Hannibal Season 2 Review “Ko No Mono”

Hannibal Season 2 Episode 11 Ko No Mono (6)

It’s truly fascinating to watch a show like Hannibal. The show contains some of the more horrific displays of violence ever seen on television, yet the show remains far more interested in the mental status of its particulars. The opening act of the season focused on our lead character’s stint in an insane asylum. It was tight and insular, but boy was it electric. Every scene with Will Graham seemed hyper-charged as Hugh Dancy found new and exciting angles to play while trapped in an array of small boxes. Will’s release from prison hasn’t created a similar kind of electricity, but it has produced this frightening game of cat and mouse between two men of superior intellect. There’s still some electricity in the air, but it pales in comparison to the feeling of dread now accompanying it. Your mileage on either act of the season will undoubtedly vary, but it is really impressive to watch Bryan Fuller and company create two distinct atmospheres over the course of the season.

Part of that change in atmosphere has come Will taking some agency in his battle with Hannibal. As expected, Freddie Lounds is alive and well as an accomplice to Will’s scheme to catch Dr. Lecter. What wasn’t expected was Jack Crawford’s knowledge and involvement. It was possible to speculate Jack had some idea about Will’s plan, but the show has kept the audience largely in the dark on Jack’s thoughts in the latter part of this season. It’s still hard to know exactly what he knew when he knew it, but he’s now back to being a major player for the final few episodes. He’s bound to get more screen time in the coming episodes, but his scene with Dr. Bloom (more on her later) was a nice reminder of what an asset he can be to a show that had largely become a two-hander the last few weeks.

While I’m excited to see the final showdown play out, I have yet to completely warm up to the Verger siblings. It’s a part of the show where I never feel like I have the entire story. I totally whiffed on Margot wanting to get pregnant, but that could be as much the fault of my heavy eyes as anything else. Still, it speaks to the larger issue where I can’t seem to immerse myself in that part of the story. It doesn’t help that Michael Pitt is playing his character with a giant piece of ham sticking out of his mouth. It’s not a bad performance by any stretch, but his performance doesn’t seem to fit in this subtle, calculating world. His sterlization of Margot even had a feel of aggressive brutality that most of the fantastical murders the show shy away from. The show could be striving for an interesting dichotomy between its evil characters, but I much prefer Hannibal’s coolness and flair to the guy who puts children’s tears in his martinis.

However, the episode did exceed expectations with Caroline Dhavernas as Alana Bloom. She’s never been a mainstay in the central thrust of the series, but she got a lot to do in this episode and didn’t disappoint. With all the weird stuff going on with Hannibal and Will, Alana would have looked like every other dense woman on these serial killer shows. Instead, she starts to seek answers for strange things happening around her, and she’s ultimately led into the middle of the investigation. It’s clear she knows Hannibal is no good, but she might realize what’s going on with Will better than anyone else. Will remains the hero of our show, but he’s got some strongly conflicted feelings running through his head at any given moment. And now he’s back to the night sweats, which wasn’t a good thing back in the first season. An interesting final two episodes await.