The latest episode, 'Sorbet', was riveting, almost transgressive cinema, and was crafted by several names with strong pedigrees in the dark arts.
It was directed with icy, inventive precision by James Foley, who made the extraordinary AT CLOSE RANGE, and was photographed by Canada's Karim Hussain, who directed SUBCONSCIOUS CRUELTY, and shot installments of the recent THE THEATER BIZARRE and three other HANNIBAL episodes.
As this episode featured a lot of material involving the removal and cooking of body parts, the direct musical references to Nacho Cerda's AFTERMATH, in addition to soundscapes that, for me, also echoed Cerda's necrophilia-themed short, were music to my ears and riches for my eyes.
As an expansion of the world (characters and themes) created by Thomas Harris in his novel 'Red Dragon' (filmed as MANHUNTER and RED DRAGON respectively), producer Bryan Fuller and his team clearly respect the origins of their show, but understand that they must venture beyond those origins in order to fly, and to enrich the source.
They are doing that skilfully and artfully.
Like the current BATES MOTEL, HANNIBAL is a refreshing, intelligent enrichment of a familiar literary and cinematic world. Both get the tone right, and never come across as imitative or purely profit-driven. Their respective original writers, Robert Bloch and Thomas Harris, might be comforted by a feeling I have that good TV is looking, sounding, and smelling more like a great novel these days where there is more room and time to depict the internal as well as the external.
Good, bloody times!