“And the Woman Clothed With the Sun ...” is the second Hannibal episode named for William Blake, and it continues the Red Dragon storyline delightfully. Despite misgivings, Will and Hannibal form an uneasy partnership to track down the new “shy boy” on the scene. He’s got his quirks, that one.
“That’s the same atrocious aftershave you wore in court!” is the new best greeting among old frenemies/dining companions. I can’t wait to use it. Hannibal smells Will before he greets him, as one does, from the luxe confines of his hospital prison room. Yeah, Will got Hannibal’s little note warning him off the Tooth Fairy case, but he’s there on FBI business anyway, and he’s acting oddly formal, calling the man who once commanded his soul “Dr. Lecter.” Lecter notices, because he notices everything, and after he toys with Will a bit, he agrees to help. “You’re family, Will,” he tells him as the case file passes between hall and cell.
Speaking of family, we flash back to a scene of Lecter, in actual doctor mode, speaking with Abigail (RIP). “Even if you know the state of who you are today, you can’t predict who you’ll be tomorrow,” he tells her while he draws an immense amount of blood for an odd ritual: simulating the blood spray from her cut throat. “Abigail Hobbs is dead ... long live Abigail Hobbs,” they eulogize. Throughout the episode, we revisit his oddly fatherly and intensely creepy therapy sessions with her.
Back in the hospital, Will meets with Alana, and tells her how unnerving his long-dreaded and long-anticipated meeting with Hannibal was. (She sympathizes.) Fun fact: she’s still with Margot and they have a baby! A Verger heir! And Alana carried him! So, she really doesn’t need to work, ever again, but she’s there on account of Hannibal. There are five doors between him and the outside world, and she has all five keys. Will passes back through all but one of those doors to get Hannibal’s take on the Tooth Fairy case, and the show does that thing where it switches from cell to opulent office, complete with crackling fire. Like old times, as Hannibal says.
All joking aside, though, he’s got some good insights into the case, and they “leave” Hannibal’s “office” to take a closer look at the crime scene. The Tooth Fairy is probably disfigured, or thinks he is, and smashes mirrors so he can see himself in the eyes of his victims (“Like you, Will, he needs a family to escape what’s inside him”). When asked how he thinks the Tooth Fairy chooses the families he slaughters, Hannibal advises Will that the home must have a yard, to maximize privacy while admiring the full moon ... naked .. covered in blood. Fun stuff.
Hey, Freddie Lounds is back, and back to her old tricks! Snap, snap, snapping photos of Will leaving the hospital ... while within, Alana “wags her finger” at Hannibal, warning him that she knows he’s up to something. Her biggest threat is “indignity,” to the extent of taking the man’s toilet away if she has to. Way harsh.
We get our first look at Francis Dolarhyde this episode well into act two; he’s having a nice, quiet, evening at home, watching movies of his crimes, writhing around, moaning and screaming (we still haven’t heard him actually speak), imagining he has a tail, etc.
Back at FBI HQ, fan-fave Agents Price and Zeller are helping Will and Jack expand on Lecter’s theory that the yards are part of how the killer chooses his targets. Buried in one yard: a strangled cat (“I am particularly fond of cats,” Price sniffs. “I am not particularly fond of children.”) Another family’s dog was wounded before they died. “Case the place, kill the pets, kill the family,” everyone muses. The murderer is eliminating any early warning system the family might have. (Three guesses who adopts the dog once it’s healed. Will and his wife now own 57 dogs! Or close to it.)
“Murder husbands” (haaa!) is what ol’ Freddie called Hannibal and Will during their time in Europe together, so Will (who prob wouldn’t have been too overjoyed to see her anyway) gives her the brush-off when she confronts him about working with Hannibal on the Tooth Fairy case. But she has a point: psychopaths are narcissists who love to read about themselves. And that’s exactly what we see Francis D. doing, gently tapping his index finger on a photo of Will in her story about him. Well, that can’t be good for Will. And at last, HE SPEAKS! We meet Reba McClane (Rutina Wesley, late of True Blood) who is blind (can’t see his cleft palate) and works in a dark room (has access to the film he needs, can help him develop whatever without actually seeing what he’s shooting). Plus, she’s nice. Really nice. Give-her-a-ride-home-in-the-snow nice.
As this develops, Will starts coming down with an advanced case of Criminal Mind-itis: waking up in the middle of the night believing he’s covered in blood, staring into a mirror as it shatters, etc. Jack Crawford pays a bemused Hannibal a visit, and the cannibal admonishes the FBI man for pulling Will back into the game, and for expecting Hannibal to get back inside his head. It would be more honest to simply open up the man’s skull and eat his brain, after all.
After Jack leaves, Lecter gets a phone call from “his lawyer.” Nice ploy. It’s Francis Dolarhyde, calling to thank Lecter for taking an interest in him (and thank you, Freddie, for putting the word out!) “Tell me,” Hannibal humors him. “What are you becoming?”
“THE GREAT ... RED ... DRAGON!” RAAAAAGH! Hooray!