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Hannibal - 1.11 "Rôti" - Review

"I feel like I've been gradually becoming different for a while"

Rôti shows the consequences of people wanting to take back their identity. This week's episode masterfully uncovered the parallels between Dr. Gideon and Will Graham, two people no longer knowing who they really are.
And Hannibal played with that.
Dr. Gideon escapes from police custody, leaving behind one kill after another in order to hunt down the psychiatrists responsible for his profiling, which prompts Will and Hannibal to take action in their own ways. On his list to kill are both Dr. Chilton and Alana Bloom. As usual, Will is perfectly able to empathize with the killer, but the problem goes beyond that. His Encephalitis is still untreated. His hallucinations become even worse, and he essentially feels like he's drowning in his own "madness". An apt description, considering that he tracked down a killer who has already drowned.

Freddie Lounds meets Gideon and becomes the instrument to expose the real Chesapeake Ripper. Will finds him, but his hallucination makes him see Garrett Jacob Hobbs instead of Gideon. A man carrying firearms and hallucinating is not exactly a safe situation, which Hannibal experiences quite vividly.
The real Chesapeake Ripper acts as soon as Will and Gideon are on his doorstep.
What I found interesting about that scene is how perception can alter reality, and I particularly enjoyed Gideon's remark that Hannibal doesn't seem all that concerned. And he isn't.
Will's seizure leads him to being unaware of what is going on, which Hannibal uses to spin a web of lies. He tells Will that no one is there other than the two of them and basically says that Will only experienced another delusion. His lies lead to Will catching up with Gideon again, killing him in front of Alana Bloom's house. Will is hospitalized in the end with Alana watching over him.

"I don't care who I am"

You really should, Will. It's particularly important when a patient becomes aware of the manipulation that happens around him, which leads to a loss of control for the psychiatrist. A patient who can successfully regain his identity can also punish the people willing to take it away from him. Dr. Gideon was still lost at the end, but Will can become Hannibal's equal.
In my opinion, Hannibal plays a dangerous game, although he still considers Will a friend. Moreover, Bedelia Du Maurier successfully points out how fascination with madness differs from a simple fascination with another person. I would even go as far as to say that madness is the pars pro toto of Will, according to Lecter. That doesn't mean he doesn't see the opportunity for friendship. It's simply the fascination with Will's ability that makes Hannibal see himself in him. But he doesn't really see the person.
I see his madness and I want to contain it.
Hannibal wants control, and it's ironic that he says to Gideon how having your identity taken away from you is a terrible thing. It's essentially what he has done to Will, but the subject can still become aware of the influence. And he will definitely take it back.

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