Hannibal didn't take a bite out of the competition Thursday, but it did give NBC some life.
Bryan Fuller's prequel adaptation of Thomas Harris' novels premiered to 4.3 million viewers and a 1.6 in the adults 18-to-49 demographic. Though obviously low, the numbers are NBC's best in the once-revered Thursdays-at-10 slot since ...
In a year that's already given us Fox's The Following and A&E's Bates Motel, some might argue that we don't need another serial killer TV show. And they'd probably be right.
But NBC's Hannibal isn't just another serial killer show.
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Taking characters from the Thomas Harris novels that inspired a film series that includes Manhunter, The Silence of the Lambs and Red Dragon, executive producer Bryan Fuller (Wonderfalls, Pushing Daisies) has created a sophisticated drama that doesn't glorify the violence of mass murder but rather examines the toll that hunting serial killers takes on the minds and souls of those who hunt. In fact, even though the show is named after Dr. Hannibal Lecter, who was immortalized as one of the greatest pop culture villains of all time thanks to Anthony Hopkins' Oscar-winning portrayal, the series — at least initially — isn't entirely focused on the cannibal in the three-piece suit...
You can't help but get a deliciously squirmy tingle when the infamous (to the viewer, anyway) Hannibal Lecter quips, "It's nice to have an old friend for dinner" while serving tongue to his guests, including an unctuous and chatty shrink whom Lecter sizes up by coolly noting, "Your tongue is very feisty."
This scenario takes place several episodes into the midseason run of NBC's feverishly twisted, fascinatingly macabre and visually remarkable procedural-with-a-twist Hannibal (Thursday, 10:01/9:01c), by which time I was completely creeped out and thoroughly hooked. In much the same way A&E's Bates Motel introduces a younger version of Norman Bates before he had his crazy mama mummified in the cellar, Bryan Fuller's Hannibal presents the mad Dr. Lecter before his secret identity as a cannibalistic serial killer is known to anyone but his victims. He is caginess personified, taking on the role of advisor and therapist to tormented FBI profiler/consultant Will Graham (from Thomas Harris' Red Dragon). Will has an ability to project "pure empathy" and see grisly crimes from the killer's POV, which Lecter describes quite accurately as "an uncomfortable gift."
Hannibal Lecter is coming to NBC, and TVGuide.com has the exclusive first look.
Hannibal, a contemporary take on Thomas Harris' Red Dragon novel, stars Hugh Dancy as FBI agent Will Graham and Mads Mikkelsen as the cannibalistic yet refined Dr. Lecter. In the sneak peek below, the cast and executive producer Bryan Fuller dish on the new series, which will show the origins of the infamous killer and his relationship with...
TV viewers have never had it so good — or maybe they have it too good. There's never been more original programming to navigate than at this very moment. Take Sunday nights: Even with the NFL season over, viewing options include The Good Wife (CBS), The Walking Dead (back Feb. 10 on AMC), Girls (HBO), Shameless (Showtime), Downton Abbey (PBS), Family Guy (Fox), Revenge (ABC) and Kourtney and Kim Take Miami (E!). And that's just in one timeslot: 9/8c.
That's a lot of DVR space being filled up week in and week out with must-see shows. "There's definitely more programming that I'm interested in watching than I can actually consume," says Showtime Entertainment president David Nevins.
According to FX Networks president John Landgraf, there were just 35 scripted shows on cable when The Shield premiered 11 years ago; now that number is up to...