Synopsis for 3×09: Will returns to Hannibal to get his perspective on the Tooth Fairy murders. While he battles with the mind of a killer, Francis meets a lovely young woman, and we finally learn a bit about what happened to Abigail during her time in Hannibal’s “care.”
What would two very good friends reuniting be without a bit of back and forth between them? Obviously feelings were cold as Will approached Hannibal for help. He kept it extremely professional, or at least he tried, while Hannibal poked and prodded to try and draw anything out of him. He brought up the letter that Will had disregarded, and the two swapped dialogue straight out of the book. Hannibal also mentioned, after pointing out Will’s shaving cream must have been a gift from a child, that he’d once given him a child. After failing to get the reaction he wanted, Hannibal agreed to take a look if Will would leave the file with him for an hour.
Bouncing off of the child comment, the show switched to a flashback with Hannibal and Abigail. In the moments after she realized that he was a killer, and when the audience presumed her to be dead, it was revealed that he’d helped her stage her own death. They discussed removing a part of her flesh, which would end up being her ear, and eventually sprayed the kitchen with blood that was drawn out of her own veins. Hannibal doesn’t joke around when he’s faking someone’s death (or actually killing them).
Speaking of children, while Hannibal looked over the file, Will paid Alana a visit. He claimed that after seeing Hannibal, it felt as if the other man had left the room with him. Hannibal was back in his head and it was a disconcerting feeling. One he clearly couldn’t shake. As he turned the attention on Alana, it was revealed that she and Margot were still together and that they’d had a child together. Alana had a son. She’d been the one to carry him, and he would be the Verger heir. After their quick visit, Will returned to Hannibal to get his thoughts on the case.
They took a stroll through Hannibal’s memory palace together, and as they tried to piece together a profile on the Tooth Fairy, Hannibal took shots at Will’s new family. How was the Tooth Fairy picking his victims? Perhaps he was like Will, picking already made and ready to go families. Hannibal tried time and time again to get a rise out of Will, but eventually Will left, though not before Freddie Lounds snapped a few photos of him coming out of the hospital. Late in the episode Will confronted Freddie while he was out at one of the victim’s houses, and she insisted that she use him to catch the killer. He was less than impressed.
Alana dropped by Hannibal’s cell after Will left and essentially threatened him. If he decided to do something she didn’t like, she would remove what little dignity he had left. Using lines that were actually for Chilton in the books, she insisted that she’d take his paintings, his books, and even his toilet seat. In other words, she knew that Hannibal did not have good intentions in helping Will and she wasn’t going to let him get away with thinking no one would realize his schemes.
Dipping back into the flashbacks revealing Abigail’s fate, the audience got a small taste of the disturbing things Abigail endured while in Hannibal’s custody. As he tried to forge a bond with her, he had her face the dead and unburied body of her father. He gave her a knife, let her do whatever it was she wanted to do to the man, and she leapt across the room and slashed a dead man’s throat. Hannibal certainly isn’t going to be getting any sort of father of the year award anytime soon, that’s for sure.
Will went straight back into the case, and the audience got a little peek into Francis’ childhood. Sitting at a table with a bunch of elderly people, a young Francis was shown to look less than comfortable. It soon faded to a modern day Francis sitting at the dinner table. As the dragon tormented him, Will watched the last video of the Jacobis before they were killed. He used his empathy and inserted himself into the video, watched the family, tried to understand what had made the killer choose them. Eventually he went to their home, after talking with Price and Zeller about a dead cat they’d found on the property, lurked in the woods, and eventually found where the killer had perched in a tree to watch them. The killer scoped out the victims and killed any pets (the “early warning system” as Jack pointed out) before the full moon.
Since Freddie had snapped pictures of Will, she had to write an article. She wrote about how it takes a killer to catch a killer, and Francis scanned over the article and looked mildly disturbed by it. Later, he went to a film development lab to find a specific kind of film. The woman there, Reba, was quite helpful and the two seemed to hit it off. She was blind, and she not only offered to get him the film he wanted but said she’d develop for him. Secrecy guaranteed, right? After their encounter, Francis saw her sitting at a bus stop in the cold and offered to give her a ride “for his pleasure.” She accepted, they ate pie, and had a conversation about sympathy.
In a break from the case, the audience was able to see a softer side of Will. He called Molly, said he was lonely, she said she was ‘feeling Randy’ too, though unfortunately for Will she meant she had a new dog. Well surprise! Will had a new dog, too, one that had belonged to one of the now-dead families who hadn’t had a home. Molly and Will were a match made in heaven, and she told him he was doing the right thing.
Jack went to see Hannibal, in much the same tone Alana had. He went as a show of force, to let Hannibal know that since he was locked up, the FBI would remain a step ahead of him. The note? The FBI read it, right before they forwarded it to Will. Though Jack also revealed that his intentions with Will weren’t necessarily in the other man’s best interest. He wanted to catch a killer, and he would use Will, and by extension Hannibal, to do it.
After he left, there was a final flashback to the events of the season finale of season two, except it offered a clearer perspective of how Abigail fit into it. Hannibal was told to leave, Abigail wanted them to run, but he said they’d wait for Will. She’d hunted with her father, now she’d hunt with Hannibal.
As the evening settled and the episode slid into a close, Hannibal received a call from his attorney. They’re the only calls he’s allowed to get, after all. However, when he picked up the phone it wasn’t his attorney’s voice on the other end of the line. It was Francis, and he was glad to have gotten Hannibal’s attention. He also told Hannibal one thing: he was becoming something. He was becoming the Great Red Dragon.