Hannibal 3×12 Review – Awesome Provocation [SPOILERS]

[Word of warning: This is long. For easier skipping through to the customary Armitage praise, jump to “The Ultimate Provocation”. Post contains plot SPOILERS but no graphic details of the gory climax of the show.]

Hannibal has always been a boundary-pushing show. Even a late-comer and one-trick-pony (read: fan who is only watching for the Armitage plot) like myself could easily see that, without knowledge of prior seasons and episodes. The show concerns itself with extreme topics such as cannibalism, which it – controversially – glamourizes and trivializes. It is highly stylized in its cinematography, is unafraid to spend hours in half-darkness, divides its artistic emphasis equally between visuals and audio (in voice, sound and spoken word), and balances the fine line between horror show and psycho thriller. In short, Hannibal is most certainly a niche product, and its current status as “up in the air” as to whether it will find a new home on a new channel, is no real surprise.

Coming into Hannibal as a non-fan, I was aware of the difficulties the source material and the artistic execution posed. I expected my boundaries to be pushed, if not crossed, and to find myself provoked. And nowhere has this happened as much as in episode 3×12. In fact, I found the underlying theme of this week’s episode to be “provocation”: Bedelia provoked Will, Lecter provoked Crawford, Chilton provoked Dolarhyde, Dolarhyde provoked Will, and indeed, I felt provoked by almost everything in this episode, speech, visuals, characters, acting, plot…

Provoked by Ennui

Hannibal 3×12 first tested my tolerance levels with the drawn out conversation between Will and Bedelia. No, there was little in there to cross my blood, gore and pain thresholds. But Bedelia’s sleep-walkerish, highly stylized speech sorely tested my patience. It is entirely unclear to me why Bedelia has this (literally) unblinking, monotonous manner of speaking. At times, her way of communicating is almost biblical in articulation, in terms of figures of speech and unctuous, deliberately slow overarticulation of words and sentences. It makes me wonder whether she is trying to put Will to sleep, or hypnotize him with her suggestively calm voice. Well, she was singularly successful with that approach on one of the audience members. I found myself yawning and wishing this endless droning-on to come to an end. Mind you, before I fell asleep, I did cop on that she was prodding and provoking Will with her assessment of Lecter’s relationship to both of them. “Do you ache for him?” Well, I was pleased to see that Will joined me in the ranks of those who will not be provoked by Bedelia – and move on to the next part of the plot…

Provocation = Psychological Gaming

… which had another conversation, this time between Lecter and Crawford. After the therapy session of the opening scene, this pushed the episode into psycho thriller territory. Initially I thought the dichotomy between “devil and god” was very clever, but such contradictions are always most impactful if they are illustrated in unconventional ways. Here, they followed fairly conventional lines – the negative connotations of the coldness emanating from Lecter (signified by the blue/green lighting and the cold grey decoration of Lecter’s empty “cell”) vs the positivity of god, signified by the warmly illuminated, wood-panelled visitor area from which Crawford speaks. Side note: In terms of cinematography I really like what the show is doing in those scenes in the asylum. The visual classification of good and evil used here may be nothing out of the ordinary, but the possibilities for exciting camera work which the use of the plexi-glass wall affords, are used really well. I like the way the camera plays with focus. The shallow depth of field used in the show allows the camera to seemingly focus on Lecter as if there is no boundary between him and his visitor, only to then pull back and bring the glass wall in focus and discover the reflection of the visitor on top of Lecter. The producers are certainly getting their money’s worth out of the focus-puller on this show!

But back to my theme of provocation. It was present in this scene (as in the later one towards the end of the episode), too – with Lecter repeatedly provoking Crawford by attempting to draw him into a cycle of guilt, to make him complicit in the psychological game that is being played. Crawford: “You are the devil himself.” “And that makes you god, Jack.” “Yes, it does.” Similarly, the confrontation between Lecter and Dr  Chilton is another dance of provocation – Lecter having written a supposedly brilliant psychological article which contradicts Dr Chilton’s assessment of Lecter and thus compromises Chilton’s expertise. “This was quantifiably bitchy!” “You don’t have the proper stuff, Frederick!” *ouch* No wonder Chilton steamrolled out of the ward and was all too happy to get in on a high-profile trap to ensnare the Red Dragon.

And nowhere was provocation so clearly heard and felt, than in the orchestrated interview between Freddie Lounds and Will/Chilton/Crawford. It was all about provocation, in fact – teasing the Red Dragon with overstated psychological assessments of subliminal homosexuality, “intolerable feelings of inadequacy”, “a vicious, perverted sexual failure, an animal”, “the tooth fairy is the product of an incestuous home”. I confess, part of me was delighted when it became clear that Dolarhyde had not stepped into the trap – at least not in the way they wanted him to. Instead of targeting Will, he kidnaps Chilton, upsetting the game that they have instigated, complicating it, and certainly provoking the fear and awe he feels the dragon is owed. That was unexpected and clever, and it perversely satisfied me.

The Ultimate Provocation

The ensuing scene between Chilton and the Red Dragon may not have held intentional provocation for hardened fans of gore. But for me, this was the most provocative scene in the whole episode because my boundaries were not only pushed but finally crossed, to the point of having to avert my eyes. To say that I “loved” this scene, would be misleading. There is little to love about the feeling of fear, dread, disgust, horror. But the intensity of the scene was fantastic. It was shiver-inducing, nightmarishly unreal fear, and both Raul Esparza and Richard Armitage were brilliant in it. The drivelling, pants-wetting mess of Dr Chilton elevated the Red Dragon even more. Comical little details – the panty-liners as blind-fold, anyone?, or the Avon lady “ding-dong” of Dolarhyde’s door bell – did not distract from the horror unfolding. Whoa, a single D pushed my blood pressure higher than a shitload of E. Well, or let’s say that the suspense in this scene was an exquisite journey from a soft pianissimo to a thundering crescendo.

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Towering inferno? Dolarhyde scares the bejaysus out of Chilton. And this viewer

Where to start on this?  Dolarhyde proves himself a master at the psychological game, distracting his victim with implied reassurance, then threatening with unexpected reactions, and confusing with references that Chilton can not yet interpret.  Armitage imbued this scene with so many startling yet effective details, I have trouble identifying the exact action that allegedly elicited a gasp from the crew on set. There is the softness at the beginning, with Dolarhyde offering the exposed Chilton a blanket – for warmth? courtesy? or merely covering his modesty? – and almost establishing a false sense of security and hope. Very unexpectedly, Dolarhyde places his hands on Chilton’s shoulders, a gesture of reassurance. But the peace is only short-lived, and the more Dolarhyde speaks, the more obvious and scary the menace he  emanates. For the viewer this is clear, anyway. The black mask is terrifying. And the voice even more so. Armitage has gone deep down again, on Thorin level, and combined with a deliberately slow articulation, it becomes a terrifying hiss.

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What the hell? This surprised me. If I had been crew on that shoot, I would’ve gasped

Dolarhyde is like a dangerous wild cat, playing with its prey. He prods (and provokes) his victim, building hopes, bursting them again. Luckily Chilton can’t see behind his back – the towering, masked killer behind him is a truly terrifying sight, emphasised by the camera shooting from below, and never more  so as when he repeats the intense staring he had subjected Reba to in the tiger scene. Listening to Chilton’s panicked babbling, Dolarhyde cups Chilton’s head (in a gesture of preciousness that  reminded me of tenderly holding a baby’s head) and slowly bends down – smelling the scent of fear? Observing his victim closely? Sensing what is going on in Chilton’s head? The fact that we  know he habitually bites his victim, makes this so scary, as does the fact that this is simply inexplicable, abnormal, unexpected behaviour. We would expect a serial killer to handle his victim roughly. But the gentleness is even more upsetting, because it is so utterly illogical. He should be tearing into Chilton’s neck, but instead he is almost caressing him.

The brief interlude with Reba momentarily breaks the tension – that is the show playing cat and mouse with the audience – and throws us back to our initial empathy with Dolarhyde. Reba’s attempt at reaching out mirrors our own reaction. We want Dolarhyde to stop killing, and to be saved by love. Awwww. The scene with Reba confirms that there is humanity and feeling within Dolarhyde. He does  not want her in the house, but he admits that he likes her. My heart broke a little when he affirmed her question.

But the interruptus is only a brief  breather. Because after Reba’s exit, Armitage really turns up the madness. Confronting Chilton with what he has done and what he has become, he now menaces with madness. A killing monster, spewing nonsense. Another opportunity for Armitage to work with his voice. He gives the Red Dragon some humanity – a choice that took me by surprise but which works so well here. This is, after all, *not* an “other”, this is a human, through whom madness speaks, and that is articulated in a voice breaking with emotion – a mix of terrifying dragon and over excited human. Great touch.

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Dolly, inspired by Smaug?

Steadily the suspense increases, and the aw(e)ful crescendo is reached once Dolarhyde has recorded Chilton’s testimony on camera. Aside – UNF, Dolarhyde/Armitage handling camera equipment was a bit of a visual overload for *this* fangirl. It didn’t help that Dolarhyde is prancing around in his snug undies. (BTW, where did they come from so quickly after exposing himself in a compellingly sexual, masturbatory manner to both Chilton as well as the Red  Dragon? And why did he turn around so rapidly after taking off the kimono? Hmph. I may have whimpered there.)  But oh, those pretty hands, tenderly lifting the tripod and carefully adjusting the camera – asdkhaskjdgka. I may have *moaned* a bit *there*. #PlayRewindPlayRewindPlayRewind…

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Hello!!! Dolly puts the “nude” in “photography”…

Ok, but that’s not really the point of it. What stood out to me in this part of the Chilton/Dolarhyde scene was the fluidity with which Armitage was acting here. There was the change between Dolarhyde and the dragon, for instance. Dolarhyde as he was presenting Chilton his packed lunch *ahem* seemed almost normal, not scary; neither did the transition to the recording. But as soon as he pulls the mask over his head before he commits the final coup de grace, he is the menacing dragon. And it was not just the mask that did it. There was something about the way Armitage suddenly stares, even under the mask, concentrates himself into a creature of unlimited power, squares his jaws – I can’t pin it down, but it is almost a split-second “becoming” in itself, so subtly and fluidly done, seamless and yet with neither transition nor clear-cut. Natural in its unnaturalness. His crawl over the sofa was fabulous, beautiful to watch, soft, muscles moving under skin, a wild cat on the prowl. To me it had an amazing fluidity again, and a modern-dance-like quality which – I admit – almost distracted me from the kiss of near-death that was to come. And yes, then there was the point where I had to look away. It took me by surprise, it was horrible, creepy, scary and disgusting, and more so because it looked as if he was diving in for a kiss. If only… I can assure you, I did not rewind *that* “kiss”…

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For a moment I thought Porter had turned up on a rescue mission to save Chilton

The ultimate provocation. The Red Dragon is so sure of himself, he wants a show-down to prove his superiority. A clear challenge directed at Will, an invitation to a trial of strengths between the superhuman and the human.

Armitage Provokes *My* Awe

The naturalness with which Armitage acted this unnatural monster in 3×12, makes his performance stand out and convince. I would love to know what exactly Armitage brings to a role like this – what are  the acting choices *he* makes to enhance the character, as opposed to the directions he is given by the director. How much artistic freedom does he have in his portrayal? Does he offer the director several different takes of a given scene to choose from? How detailed are the directions in the script? In the attic scene earlier in the episode, Dolarhyde self-mutilates, scratching his back, tearing off his own skin. Such visuals are hard to watch at the best of times, but Armitage adds extra layers with his voice, moaning under the roar of the Red Dragon. Hearing those sobs was absolutely heart-wrenching – it was an indication that Dolarhyde is not easily submitting to the dragon, not suffering gladly, sacrificing against his own will, compelled by the command of the dragon. Where do such ingenious additional details come from?

Is asking those questions demystifying the magic of a performance? I don’t know. But I know one thing: Don’t provoke me with flawless performances if you don’t want to be praised. Armitage is awesome.

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45 thoughts on “Hannibal 3×12 Review – Awesome Provocation [SPOILERS]

  1. Haven’t seen it here yet, like you I’ve only really watched from when he joined. I found the first series too horrific so stopped watching. I don’t think I will be able to watch the final part of 3.12. Your review is brilliant as are those pants!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I completely understand, Rosie – I am not particularly fond of the gore myself. And despite reading the book, I was taken by surprise when it happened. It’s easy enough to avoid it, though. You could watch until you get to the point where Dolarhyde crawls over the sofa. Then close eyes and wait until the screaming is over. Hm. That doesn’t exactly sound good either, does it?
      Hehe, I like how you are complimenting my post in conjunction with “those pants” 😉

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  2. It was excellent…everything one could want in a thriller. The interplay between Armitage and Esparza was masterful…the bit where D. creeps silently up behind him causing Chilton to start then whimper made physical jump and shiver. Total rush!

    As to the “kiss” – I had to look away, during and then cringe as HULU cut immediately to an ad for Applebee ‘s burgers! Ugh.

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  3. Ich oute mich auch als selektive Hannibal-nur-wegen-Armitage-Seherin – und dazu stehe ich nach jeder “seiner” Folgen umso mehr! Tolle Analyse, verbal auf den Punkt! Danke!
    Bleibt nur die Frage: wieso und woher die Slipeinlagen? 😉
    RA spielt für mich geradezu unbeschreiblich vielschichtig, seine Stimme toppt sein Spiel noch. Ist das eigentlich überhaupt noch zu fassen?
    Den “Kuss” der Zahnfee konnte ich mir nicht anschauen … Was steht uns wohl im Finale bevor?

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    • Selective viewing rocks 😉 Ernsthaft: Man hat da doch alles, was man braucht. Armitages Werk, ohne lästige Ablenkung. Der Tag hat ja nur 24 Stunden, also muss man sich auf das Wesentliche konzentrieren. Macht Dolly ja schließlich in seinen Outfits auch so…
      Die Slipeinlage waren schon ein bisschen schräg. Ist völlig unersichtlich, warum Dolly sowas im Hause hat. Vielleicht hatte Reba was liegen gelassen? Aber ich gebe zu, die Dinger sind absolut ideal als Augenbinde. Höhö, das sagt ja auch schon der Name…
      Ja, Armitage macht das wunderbar. Ich bin absolut erstaunt, denn ich hatte nicht wirklich erwartet, dass sein Spiel nach Thorin und Proctor noch zu toppen ist. Ich hoffe ja nur, dass er jetzt nicht auf irre Killer abonniert wird, so überzeugend wie er das darstellt…
      Das Finale, weia – da werden wir auf jeden Fall überrascht werden. Allein schon, wie sie den großen Plot-Twist visuell umsetzen werden – denn im Gegensatz zu Reba können *wir* ja sehen. Gespannt bin ich auf jeden Fall, aber auch leicht beunruhigt…

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  4. The Dragon/Dolarhyde repeatedly asking “Buuurnt?” was veeeery creepy … and the “Dragon’s kiss” was one of the most brutal and goriest scenes so far … Chilton’s screams were rather impressing. As I’m really not into gory movies, I’m a bit astonished about my self – I slept very well after watching it alone late last night – it WAS certainly a frightening highlight in Hannibal, but it hasn’t made it among my “top 5 of horrifying movie moments”:
    #1 “Man bites dog” (or what I’ve seen of it, as I actually left the cinema)
    #2 more than one scene from Greenaway’s “The cook, the thief …” excellent film, but hard to stomach
    #3 Buffalo Bill’s conversation with himself in “The silence of the lambs”
    #4 the rape scene in “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” (in the swedish original film)
    #5 “Jurassic Park” the raptors in the kitchen scene (I saw raptors everywhere for 3 days after that)
    The scene between Will and Bedelia was actually the first one between them, that I really liked 😉
    And Hannibal’s excellent mood after getting his “piece of Chilton” was priceless. Did you notice that quick boyish grin of Mads before he eats, the, er, yeah well you know? This grin is dangerous 😉

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    • Oh yes, that “burnt… burnt… burnt? Burnt!” at the beginning of the scene was brilliant. As if Dolarhyde only gets the idea there and then what he will do with Chilton.
      Like you, it didn’t leave me with nightmares at all. Maybe because there is enough yummy visual material to balance out that one scene of gore? It was really rather short, and therefore it affected me less than the rape scene in “Girl with Dragon Tattoo” which you cite.
      Oh yes, Lecter was his own disgusting self when presented with the lips. Yuk!

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  5. Zum Glück bin ich nicht die Einzige, die das mit der Slipeinlage komisch findet. 🙂
    Danke, dass du mein gefühltes Grauen nochmal so schön szenisch seziert hast. Ich war in einem Dauergrusel, weil ich das Ende schon habe kommen sehen. Und ich habe bisher nicht den Nerv aufgebracht, mir das Ganze nochmal anzusehen.
    ACHTUNG SPOILER: Bin mir auch nicht sicher ob ich nicht sogar die Darstellung des verkohlten Chilton nicht noch unerträglicher fand, als den Kuss. Da wird mir ja gerne mal schlecht, wenn ich sowas sehe. Hast du gesehen, wie darüber auf Twitter gewitzelt wurde? Fand ich irgendwie geschmacklos. Vielleicht bin ich aber auch nur zu zimperlich.
    Jedenfalls hoffe ich, dass wir jetzt den Zenith des Grauens überschritten haben. Und ich bin garnicht böse, wenn wir demnächst wieder mal ein wenig anspruchslosere Kost geboten kriegen. Muss ja nocht unbedingt auf ITS-Niveau sein, aber ich freue mich mal zur Abwechslung wieder auf etwas ausgeleuchtetere Szenen.
    Ach so, klar, hat er super, duper, toll gespielt (hätte ich ja fast vergessen) 😀 Dieser Panther-Move war unglaublich!

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    • Die Slipeinlage war schon sehr witzig. Bin mir nicht sicher, ob das überhaupt so groß aufgefallen ist. Ich habe das auch erst im Nachhinein registriert.
      Der Höhepunkt des Grauens bleibt für mich schon der “Kuss”, aber in meinen Notizen hatte ich vermerkt, dass ich mich zu Beginn der Krankenhausszene bereits abwenden wollte, weil ich den verkohlten Chilton nicht gerne sehen wollte. Fand ich dann allerdings nicht ganz so schlimm, weil dabei irgendwie der Sound fehlte, der die unerträglichen Schmerzen des Brandopfers erst so richtig emotiv herübergebracht hätte. (Das fand ich bei der Kussszene am schlimmsten – die Schreie von Chilton.) – Die Witzelei auf Twitter: Meinst du das Foto mit “Duck on Dick”? Gar nicht so richtig mitgekriegt. Aber ich schätze mal, das ist auch so eine Art Verarbeitungsstrategie, oder?
      Nach der Funzelbeleuchtung von Hannibal haben wir uns auf jeden Fall mal wieder ein bisschen Scheinwerfer verdient. Nach dem, was wir von Sleepwalker bisher gesehen haben, war das aber ja auch eher eine schattige Angelegenheit. Urban könnte da wohl mehr hergeben, obwohl thematisch ja dann doch auch nicht leichte Kost. Nun ja, Armitage fordert uns eben heraus. Bless!

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    • erm, ich kann dir auf Nummer sicher versichern dass das nicht das Schlimmste war, wir haben noch das Ende zu sehen, die Serie wird nicht so kurz vor dem Ende voreilig.. klimaxen 😉
      Und man muss den Fans verzeihen, sie sehen sowas schon seit 3 Jahren 🙂 Da ist man echt abgehartet und sieht manchmal echt das Komische an dem gut gemachten Magenmixer.. bleurgh!
      Bin mir sicher die Slipeinlage war auch sehr komisch gemeint, ich habe mich total weggelacht 🙂
      Und ja ich will nachher auch was erstmal essensfreies, blutloses, ohne Bibelgeschwatz und dergleichen, Nackedei kann ruhig weitergefuhrt werden, war ja schade um die Form sie nicht gleioch weiter auzzunutzten 😉 Kopf hoch, alles bald uberstanden :-p

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  6. He gives the Red Dragon some humanity – … *not* an “other”, this is a human, through whom madness speaks, and that is articulated in a voice breaking with emotion – a mix of terrifying dragon and over excited human. Great touch.” Wow, I heard that when it was happending but didn’t really think about it, that is very perceptive of you….Armitage is awesome. Thanks for your review and insights, I get so much more out of the episodes.

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    • Oh, thanks Sparkhouse 🙂 Glad to hear that. I am sure I am missing so much stuff because I am avoiding all reviews until I have written my own. And these days I am so late in getting my posts out that the discussion on other review posts is already over. It’s fun to discuss here, though.

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      • I read a lot of the reviews and you always add something (a lot of things) that are unique and thoughtful and funny too; your writing is lovely. And your picture choices are fantastic!

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  7. I have not seen it yet. As you know I’ve been ill, but I’ve downloaded it and I’ll probably watch it tonight or tomorrow night.

    I have seen ‘the kiss’ which is no kiss and I admit that it disturbs me to no end that there are those trying to turn this frightening bit of abuse and horror into something sexual and sensual. I will NOT go off on your blog and just leave it at that.

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    • When you watch, don’t be afraid to look away. The detail of the scene is evocative enough through sound alone…
      Hm, I suppose it is disturbing to interpret the “kiss” as something sexual. But then again, Dolarhyde is a sick monster, and there is no doubt that there are elements of sexual arousal in it for him. Not sure whether he sees the “kiss” as such, though.

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      • and there has always been a strong dexual undertone to the series as well, they imply and create the type of atmosphere that will lead people to think that way, i guess because they can’t show things they play with it. And yes it is on a rational level very objectionable to connect all the violence to sex… but we already know all the reasons why one could object to the whole thing. I just made peace with the fact that horror is just not very rational. Doesn’t make it right and so on but we’d only end up running round in circles with those arguments. To watch it we just have to move past them temporarily and we may never have to go back to the genre again if our general objections are strong. I sort of include myself in that group too i think.

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  8. Another great review thanks Guylty! So far I have just tiptoed through it, but the more I read the better idea I get of what happens and where, and eventually I should be able to watch Richard’s awesome performance and miss the icky bits, as well as the interactions between the other characters. I’m just not interested in their dynamics – ten seconds of Bedelia talking to Will was enough for me *yawn*

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    • Glad to hear I am not the only one who feels bored every time Bedelia comes in. I feel guilty saying that because Gillian Anderson is fabulous. But the character she plays just really gets on my nerves with the stilted articulation…
      I think it is entirely possible to watch the episode and avoid the gore. You are safe until Dolarhyde climbs over the sofa. But then you have to close your eyes. Unfortunately the sound will be rather evocative… But however creepy and scary the whole scene between Chilton and Dolarhyde is, it is actually fascinating to watch, and RA does a fantastic job. So much so that I get goosepimples every time I get the mental image of him with the mask over his head. Seriously creepy.

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  9. That was terrific Guylty, thanks for writing. I always ‘see’ so much more after reading your reviews. Like you the other characters bore me to death, pardon the pun. Esperaza’s acting was great but to be truthful I was only interested because Armitage was in the scene. I’m only watching for RA and Rutina really. Having read the book I assumed the lip ‘kiss’ was coming but I didn’t look away fast enough, gah! though what Hannibal did with his present from the dragon disgusted me more, though probably because it was so quick and I was unprepared for it….I’ve seen some things in this series that I would NEVER normally watch…thanks Mr A! After next week I’m going to bleach my brain with back to back North and South for a month xx

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    • LOL – I think we all need some sort of contrast from next week. Overdose of Harry Kennedy?
      Glad that my review is useful in some shape or form. By avoiding all other reviews until I have written my own, I probably miss lots of stuff that others have noticed. In a way I am glad the whole thing is over soon, just in terms of having to tip-toe around the topic in order to avoid spoilers. OTOH it will be sad to go back to weeks and weeks without anything new by RA popping up. He’s really great on TV where he gets more space to portray a character in that detailed way of his.

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  10. Danke für deine Gedanken. 🙂

    Weißt du, welche Fragen ich mir stelle?

    Wie lange wurde daran gedreht? Wie schafft man es, über Stunden oder Tage hinweg eine gleichbleibende Auslegung der Rolle zu liefern? Äh, ja, die Patzer kriegen wir im fertigen Produkt nicht zu sehen, schon klar – aber Richard muss offensichtlich oft genug eine konsistente Darstellung liefern können. Wie machen Schauspieler das?!

    Tja, jetzt zittern wir der letzten Folge entgegen … So schnell sind ein paar Wochen um. *seufz*

    Ich weiß nicht, ob ich mir eine TV-Serie für RA wünsche. Einerseits ist es toll, jede Woche Fangirl-Futter zu kriegen, andererseits empfinde ich Serien als unbefriedigend. Ich sehe lieber eine ganze Geschichte am Stück.
    Hinzu kommt, dass ich bei Serien-Arbeit eine größere Gefahr für RA sehe, auf eine Rolle festgelegt zu werden.
    Außerdem gibt’s viiiiiel Schrott im TV … (Sag mir nicht, ich solle drauf vertrauen, dass Richard weiß, was er tut! – Wo kämen wir denn hin, wenn wir den Gutesten selbst entscheiden ließen?!?! 😀 )

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  11. Haha! Once again we both cued into the same little humorous touches… panty liner and doorbell ding dong! If I had you guess, I would sat that the gasp moment was the incredible “creaturely” action over the back of the sofa. I know it startled me WAY more than if he’d merely turned around in his teeth and walked around the side of the couch! Great review!

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  12. Just loove the way you describe the detail in his acting of that scene. I thought it was marvellous too, not letting us forget that he is human, just very very insane.. It would have been the wrong choice to go completely beastly on it all the time.
    I think this episode was one for hardcore fans of the series 🙂 Who find those long drawn out monologues less tedious and monotonous than we do 😉 I’m used to them and some have been better than others but my eyes glazed over too! Get on with it 😉 Same with the Bible references in this show, it just doesn’t stack up and fails to make an impact in the context, just makes me roll my eyes a lot!
    The H+J and H+C scenes were funny, in a pot/kettle style 🙂 Who’s the worst? Who’s done something silly, everyone pointing fingers… time for the last meal for the lot.
    The glass wall and that whole room where H is in was a great idea, so much to play with! But the glass surface must have been a nightmare for the shoots too as it reflects everything in the room! Including crew, etc 🙂 I don’t like dissecting it too much and analysing every corner as it spoils the watching experience but i didn’t detect any obvious reflection that shouldn’t be there so they did good 🙂
    I also confess to having been more on edge last ep when he was chasing Molly than in the scene with Chilton. Just because of the predictability factor. I enjoyed it 🙂 Honestly i did and thankfully i was sort of on edge but not so much that i couldn’t enjoy the visuals 😉 I think they did by the book and chose well. I thought that was one of the best scenes in the book, because you are lulled into a false sense of security by the calmness of it all so the blow comes even harder. But while they were very faithful to those ideas i thought they did excellently in realising it. I am not sure how much of the words they changes, but i’m not going to check, it worked very well. I thought the acting was amazing! Esperanza did a great job too of falling for it and talking himself into a hole and also giving the impression he was desperately trying to ration it out and say the right things, as if that were even possible 🙂
    And there can’t be many people out there who can play insane as realistically and well as Armitage does 🙂 The apparent normality, the belief in his own normality and the flashes of crazy and the way he makes crazy look natural. Greatly done! It was nice to have the very brief flashes of Francis thought i think- but that is just a possibility and only my interpretation – that control and calmness does not mean Francis necessarily. I think the dragon felt like a beast when it was trying to get out, all the rumbling and growling. But now that it is effectively in control it is in it’s own way natural. It is a deceiving beast that can play by human rules and can display the same control poor Francis used to have a while back. But i am with you in that the overexcitment is probably Francis in some way or we see what drives him to do it, this feeling he is drugged with. Mind you, it is all crazy as we are trying to dissect and rationally arrange something that is just nuts 😉

    Sad they had to break up the reveal he does to Chilton because of S&P and they cut so he could go and put some pants on. Unrealistic in the context somewhat but i guess enforced. But it keeps us and Chilton on our toes too, as we see a sort of climax and then he comes back all ‘normal and domestic’ Maybe he went off and had some of that soup? 😀
    The camera manipulation was all kinds of crazy LOL The fine gestures and then the red light which should have triggered Chilton but he’s not well informed enough.
    And i was very stupid, i had to rewatch to cap, i should have paid more attention as i walked tight into what i had avoided the first time round, grrr I feel like sitting him in front of a telly making him watch that scene a few times himself LOL I hope he gagged profusely after acting that bit 😀 payback!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I think you’ve hit on another interesting theme or motif in this episode ( Provocation). I can;t tear myself away from this episode. In off moments, and when reading reviews, I try to imagine why Francis has a panty liner in his house or how he felt purchasing a box. Maybe it was one of those “light days.”

    Like

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