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Last week we reviewed the series premiere of Hannibal, NBC’s new show based on Thomas Harris’ characters. There were several elements to the show that we genuinely enjoyed, but were not overly impressed. However, we have decided to give the show another chance and watch the sophomore episode after reminding ourselves that the first episode of Game of Thrones was not very impressive to us either. And look what that turned into. Thus, we give you our thoughts on episode 2, Amuse-Bouche. SPOILERS BEYOND THIS POINT!

As Graham and Crawford investigate the hunting cabin of Garrett Jacob Hobbs, last week’s killer, they discover that someone has been there before them. Graham is visited by nightmares now that he just put ten bullets into Hobbs. This lands him in Doctor Lecter’s office for therapy. Meanwhile, some kids hiking through the woods in Maryland (our neck of the woods) discover a gruesome sight, a garden of hands sticking out of the ground belonging to people that had been buried alive with breathing tubes and I.V. tubes sticking out of their hands. Mushrooms cover the bodies, the fungi being used to erase any distinguishing features… while the victims are still alive. But, as Will hallucinates Hobbs laying in the grave, one of the bodies comes to life. But wait, there is a mysterious redhead following Graham around, taking photos of the scenes he works, and it turns out that she knows of Lecter as well.

Turns out she is a tabloid journalist, trying to get a story on Will and his relationship with Lecter. Hannibal finds this very… rude. What’s to be done about it? Lecter makes a nice loin dish to serve to Crawford as they go over Will’s therapy sessions. Back at the FBI lab, autopsies on the bodies commence and Will determines that all of the victims were diabetic. Realizing that the victims all used the same pharmacy, the FBI sets up a raid but the pharmacist they are looking for is gone. I wonder how he knew they were coming. Know anything about that Lecter? Meanwhile, the redhead journalist has published a rather revealing article about Graham, upsetting both the FBI and Hannibal. And, as Will watches over Hobbs’ comatose daughter, the journalist is confronted by the cop that supplied her with information. Then up pops the missing pharmacist and pops the cop in the head just before he asks her what she knows about Graham. This journalist, Miss Miles, may not last long considering she is pissing off everyone. And the information she gives the pharmacist leads to Abigail Hobbs nearly being abducted and Graham shooting yet another perp. It lands Will back in Lecters office, where the good doctor tries to convince the agent that killing feels good. Will Graham give in to his baser instincts? We’ll have to tune in next week to find out.

We were intrigued by this episode and may have been to rash in our last review. This episode features solid acting and an interesting killer. This ideas on using fungus to connect human minds is just the kind of off-the-wall thinking those crazy serial killers are known for. Likewise, watching Agent Graham place himself in the shoes of the killer to figure out what they are going to do and why they are doing it an neat twist (reminds us of the shooting reconstruction scenes from the Boondock Saint movies). Then you add Doctor Lecter trying to turn Will into a killer and you have an intense show. Well done to all the talent behind this show. Definitely a show to watch. ½