You thought Anthony Hopkins was skin crawlingly creepy as Dr. Hannibal Lecter, well just wait til you see Mads Mikkelsen step into those shoes. If you don't know who Hannibal Lecter is, where the hell have you been for the last 25 years? If you do, you're really going to enjoy this. Creator Bryan Fuller ("Pushing Daisies") brings us one of the most stunningly gorgeous shows on television about one of the greatest villains ever created. "Hannibal" has one of the best pilots I've ever seen. With devastatingly beautiful imagery, suspenseful storytelling, stellar performances and a haunting score that makes me wonderfully uneasy, I can't wait for the next riveting installment.
With only two episodes broadcast, I'm hooked. The series, which is based on the characters from the Thomas Harris novels takes place before the novels and films. Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) is not your average FBI profiler. He's got a gift ....or curse, depending on how you look at it, of empathizing with anyone. In addition to his special talent, Will Graham struggles with a developmental disorder that falls on the autism spectrum. He's not so great in social situations, but he's able to retreat into his mind to solve the most difficult cases. If you can think like a serial killer, you can catch a serial killer. It's working out so far, even if it does cause a little psychological damage. Not to worry, he can spill his guts to his new psychiatrist ....enter Dr. Lecter.
World reknowned psychiatrist, Dr. Hannibal Lecter is brought on as Will's therapist. If you were getting inside the heads of highly disturbed, demented men, wouldn't you need someone to talk to? And if you did, wouldn't you want that psychiatrist to be well dressed, well spoken (albeit with a thick Danish accent), well read and have excellent table manners? Of course! But you probably wouldn't want him to be a psychopath/serial killer/cannibal. What Will doesn't know......
But we know. It was quite brilliant to show the audience Hannibal's proclivities, while no character is the wiser. Talk about a lot of table scenes. I wonder if Mads Mikkelsen realized he'd spend so much time eating on camera when he took the role. We see a lot of Hannibal cooking, eating and sharing meals. Every time he offers food to someone, I cringe. Is he feeding them human flesh? If he is, why can't they tell? Does it taste like chicken? I really don't want to know the answer to that question.
Some are adding this to the list of horror series that have been popping up, but I don't see this as horror. For me, it's really a suspenseful psychological thriller. As much as I love "The Walking Dead", TWD this is not. "Hannibal" is all about clever mind games. It's nail-biting in a different kind of way. It's a stomach twisting, arm hair raising, emotional rollercoaster ride. After catching up with the first two episodes, you'll agree that Bryan Fuller and company have risen the bar for Network television, once again.
I might need a little therapy myself, by the end of the season, but it will be worth it I'm sure.
Check out the trailer
Catch up with full episodes on NBC.com or Hulu.com
Thursdays at 10pm on NBC
OH! And Morpheus is in it!