Does the ‘Hannibal’ Season 3 Finale Tease ‘Lambs’ in Our Future?
The sun seems to have set on NBC’s Hannibal beyond a third season, with Mads Mikkelsen and Hugh Dancy released from their contracts, and creator Bryan Fuller suggesting a feature followup may prove more likely. Still, with talk of Thomas Harris’ Silence of the Lambs canon off-limits, could Fuller’s fourth season plans point toward Clarice Starling after all? The Season 3 finale title might …
You’re warned of Hannibal Season 3 spoilers from here on out, but with Dr. Lecter finally behind bars, and the Red Dragon looming over the final six episodes, one wonders what Season 4 plans Bryan Fuller may have intended before NBC pulled the plug. Followup interviews saw the creator keeping vague about the storyline, lest it spoil the Season 3 finale, though Fuller at least indicated that any potential Silence plans would wait until a fifth season.
That in mind, Gaumont TV officially released the final two episode titles of Season 3, the latter of which will certainly peak fan interest:
Any mention of the word “Lamb” (especially in that structure) would understandably call to mind Harris novel Silence, though in this case at least, the allusion follows a biblical theme. Not only does “The Number of the Beast is 666” similarly emerge from the Bible, but so too do all of the William Blake paintings that factor into Harris’ Red Dragon, namely (including Hannibal episode titles as such) “The Great Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed in Sun,” “The Great Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed With the Sun,” “The Great Red Dragon and the Beast From the Sea” and “The Number of the Beast is 666.”
Worth noting is that Thomas Harris himself evidently confused the first two paintings, text referring to “With the Sun,” while Francis Dolarhyde appeared to worship (and tattoo) “In Sun,” though the outlier of Season 3 episode titles would seem to be “The Wrath of the Lamb.” There is, however, a Revelation 6:16 passage that inspires the title (including its 6:15 - 17 context):
Then the kings of the earth and the great men and the commanders and the rich and the strong and every slave and free man hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains; and they said to the mountains and to the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the presence of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to stand?”
Blake himself also utilized “The Lamb” in a number of his paintings and poems, though so far as we can see, never drew any major correlation between it and the so-called dragon. At best, Revelation 13:11 notes that a “second beast” is noted as having the appearance of a lamb, while speaking with the voice of a dragon:
Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb and he spoke as a dragon. He exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence. And he makes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose fatal wound was healed.
Again, it’s at least an evocative name for Bryan Fuller to have chosen as a Hannibal finale title, though other than Season 3’s connection to the Book of Revelation, it remains uncertain how Season 4 would have unfolded prior to cancellation. Should Hannibal get its shot as a feature, one also imagines Silence of the Lambs would prove the most sensible material to tackle, rather than an independent adaptation.
We’ll have plenty of Red Dragon to enjoy from the final Season 3 installments of Hannibal, but could “The Wrath of the Lambs” point toward the franchise’s future? What might Season 4 have build toward, before the cancellation?