Just so we’re clear I mean killer as in people killing not killer as in awesome. I don’t like the idea of these prequel television shows depicting a young Hannibal Lecter or Norman Bates at all. I’m trying to be open minded about them as they have some talented people running these shows but it just seems like a bad idea.
First of all we have the first casting news for the Psycho prequel in the works over at A&E. Vera Farmiga, an actress I like very much, is playing Norman Bates’s mother. The show is being run by Carlton Cuse who was one of the masterminds behind Lost. I still don’t like the idea but I like Farmiga and Cuse. I may have to see what happens with this show.
As far as Hannibal is concerned I don’t know how I feel about any of the casting choices on that one. Bryan Fuller is a talented writer but I have issues with exploring this character further.
When it comes to evil the more it is explained the less scary it becomes. Silence Of The Lambs worked so well because we knew very little about Hannibal. The sequels and prequels all diluted that to a point where he sort of lost his edge. Same with Norman Bates. The original Psycho was amazing. Psycho II was fun and had a great ending. Parts 3 and 4 were terrible. Then there was the God Awful made for TV movie The Bates Motel which was supposed to serve as a backdoor pilot for a television series back in the 80’s. That didn’t happen thankfully. It was bad enough we had to sit through Manimal.
The reason other shows about serial killers work is because they focus on the good guys. Even Dexter is technically a good guy. Criminal Minds is about the team taking down the killers. The same goes for any other paint-by-numbers procedural cop show. When the focus is clearly on the bad people then who do you root for on a weekly basis? You can’t really root for anyone. That’s the problem.
I could be totally wrong about both these shows. Only time will tell. But I was right in the 90’s when I said that I didn’t like Independence Day because I saw clearly in my mind that the filmmakers were gonna get lazy and then everyone finally agreed with me when they saw Godzilla. I was right when everyone else was singing the praises of Batman Forever and I said the director was ruining the franchise. I felt vindicated and disgusted when I was proved right after Batman & Robin was released.
I always hope I’m wrong and I do truly hope that’s the case here. Only time will tell.