Tag Archives: 3.11

Hannibal 3.11 “…And the Beast from the Sea” Review: Are We Having Fun Yet?

16 Aug

Hannibal is certainly enjoying himself even if no one else is as his “sophisticated intelligence” allows him to forecast many things such as the ‘chance’ encounter between Will Graham and Francis Dolarhyde at the end of last week’s episode. This meddling enters even more dangerous territory as he gives Will’s personal address to his new protege – which he also obtained through nefarious means – imploring him to “Save yourself. Kill them all.” Whispering it in his ear as if it is a sweet nothing.

This is what Hannibal does best; manipulate someone in crisis to kill and Dolarhyde has already crossed the murder threshold and really doesn’t need much convincing. Particularly now Reba is on the scene and he fears his impulses and the Great Red Dragon will turn their rage toward her.

Hannibal 3.11 Hannibal and DolarhydeSurrendering to Jack Crawford was Hannibal’s ultimate fuck you to Will; Will wanted Hannibal out of his life for good and this was his way of ensuring his location is known at all times. Jack is who brought Will back into Hannibal’s orbit and because of Will’s special investigative skills, Hannibal had to foresee that their paths would inevitably cross over a tableau of death. All he had to do was bide his time and there has been plenty to occupy Hannibal with papers to write, books to read, sketches to draw and places to hang out in his memory palace. But now is where the real fun is to be had. After all Will isn’t fortune’s fool, he’s Hannibal’s and Hannibal is more than up for wearing this crown.

Despite a change in living arrangements everyone is taking up their old mantles with Hannibal as chief antagonist and mischief maker. Jack is the “fisher of men” borrowing Will’s brain regardless of the consequences as he pushes to get results leaving a trail of misery to be cleaned up later. The Jack we saw in Italy was remorseful, but that was three years ago and he has a serial killer to catch so his priority has shifted. Alana has also resumed her former position of moral compass questioning Jack’s suggestion at pushing Dolarhyde to self-destruct (or rather kill himself). Not that suicide is something Dolarhyde will go for as Will posits that he will be too afraid of unleashing the beast even if he dies as the delusion is this strong.

Hannibal 3.11 Will and HannibalHannibal wants Dolarhyde to take an interest in Will and his brief interaction with him has done just this. Dolarhyde is somewhat scathing of his appearance – yes Will looks a little world weary but Hugh Dancy is still undeniably handsome no matter how hard they try – but he finds him interesting in how “purposeful” he looks. Will’s family is the perfect sacrificial lamb for both Hannibal and Dolarhyde as it saves Reba from the beast within while also destroying Will’s happiness. Something Hannibal views as disingenuous and as a temporary facade which Will hides his true self behind. It is why “…And the Beast from the Sea” ends with Hannibal asking Will “Don’t you crave change?” In the same way Dolarhyde is splitting his personality, Hannibal believes Will is doing the same, the difference being that Will is trying to suppress his beast.

This mischief making can only go on for so long before Alana delivers on her promise to remove pretty much everything from his cell. Yes even the toilet. Setting a serial killer on Will’s family doesn’t revoke his privileges, but they still need Hannibal’s help at this point. Alana plays a game with the phone getting his real lawyer on the other line and Hannibal is all ‘well you could have just asked me’ sassing off. Claiming he has always told her the truth in his own way is like saying “oops I thought you realized your beer had people in it” and there is something very Jaye Tyler about the way Caroline Dhavernas delivers some of her lines with Hannibal this week; she has no time for his bullshit. It is amazing and I wish there was more Wonderfalls in the world.

Hannibal 3.11 Alana Bloom Hannibal 3.11 AlanaExcept now she is wearing killer lady suits of which there are several amazing ones this week. All slightly toned down from previous bold stripe affairs and there is a subtle hint of Hannibal inspired plaid when she strips him of his dignity. Hannibal it would seem is probably even more inclined to keep his promise and even when he is completely incapacitated, face mask and all I still fear for her future. Right now she has all the power, but as we have seen he can get to someone even when he is locked up. And this look he gives her is terrifying.

Hannibal 3.11 maskReally, really terrifying.

But Hannibal was never going to give up his special shy boy and he gives them just enough time to find the location Dolarhyde has been ringing from while also letting Dolarhyde know they are onto him. That’s what will get your toilet taken away from you.

The sea and the moon are intrinsically linked and the Blake painting which gives this episode its title shows what could be both Dolarhyde as the Great Red Dragon with Hannibal as the Beast from the Sea. Hannibal is shown reaching for the sky after he has sent Dolarhyde on his new mission as Will enters his chamber suggesting his beastly motives even further.

Hannibal 3.11 Hannibal in cell Hannibal 3.11 the moonOnce again the use of space and place is incredible as the dome itself looks like a giant moon with the actual moon forming the center of the image, illuminating Hannibal in the process.

Here are a couple of other really great shots from Hannibal’s cell location from both sides of the glass:

Hannibal 3.11 Hannibal, Alana and Jack

Hannibal 3.11 empty cellThe second one really emphasizes how sparse it is without anything but a very uncomfortable looking bed.

Two romantic relationships are impacted this week because of the Great Red Dragon’s urges. Last week Dolarhyde  felt a living woman for the first time (let’s not dwell too long on the living part) and this has disrupted his relationship with the Dragon. Reba and D have a lovely date night with martinis and snuggling, but Dolarhyde has homework to do and by homework he means watch his stalker movie of Molly, Walter and the dogs.

Hannibal 3.11 Molly on filmWhen cute turns creepy in two frames.

Hannibal 3.11 Reba and D Hannibal 3.11 date nightAll is going swell between them until his botched murder night out and after beating himself up (like, actually beating himself up while envisioning the dragon is doing it a la Fight Club) he breaks things off with Reba because he is afraid what might happen if he doesn’t.

Dolarhyde’s night time venture doesn’t quite end the way Hannibal would have preferred, but it does lead to difficult conversations with Will’s wife and the boy who calls him dad. The sequence where Dolarhyde walks around the secluded cabin while Molly and Walter escape is full on slasher horror movie terrifying. His all black attire, special set of teeth and the way he pulls the stocking down over his face is super creepy; this is a version of Dolarhyde we have not previously seen as he switches to stalk and kill mode. And he’s gone all out on the leather badass look to top things off. I wonder if this is what he has worn for his previous excursions or if this is a new ensemble. It’s like a twisted version of Netflix’s Daredevil costume. Hannibal is right that Molly’s survival took “a pinch more than luck” and we see her being incredibly resourceful in their escape.

Hannibal 3.11 DolarhydeAt first I was annoyed at how Molly is put in a position where she walks past an FBI warning about pet mutilation and decides to keep the information regarding the dogs getting sick from Will, but she is later redeemed by her quick thinking regarding the intruder. Molly later tells Will that thanks to Freddie’s article she instinctively knew it was the Tooth Fairy (Hannibal will be so mad that I’m calling him by his tabloid name) and for once Freddie’s writing has helped Will out of a bind. When she chose to not follow her son out of the window I had a brief moment where I yelled “WHY?” at the screen and then realized she needed the car keys to provide a distraction (or perhaps to getaway was the original plan). Molly gets all the smart points, although I do feel bad for the random passerby who got shot in the process as we don’t get a report of what happened to them and on second watch he definitely got shot in the head.

Freddie’s article does open a whole can of worms between Will and Walter as Walter now knows he killed someone and ended up in a mental hospital. Walter also has strong feelings regarding Dolarhyde’s fate and he doesn’t agree with Will wanting to catch him rather than kill him. Hannibal might like Will’s son after all. Walter has just experienced a horrific ordeal so it is not surprising his mind has turned to vengeance rather than empathy.

Hannibal 3.11 Will and MollyThey do not survive their encounter completely unscathed and Molly is shot in the shoulder as they drive away. She is angry at how these circumstances and Will’s job almost resulted in the death of her son and she has a right to feel this fucked off. Molly lays some of the blame at her own feet as she told him to go, while putting the rest on Jack for coming to get Will in the first place. Really Hannibal is the one who is to blame but Jack, Hannibal and Will are all intrinsically linked in the cause and effect of this encounter.

Molly remarks how it is “tough to hold onto anything good. It’s all so slippery” and this pretty much applies to every relationship on Hannibal (and this is why I’m currently worry for the other happy family unit of Alana, Margot and their son). Hopefully Hannibal’s not done any permanent damage here because the Molly/Will dynamic includes a much lighter Will than we have previously seen. They even manage to have a laugh after this tragedy. Hannibal will of course do everything in his power and with his bag of tricks to disrupt and fracture what is good as he pokes and prods until something breaks. If he can’t have his teacup then Will sure as hell can’t play happy families with someone else.

The Americans 3.11 “One Day in the Life of Anton Baklanov” Review: “We Do Hard Things”

9 Apr

Questions come in many forms on The Americans this week including the emotional fallout from last week’s huge revelation and trust is not something that comes easily across various storylines. Philip and Elizabeth continue to juggle multiple operations while dealing with their fraught situation at home and the scrutiny they are under has increased. In an episode with Anton Baklanov’s name in the title he remains on the periphery with the Jennings still very much at the heart of the story, especially after that bombshell last week and Paige has something Anton’s son Jacob does not have; answers.

These answers don’t completely satisfy Paige with half snatched conversations and the inability to fully believe what they are telling her. The foundation of her entire world has been destroyed and we are entering uncharted waters.

The Americans 3.11 Snow!Philip and Elizabeth have spent the season at odds over this decision with Gabriel acting as the master manipulator. Tension has been simmering between Philip and Gabriel with Philip telling him exactly how he feels about his methods a couple of episodes ago over a not so friendly game of Scrabble. This continues this week in both their solo conversation and when Elizabeth is present. Gabriel keeps asking how they are and it seems less out of personal concern and more to do with their positions as highly valued agents. Later Gabriel questions whether Philip is falling apart and all I have to say to Gabriel on this one is you should have seen him last season because right now Philip is incredibly stable. In fact Philip is doing a better job of compartmentalizing his emotions than Elizabeth is right now, maybe he is doing it too well and he should concerned with his mental state.

With Elizabeth, Gabriel holds a certain level of control with his access to the tapes from her mother and he informs her there might not be too many more. There is something about the way he takes her hand that really puts my back up and I am very much on Team Philip on this one. Prompting Philip to suggest once again that Elizabeth has one last face to face meeting with her mother before she dies and both Gabriel and Elizabeth think it is impossible. This request from Philip is not out of character and much like Elizabeth’s desire to get Philip’s son home from Afghanistan it shows a deep level of love between the pair that goes beyond their inability to always share how they are feeling with each other. The difference here comes in Gabriel’s response as when Elizabeth asked he left it open and managed to come through; with Philip it is a straight no. By pushing Philip like this it unleashes the sassy strop off which is more than fair as Philip points out how much he has done for the Centre and he’s getting nothing in return. This includes a detailed description of what happened with Annelise – “I had an agent I slept with for three years and then I got her killed. I broke her bones and I shoved her in a suitcase” – the Paige problem and the Afghanistan issue.

In a way it feels like they are having two conversations which comes back to the repeated use of the word fine; Philip says “we’ll be fine” when Gabriel asks how he is specifically and then this switches to how this whole situation is not fine followed by Philip barely containing his disdain when he snarks “I’m fine.” Basically Philip wants Gabriel to stay out of anything to do with his family and he also wants him to do something in return to make up for this clusterfuck of a life they are living. Earlier on when they tell Gabriel that Paige knows, it is Elizabeth who emphasizes how fine they are and they are less convincing the more they say it.

Philip sells it much better with Yousaf as they have a heart to heart about the aforementioned suitcase incident with the party line being that what they do doesn’t get any easier but the thought of what the world could be like is what gets him through. This sounds a lot like the version of their job description they told Paige about last week, which was a highly edited and unspecific description. They can only tell Paige a certain amount about what they do and I doubt they will be sharing recent activities with her such as sleeping with hotel managers or the other wife that Philip has.

The Americans 3.11 pancakesThere is some transparency and instead they focus on personal details which means we get far more information about Elizabeth’s childhood (still Philip is pretty much a blank slate) and the discussion in the car between Paige and her mother is heartbreaking. Elizabeth essentially monologues with her daughter sitting there listening to this tale of hardship; what appears to be a potential bonding moment ends with Paige explaining that she doesn’t know how she can believe anything they say anymore. Elizabeth does not have a sharing disposition, but as we see here and in the past when she is talking about her mother it taps into a reservoir of emotion. Paige starts the episode with a series of questions and she is quick to find out they are not willing to talk about this when Henry could come in at any moment. Luckily Henry is too busy practicing his Eddie Murphy impression that while he is aware there is tension he is also not that bothered by it.

At the end of the episode Paige knocks on her parents’ door – after last time she has definitely learned that knocking is key – and asks what they are talking about. Philip is honest and mentions how her grandmother is sick; Paige is overwhelmed and leaves without saying much as if she still can’t process all of this information (she has a grandmother now), which is more than understandable. Initially leaving the door open we are left with a shot of Philip and Elizabeth in bed, but she comes back to shut the door and we are left with Paige on one side and her parents on the other. The divide in the Jennings house continues to grow.

The Americans 3.11 ElizabethIn the past we have seen Philip and Elizabeth reconnect through sex and Elizabeth uses this tried and tested move with different results. This season has featured several occasions where Philip comes in late at night followed by either stoned confessions or shared sparking up sessions. The intimacy level has been high but in different forms from what we see this week; when Elizabeth comes home from the hotel (where she made her excuses with Neil) she strips and wakes Philip with a passionate kiss. As Elizabeth drops out of the frame we stay on Philip’s face which remains impassive and this attempt at connecting falls short. This is the first time in an age where Elizabeth has been used as a honeytrap and the earlier encounter with Neil is all about him giving her pleasure and it feels like this is her way of making it up to Philip. Elizabeth has been experiencing jealousy for the first time this season and while I wouldn’t necessarily suggest that Philip is projecting similar feelings he is concerned about the hotel operation.

Going back to Philip’s conversation about ‘making it real’ when it comes to sex and despite the sexiness of Elizabeth’s underwear and Neil’s “I want you wet” there is an awareness in these scenes of how fake it is as Elizabeth takes a moment to sell it and sell it she does when she experiences a real moment of pleasure. However when Elizabeth comes home from her sexual encounter with Neil she looks so fucking depressed as the consequences are far higher now her daughter knows who she is and there’s a lot more feelings to be considered beyond just Philip.

Anton talks to Nina about how he was traded like a slave and he is fed up of being used in this way. Nina connects with him by using his son and her own experience of being traded back and forth. Everyone on this show is being used in some way and it is all about controlling how this is done; Philip is attempting to limit this with his conversations with Gabriel, Martha is being used and Paige doesn’t have a clue what could be in store for her. And what of Nina? She is so good at getting people to trust her and as with last season it is hard to tell exactly what is for show and what is real. They have tried to get to Anton with a series of women for him to sleep with and I am thrilled that Nina is using charm of another kind to obtain her freedom.

What The Americans also teaches us this week is how to look like you’re making eye contact with someone as Philip preps Martha. He tells her to stare at the end of Taffet’s nose as this will create the illusion of looking into someone’s eyes. Martha passes this test with Taffet as she confidently answers his questions although I am concerned for her safety now that Hans knows where she lives.

Speaking of unstable entities and Maurice wants in on Michelle’s money making plan. Lisa hasn’t made an appearance for a few episodes and this reminds us just how many missions they’ve got going at the moment. There are plenty of ways for any of these plans to go wrong and there is a strong look of concern (and loathing) when Maurice is upfront about knowing Elizabeth is the mastermind of this plan.

One story that continues to tick over is at the rezidentura and the bug they put in the mail robot is up and running. Arkady has given Oleg and Tatiana the task of going through the transcripts and I have a feeling the beeping which causes them to crack up is going to be very important.

This episode was very much a table setter after last week’s major shift with Philip and Elizabeth attempting to keep control of their inseparable home and work life. It feels like it is only going to get harder for the pair as they are now in deep in every facet of their life and there still remains some distance between them emotionally; is there couples therapy for spies?

Shot(s) of the Week

The Americans 3.11 Philip and ElizabethElizabeth and Philip are poised waiting for Gabriel to tell him about the big development and this shot represents how fine they are trying to pretend they are while both looking like they want to throw up. When Gabriel enters, Elizabeth pulls up a seat close to Philip putting on a show of unity.

The Americans 3.11 Anton and NinaThis looks like an Edward Hopper painting.

Disguise of the Week

The Americans 3.11 ClarkPhilip causes extra confusion as Clark by wearing a turtleneck AND a sweater; perhaps this is his way to distract Martha from asking any other questions. Although unlike Paige, she hasn’t shown any desire to delve any further.

Outfit I Would Wear in 2015

The Americans 3.11 Elizabeth kitchenSpeaking of sweater game and Elizabeth gives good serious face while wearing this purple number. I would probably leave the high waisted polyester slacks for another occasion.

New Girl 3.11 Review: “How do you Know When You’re on the Right Path?”

8 Jan

At the start of the last season of New Girl Jess was made redundant and it put her in a tailspin as teaching was the only thing she ever wanted to do. In “Clavado En Un Bar” she’s set up with another work dilemma as she’s offered a non-teaching job and has a very short amount of time to make a potentially life changing decision. Jess turns to the guys for help by asking them about their own career choices and as with “Virgins” the answers are varied and Winston learns something unsettling that once again destroys his belief system. “Are we all just living inside the mind of a giant?”

NG_311-30thru36_0351The school Jess is working at is pretty much a disaster and this makes this makes her seriously consider the prospect of another career working as a fundraiser for a children’s museum – she has been volunteering but Nick has neglected to tell anyone, nicely worked in there New Girl writers. Giving this thing a time limit of 21 minutes means I will now have So Solid Crew stuck in my head all day and it also gives the whole thing a frantic quality aided by Coach and his stopwatch. It’s a very self contained episode and in doing this it’s further alleviates the disconnected feeling from earlier this season. What this episode is doing is reminding Jess why she wanted to be a teacher in the first place even if her students end up using their maths skills for criminal purposes and the school she is works at is falling apart. The seed is planted for further progression in this line of work as it becomes clear that her organization skills are an asset that could lead to becoming a principal one day.

Cece arrives late in the story and it’s her contribution that allows Jess to go with her gut feeling, or the call from inside the house as Coach might put it and she sticks with teaching. Having Cece suggest that she was actually Jess’ first student could have tipped into total cheese territory, however it is the story of how Cece and Jess became friends and it’s adorable without being saccharine. The flashback shows how young Jess didn’t recoil when Cece mentions her dad has died; not because she is uncaring, but she’s at an age where she can give an honest and non-awkward reaction. The kids playing Cece and Jess are terrific and the instant bond is easy to read, even if they can’t without their glasses on.

Working Cece into the story has been a challenge at times, particularly when they focus on her romantic entanglements and the end of this episode suggests they will explore her professional woes. Cece mentions her age and how her jobs are becoming less glamorous and while I’m not sure the bar tending gig is something they will use beyond this week, they should definitely continue to address what’s next for Cece beyond who she is dating. The Jess/Cece friendship is also something that has been dialed back this season, in the most part due to the Schmidt shenanigans and this has been disappointing. Thankfully they’ve resolved some of the Cece/Schmidt tension and this means she can be a part of the group scenes without it coming across as forced. With the addition of Coach for the rest of the season, Cece needs to be more than just a sometimes character as otherwise it’s just Jess and four dudes.

Winston gets to play a bigger role in this episode as he becomes the cautionary tale when he realizes he’s never made a decision about his own career; he was given a basketball when he was born and his career ended through injury not choice. Winston quits his job as his first major work related decision and it’s time to further explore this “crazy English muffin we call Winston’s life.” This has been the season of Winston’s less than stable side and at this moment he’s switched positions with Nick as the content/wise member of the loft. That’s the thing with New Girl is that at no one time do all of these characters have their shit together and I don’t think I would want to watch the version where they do. Exploring both Cece and Winston further does sound like something I want to see. The same goes for Coach and at the moment he is still on the periphery, even if we now know that his name before Coach was Ernie.

The worthiness of Nick Miller is a topic TV Ate My Wardrobe has addressed on multiple occasions as he’s the one character on New Girl who has the shakiest self-belief. Not so in season 3 and this is the most stable I think he’s ever been. Is it the Jess factor that has made bar tending not seem all that bad? Perhaps, but being a lawyer is not what Nick really wanted to end up as (something about cock fighting and Mexico from season 1). The bar has been used as the ultimate career procrastination for Nick in the past and while he is gently mocked by Schmidt, I’m glad this didn’t turn into a Nick is sad about his life episode. Instead he’s content and this is character progression I’m happy to see. Plus we got to see him looking all preppy in a yellow polo and two more hairstyles in the amazing long list of college looks for Nick. He’s had more wigs than The Americans, ok maybe not quite that many. Like Schmidt, I love the scarf. As for the sports movie debate I haven’t seen A League of Their Own (I know), but I suspect that Jess and Cece are right.

Of course Schmidt had a signed Lance Armstrong yellow Tour de France jersey and it’s one of my favorite visual gags from the episode. Schmidt’s path to marketing comes thanks to following the advice of some terrible people and it’s no surprise that all of his efforts have been motivated by money and women. Like Nick, Schmidt is happy with his chosen profession and yet he does take a trip down memory lane in the tag selling Christmas trees. I can’t be the only one who was hoping to see Winston burning some bridges at the radio station after his description of what went down in this final scene. Will Schmidt progress beyond being fulfilled by things? They’ve touched on his emptiness before and it’s notable that the whiskey word association game in the opening ended with him being mournful about fathers. Is it time to meet Schmidt’s parents?

Progression is important whether it’s through relationships or professional choices and we saw some of this on New Girl this week. Season 3 still hasn’t clicked in the electrifying manner as last year, but this episode is a good start to 2014. Even if Jess’ super short flashback bangs transported me back to being 15 and having my very own DIY bang disaster. Pro Tip – don’t get a friend to cut your bangs when your hair is wet, unless you intend for them to be a centimeter long.

Julie Hammerle

Nerds Need Love Too

Sofa and Remote

I love talking about TV as much as I love watching it

Ellie Writes Stuff

About this and that

Twitter Music Club

A rotation curation music club, based on Twitter, mainly for Kiwis


If you enjoy a challenge, like Claude Makélélé, read my blog. Its about sport.

lost somewhere in new york city

We rock a lot of polka dots


We rock a lot of polka dots


Just another WordPress.com site

Cultural Learnings

Television Reviews and Analysis

judgmental observer

film, tv, popular culture, higher ed, unicorns


We rock a lot of polka dots

The Frisky

We rock a lot of polka dots

Tell Us a Story

stories about true things