[Spoilers avoided as much as possible but not completely guaranteed to be missing]
I am pretty sad to say goodbye to Hannibal. It took me a while to get into this show due to its excessive violent and yet I am so glad I got over these initial reservations. Hannibal is perhaps the best show ever over normal network television. I was constantly surprised by the storyline and character arcs, impressed and blown away by the imagery and cinematography, and convinced by the acting. In this last season, the writers decided to split the story in two for the first time. The first half was dealing with Verger’s revenge following Hannibal’s flight to Italy and the second culminating in the story of the Red Dragon, there was nearly no respite to the action and intrigue. And what beautiful filmmaking and music. That is one of the hallmarks of this show, how it is shot with delicacy and taste. Not to mention the re-interpretation of the various characters from the Thomas Harris books – and in particular, Mats Mikelssen’s re-invention of this debonair, charming and yet completely pathological, manipulative, and brilliantly terrifying cannibalistic killer. He brings off the character in such a believable way that we find ourselves cheering for him despite our utter horror at what he has done. Half of this season, he was often behind bars (but wow, the payoff in the last episode was epic!), but he still manipulated Will and Dolarhyde into doing his dirty work. The make up for Mason Verger (sans mask!), Dolarhyde (that tattoo!) and especially Kentucky Fried Chilton (just, wow!). It was masterful. There has to be an Emmy in there. Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of the show overall is the homoerotic dance between Hannibal and Will which escalates over the three seasons from fascination to bro-mance to as close to a realised relationship that the two men could ever be capable of. Hugh Grant deserves an Emmy for this portrayal (to say nothing about Mats deserving one as well) and the writers deserve one for holding this story to the end and giving us such a satisfying yet open ending with the best punchlines of the entire series….so Mr Brian Fuller, when do get get a movie again?
So, open a bottle of your favorite red wine, eat some red meat with vegetables and binge on Hannibal if you missed it. It is the most chillingly, beautiful television you may ever feast your eyes on.