The constant focus on water throughout each
season of the show has fascinated me, and I have come to the conclusion that
water represents Hannibal’s influence. Both Alana and Bedelia dream of drowning
in deep, black water when they are most under Hannibal’s control. Whereas they
are unwillingly consumed by the water, Will dives into it.
Therefore, Hannibal and Will do not
actually go over the cliff; rather, it is a dreamy, metaphorical sequence, just
like Alana and Bedelia drowning. This sequence is meant to show Will’s complete
and unequivocal acceptance of Hannibal’s presence in his life. Whereas Alana
and Bedelia struggle against the water, Will openly embraces it.
Water normally symbolizes purity,
cleansing, and rebirth, none of which have ever been the case in Hannibal,
until the finale. In this case, the water carries a dual symbolism of both
Hannibal’s influence and of rebirth: it is through Hannibal that Will is
reborn. So, yes, they do “die,” but it is a symbolic death, in that their old
selves die so that they may emerge from the water reborn and ready for their
new life together.
Finally, Hannibal mentions the erosion of the bluff to Will, that the land has slowly been devoured by the relentless power
of the ocean. To me, this makes their union destiny. Had they arrived too soon,
the shore might have broken their metaphorical fall, instead of the ocean. In
other words, Will would not have been ready to give himself over completely to
Hannibal. However, over the course of three seasons, from Miriam to Abigail,
Will is finally ready to embrace Hannibal, and so he delivers them both to the
power of the sea.
So @lottitheunicorn and I were talking about all those people who compare the anime series Yuri on Ice with NBC‘s Hannibal and at first, I was laughing but then I realized that there are actually quite a few similarities. Don’t expect an in-depth analysis and don‘t take it too seriously ;). Here it comes!