Hannibal 3×04 ‘Aperitivo’: Vengeance and forgiveness

Hannibal 3x04 Cover

Everybody searches for balance and peace in their lives, and a lot of that can be chalked up to the idea of forgiveness.  When we experience any turmoil or pain in our lives, in order to put that behind us, we have to look to forgiveness in order to move forward.  Because there is always somebody to forgive in order to get rid of the pain, whether it be a friend, a parent, or ourselves.  And that’s the hardest part of moving forward, having the strength and the humility to put injustice behind you without any resolution.

Hannibal 3x04-1

Source: NBC

In “Aperitivo”, we see some characters on the path to forgiveness and others hell bent on vengeance.  The episode focuses intently on the characters that were damaged by Hannibal, showing us the irrevocable damage that was done to them, as well as the extreme reaction that they have to that damage.  Dr. Chilton sees this as an opportunity to capture Hannibal and have the ultimate specimen in his hospital, but Alana and Mason both want to see Hannibal eviscerated.  Mason was disfigured so greatly and Alana was broken so badly that both can’t even begin to see forgiveness, at least, not until they destroy the source of their emotional pain.  So Mason puts a million dollar bounty on Hannibal, and Alana brainstorms ways to find Hannibal, while Dr. Chilton just tries to find people who will assist him in his cause.

Hannibal 3x04-3

Source: NBC

We also see Will before he goes off to Europe, and while there is some focus on Will, most of the focus is on Jack and how he intends to heal from Hannibal’s wounds.  Jack doesn’t want to go after Hannibal; he just wants to be with his family.  So he spends Bella’s last days with her, holding her as she fades away and dies.  And it brings him peace to do that, as he can say that he was with his wife when it all ended.  But then he gets a card from Hannibal, offering his condolences, and it hits Jack that he’ll never be rid of Hannibal, that he has to go after Will in order to save him from Hannibal’s grasp.  Forgiveness, for Jack, is in healing the people around him, making it so that Hannibal’s influence doesn’t mean what it once did.  This is the most powerful storyline “Aperitivo” has to offer, as it shows us just what is influencing Jack to care about what happens to Hannibal and Will.

Hannibal 3x04-2

Source: NBC

It’s a decent week of television, but it’s easy to understand why the ratings for the show may have dropped to the point where it was cancelled.  “Aperitivo” is another episode that is essentially all exposition, and while it isn’t a big deal, it’s a far cry from the frenetic pace of the second season, where characters were being brutalized and dispatched nearly every episode.  And while that kind of change in pace is certainly commendable and courageous, with the kind of “moment-packed” television that we’re seeing these days, it may not be enough to keep the average viewer intrigued.  Even for those viewers who are patient, four episodes is a long time to be delivering exposition while Hannibal sits around in Florence and eats people.  The plot is interesting, and I’m sure we’re being set up for an intense seventh episode, but as of right now, the exposition needs to taper off while the plot moves forward.

Hannibal has had a good run, and Bryan Fuller himself said that the show had a 50/50 chance of finding a fourth season, but this third season is definitely a transitionary one.  It’s one that is exciting, but not quite exciting enough to keep up the hype that has permeated the first two seasons.  It’s also far more artistic, to the point where even Bryan Fuller wanted directed to film it as if it was a pretentious art film.  And all of these are great; they’re all facets of Hannibal that I love.  But the season just isn’t building fast enough for the ratings to keep up.  Tis a shame.

So what did you think of “Aperitivo”?  Are you excited for the showdown between Hannibal and Will?  Let me know in the comments!

Michael St. Charles

is just a Michigan State University grad who loves a good story. If he’s not off teaching the young ones how to solve quadratic functions or to write an expository essay, he’s watching old-school HBO shows, indie horror movies, or he’s playing Resident Evil 4.

Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed.