nenena: (Default)
nenena ([personal profile] nenena) wrote 2013-06-20 02:54 am (UTC)

It really doesn't, though.

Hannibal is surreal because the set design and cinematography (not to mention the fact that our protagonist Will spends an awful lot of his screentime every episode either dreaming or hallucinating), but we're still supposed to understand that the plot is "real" and actually happening. So yeah, major plot holes like Abigail's ability to travel to Minnesota and back in one night can't just be explained away by "oh well it's supposed to be kind of surreal." It's surreal because Will keeps hallucinating that a giant deer is following him around, it's not surreal because of the actual plot.

And I think, in the end, that's kind of my biggest issue with the show? The source material (Red Dragon and Silence of the Lambs) is famous BECAUSE it's so incredibly realistic. Thomas Harris spent months embedded in the Behavioral Science Unit at the FBI, he interviewed real detectives and FBI profilers, and his books were praised universally by actual detectives and FBI agents as being incredibly realistic. But this TV show is... not realistic. And I don't mean that it's "not realistic" in the sense that it's supposed to be more surreal and dreamy than the source material because we're experiencing it largely through Will's POV and Will is losing his grip on reality, I mean it's not realistic in two important ways: 1. the show makes no attempt to realistically portray forensic science or criminal investigation techniques, and 2. the psychology of the characters doesn't fit any realistic patterns, either. Will's "empathic reconstruction" disability is 100% totally made up, and this version of Hannibal Lecter doesn't fit any known pattern of psychopathology, either. Red Dragon and Silence of the Lambs manage to be totally realistic about points 1 and 2, and that's kind of what made the original version of Hannibal Lecter so terrifying - he DID fit with the behaviors and thought patterns of real serial killers and he WAS a monster that could have existed in real life. This version of Hannibal... doesn't, though. And while he may be absolutely fascinating and terrifying to watch, at the same time, he's just not as scary as Original Flavor Lecter to me, mostly because he's just so unrealistic - he doesn't think or act the way that real serial killers do, and the show totally ignores the many ways that modern forensic science could have caught Hannibal several times over by now.

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