Hannibal S01E04 – Oeuf – Eat The Rudecast

In this difficult to pronounce episode, we finally stray from our scene by scene deconstruction in an attempt at brevity, and wind up with almost twice as much content. We disparage the KOW (Killer of the Week) but praise the familial theme of the episode as well as guest star Molly Shannon.

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  • I have some thoughts about the business with the fish hook….
    I don’t think it’s supposed to necessarily suggest masochism on Hannibal’s part (and I agree he’s not a masochist; further, if he’s the same as book!Hannibal, he’s someone whom physical pain doesn’t affect so much, so puncturing his thumb wouldn’t produce an impressive sensation anyway).
    I think it’s there for a few reasons. 1, foreshadowing, given what he does with the flies later. Arguably, finishing off the fly might have been adequate, but considering his use of biological matter, it may have been very *specific* foreshadowing.
    2, it underlines his sort of vampiric nature. He’s a character often compared to vampires; in the books (in SOTL); in meta and academic literature; and within the show itself, e.g. contaminating other characters (with meat instead of blood), the way in the very first episode he waits to be invited into Will’s hotel room (and asks, very specifically, ‘may I come in?’ twice), and the way he feeds on people’s pain and distress, like a psychic vampire–as opposed to (as more horror-savvy people than me have pointed out) Will the wolfman (1st season; losing time, waking up scratched up and muddy, fearing having killed and eaten someone without knowing it etc).
    3, his expression is kind of–reverential? more than pained or seeming to be getting off on it, like this is kind of a blood sacrament, something he’s leaving there for Will, his wished-for acolyte.
    4, kind of following on from the above two points: it’s a violation of Will’s safe and personal space, which would amuse him; it’s contamination and infection–he’s getting himself in there.
    5, and not to put it too crudely, but the equivalent from a less refined stalker might be something like jerking off onto Will’s bed. (I hesitate to compare book!Hannibal to show!Hannibal too much bc we shouldn’t assume that one will correspond to the other all the time, but hey, book!Hannibal is the kind of guy who licked Starling’s steering wheel. This is no weirder.)


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