‘Hannibal’ Review: “Rôti”
‘Hannibal’ serves up another course with its eleventh episode of the series, “Rôti,” as Dr. Abel Gideon (Eddie Izzard)'s escape forces the FBI to protect his most recent therapists, while Will turns to Hannibal for help with his continued mental degradation.
Last week’s ‘Hannibal’ episode “Buffet Froid” saw Will investigate the killings of a diseased girl (Ellen Muth) while undertaking a battery of neurological tests, and Hannibal decided to withhold a deadly secret from Will, so how does the eleventh course of ‘Hannibal’ taste?
Read on for your in-depth recap of everything you need to know about ‘Hannibal’s latest episode, “Rôti!”
Hannibal has Dr. Chilton (Raul Esparza) over for dinner, wherein the two discuss Chilton’s apparent psychic driving of Abel Gideon, while elsewhere Will has nightmares of an ice wall breaking in his head, and water surrounding him as he sleeps. The next morning, Abel Gideon makes his plans to sue Dr. Chilton clear before his transfer, during which Gideon attacks his guards and manages to escape.
Will and the others investigate the aftermath of the murders, wherein Will reconstructs how Gideon escaped the van. Seeing several organs strung up nearby, Will reasons that Gideon has become confused whether or not he committed the Chesapeake Ripper murders, and seeks to regain his identity. Will and Alana pay a visit to Chilton in his office, where Chilton reveals that Gideon last believed himself to be the Ripper after all.
Jack briefs the FBI team on Gideon’s escape, as Will increasingly hallucinates stag antlers everywhere and an imaginary Jack yells at him for his insanity. Later, seeing how Gideon literally scrambled the brains of his captors and prior therapists, Will reasons that Gideon intends to murder all those who potentially misdiagnosed him, including Alana. Will visits Alana in advance of her protective detail as the two work out that the real Ripper would likely kill Gideon if presented with the opportunity.
Elsewhere, Freddie Lounds follows a call from a doctor who’d previously written about Gideon, but upon arrival finds that Gideon himself gave a Colombian Necktie to the real doctor, and lured her in. Some time later the FBI surveys the scene at the dead doctor’s office, complete with blood to be donated to the Red Cross, as Will finds a clue on the doctor’s computer to TattleCrime.com, and the involvement of Freddie Lounds.
Gideon advises a captive Freddie Lounds of his plans to lure the real Chesapeake Ripper to the same observatory where Miriam Lass’s arm was found, knowing the killer frequents Freddie’s blog. After Hannibal reads the article, the FBI team observes the latest body, pointing out that Dr. Chilton appears to have disappeared as well. Noting the missing arm on the latest body to be inconsistent with the other killings, Will realizes the arm to be from the Ripper himself, as a message to Jack to find Gideon at the observatory.
With Chilton still conscious on the observatory operating table, Gideon cuts into Chilton’s chest and slowly removes his organs, while Will and Jack approach miles away. Jack notes Will’s increasingly apparent sickness, before ordering Will to stay in the car as the convoy arrives to the observatory. Jack and the SWAT team enter to find Freddie pumping oxygen to a dying Dr. Chilton, while a delirious Will follows his stag vision to find Gideon watching nearby, though Will sees him as Garret Jacob Hobbs.
Will arrives at Hannibal’s home with Gideon, deliriously seeing him to be Garret Jacob Hobbs, though Hannibal falsely insists no one to be there but the two of them. Will lapses into a sort of standing seizure, after which Hannibal calmly points out to Gideon that he isn’t the ripper, and offers to provide him with Alana’s address. By the time Will wakes Gideon has gone, while Hannibal pretends to depart in search of Alana, leaving Will with a gun. Hannibal returns minutes later to find Will gone, having taken the gun as expected.
Gideon watches outside Alana’s house before Will hazily stumbles up behind him, and Gideon wonders if killing Alana would help Will to better understand himself. Alana hears a shot from outside, and looks through the window to find Gideon lying in the snow, as Will collapses alongside him. Later, Jack shares a drink with Hannibal and points out that doctors will soon identify Will's condition, while Hannibal suggests Will’s access to firearms be revoked.
The next day, Hannibal meets with Bedelia du Maurier (Gillian Anderson), who presses that Hannibal can’t be both a therapist to Will, and a friend who ignores his madness all the same.
It's of great relief to watch 'Hannibal' with knowledge of its season 2 renewal, though even last week we had questions about the show's longevity given Will's increasing madness. Compounding the concern was the recent leak of finale spoilers that seemed to drastically alter Will's relationship to Dr. Lecter, though in context, "Rôti" delivers some excellent setup for the final two episodes of the season.
Eddie Izzard's return provides some welcome continuity relief from the artful serial killers of the week, and affords some excellent opportunity for Hugh Dancy to deliver Emmy-caliber performances of Will's encroaching madness. There isn't much genuine suspense over the course of the hour, given our familiarity with the characters likely to survive, but 'Hannibal' continues to craft its own unique world full of compelling characters we'd gladly watch read the phone book in anticipation of the more recognizable tales.
What say you? Did you feel that ‘Hannibal’ hit the spot with its tenth episode? What did you like about “Rôti?” Join us next week for another all-new ‘Hannibal’ episode recap of “Relevés” on NBC!