(Really, fever? We're doing this again?)
To begin, particle_person found a Sophie Cabot Black poem called "Eat What You Kill" that you may enjoy. Also, both the Dire Ravenstag and Winston the dog (who has given an exclusive interview to tattle-crime.com) have tumblrs of their own now.
In case you were wondering, le trou Normand ("the Norman hole") is, according to Wikipedia, "a small drink of Calvados taken between courses in a very long meal, sometimes with apple sorbet, supposed to re-awaken the appetite. Calvados can be served as an apéritif, blended in drinks, between meals, as a digestif, or with coffee. The less aged calvados distinguishes itself with its fresh apple and pear aromas. As calvados ages, it may become golden or darker brown with orange elements and red mahogany. The nose and palate are delicate with concentration of aged apples and dried apricots balanced with butterscotch, nut and chocolate aromas." In honor of this, I drank a Woodchuck Amber while making screencaps.
PREVIOUSLY ON: EMPATH AND CANNIBAL: The "vocal cords are really gross" theme continues; Will's got a bad case of the brain raccoons; Alana thinks too much about thinking too much instead of thinking about kissing; Franklyn did seem to be attracting all the serial killers in the greater Baltimore area but not anymore; the Dire Ravenstag made a statuesque guest appearance upside somebody's skull; FIGHT! FIGHT!!
@cleolinda: PSA: I don't livetweet #Hannibal because y'all are in so many different regions (spoilers), but #ThisIsMyDesign is tonight's hashtag.
A frosty West Virginia beach. Crawford's brought Will (tossing back more aspirin) to a rather complex crime scene, and Will walks up to it with such a dismal sigh that for a moment I thought he was going to be like, "Really? Really. We're doing this now. This is what we're doing. You know what? Fuck this noise, guys, I got some motors to boat." Because there, waiting for him on the beach, is a twenty-foot "totem pole" of long-decayed human bodies surrounded by open graves.
"World's sickest jigsaw puzzle," says Brian, taking pictures of the scene. "Yeah, but where are the corners?" Jimmy asks, seemingly in complete sincerity. (Brian: "...what?") "My mom always said, start a jigsaw with the corners." "Uh... the heads... are the corners, I guess?" But, as, Beverly points out, "We've got too many corners. Seven graves... way too many heads." "The headpiece appears to be the only recent victim," Crawford tells Will (it is a guy with his legs bent back over his shoulders, feet bookending his face. Completely standard as far as your murder poles go). "The others are years, even decades old. And we know that seven of the bodies were buried out here," he adds, gesturing to the circle of graves that the killer himself dug open. Will observes, "Whoever dug them up knew exactly where they were buried," but disagrees that it had anything to do with defiling the victims on top of murderizing them. "These graves weren't desecrated, Jack... they were exposed," he says, in such a pensive tone that Crawford claps his hands and tells everyone to GTFO, WE GOT SOME EMPATHY OVER HERE.
The mind metronome takes Will back to a snowy day on the beach, a twenty-foot tree trunk, and piles of gnarly grey dismembered limbs. "I planned this moment, this monument, with precision. Collected all my raw materials in advance. I position the bodies carefully, according each its rightful place," empaths Will, tying a torso (?) to the pole, then adding an arm. "Peace... in the pieces disassembled." Also, the headpiece victim is currently squirming on the beach, bound hand and foot with duct tape over his mouth, still alive. I'm guessing he regrets winning that Free Beach Vacation now. "My latest victim I save for last. I want him to watch me work. I want him to know my design" (drink!). Now Will walks over, sits on the guy, and stabs him in the heart without further ado, which is nice, I guess. I mean, could be worse. Could be meat wings. A pool of blood spreads over the sand, and then the camera pans up the finished pole, with Final Victim on top, as noted. Will intones, "This is my résumé. This is my body of work. This... is my legacy."
The Best Office Ever. Lecter's turning out the lights and leaving for the day, when-- "Will--I wasn't expecting you." Yeah, apparently Will wasn't expecting Will either; he opened his eyes from the empath trance and found himself at the BOE, and it is freaking him out. "I don't know how I got here--I was on a beach in Grafton, West Virginia, I blinked and then I--I was waking up in your waiting room except I wasn't asleep!" Lecter points out that Will's car is outside, so obviously he drove himself--but "Grafton, West Virginia, is three and a half hours from here. You lost time." "Th-there is something wrong with me." "You're disassociating, Will. It's a desperate survival mechanism for a psyche that endures repeated abuse--" "NO NO, I'M NOT ABUSED!!" cries Will, going into a full-on panic attack and probably assuming that Lecter's playing the "Jack Crawford is bad and he should feel bad" card again. Ah, but no--"You have an empathy disorder," says Lecter. "What you feel is overwhelming you." ("IknowIknowIknow--") "Yet you choose to ignore it. That's the abuse I'm referring to." "W-w-what, do you want me to quit?" "Well, Jack Crawford gave you a chance to quit, and you didn't take it, why?" "I save lives," Will insists. "And that feels good?" says Person Suit, taking notes for his next dissertation, "Sometimes the Humans Do Nice Things Because Reasons: A Qualitative Study." "Generally speaking, yeah," mutters Will. Lecter: "What about your life? I'm your friend, Will. I don't care about the lives you save; I care about your life, and your life is separating from reality." 1) Yeah, to hell with all those innocent would-be victims, whatevs. 2) You guys, they're officially friends now! At least, Lecter is pretty sure this is what real-person human-friends say to each other. "I've been sleepwalking," Will admits, hands over his face. "I'm experiencing hallucinations. Maybe I should get a brain scan." "WILL! Stop looking in the wrong corner for an answer to this." SIR! I AM AFRAID YOUR BFF HAS THE BRAIN RACCOONS. TALKING IT OUT IS NOT GOING TO HELP. AS YOU WELL KNOW, BECAUSE YOU ARE the worst at helping.
@E_VanEvery: @cleolinda Relevant to some of your recent speculation about Will Graham's health & our friend Dire Ravenstag: Dreaming of animals and other warning signs of neurodegeneration.
WILLIAM SOMETHING GRAHAM, GET YOUR FINE ASS TO A HOSPITAL RIGHT NOW.
(Have you seen the Ravenstag's baby pictures? They're pretty cute.)
"You were at the crime scene when you disassociated. Tell me about it." "It was a totem pole of bodies," says Will, succinctly enough. Lecter observes that, "in some cultures, crimes and guilt are made manifest so that everyone can see them and see their shame." Which he knows, because that's what they decided
After the scaryface credits, Abigail is giving her despised group therapy another shot in the psychiatric hospital's really, really beautiful common room. Hiiiii, Abigaaaail. "Every day I wake up, and... I hear my dad's voice. Like he was kneeling next to my bed. He whispers what he told me." (She thinks back to a shot from what looks like the dream/flashback where her father was teaching her to gut deer. It's ambiguous enough that it also sounds like she could be talking about what he said to her right before he cut her throat.) "He told me he killed girls... again and again. So he wouldn't have to kill me," she says, tears in her eyes. "I wish he was still alive so I could ask him... what did I make him feel? What was so wrong with me that he wanted to kill--" "He should have," interrupts, uh, the corpse of Elise Nichols, sitting directly across from Abigail in the circle. "He should have. He should have killed you. So he wouldn't have killed me." "So he wouldn't have killed me," chime in the other patients, who are also her father's victims. "So he wouldn't have killed me." "So he wouldn't have killed ME." Sing it all together now: "SO HE WOULDN'T HAVE KILLED ME." Jesus, no wonder Abigail hates group therapy. And now the circle's empty, except for the corpse of Nicholas Boyle in Elise's chair: "He should have killed you. So that you wouldn't have killed me." And then Abigail wakes up gasping with a really spectacular case of bedhead.
Over at the Crawffice, Will pops in to say he's sorry about the day before. "Sorry about what?" Wait, wha--? "I... I wasn't feeling like myself," says Will, baffled. "Well, not feeling like yourself, that's... kind of what you do, isn't it?" says Crawford, grinning. Oh, heh, yeah, that's really cute, yeah, heh... what the fuck. "So... I seemed fine to you?" "Is there something you want to tell me?" asks Crawford, but Will stammers, "Uh, no--no, no." "Well, clearly there's something that you don't want to tell me." Yeah, Will just thought Crawford would kind of notice that his body was walking around without him, that's all. "It got to me. All those bodies got to me," Will admits with that awful Smiling-Not-Smiling grin you get because no one's taking you seriously anyway. "And, uh, I thought it was a little more obvious than... than it was." "If there's a problem, you need to tell me. Is there a problem, Will?" says Crawford in that BECAUSE I KNOW YOU DON'T HAVE A PROBLEM voice. "It's fine," says poor Will, again with that awful, eager-to-please smile. "All right." "All right." And the Head of Behavioral Sciences watches him turn around and walk out, with a look that clearly says he knows Will is Not Okay and he's just going to sit on that information because (and I cannot believe I am agreeing with Hannibal Lecter here) he is really kind of bad and he should feel bad.
Back at the psych hospital, "They sold my parents' house. Murder houses don't fetch big money in today's real estate market," Abigail tells MISS FREDDIE, YAAAAAY!, who is wearing a fabulous but subdued jacket today. "Not that you'll get any of it," Freddie tells her: all the victims' families have filed wrongful death suits. "That means that they get everything, Abigail. Every penny. What you have here is all you have." But Abigail says, "Let them take all his money. I don't want any of it," and Freddie agrees: "You can make your own money." "How much would I get... if you wrote a book about me? About my dad?" Not gonna lie: true crime is one of my most favoritest book genres. This is a terrible life choice for her, but I would totally read it. "Plenty," says Freddie, who is definitely the one who should help Abigail tell her story: "No one knows more about what your father did than I do." Well, when you're creeping around therapists' offices with recording devices, that does tend to be the case, yeah. (Which reminds me--even Lara Jean Chorostecki pointed out that we still don't know how that scene in "Amuse-Bouche" ended, since it did not, in fact, end in pork.) "Not even Will Graham?" "Will Graham is part of the story you tell, Abigail, not the person to help you tell it," says Freddie, pointing out that the reason Will avoids Abigail now is that "feeling like your father makes him feel like a killer." (So... I guess this is why we haven't seen Abigail in four episodes?) Abigail gets down to the heart of the matter: "People think I helped my dad kill those girls." "Well, you can change what people think. We can change that together. Everyone will know the truth." And now Abigail gives Freddie an extremely queasy look--a look that takes on an even deeper significance the second time around. Nonetheless: "Okay... let's tell my story." Yeah. Let's go have a writer's retreat down at Lake Badidea and talk out a first draft. I think that'll end well.
@LaraJeanC [Freddie]: Yes! Got her!!! #thisismydesign
Over in Forensics, decayed corpses are being wheeled past as the Investigators Three try to chart the victims' identities on some nice big gruesome photos of the totem pole. Will has to take a moment to pull himself together before he walks over with a stern "How many bodies?" "Seventeen in total," says Brian, while Jimmy introduces Will to "our freshest one, Joel Summers. Forty years old, runs a cell phone store in Knoxville, Tennessee. Or did. Been missing for three days." As we saw, he died from a single stab to the heart--all the bone-breaky injuries happened after death so the killer could pretzel him on top of the totem pole (great, now pretzels are also ruined). "He was special to him somehow. He held a place of honor," says Will. Seven of the bodies, we find out, did come from the graves on the beaches--all murders, explains Brian: "Blunt force trauma, stabbings, strangulations. Wrongful deaths." But Beverly notes that "there are at least eight other bodies that are recent grave robbings from all across West Virginia. No crimes attributed to any of them. Accidental deaths." "They're all murders," Will declares, turns around, and walks out. Oh. Well. Thank you, then.
Academy lecture hall. Will goes through the other victims on his slide projector: "Anthony Lamb, 28, fatal car wreck, 1986. Francesca Bourdain, 42, suicide, pills, 1994. Adrian Packham, 60, massive coronary, 2001. Peter McGee, 25, carbon monoxide poisoning in his home, 2006. And seven as-yet unidentified bodies buried on a beach. Every death is different, made to look like something else. No sadism, no torture. The method of these murders was less important to the killer than the simple fact... that these people die. This killer's design was to remain unnoticed, a ghost." (I think Lecter would enjoy talking shop with this guy. I mean, yeah, over the years Lecter has "displayed" some of his victims in those malicious whimsical ways, but at the rate he's been eating people, surely he just does away with them quietly sometimes? And really, hauntings are just ghosts putting on a show. I'm sure any two killers who have gotten away with it for decades would have a lot of things to talk about.) "That is what excited him... until now. Why is he coming out into the light?"
"Will?" says Alana, peering into a dark, empty classroom. "I don't want to interrupt if you're rehearsing, or..." Oh. Ohhhhhh. "No, no, no... it's okay, it's okay," he stammers, realizing that he just hallucinated an entire class. "Very... moody in here," she observes. "Well... that's me all over," says Will in a way that really shouldn't have made me laugh. "Come on in. I promise I won't try to kiss you again. Unless you've stopped taking your own advice." Actually, now that you mention it, "a doctor who treats herself has a fool for a patient," she says (FOR REAL, ALANA), because she's having regrets about walking out the other night. Kissing regrets. "Regretted? Implying that you're no longer regretting, or are you still in a state of regret?" And this is how you know Will is a professor: semantic pedantry. (Kissing pedantry?) "I'm crisscrossing the state line," she says, and right now "I've got one foot firmly planted on both sides." Will, agitated: "Are you telling me that to confuse me?" Look, Alana, he's got a lot of things going on in his head right now, many of them raccoons, and you're not so great at helping either right now. "I don't want to mislead you," she says, "but I don't want to lie to you either. I have feelings for you, Will. But I can't just have an affair with you. It would be... reckless." Wait, what's with the "affair" here? You don't really seem like the hit it and quit it type, Alana--wouldn't it just be, you know, a relationship? "Why?" asks Will, laughing incredulously (I'm saying!). "Why? And it is not because you have a ~professional curiosity~ about me." "No," she says. "It's because" (*TRUTH BOMB INCOMING*) "I think you're unstable. And until that changes... I can only be your friend." omg his face, you guys. He was already all sad-lost-puppy "I feel unstable" last episode, and now he has to hear it from everyone else, too? "Do you feel unstable?" she asks. Unable to speak, he nods. For this, Alana prescribes friendsome huggings. His face, you guys.
@MrAaronAbrams [Brian]: Will is the worst closer ever. Zeller woulda had this locked UP. #AlanaBloom #Hannibal #ThisIsMyDesign
Meanwhile, back at the psych hospital, that episode of My Two Dads where the guys try to talk their surrogate daughter out of writing a true-crime tell-all is on. "I'm trying to be... understated," Will says crisply, "when I say that this is a bad idea." "Freddie Lounds is dangerous," Lecter agrees. Even his pocket handkerchief looks concerned. Oh, but wait, it gets better! "She said she wanted me to write about you guys in the book!" Uh... that's not better. Lecter immediately points out that everyone's privacy will go *poof* if she does that (in reply, Abigail gives him an uneasy look). Will tells her, "Whatever you're feeling now, that won't last. Things are changing for me, too. I'm doing some accounting of what's important in my life and what isn't. You are important, Abigail." To which she retorts, "Just because you killed my dad doesn't mean you get to be him." Well, SOMEONE needs a cookie and a nap. "Abigail, we've been through a traumatic event," Lecter reproaches her, "and no one more traumatized than you, but we went through it together. What you write, you write about all of us." "
(Speaking of messages--you can't show me Scrabble tiles and not have me try to read what they say. Across kind of looks like "deer"--fittingly enough--and, if you assume that is an e, down kind of looks like "mehdi" or "mendi"? Or whatever Kacey Rohl felt like spelling out at the time, I guess. *throws up hands.*) (Merde!)
Cut to: Someone in a furry parka, in the dark, digging in the middle of snowy nowhere. Digging up a body. Digging up Nicholas Boyle's body.
Okay. I was super confused about who's doing the digging here. At first I thought it was the Totem Killer, since he seems to like to dig up murder victims--but this turns out to not be the case, and it's not his victim anyway. More logically, this is not an accidental discovery--it's someone who knew where Nicholas was buried. And there's only two people who know that. So at first I was like, it has to be Lecter, right, since he's the one not in, you know, psychiatric custody? Even though this is a bad idea, but maybe he really, really wants to threaten Abigail? But--well, we'll get to that.
Over in Forensics, Will tells the Investigators Three, "The display was built in Grafton for a reason. Totem poles commemorate special events. They tell the story of a life." (However, apparently there are shame poles.) "If Joel Summers is his finale, then this lowest body on the pole will be our killer's beginning. His first," and he points at a very nice illustrated chart. "Fletcher Marshall. Murdered in 1973," says Beverly. "Beaten to death right in Grafton. His grave was robbed five days ago." However, no one was ever convicted of the murder forty years ago, "so he kept on going," says Brian. "There will be a connection between Joel Summers and Fletcher Marshall," says Will--but now he's needed in the Crawffice?
There, Alana and Lecter stroll in as well, at which point Crawford announces, "Nicholas Boyle turned up in Minnesota--" (*DESK THUMP*) "--DEAD." (What impresses me is that Lecter just gives him this eyebrow-raise of mild interest. Man, you wanna talk about some ice-cold sangfroid.) "His body was found in the woods. He was frozen. They thawed him out fairly quickly, but they said they can't tell if he died a week ago, six weeks ago, or the night that he disappeared." "How did he die?" asks Alana (Lecter flashes back to "let's hide the body, that is so totally a good idea"). "Knife wound," says Crawford. "He was gutted. I've had the body flown down here. I want Abigail Hobbs to identify it for us." Awwwww shit. Lecter points out that Crawford obviously already has a positive ID--"Not from Abigail Hobbs," he replies. It's up to Alana to fly the AW HALE NO flag: "You can't put her in a room with Nick Boyle's body! She already has nightmares about him, Jack!" "I'm curious about why." "You can't think that she has something to do with this," Will protests. (Oh, he can, and he has, early and often.) "I think Abigail Hobbs is the common denominator between her father, Marissa Schuur, and Nicholas Boyle," Crawford insists. "My instincts tell me that Abigail has answers that we have not heard." Will: "What are the questions, Jack?!" Well, "Let's start with where she goes when she climbs the walls of the psychiatric facility." (Wait, she's climbed the walls multiple times? Last we heard, she escaped at the end of "Potage" to Cannibal Library Paradise to have the whole "I'll keep your secret" conversation, and then Lecter openly checked her out for An Evening of Shrooms by pretending to be her guardian?) "Maybe she's meeting Nicholas Boyle. None of us know what was really going on between them." (SPOILER: One day he showed up and Marissa threw a rock at him. The end.) To which Alana retorts, "I want to go on record as saying that this is a VERY BAD IDEA. Hannibal?" "Jack has the look of a man with no interest in any opinion but his own," Lecter says smoothly.
So Crawford wants Alana to observe the ID process as Abigail's escort; Will wants in on this--vehemently so--but Crawford is all like, sorry not sorry, "I am not very confident with your ability to be objective about Abigail Hobbs right now." Aw, Jack, don't hurt the brain raccoons' feelings. Once Crawford and Alana have left the room, Will fumes, "He could do Abigail irreparable damage exposing her to this." "Perhaps she's stronger than we think," says Lecter, who damn better hope so.
So Alana walks Abigail down a big scary steely room to Crawford, who's got Nicholas's body covered on a gurney. Voilà: "Miss Hobbs, I want you to look at this man." AUGH HE WAS NOT FROZEN ENOUGH. "Is this the same person that attacked you, Dr. Bloom, and Dr. Lecter at your home?" Yup, that's him, that's totally him, can we go home now? "Good. I just have a few other questions I'd like you to answer. Have you seen this man since the night he attacked you?" "Could you cover him up?" Abigail asks, freaked out to a completely reasonable degree. Seriously, there is a large rotten patch of Swiss cheese over this guy's ribs now; I would like to second this motion. "I just need you to answer the question first," says Crawford--Alana reaches over to cover the body herself, but he stops her. "No... I haven't seen him... since he attacked me," Abigail finally says. But Crawford presses on: "This man, Nicholas Boyle, was gutted with a hunting knife. You knew how to do that. Your father taught you." Alana bursts out with, "JACK, I WON'T BE PARTY TO THIS"--"Then you can leave. You're here by invitation--by courtesy, Dr. Bloom, please don't interrupt me again." Eeeeeeh. Apparently Alana forgot to recharge her mighty buffer powers overnight. And now, Abigail realizes that Crawford thinks she did it. "Where do you go when you escape from the hospital, Abigail?" he demands (yeah, I would kind of like to know this as well). "Sometimes... into the city, sometimes into the woods... sometimes just out," she says. "I go get away from... this, to be alone where I can think... breathe." (Abigail, you better not piss Lecter off now, because you've just set up a plausible scenario where he can be like, "Oh no. It seems that Abigail has run away. And will never come back. I am. So sad. WHO WANTS DINNER?") "Did you ever meet with Nicholas Boyle on one of your little getaways from the hospital? Did the two of you know each other before the night he attacked you? Did he know your father?" asks Crawford, but even Abigail's like WTF NO. "And you know nothing about his death."
"I know he tried to kill me," says Abigail, mustering her awesome. "And when he was trying to kill me, all I could think was that I was gonna die in that house after all. But I didn't. I SURVIVED," she says, perhaps thinking about how Lecter told her she was a survivor, not a sociopath. (And she may think about that a lot, in retrospect.) "Dr. Bloom and Dr. Lecter saved my life. They saved me from him." (Wait, how was that supposed to have worked? I thought the official story was that "Nicholas" whacked Alana upside the head so she wouldn't see anything and oh also Lecter that totally happened yes and Abigail fought him off by "scratching" his blood all over herself, conveniently providing tissue evidence to prove that he was both her attacker and Marissa's killer?) Crawford, with a condescending smile: "And you haven't seen him since." "Only in my nightmares," she says defiantly.
"Are we done?" asks Alana. She walks Abigail halfway to the door, then says she'll join her in a moment--and stalks back to the table in her sassy clacking boots because GIRL. I thought Alana was gonna reach over that body and slap the face off Crawford. "YOU BELIEVE HER?" he demands. "I think Abigail Hobbs is damaged," she insists. "There is something she's using every ounce of that strength to keep buried, but it's not the murder of Nicholas Boyle, Jack!" "WHAT MAKES YOU SO SURE?" "BECAUSE ANY RESERVATIONS I HAVE ABOUT ABIGAIL DON'T EXTEND TO HANNIBAL!!" Oh. They both seem to take a moment to process that. "He has no reason to lie about any of this!" And he definitely had no reason to slam her head into a wall so she wouldn't hear him telling Abigail they should hide the body, that's for sure. EXIT BOOTS.
At the psych hospital, Lecter is standing at Abigail's beautiful window and I kind of want a house like this and I'm not sure that was the message I was supposed to take away from this scene.
"It can be a comfort to see the broken, bloated corpse of a monster" (seriously, stop helping) "and know it can never come back." "Nick Boyle wasn't a monster," says Abigail, although "I sometimes feel like one." "Is that why you uncovered his body?" WAIT, SHE DUG UP THE BODY?! You mean to tell me that she snuck out of the hospital, traveled 1200 miles to Minnesota and back overnight, found a parka and a shovel, and ventured out somewhere in the dark dark woods to dig up the guy her psychiatrist buried somewhere at some point? Truly, she has the murder wizard powers. And some kind of nerve. "Would this be a chapter in your book, Abigail?" "No. Neither would killing Nick or you helping me hide the body," she says pointedly. He smiles: "There's always an addendum." "The FBI already asked their questions, I answered them, I passed." Yes, but now CRAWFORD SUSPECTS YOU, GENIUS. "You're right," she admits. "I opened the door. I can't control what comes through it, but this time I could control when. I'm not afraid of them finding Nicholas Boyle anymore, he's been found." Oh my God, you dumbass. "You betrayed my trust," says Lecter (oh shit). "You jeopardized my life as well as your own. I deserve more than that. I need to trust you, Abigail. What if I can't?" Child, he gonna eat you.
Over at Forensics, Beverly reveals that "Joel Summers, the headpiece of our totem pole, was adopted after his parents died. Guess who Dad was?" Ah, Fletcher Marshall, of course, says Will--actually, funny you should mention that: "We did a DNA comparison between Fletcher Marshall and Joel Summers. No match," says Jimmy, handing over a file. It turns out that Joel's mother Eleanor died in a car accident four years after Fletcher was killed--and, Beverly argues, it must have been a genuine accident, or else she'd be on the totem pole too. "Well, unless [the killer] loved her too much to disgrace her that way," Will suggests. No one was ever convicted of Marshall's murder, but, Beverly says, "There was a man named Lawrence Wells who was questioned twice in 1973. Never charged. Still lives in Grafton." "Fletcher Marshall was a crime of passion," says Will. "It had something that none of the other murders had." "Motive," says Crawford, who was right about Abigail but is still a little bad and should feel a little bad, I'm just saying.
Out in Grafton, here's a strange little scene where we get to meet the Killer of the Week, who is Lance Henriksen (!). I kept getting a Nobody's Fool vibe off this for some reason... like Evil Paul Newman. And there's so little of the actual KOTW plot that I kind of suspect they brought in someone this awesome to sell the character in a very short amount of time. "It's open, come in," Lawrence Wells calls out. The front room has a stack of packing boxes in it but not much else; even his carefully chosen chair kind of looks like a giant black trash bag. "I'm unarmed," he says. See? No murder weapons:
"So you were expecting us," says Crawford, with Will in tow. "I had faith you'd find me," Wells deadpans. (How long has he just been sitting there waiting, exactly?) (Granted, if I had just built a twenty-foot murder pole, my ass would be pretty stationary.) Will: "And why is that, Mr. Wells?" "Because I let you," he replies, in his grave gravelly Lance Henriksen voice. "That last one was... let's just say it's a good thing it was the last one. I don't have the fight in me anymore." So... you're confessing to the murder of Joel Marshall-Summers-Whoever? "And Fletcher Marshall. [*evil pause*] And fifteen others. I assume you've counted 'em up by now." Just... to get caught? "Not just. I killed Joel Summers because he was never meant to be." What about the others, then? "I had every reason to kill the others. They just had no reason to die. They never saw me coming unless I wanted them to see me coming." Basically, Lance Henriksen is terrifying while barely lifting a finger, is what I'm trying to tell you here. "I could wave at a lady and smile... chew the fat with her in church... knowing I killed her husband. There is something beautiful about that ball of silence at a funeral, all those people around you... knowing that you made it happen." (*creepy smile.*) Crawford retorts, "Now there's something beautiful about knowing that you'll spend the rest of your life in prison." Wells nods: "Do I look wealthy to you? Prison is gonna be a luxury next to the kind of retirement home I can afford." Wait, all this happened because you don't have a 401(k)? "And I certainly won't be forgotten there. I'm securing my... I'm securing my legacy." Will sets the trap: "That's one way to be remembered. No children to tell your story--did Joel Summers remember his father?" "Not anymore." (AHHHHHH.) And then Crawford "guesses" that Wells and Eleanor Marshall had an affair ("before you murdered her"--so much for the genuine car accident, I guess): "From your silence, I'm gonna take that as a yes." "He was your son," Will breaks in, crouching down in sheer exasperation (THANKS FOR WASTING MY SANITY ON YOUR POINTLESS VENGEANCE TOTEM) to look Wells in the eye: "You thought the woman you loved was having Fletcher Marshall's baby when she should've been having yours, but you got it the wrong way around! Eleanor chose to raise him as Fletcher Marshall's child rather than yours, so maybe... she saw what's in your heart." Crawford twists the knife: "You didn't secure your legacy, Mr. Wells. You murdered it." Will delivers the final blow: "In fact, your one act as a father was to destroy your son." And then Wells smacks the armrest of his chair a couple of times, eyes glazed over with the sheer O. Henryness of it. And that's it. No SWAT teams, no gun-pointing, not even any yelling.
The Nobark Home Where Sleeping Dogs Should Lie. Will's dreaming about the greenhouse scene from "Potage," where Abigail said (in answer to "the worst feeling in the world"), "Killing somebody, it feels that bad?" and "I'm worried about nightmares," to which Lecter replied, "We'll help you with the nightmares." It's not so much a nightmare of his own as Will mulling things over, because the next day, over at Forensics, he decides to take a look at Nicholas' body for himself... and try to empath it, oh nooooo. So not only does he get to see Nicholas' spongy dead body sit up and get down from the table--he gets to experience the murder both as the killer and then as the victim staring into Abigail's panicked face OHHHHH NOOOOOO.
The Best Office Ever, that night:
@BryanFuller: #HANNIBAL is listening to Hildegard of Bingen "O Euchari" #HANNIBAL #ThisIsMyDesign
("Pray for this company now,/ pray with resounding voice/ that we forsake not Christ/ in his sacred rites,/ but become before his altar/ a living sacrifice"? Y'all music and/or theology experts, have at it.)
Lecter's working on a sketch of I don't even know what (ah!), when Will walks in uninvited--right past the Ravenstag murder statue, which is back on its stand.
"Abigail Hobbs killed Nick Boyle," he announces.
"Yes, I know."
"Tell me why you know?" says Will, very much sounding like he does not want the answer.
"I helped her dispose of the body," Lecter says calmly.
"EVIDENTLY... NOT WELL ENOUGH." I feel like at least part of Will's utter Blue Screen of WTF here is--WHY WAS THIS THE FIRST THING YOU THOUGHT OF? "Hide the body," WHY WAS THIS YOUR SOLUTION TO A PROBLEM? (Even the brain raccoons are all up there squeaking "WTF!" "That's some bullshit right there!" "You tell him what!") "Have you told Jack Crawford?" asks Lecter. "No," says Will. "Because I was hoping it wasn't true." His face, you guys, it hurts my heart--ohhhh no, Lecter looks down at whatever he's been sketching--
WILL, YOU IN DANGER, SON
--then he changes his mind and pushes the scalpel away? Yes, let's try diplomacy first. It took us eight episodes to make a friend; these things don't grow on trees, you know.
(That's probably next week's crime scene.)
"Well... now you know the truth." "DO I?" But Lecter insists, "Everything you know about that night is true, except the end. Nicholas Boyle attacked us." (Technically he is fudging here, as Nicholas Boyle actually attacked just Abigail, and then Lecter walked in to find her already covered in justifiable murder blood.) "Abigail's only crime was to defend herself, and I lied about it." "Why?" "You know why. Because Jack Crawford would hang her for what her father's done, and the world would burn Abigail in his place. That would be the story."
Guys, you have to see this: Abigail Hobbs was a real person. She was one of the accused Salem "witches," a teenage girl (to whom the devil allegedly offered "fine things") who escaped execution. This is her:
"That would be what Freddie Lounds writes," he continues. "Abigail is no more a killer than you are for shooting her father, or I am for the death of Tobias Budge." I was going to start shouting at the TV there, but--let's be fair, if you can't wreck the shit of a man who comes after you with a cello-string garrote and gut kicks, I don't know whose you can, really. Will insists, "It isn't our place to decide--" "--if not ours, then whose? Who knows Abigail better than you and I? Or the burden she bears?" And now Lecter leans in for the kill: "We are her fathers now. We have to serve her better than Garrett Jacob Hobbs." Wait for it... wait for it... "If you go to Jack, then you murder Abigail's future."
Will doesn't say anything.
"Do I need to call my lawyer, Will?" Which is sort of a strange and interesting thing to say--it's so impersonal, almost like he's saying, "Do I have to slam the friendship door in your face now?" I wonder if the prospect of losing the one person who seems to understand him motivates Will as much as concern for Abigail... because, after a long, long pause, some medieval singing, and another look from Lecter... he shakes his head no. HIS FACE, YOU GUYS.
"We can tell no one," says Lecter. (Which, of course, will have to drive a wedge between Will and both Crawford and Alana.) "What we are doing here..."
"...is the right thing."
@winston_graham: so abigail is my sister now #welcometothepack
Let her have the big pillow, guys.
As they stand in front of the Best Office Window Ever, the lights outside throw these shadows from the openwork curtains onto their faces, and it kind of reminds me of that scene from In Cold Blood, with light from the rain running down Robert Blake's face like tears he isn't crying.
I'm trying to think what this looks like--prison bars? A mourning veil? A confessional screen? A plague spreading over Will? OMG TRAFFIC JAM OF SYMBOLISM IN MY BRAIN, MAYBE IT'S JUST A CURTAIN, I DON'T EVEN KNOW ANYMORE.
"In time, this will be the only story any of us cares to tell," says Lecter.
And the one they've decided to tell right now is All the Things I Definitely Did Not Know: The Abigail Hobbs Story. A sullen Will, Abigail (in an easier-to-symbologize red sweater) and Miss Freddie, God help us all, are sitting down to Beethoven and beef tenderloin (with "pomegranate splatter"). "I feel terrible, Miss Lounds," says Lecter, bringing in a fresh plate of salad: "Never entered my head you might be a vegetarian." Somewhat hilariously, the show's food stylist, Janice Poon, notes on that blog post that the white asparagus on Freddie's plate is arranged nonetheless to suggest finger bones. Also, everyone else's plate is garnished with a bird skull? I AM SERIOUS.
(Meanwhile, she's also planning A Pop-up Dinner in Toronto's Yorkville, for which they are considering tasting plates of, among other things, "Brain Ravioli in Beurre Brun, Blood Sausage Cassoulet, Crispy Deep-Fried Sheep Intestines on Panisse, Humano (Veal) Tonato, and Chocolate-Blood Tarte.")
And then, THIS happens:
So here's Abigail, once again, in thrall to a man who feeds her people. Sigh. I am curious, though, as to whether she's only now realizing that she's not the only humanitarian in the room. She was tripping pretty hard when Lecter made her breakfast-dinner, so maybe she didn't catch on to the whole sausage thing at the time. But what's that moment got to be like? You're eating this man's cooking in a room with other people where you can't say anything but they're eating it too and you go, "I recognize the taste of this. Somehow... I've ended up with yet another cannibal. Fuck my life." What are even the ODDS of that?
Meanwhile, Will can barely stand to even look anyone in the face, so he and Freddie have started bickering: "Are you still angry I called you insane?" she awfuls smoothly. "Insane isn't really black or white, is it? We're all pathological in our own ways." "You choose the version of the truth that suits you best and pursue it pathologically," snipes Will. The whole thing's so awkward that even Lecter's like *DRINK.* "Everybody decides their own versions of the truth," counters Freddie. "I'm here because I want to tell Abigail's version of the truth." "See that you do," Will mutters bitterly. The meat is medium rare, but the burn is well done. Abigail, softly: "I don't have anything to hide--" "Everyone has something to hide," Freddie says sagely (Will shoots Abigail a broken-hearted look. Shaggy Dad is so disappoint in you), "but I won't tell anything you don't want me to." Lecter says, once again, that their only concern is to protect Abigail, but Freddie points out, "She's already exposed. Her silence until now has been taken as guilt. This book is about her innocence. I want Abigail to have a future." And money. Lots and loooots of tell-all money.
"This is possibly the finest salad I've ever eaten in my life," she adds. "Shame to ruin it with all that meat." Oh, he'll be ready for you next time, Miss Freddie. He'll have a whole vegetable garden by the time you come back, just you wait.
(The dressing will also be people.)
Afterwards, Abigail's helping in the kitchen, drying the wineglasses but clearly on the verge of a breakdown. "Will knows, doesn't he?" Yeah. He knows. (She sniffles. It was one thing for Fancy Dad to know, but now Shaggy Dad too?) "He will keep our secret," Lecter reassures her. "He will keep it because otherwise the one good thing in his life is tainted." (And what would that be? Which of them is Will more disappointed in?) "And he will lie to Jack Crawford about you... just as he has lied to himself. You're free, Abigail. No one will know what you did." Yeah... I wouldn't be so hasty with that assumption. Even Abigail isn't comforted by the thought--it seems to upset her even more, because she puts down a wineglass quick like she's afraid she's going to lose her shit and drop it. "And no one will know the truth you're trying to avoid. The one you cannot admit even to yourself."
"...helped..." "I can't hear you--" "I HELPED HIM," she sobs. "I knew what my father was, I knew what he did, I--I knew. I was the one who met the girls... talked to them... laughed and joked... found out where they lived, where they were going, when they'd be alone. Girls that looked just like me. They could have been my friends. I--I couldn't say no to him, I knew... I knew it was them or me."
ABIGAIL! ABIGAIL!! I LOGICKED MYSELF INTO BELIEVING YOU DIDN'T KNOW!! WHY DID I THINK LOGIC WOULD GET ME ANYWHERE?! I kept arguing in the comments of various recaps that she must not have been helping her father because she seemed genuinely shocked to find the girls' hair in the deer pillows when there wasn't anyone around to put on a show for! Because, yes, she did have that giant realization in front of her psychiatric posse that her father had been feeding them his victims, that could have been for show, except that maybe she was helping him but truly didn't know they were also eating the girls and decorating the house with them, but that THAT ONLY RAISES MORE QUESTIONS, LIKE SERIOUSLY DID YOU OR DID YOU NOT SIT THERE AND EAT "DEER BUTTER" KNOWING IT WAS GIRLS? WERE YOU NOT LIKE Dad look I know you like killing girls and making us eat steaks of them but can't we just have some margarine now and then? LIKE I AM SERIOUS ABIGAIL YOU HAVE TO DRAW A LINE AT SOME POINT. THERE IS LURING PEOPLE TO THEIR DEATHS AND THEN THERE IS EATING THEM ON YOUR WAFFLES. SO WHAT ALL DID YOU KNOW AND WHEN DID YOU KNOW IT AND WHAAAAAT.
@BryanFuller: Miss @KaceyKadoodles holds the FRAME for over 2 minutes. #ThisIsMyDesign #CouldNotCutAway
@MrAaronAbrams: Shout-Out to supertalent @KaceyKadoodles who nails that monologue with NO CUTS. Though "Scream-Out" might more apt a term.
That said, they are totally correct: Kacey Rohl kills it dead. So to speak.
And then omg it is time for cannibal huggings, because apparently Lecter is taking my advice from last week.
"I wondered when you would tell me," murmurs Lecter, who knew this whole time, because of course he did. I would love to know the precise moment he had even been around her long enough to be like, yup, she done it. The greenhouse conversation in "Potage"? Or did he figure it out just from psychologizing the case files and so he already knew how her relationship with her father must have worked by the time they tracked Hobbs down, and that's why Lecter was parked by her bedside holding her hand at the end of the first episode? DIBS ON BABY CANNIBAL, YOU GUYS!
"I'm a monster," she whimpers. "No. I know what monsters are. You're a victim," he says, AND I GUESS HE WOULD KNOW. "And Will and I," he whispers, still embracing his cannibaby, "we're going to protect you."
(I can't stop laughing, you guys. Not because it's funny, but the "oh my God this is happening and it is so awesome" giggle. Also possibly because Hannibal Lecter is now the Best at Hugging, and I don't know how to feel about that. Well played, Fancy Cannibal.)
@KaceyKadoodles [Abigail]: Hannibal Gives Great Hugs. I'm getting shirts made. Who wants one?
@KaceyKadoodles: Scratch that. Snuggies with that printed on it. Maybe ONESIES. I'm riffin' here, guys.
@DireRavenstag: The fancy fleshmeat gives the best hugs. I know this because Will wants one. Constantly. #ThisIsMyDesign
We're so far into the season now that I went back and read some of the earlier recaps as a refresher, and it struck me during "Potage" that he didn't just "intercept" Marissa's mother when she was having her grief meltdown. He actually embraced a complete stranger--tenderly?--and I didn't mention it at the time because I was like... am I seeing this right or have I got the woobie glasses on, what the--? But it's like this thing he does, holding people like this--he also does it, I swear to you, right after he strangles Miriam (with bonus kiss on the head). I said something last week about him being emotionally "vampirish," but--you guys, I think he actually drinks people's pain in some way. (ETA: Okay, I am ashamed that I did not remember the "sip of her pain" line from the book.) I mean, maybe Lecter's also getting in touch with his inner snugglebunny, but this whole ~cannibal hugs~ thing reads to me as somewhat predatory, or at the very least self-serving. (Imagine how much high-quality pain you would have access to as a therapist. How does that make you feel? Quite honestly, I think he's been doing it to everyone, Will especially and Crawford included. It's what he does with Clarice, after all--trade clues for painful memories.) In this case, he's both feeding on Abigail's trauma and feeding her emotionally to keep her coming back for more. Of course, as a number of people have pointed out, there's a strong suggestion of Lecter's obsession with his dead little sister in the later books. Soooooo that's also going on here. (Is Abigail also, as a surrogate daughter, his "legacy"?) And, of course, co-parenting is a way to keep Will close.
(And you know what? As long as Abigail is "the best thing in Will's life," Lecter could potentially hold her over Will to make him cover up a lot of things. Abigail needs her two dads! How will she feel if Fancy Dad GOES TO JAIL, WILL? Only you have the power to keep Baby Cannibal from getting a sad, Will. Of course, if Abigail gets a little too enterprising and falls off the Daughter in Distress pedestal, she's toast. Buttered toast, I daresay.)
Anyway, until further notice--say, finding out that Abigail is the GRAND MASTERMIND OMG behind everything--I am feeling really, really sorry for her. However? She is totally the Worst at Helping this week.
JARRING CUT TO TRAIN STATION. And in a nice creepy black and white, so we know this is a flashback. On the train, Garrett Jacob Hobbs is scouting for Abigails to murderize; when he sees Elise Nichols, he gives Actual Abigail a look: this is the one he wants next. So she has go to over and pretend like she needs to find a seat, could she have this one next to Elise? "I hate traveling by myself," she says. "I love it," says Elise (her father even remarked on this in the first episode). "Where are you going?" asks Abigail (oh, home for the weekend to feed my cat and get killed by your father, how about you?), as Hobbs smiles to himself. Creepy motherfucker, I'm glad Will shot the fuck out of you.
NEXT WEEK: Georgia lives under the bed and we are all going to die.
@DireRavenstag: I always wanted to try out the whole monster-under-the-bed gig. But mattress springs and antlers don't mix. #ThisIsMyDesign
(Continue: 1x10: "Buffet Froid")