Hannibal: Yakimono, Review

Hannibal's Yakimono episode serves up a splash from the past.

Holy crap! Miriam Lass is alive! Last week Crawford found her, dirty, disheveled, and missing one arm in the bottom of a cistern. The scene was reminiscent of Silence of the Lambs and the well in which Buffalo Bill kept his victims. The show runners over at Hannibal do love to appropriate imagery and dialog from the movies. And that, in turn, is why I love them.

This week Crawford goes to work on Lass, trying to get her to remember her captor. Specifically, if it was Hannibal. For her part, Lass is either unwilling or unable to identify him as the Chesapeake Ripper. My guess? She has either developed Stockholm Syndrome or is too afraid to shine a light on the good doctor. Poor Crawford. Lass’ identification of the Ripper ends badly (see the end of this review for the SPOILER).

Last week, the Ripper tipped his hand to the FBI, leaving them an abundance of forensic evidence which exonerated Graham. Generous of Hannibal, but also self-serving. Clearly he misses his wackadoodle, even if the relationship has been irrevocably damaged (by their abusive and codependent bromance). This week Graham walks out of the asylum and back onto the job. Crawford takes him to the Ripper’s hidey-hole and the now calm (and significantly less sweaty, but no less wackadoodle) Graham immediately sees the scene for what it is: more theater. Hannibal is painting them a picture, telling a story, setting some poor sucker up for failure. Everything he does, he does with a purpose and for personal amusement. And Graham knows this down to the marrow of his bones.

Back at his home, Graham reunites with his puppies and has an awkward moment with Bloom. By awkward, I mean, wow is she a bitch. Sure, they used to be friends and she used to have a crush on him, and then she used to think he was a crazed killer and spent her time trying to convince everyone of the same. However, now that she is banging him, she finds Graham’s (alleged) attempt on Hannibal’s life completely unforgivable.

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This week’s episode was all about relationships and perception. Lass was under the perception that Crawford never stopped looking for her (he did). Bloom is under the impression that Graham is a monster driven by retribution (sorta true). Both women have misguided loyalty toward Hannibal. As for the bromance? Hannibal and Graham are slowly coming to the realization that they complete each other. They have both had ample opportunity to kill the other, yet they haven’t. Why? For Hannibal it would mean the end of the game. For Graham it would mean too many unanswered questions and unresolved feelings. For this viewer it would mean a sad end to implied sexy time. Man do I live for Hannibal/Graham sexy time moments. Those happy scenes where they stare into each other’s eyes and grumble their homicidal urges in low, manly, voices.


So who does Hannibal pin the Ripper’s identity on with his conveniently assembled shack of clues and Miriam Lass? Why Dr. Chilton of course. He IS slime. Poor Chilton comes home to find a limbless and half-eaten Gideon in his guest room, Hannibal in his hallway, and soon to be eviscerated FBI agents at his door. He flees to Graham’s house (showing surprising agility for a man that used to be dependent on a cane a mere handful of scenes ago) and is apprehended by Crawford – after stammering his innocence to Graham and fleeing through the snowy woods while looking like an immense wussy.

MAJOR SPOILER: Lass identifies Chilton as the Ripper in a stunningly emotional (and highly convincing) display, then manages to pull Crawford’s gun and shoots Chilton through the observation window, while he is in the FBI interrogation room. Oh my, my, my. Does this mean Chilton is dead? He sure looks dead. And a dead Chilton is not cannon. Sure, we could argue that the entire series breaks cannon with the books and movies. But killing Chilton directly impacts the future trajectory of the Hannibal story; breaking stride with the existing narrative. It means the people we thought were safe are now fair game. Including Crawford, who, in the Season 2 premiere took a mortal wound from the good doctor during their kitchen brawl. Oh the implications!

Body parts eaten this episode: None, sadly. The title of the episode, Yakimono, can refer to either a flame broiled cut of fish or to Japanese pottery. In this viewer’s opinion, the reference is to the plate and presentation more so than the meat.

Den of Geek Rating: 5 Out of 5 Stars

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5 out of 5