TV-14, 13 45-min. episodes
Creator: Bryan Fuller
Directors: Tim Hunter, Peter Medak, David Semel, Michael Rymer, Vincenzo Natali, David Slade
Writers: Bryan Fuller, Thomas Harris (characters from novel “Red Dragon”), Steve Lightfoot, Jeff Vlaming, Jason Grote, Scott Nimerfro, Ayanna A. Floyd, Andy Black, Kai Yu Wu, Chris Brancato
Starring: Hugh Dancy, Mad Mikkelsen, Lawrence Fishburne, Caroline Dhavernas, Hettienne Park, Scott Thompson, Aaron Abrams, Raúl Esparza
Guest starring: Gillian Anderson, Cynthia Nixon, Jonathan Tucker, Martin Donovan, Patrick Garrow, Lara Jean Chorostecki, Maria Del Mar, Shawn Doyle, Eddie Izzard, Gina Torres, Kacey Rohl, Amanda Plummer, Anna Chlumsky, Ted Ludzik, Katharine Isabelle, Jeremy Davies, Chris Diamantopoulis, Mark O’Brien, Michael Pitt, Daniel Kash
There was a point about halfway through the second season when I though this series had finally run itself off the rails. It has always skirted on the precipice of going too far off the deep dark end. I’m sure there are some who feel that it started that way. However, the writing has always been incredible on this series. It is about the best written American television show out there. So how was it possible that things could go so wrong with the writing starting with S2E9 “Siizakana”?
I couldn’t have been more wrong, but it takes several episodes for things to progress far enough for the writers to reveal what they were really up to, which was actually quite ingeniously spelled out in the cold intro to that very episode where things started to seem wrong. I am uncomfortable with how the season leaves things, but I’ve finally learned by this point that making me uncomfortable is one of the greatest elements of this series and I don’t need to worry about the writing. It will play out as one of the best-written shows no matter what happens or how uncomfortable those events make me feel. What Bryan Fuller and his staff of writers are doing is taking one of the greatest movie monsters ever created and somehow twisting him into a darker and more fully formed monster than anyone, including Hannibal’s creator novelist Thomas Harris, could’ve ever imagined. Into this twisted darkness Fuller also pulls Will Graham and the entire FBI team chasing Hannibal down into the muck with him. It’s fascinating.