Hannibal: Season 3 Recap

So, it’s over. Let’s talk about the season as a whole, and a little about the show in general.

What about Season 3?

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It’s very good as a whole. The first half suffers from some pacing problems, which is the nice way of saying too much time is spent with Will and Hannibal trying to find each other.

Maybe changing the order – moving episode 4 up, namely – or integrating the Baltimore scenes with those in Europe earlier and more consistently would have helped. Possibly another episode of Hannibal hiding in plain sight, or more of the cat-and-mouse game with him and Bedelia. More of Margot/Alana scheming against Mason. A lot more Cordell. I still very much enjoy these episodes, they just try my patience a little before Jack and Will go after Hannibal.

The second half is very good. Armitage is formidable and more than holds his own, Hannibal remains the center of attention for good reason, and the finale is worthy of the show.

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How would you rank the seasons of the show?

1,3,2. Through this rewatch, I found that I enjoyed S2 more and S3 slightly less than I had initially. They’re both good seasons, though. Even when the show became maddening, it was still intelligent and beautiful.

recap sexy time
Let’s get weird


Before I started these reviews, I ranked the characters. After rewatching these episodes, I probably wouldn’t change the list much. Dolarhyde/D/the Red Dragon would probably be sixth or seventh. I’m a little higher on S3 Will than S1 or S2. And S3 Alana would probably be top-5, her fantastic wardrobe and her unflinching coldness are a dramatic improvement from a character I already liked. The petty, malicious Hannibal in prison may have lost his great suits but his harsh truths and threats were always welcome.

A top 5 Best Dressed list for this season would be

  1. Alana – everyone else was second at best
  2. Bedelia – pure elegance
  3. Hannibal – counting the memory palace suits too
  4. Frederick – under the radar but very well dressed
  5. Margot, probably – some great outfits in limited screen time
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Not nearly enough Freddie Lounds in this season though

What does that epilogue scene mean?
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Silence of the Lambs?

I’d love to see it. Apparently the cast is open to the possibility, and we are in the era of Too Much TV, so it remains a possibility. I’m sure Bryan Fuller would love to do it, and this show’s interpretation of <I>Red Dragon</I> was certainly an effective adaptation of the storyline, a seven-episode adaptation of SotL would probably work well.

There are enough little nods to the continuity of Red Dragon/SotL in this show – I think Fuller and his crew would find a way to present the storyline in their own style but with enough familiarity. And I’d love to see Mads as the SotL Hannibal – his performance in the Red Dragon storyline was very much in that character already.

My only hesitation comes from the effective finale of the TV show – it ended so well that from a storyline perspective, I’m more than okay with leaving things alone.

Fuller has stated that his pick for Clarice Starling would be Ellen Page. (I think she’d be great.) Honestly, if it wouldn’t be wildly distracting, Kacey Rohl would be good in this role too. Your thoughts?

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Final Thoughts

There was never enough of anything here. I think the show had one truly mediocre episode – “Oeuf”, the first season episode with Molly Shannon and her abducted children – and everything else ranged from great to spectacular. A visual spectacle in nearly every episode. Spectacular food and one of the best-dressed shows of all time. Incredible cast. Put Scott Thompson in a serious show and made it work. And I say that as someone who loves Scott Thompson!


Fullerverse Person Suit – there are some good Hannibal pages on this site. The one I’ve linked here talks about clothing, and I’m already sure to spend some time looking at other pages here.

I might do this for another show in the near future, if I find something that strikes me. Thanks to everyone who read these – I appreciate you participating in my design.