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Reviews Series / Hannibal

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08/29/2017 01:37:34 •••

When hypocrisy taints brilliance

I loved Hannibal. A good friend of mine introduced the series to me a few years ago and I was hooked. Also kinda creeped out, not for the obvious reasons but rather because I thought that if I ever got to direct a TV series it would be 99% in the same style. As a matter of fact, after How I Met Your Mother ended, I parodied the ending on my (now defunct) Tumblog, referring to the Ďfirst natureí scene from The Silence of the Lambs; the next episode referenced that exact scene and I got seriously creeped out.

The cinematography is brilliant. The writing is tight. The music is haunting and beautiful. Everything about the artistic side of the show is amazing.

But the thing is, aside from minor Seasonal Rot (Hannibalís senseless babbling shtick was stretched thin, and the Mind Screw got toned down too much for me), there was a particular blemish that made me feel really mad at Fuller and disappointed with his work was that the insanely hypocritical stance he took when making this show.

Spoilers ahead.

Fuller proudly proclaimed that he would not use rape on his show, feeling it to be exploitative (cf. Game of Thrones). He got rousing cheers for that. I was mostly happy about it: although I figured it could theoretically be handled delicately and with a sense of nuance, it was good that he explicitly wanted to avoid exploiting such trauma.

Then, in season 3, Will got sexually assaulted by Freddie Lounds, who took a picture of him naked under the hospital covers, and told Will he should thank her for using a big censor for his genitalia. In the original novel and the film adaptations Will almost assaults her male counterpart for less, and he gets some serious comeuppance; in the series, Freddie gets away scot free.

Worse: after three seasons worth of gaslighting Will and abusing him physically and emotionally, Will and Hannibal become an item. After the special brand of hell Hannibal put Will through, Hannibal, who never so much as hinted at reforming, finally nabs his (married!) abuse victim.

I didnít realise it at first. I figured Will actually pushed him over the cliff to kill him. But apparently theyíre an item, and it sickens me. Itís as if Kilgrave got back with Jessica Jones (actually, itís exactly like that).

But that alone I could somehow let slide—not like thereís a shortage of Unfortunate Implications out there, I mean, Literature/Twilight is a thing, after all. But itís the hypocrisy that gets me. Fuller openly condemned rape and earned lots of points with fans, but then featured a man getting sexually assaulted and getting with his abuser, and... nobody panics.

It felt like Fuller threw away his principles for some quick-and-easy Author Appeal, and I hope season 4 fixes it. Meanwhile, I donít feel comfortable grading this work.

06/27/2016 00:00:00

Good and informative review, speaking myself as someone who hasn\'t seen the series. Just one markup tip, though: To link to a TV Tropes page that\'s only a single word, you type this: {{Literature/Twilight}} to get Twilight.

11/24/2016 00:00:00

Thank you for speaking my thoughts! At first I was nothing but delighted over how Hannigram was a thing, and I went nuts on the trope pages of the series for a while, but after some thinking, I changed my mind and soon grew annoyed; a big part of me even wishes that the whole romance never happened in the first place. But thanks for your honest thoughts. It felt refreshing to read.

08/26/2017 00:00:00

I watched all three seasons of this show and while it was entertaining, I was also rather irritated by Will and Hannibal developing a romance out of nowhere. Not only is it something taken straight from a work of crappy fanfiction; but goddammit, Hannibal is a sadistic sociopath who tormented everyone around him, especially Will.

08/29/2017 00:00:00

"Nobody panics" because a majority—or at least a vocal minority so vocal Helen f'ing Keller would be able to get the point through sonic vibrations—of the show's fandom are creepy nightmare fetishists in dire need of psychological help or medication.

...You know, teenagers.

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