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"Hannibal: Coquilles (#1.5)"
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Reviews & Ratings for
"Hannibal" Coquilles (2013)

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5 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Horrifying but beautiful

9/10
Author: Sophie Wise from United Kingdom
14 May 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Bryan Fuller unfortunately decided to forgo episode four of Hannibal this week. He has stated that this decision should not pose problems in terms of continuity although just in case, a mini web-series including snippets from the episode has been uploaded to the programme's official website. This swiftly brings us on to episode five, entitled Coquilles. In the words of Jack Crawford, "prepare yourself for this one" as it is quite possibly the most gory and emotionally-heavy installment of the series so far.

As each week has progressed so has Will Graham's profuse amount of sweating, resultant from his plagued psychosis of all things socio- pathic. Now sleepwalking has been added to the mix, which after meeting with Dr. Lecter, is thought to be a result of losing control or to cover up aggression. It's true – Graham has in a way been manipulated into returning to work for Crawford. Lecter brings this up of course, as part of his slow but continual path in presumably pitting both against one another. Furthermore the boundaries between serial killer and criminal profiler are dissipating for Graham; he is increasingly becoming "too close". Regardless, Graham struggles to think cohesively and therefore questions his abilities in remaining to work for the FBI (don't worry - he stays... for now.). Undoubtedly, failing to catch this week's serial killer was a key instigator of this doubt.

Okay - the mushroom fiasco from episode two was a pretty nasty affair. However, this week's contender named the 'Angel Maker' was most definitely a tough opponent as he mutilated and displayed his victims to form praying angels. This enabled the episode to showcase arguably its most gory and disturbing imagery, yet retained that ever-present visual flare that somehow makes each relevant frame captivating enough to form a piece of art. Graham profiled the 'Angel Maker's motive as protection – he had a brain tumour and was afraid of dying in his sleep so created guardian angels to watch over him (something also linked to a childhood trauma of his). Eventually he mutilated himself into an angel, embracing death and beating Graham to his arrest. As always, the serial-killer-of- the-week is a narrative device, a catalytic mechanism to characteristically develop our key protagonists. This week was no different as, not only did he throw Graham off course, but the 'Angel Maker's back story of a brain tumour also linked to Crawford's discovery that his wife had cancer . His revelation provided the episode with its most emotionally-heavy subject matter (and a moment of brilliant acting by Laurence Fishburne). Just in time, as Crawford's character development was almost non-existent up until now. Topic aside, it was great to finally see a more emotional side to him in dealing with such heavy personal issues.

Lecter, therefore, was situated in the background this week, although still managing to shine (and showcase an impressive sense of smell) when he has Crawford and his wife to dinner. The food he delivers looks exquisite and is consequently shot in food-porn territory. However it's a clever little trick as we continuously question the ingredients, further emphasised by the tantalizing dialogue exchanged. When Crawford's wife alludes to being a vegetarian, Lecter insists that all of his meat is from an "ethical butcher", someone who is kind to the animal before eating it. "I'm afraid I insist on it" he says, as if to give a massive wink to the audience. It's a true credit to the cast and crew that short sequences such as these can even carry the whole episode if needed.

Not that it is needed however, because as usual, another week - another stellar episode has passed, leaving us hungry for more. Subject matter was particularly heavy, whether it was Graham battling with his psychological demons or Crawford and his wife facing those of a more cancerous nature. It was dealt with in a smart, well-written and strongly performed manner forever keeping our eyes peeled and ears open. Just in case solid drama was not enough however, the show's gory crescendo managed to reach a new level, once again showcasing how tough imagery can be constructed in an eerily compelling way.

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4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

The blurring lines.

9/10
Author: A_Voice from India
30 December 2013

The lines between a serial killers mind and that of a profiler, specifically Will are blurring more and more as the time progresses. He is slowly losing control over his body resulting into sleepwalking.

With Will unable to sleep properly (mainly sleepwalking and bad nightmares), he reconsiders his decision to carry out his job. Meanwhile a suppose angel maker is on the lose.

An improvement from previous episode. Also a better and more philosophical serial killer. I don't like the concept of introducing a serial killer every episode but I'm beginning to accept it now. This episode fulfills the gory imagery missing from the previous episode, but still falls behind the mushrooms one (IMO). The killer in this episode is revealed before the action takes place, which negates the mystery element of as to "who the killer might be?", which is actually good for a change. Only the usual "why?"(reason for the actions) is prevalent and is fascinating and deep. It also has some usual Hannibal philosophical conversation scenes, and to the viewers delight, over a dinner table.

The back story of the psychopath killer strikes an element of interest, concern and realization for Jack Crawford. Which brings out some top notch acting from Lawrence, which he was potentially capable of but wasn't able to bring it up due to lack of character development in the previous episodes. This episode also has an emotional front which wasn't present up-till now in the series.

Direction: Strong.

Story/Screenplay: Well written and strong.

Acting: Lawrence may not be as good as Dancy and Mads, but is certainly excellent. Previously his character didn't require much of extraordinary acting.

Music: Excellent.

Overall a good episode, but not to be watched on a dinner table.

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