‘Hannibal’ Season 3: Bryan Fuller Teases New Characters & Season 2 Aftermath

Published 11 months ago by

Hannibal season 2 premiere Hannibal Season 3: Bryan Fuller Teases New Characters & Season 2 Aftermath


[Warning: MAJOR SPOILERS for the Hannibal season 2 finale ahead.]


It’s never pretty when couples fight, and when one person in the relationship is a cannibalistic serial killer, disagreements can get positively ugly. Such was the case in the season 2 finale of Hannibal, ‘Mizumono’, which delivered a series of shocks in quick succession and ended on a brutal cliffhanger.

Before Hannibal first premiered on NBC, showrunner Bryan Fuller described it as a “love story” between Will Graham and Hannibal Lecter, and the first two seasons have certainly played out that way, with a sordid mix of seduction, betrayal and infidelity. The conclusion of season 2 left Jack Crawford, Abigail Hobbs, Alana Bloom and Will bleeding out at Hannibal’s house as the killer made his escape, and it was unclear which (if any) of these characters will live to see the next season. All in all, it’s not the best execution of an arrest that’s ever gone down.

Fans of Hannibal are still reeling from the finale, but Fuller has provided a postmortem (pun intended) on the second season, as well as some details of what’s to come in season 3, in an interview with TV Guide. Since Fuller has previously talked about his plans to develop Will’s character throughout the show’s seven-season arc, he doesn’t try to make a secret of the fact that Will is going to survive his gutting. The rest of the characters, however, are not so safe.

“We are staying very true to in the incident in the novel with Will and Hannibal and it’s very basic outcome… There’s going to be an impact from what’s happened here. It’s safe to say that not everybody survives. Everyone that’s laying there breathing could be breathing their last breaths. It doesn’t go well for all of them.

“One of the wonders of this season is: Will Alana survive and will Jack Crawford survive? Will Abigail Hobbs survive? Those are things that are going to be revealed very slowly at the beginning of Season 3.”

Hannibal sniffs Will Hannibal Season 3: Bryan Fuller Teases New Characters & Season 2 Aftermath

While the death toll has been steadily rising, Will and Hannibal seem to be the mainstays of the show, and much of the focus so far has been on their developing friendship and its peaks and valleys. Describing what happened between them as “a nasty breakup,” Fuller touched on what Will’s actions in season 2 will mean for their relationship – and for Will’s path in particular – when season 3 arrives.

“The stag always represented the connection between Will Graham and Hannibal Lecter. He started seeing the stag after he was first exposed to Hannibal’s murder of Cassie Boyle impaled on the stag head in the field. It felt like, [when Will sees the stag dying], the relationship that they had has died. Whatever comes next between them will be a fresh new hell. …  In any relationship, when you throw a fit and end a relationship in dramatic fashion, later you might be going, ‘Oh, I do sort of miss them.’ [Laughs] The obsession is going to always work both ways between these two gentlemen.”

The way Fuller describes it, season 3 may well open with Hannibal jealously stalking Will’s Facebook page. The showrunner has previously discussed the seven-season arc that he originally pitched for the show, and how it roughly follows the storyline of Thomas Harris’ novels. The show has deviated from the source material previously, however, and Fuller explained that season 3 will largely be a mix-and-match of different books in the series that also rewrites Hannibal’s history.

“Season 3 is going to be a lot of fun because it’s going to be taking a lot of disparate elements from the novel Hannibal Rising and the novel Hannibal and mashing them up together as part of the thrust of the season. It’s going to be fun to bastardize two novels into one sort of Frankenstein season. I will brace everybody right now: We’re significantly changing the Hannibal origin story from Hannibal Rising.

“The books won’t necessarily be in sequential order. We’ll be hitting elements of each of them except Silence of the Lambs in the next season. My hope is that not only do we have a completely different Hannibal Lecter story in Season 3, but we will meet some of those great characters like Francis Dolarhyde and Lady Murasaki and weave them into the world in a unique way.”

Mads Mikkelsen and Hugh Dancy in Hannibal Season 2 Episode 8 Hannibal Season 3: Bryan Fuller Teases New Characters & Season 2 Aftermath

Francis Dolarhyde is the killer that Will Graham hunts (with Hannibal’s aid) in Harris’ novel “Red Dragon”, while Lady Murasaki is Hannibal’s Japanese aunt, who raises him through the later stages of his childhood and appears in “Hannibal Rising”. It’s not too surprising that Hannibal’s backstory has been changed for the show, since in the novels his backstory is tied to his experiences in World War II, and Mads Mikkelsen looks a little bit too young to play a modern day character who was born in the 1930s.

Fuller has left us with plenty of exciting teases to be going on with, but Hannibal fans will have to wait until next year to find out who survived the massacre at Hannibal’s home, and who will be going into the ground.


Hannibal returns to NBC for season 3 in 2015.

Source: TV Guide

Follow H. Shaw-Williams on Twitter @HSW3K
TAGS: Hannibal
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  1. Maybe they introduce Dolarhyde in some way next season to lead into the Red Dragon storyline in season 4? I’ve been very interested in Fuller’s take on that character, and who will follow Tom Noonan and Ralph Fiennes in playing him.

  2. I have no doubt they will find the perfect actors to play any previously established characters. They’ve nailed the casting thus far so it’s a safe bet that streak will continue. I’ve willingly accepted many of the plot changes from the original books. However, Jack’s death would be too much of a deviation for me. He’s so critical to not only Will’s future journey – but Clarice’s as well. I know they may not get the rights to her story, but they have to keep Jack around.

  3. Really like the liberties Fuller has taken with the source material so far, but in incorporating Hannibal Rising into the series I hope he avoids the mistake Harris made – trying to ‘explain’ Hannibal. Hannibal’s meant to be a force of nature, or as has been discussed before, a sort of literal incarnation of the devil. To give him an ‘origin story’ would sort of cheapen the character’s effectiveness – and I think that Fuller’s done a great job making us root for the character in one way or another (or at the very least, not disliking the character despite being the villain) and he doesn’t need to tell us he’s the way he is. It’s like Nolan’s Joker – there wasn’t a need to give him a humanising backstory because he worked best as this unstoppable, inscrutable antagonist. Still, it’d be interesting to see people from earlier in his life – and I trust Fuller to pull it off.

    • I rather liked knowing the possible “whys” behind Hannibal Lecter’s person and actions. I’ll admit the movie ‘Hannibal Rising’ was less than savory in the acting department, but it did give insight to the age-old question – Why does a serial killer do what a serial killer does?

      • That’s one problem I always have though, the desire to know why something or someone is the way they are. A lot of time, psychopaths are just born and don’t need outside influences to make them the way they are. Hannibal could be a mix of nature and nurture in becoming what he is but honestly, if they explore that, it’ll be the first mistake the show has made thus far.

      • because they enjoy it right?

  4. I’ve never read or seen Hannibal Rising and from what I’ve heard I don’t plan on it so season 3 will be a different experience for me compared to the first two.
    That’s fine, I’m sure I’ll enjoy the show just as much but I will miss some of the easter eggs.
    I’m so excited for the season when Red Dragon is covered. To this day it’s the scariest book I’ve ever read.
    I’ve read it twice and it still gives me the willies.

    • The book was actually pretty good. I didn’t bother seeing the film since I heard that it was subpar. I recommend the book.

    • Hannibal rising is a great movie

  5. Hannibal and Will … bromance at its finest.

  6. One thing’s for sure: It’s going to be a long year.

  7. I’m not sure how I feel about the notion that Jack may die: On the one hand, if he dies, it gives real tension to the show by making you believe anything can happen and no one is safe. One the other hand, this doesn’t feel like the proper place to take him out, and it still feels like there’s much more for him to do to complete his arc (not to mention that I wouldn’t be happy about seeing Laurence Fishburne’s talents leave the show).

    • Yeah. I’m hoping that when they bring in Clarice Jack is still around to mentor her.

    • Agreed. I hope that Fuller makes the decision to keep him around. I like the idea of him being the bridge who keeps introducing Hannibal into people’s lives. I didn’t start reading the books until after I had Silence of the Lambs and the one thing that always drove me crazy about his character but that I think makes him a great catalyst for story is that he willing to pretty much sacrifice the psyche of his colleagues (like Will and Clarice) to get what he needs. In a way it makes him completely selfish, but on the other hand he is someone chasing monsters and you understand his desire and need to catch them and put them away.

  8. I do hope they get David Bowie as Robert Lector (Hannibal’s uncle) in Season 3. That was the idea to bring in that character in Season 2, but Bowie was unavailable.


  9. This is my all time most favorite show. I am so happy its getting a 3rd season and pray that it makes its way through the entire 6 seasons. A friend and I went on a little mini road trip this past weekend and played a few shows. We both tried to get the audience to start open dialogue about the series to try to get more people to watch out of our collective fear of it getting cancelled before its completion. Unfortunately we broke up in Chicago yesterday.

    To him i said, ” I have given you a rare gift, but you did not want it… ” hahaha

  10. As much as I liked/loved all the Hannibal movies I gotta say: whenever I picture Hannibal Lecter now I always picture him as Mads Mikkelsen. No disrespect to Anthony Hopkins at all but Mads has taken this role & completely & totally made it his own without having to ham it up in the least. Not only does Hannibal now have the most exquisite taste in all things from cooking, dressing, art, literature, etc, but he’s basically a badass cannibal ninja to boot! I can’t wait for season 3.

    • I was just thinking that! I actually fond Mads’ Hannibal far more scary that the Hopkins version. He has this eerie calm to him and then the other side where we get to see that he truly is an animal like in the season finale.

    • I was just thinking that! I actually find Mads’ Hannibal far more scary that the Hopkins version. He has this eerie calm to him and then the other side where we get to see that he truly is an animal like in the season finale.

  11. Let’s hope that Fuller can execute a better story than that of Hannibal Rising ever did. Can’t lie, there were some cool bits from rising but the way it was executed was terrible and Hannibal’s origin was that of a slasher villain. Other than that, I hope that Chilton is still alive and that we get to see the Clarice and Hannibal story in Fuller’s Hannibal saga, assuming they can get the rights to use her.

  12. Am I the only one who’s going to miss the Hannibal/Will relationship? The idea of a Clarice type character just doesn’t excite me because I think that type of relationship between a man and a woman (obsession/manipulation) is shown so often on TV and in movies that its a little old by now. For me the dynamic between two men trying to manipulate each-other and breaking each other’s hearts was new and exciting, and its the chemistry between the actors that really makes the show for me. That final scene…

    Hopefully they’ll keep this going in some way in future seasons, and I am enthusiastic with Fuller’s comment that obsessions don’t just end like that. Gives me hope…

    • no im going to miss it to , i agree with all you said it was and is much more fascinating in all its complexities and id rather see more off that then Clarice , she was really always only the female version of will for me any way , no ofence intended to anyone by the way .

  13. My favorite show on TV! I always knew that Will would survive. I am assuming that Alana will not and that Jack will. As for poor Abigail- I HOPE she survives. That’s the one that really stings! That poor girl deserves to survive after her father and being basically kidnapped having her ear cut off by Hannibal!

  14. Everyone said everything already. Love this show. Mad about Madds. W
    We need more Wil and Hannibal. Bryan u are the man.

  15. It’s 2014 and many issues have come to TV and into the real world. Lots for the better, some just because. I like to thing that 24 helped to put a colored man I to the Oval Office. And in this horridly macabre dance called Hannibal, I truly wish that in those last few moments between them Hannibal would have passionately kissed Will, in a way that truly conveyed he deep loss and betrayal of the apprentice he obviously loved.

    I think the audience would have accepted it in this age and time, it would have cut a lot of the expected tension in those scenes. I hope that if Fuller and company filmed such a scene, it will be included in the DVD set. The innuendo was conveyed, the follow through would have been less controversial than the lake of blood left in its wake…. love before violence? In this case love along with…

    • i thought he was gonna kiss him as he touched his face like a lover… can’t wait til next season! great show… it’s up there in my top 10

  16. Interview with Bryan on Collider:


  17. Hannibal is one of the better series that will be remembered in the future years. Even the filler episodes where not annoying. In some sort the relationsship between Will and Hannibal reminded me of the relationship between Light Kagami and L from Death Note. I wonder pretty much if this also very thrilling anime took its inspiration from the Hannibal books…

  18. Hannibal is the best tv show I’ve seen in years. I even enjoyed the fact that it wasn’t exactly like the book/s and I have no desire to Clarise come into the show. Saying that I did enjoy the relationship between Clarise and Hannibal, particularly in ‘Hannibal’ and would love seeing something similar between Will and Hannibal. Can’t wait for more.

  19. Check out http://www.hannibalbuffet.com for the latest Fannibal news & show updates.

  20. Jack Crawford survives we all know this he is mentioned in the Silence of the Lambs

  21. Well, IF they should plan to keep Hannibals traumatic childhood experience with Misha in the series they could refer to the yugoslav civil war in the early 90ies.
    It`s just a suggestion, which might be totally wrong.
    But with Lecters original heritage from Eastern Europe (Lithuania)they could keep the link to the Original as close at possible that way.

  22. im wondering what sexy asian girl they will have play lady murasaki