Warning: Spoilers Ahead
First, as the entire worldwide fandom knows by now, Hannibal was officially cancelled by NBC this past Monday. While this, of course, is very disappointing, let us not despair and lose hope, my dear Fannibals. We all know this series is one of the best on television and has a huge fanbase and social media footprint, and I am very confident it will find a new home — and Bryan Fuller and the rest of the production team have expressed the same optimism. In the meantime and while we wait, let us enjoy the 10 remaining episodes of the season, which begins tomorrow with the episode I have been waiting anxiously for.
A few weeks ago, it was announced that we would get our first look at the “resurrected” Dr. Chilton in the 4th episode titled “Apertivo.” We may recall that Dr. Chilton was framed as the Chesepeake Ripper and then, shot in the face by Miriam Lass in the season 2 episode “Yakimono.” Most assumed Chilton had died from the attack until actor Raul Esparza surprised everyone by showing up at San Diego Comic-Con last summer and announced that his character is very much alive and would be returning for season 3.
The episode finally airs tomorrow, and below is the official synopsis from NBC:
Official Synopsis: “After surviving a disfiguring gunshot, Dr. Fredrick Chilton (guest star Raúl Esparza) is now focused on rallying support to capture Hannibal (Mads Mikkelsen), using Will (Hugh Dancy) as bait. Jack (Laurence Fishburne) is distracted by Bella’s (guest star Gina Torres) failing health, but he implores Will to abandon the risky idea of finding Hannibal. Meanwhile, Alana Bloom (Caroline Dhavernas) entertains a different approach, potentially partnering with Mason Verger (guest star Joe Anderson) to utilize his vast resources. Glenn Fleshler also guest stars.”
Also note from both the photos and the synopsis that not only is Dr. Chilton back, but we will also get our first glimpse of Dr. Alana Bloom and Mason Verger, 2 other surviving victims of Hannibal Lecter but whose lives have been dramatically and traumatically altered because of their attacks. I talked with Showrunner and Executive Producer Bryan Fuller before the season began, and he said that Chilton will have a very intense arc and will play a major role in both the 1st and 2nd half of the season. “We saw [Chilton] in the first season being gutted by Eddie Izzard’s character. And in the second season, he was shot in the face by Anna Chlumsky’s character. And so he’s a bit of arcane for this series that we do something absolutely horrible to Dr. Chilton in every season. And what happens to him in this season is probably the most horrible. But the fun of it in doing it with that character is that Raúl Esparza brings such a different energy to the show, a vital energy to the show where he understands his role as comic relief in this world and provides a perspective of the madness that is grounded at the same time as witty. And so we do some very fun things with Dr. Chilton this season. And Will is always cracking the stage up with his antics. And the blooper reel for this season, he definitely is the highlight of that.”
“And so, yes, he comes back in and plays a pivotal role in both chapters, the first chapter and the second chapter. And we understand – we will see very clearly how he managed to survive those things, so we don’t just sort of magically have him show up and everything is fine. We see exactly what happened from a bullet’s point of view and how he survived.”
Dr. Bloom is another character that will be re-introduced in tomorrow’s episode, and just like Chilton, her character will also play a major role in the season and undergo an equally drastic transformation. Fuller explained, “When we get into Alana Bloom’s story in Episode 4, it was exciting for me to have listened to some of the reactions to Alana’s story in the second season, and there was a significant amount of feedback in terms of frustrations that she had been relegated to the girlfriend role, triangulated between Will and Hannibal and she wasn’t necessarily following her own story. I was determined at the beginning of this season to make Alana as interesting a character as any of the characters in this season, and her change is perhaps the greatest from the first two seasons and the length that she goes to deal with her own damage from being in that relationship and finding out new things about herself as a result. So I’m thrilled with what Caroline has done with that character and having a long history with that actress going back to ‘Wonderfalls,’ it was a delight to see her really shape the character’s arc in a new way, embrace these radical changes in her personality which having survived the Red Dinner gave us the motivation to really make a shift in her character.”
I’ve really been enjoying the season so far, but something tells me this episode is going to be the best one thus far and by a long shot. All of the characters will be in it, and it’s going to be so interesting to see the moments right after each of the character’s near-death experience at the hands of Dr. Lecter. Of course, it’s going to be equally intriguing to see each of them plan what I’m sure will be futile attempts at revenge.
Episode 3.04 of Hannibal airs Thursday at 10/9c on NBC.
Geeky computer and math nerd by day and TV fanatic by night. My beats are The Walking Dead, The Strain, Person of Interest, Z Nation, and anything that most people would call freaky. Editor-In-Chief and Lead Writer of TVGeekTalk.com