wincest gives brofisting a whole new meaning
Amuse-Bouche vs. Potage
#hannibal #will #he hates that he likes it #thats whats so ugly #to become a monster and realize that you now are the thing you hate #when he says ‘its the ugliest thing in the world’ #he means the satisfaction #and power that made him feel superior#and good #that is why in episode 12 when abigail meets with him #she gets it #she gets that its ugly and its unnatural and it doesnt feel good anymore #it feels ugly #thats why she got so confused #’i am a monster’ #she felt exactly like will #fuck #im having feelings this needs to be addressed #hugh dancy (@artalisist)
I was worried you were dead
I quite enjoy how actors—I don’t know how to put it exactly—sort of personalize and internalize and become protective and possessive of what their characters think and feel. And then they talk a lot about it. So, like you’ve pointed out, Mads has really been going on and on about how much Hannibal lurves Will, but interestingly Hugh has actually said very little about how Will has felt in return. He seems to echo Will’s emotional reserve and aloofness.
Will ends up quite dependent on Hannibal before he realizes to what extent Hannibal has fucked him, but I’m not certain he ever was as in love with Hannibal as Hannibal was in love with him. Hugh said something at SDCC about the fact that Will is circling and testing Hannibal for a long time into the season, but by the time the encephalitis takes hold, it sort of takes that judgment call away from him. I think this more or less happens around “Fromage.”
We talk a lot in the fandom about how “Fromage” is the episode when Hannibal comes to discover how deep his feelings for Will are, but I think it’s also an important point for Will. His hallucinations have finally affected him severely enough that he actually begins to act irrationally while he’s conscious, by digging the hole in his own chimney. He reaches out to Alana, and she rejects him. He has only Hannibal he can turn to (and Beverly, but he’s not as close to her as he is to Hannibal). At the end of the episode, when Will enters Hannibal’s office and Hannibal gives him that puppy-eyed look, the empath in Will can see that these emotions are authentic. He smiles back to Hannibal in one of the very few smiles all season that isn’t tinged with bitterness (the only other times I can think of where his smile is this sincere are when he picks up Winston and when he smiles at Georgia Madchen in her hyperbaric chamber).
He seems to be genuinely touched by Hannibal’s worry. But later, when he finds out just what Hannibal has done to him, all he can see is Hannibal’s lack of motive and his curiosity. “You were just curious what I would do,” he says. “Someone like me. Some who thinks how I think. Wind him up and watch him go.”
He shed any sense that Hannibal cares for him at that moment. And this is understandable enough—a significant portion of the fandom still insists that Hannibal has no feelings for Will, in spite of everything Mads and Bryan have said to the contrary. Bryan said somewhat incoherently in the “Savoureux” commentary, “The betrayal that Will feels that he’s just this wind-up toy essentially for Hannibal Lecter—the perversion of that. And the rage.”
So Will’s rage is interestingly centered around the perversion of Hannibal’s feelings toward Will. Hugh also said, “We knew this was coming. The way Bryan wrote the unfolding process of Will’s…he’s—he’s saying something that’s been in his mind, but he’s also realizing it at the same time, and the real horror is the lack of motive.”
But the thing is, Hannibal has motive. Will just doesn’t see it yet. Yes, he is profoundly curious and that is his biggest drive, and for the first murder of Cassie Boyle, curiosity was certainly his only motive (besides his usual thing for killing rude people, but Will doesn’t know about that little personality quirk yet). But the later murders and the frame job itself primarily came from the motive of getting Will to accept that he’s a killer and that it’s okay to kill people. And Hannibal wants to do that because he cares about Will.
The reason I’m going back over all this old ground is because while Will may be feeling rage and horror at Hannibal’s lack of motive now, if the realization comes to him that Hannibal has done it all out of some perversion of love, that’s a whole new kind of horror. And I don’t see how Will can avoid coming to this realization at some point, given his gifts, Mads’ take on Hannibal’s feelings, and how much Bryan Fuller seems to listen to his actors. Bryan has also stated that the two men are “so unique in their insanity that they need each other to understand themselves.” (x) If this is really the way he views the relationship, then I think we’ve only scratched the surface of what that could mean. There’s no reason to believe it will become less true just because the men may come to hate each other.
Rage can only take the story so far. It might take us most of the way through Season 2 and the “nasty breakup,” but I don’t think it will take us much farther. At some point Will is going to have to realize that Hannibal’s interest in him doesn’t come simply because Will is a specimen; Hannibal sees Will as a kindred spirit. I think Will’s rage will probably turn to real fear once he knows Hannibal is the Ripper, and as he begins to understand more of Hannibal’s design for him, then a real need for avoidance. Once Hannibal is outed, it’s certainly canon that Hannibal likes to remind Will that they’re “just alike” while Hannibal is incarcerated, and this may well be his best weapon to wield in Will’s therapy. Like the Will Graham in the book, Will probably isn’t going to relish these meetings.
After that we’re into SOTL territory and beyond, which is really hard to guess at. How much he would blame Hannibal for costing him his marriage and getting him stabbed in the face is hard to predict (if these things even happen). Because of course the difficulty of Will trying to maintain any sense of anger, no matter how righteous, against someone is that he’ll always also be able to see it from that person’s own point of view. And having that person’s point of view be that he was doing it for your own good has got to be one hell of a mind trip.
Also, it will depend a lot on how they decide to integrate Clarice Starling (or Flarice Clarling, or whatever) into the series. If Will’s actively involved with her character (which is probably how I would write it—maybe give him back his teaching job and let her be one of his students), then his feelings toward Hannibal are going to reflect a kind of protectiveness and defensiveness, I’d suppose, about Clarice.
It will be interesting to see if Will partakes in Clarice’s rescue of Hannibal from Mason Verger, assuming that goes down more or less like the book (which is assuming a lot), because while on the one hand I can see him really loathing Mason Verger and not wanting even Hannibal to die at his hands—similar to the way Clarice feels about it in Hannibal—on the other hand, him choosing to let Hannibal die that way could be a really pivotal moment in the series.
These are all suppositions, but the bottom line is that I think that—whatever Will’s feelings toward Hannibal are, whether rage, fear, loathing, whatever—there will be a sense that Hannibal has seen the truth of him in a way that no one else can possibly fathom. And this seeing between them is reciprocal. Knowledge of that sort breeds a kind of intimacy even though it will not necessarily breed affection.
Assuming Will remains the story’s central protagonist, then, and assuming that they’re going to have an ending for him that includes some acceptance of himself for who he is and an ability to come to peace with that—and both of these suppositions are a bit precarious—then I would think they also imply that he would come to a kind of peace regarding Hannibal as well. Forgiveness is a powerful step in the healing process, and to some extent, forgiving Hannibal may well be an important step to forgiving himself. If I were writing for this show, I would be writing with that end in mind.
Forgiveness is probably as close to a happy ending as this show can get.
No Body, No Mind
Despite society’s emphasis on abstract thought, the brain cannot become a mind without a body.
Tony likes to make bird puns at Hawkeye.
Fandom wisdom, typography exercise (2013)