s psychiatrist back and being forced to lie for him again was most intriguing. During the trailer for next week we see her whisper to Will, “I believe you,” could mean she’s sympathetic to his plight as she too is trapped because of Hannibal, and maybe by helping him she could be helping herself.

TV Review by Ed Blackadder, Lead Entertainment Writer