Symbols and Sociopaths: Hannibal Season 2, Episode 10

hannibal, episode 10

Jonathan May

We always open inside Will’s head lately, and this episode was no different. (Here’s hoping we’re not Roseanned at the end!) He conflates his slaying of last week’s serial killer in a dream of also killing Hannibal, which ties in with the incredibly slow David Lynchian conflated sex scene wherein Dr. Bloom is “had” by Hannibal literally and Will projectively. The use of conflation in this episode is important because Will and Hannibal are finally merging. Before they do fully, however, we will be prone to their flirting (serial killer-style) with one another in front of Jack and Dr. Bloom and everyone else. I didn’t expect Will’s transformation to be so obsequious in regard to Hannibal, but if we take the whole sex scene a step further, then Will, by projecting that he has sex with Dr. Bloom through Margot, is able to “have sex” with Hannibal through that projection. I know, I know, I’ve been reading too much Harold Bloom. In any case, the episode ends with both Will’s and Hannibal’s faces conflated into one another, like some kind of ghoulish Chuck Close painting. If the effect is to heighten the “merging” aspect of these two, the production is laying it on a bit thick.

So, Will gets to (presumably) kill Freddie Lounds, ending the life of yet another part of the closed circle. But Margot and her sinister, pig-obsessed brother are uncovering the dark of the wings and heading for the limelight as we speak. As old ancillary characters die, so must new ancillary characters live. Will murdering Freddie didn’t bother me; she already had figured out, as Alana is coming around to now, what the game is. And tonight, it should come around to Jack, prompting (perhaps) the showdown with Hannibal that began the season. But I think we have to deal yet with further piggishness before we can get down to the bones. Other prediction for tonight: The whole Will and Margot (though I wouldn’t rule out Alana and Hannibal) pregnancy thing is another emotional red herring. Don’t let’s add another complication, Story Gods! This isn’t Passions.

My favorite moment of the episode: when Will is eating (presumably) a part of Freddie, that look on his face—transcendence.

Jonathan May watches too much television, but he’s just playing catch-up from a childhood spent in Zimbabwe. You can read his poetry at, follow him on Twitter at @jonowenmay, or email him at

Hannibal airs Friday nights on NBC. You can read our pieces about previous episodes here.

Image: NBC

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