Inside Television with Alan Sepinwall

NBC renews 'Hannibal' for season 2

Serial killer drama has been low-rated but brilliant

<p>NBC&nbsp;has renewed &quot;Hannibal,&quot;&nbsp;starring Mads Mikkelsen in the title role.</p>

NBC has renewed "Hannibal," starring Mads Mikkelsen in the title role.

Credit: NBC

NBC has renewed "Hannibal" for a second season.

The Bryan Fuller-produced drama, starring Hugh Dancy as criminal profiler Will Graham and Mads Mikkelsen as infamous serial killer Hannibal Lecter, has easily been NBC's best new show of the season, and perhaps the best-reviewed new show on any of the broadcast networks this season. (Here's mine.) But because it premiered so late in the spring, and because the ratings have been modest at best (though they're mitigated by the show's cheapness, since it's an international co-production), the network held off on deciding to renew or cancel at the upfronts earlier this month.

Instead, the good news came tonight, only a few hours before the next new episode airs at 10 p.m. The renewal is for another 13-episode season, to debut "no earlier than midseason."

NBC entertainment president Jennifer Saalke unsurprisingly had praise for the work executive producer Bryan Fuller has done adapting the very familiar Lecter story (specifically, material from Thomas Harris' first Lecter novel, "Red Dragon," later adapted into both a movie of that name and Michael Mann's "Manhunter") into something that feels exciting and new, 20-plus years after "Silence of the Lambs."

“We’re so proud of Bryan’s vision for a show that is richly textured, psychologically complex, and very compelling,” Salke said in a statement. “There are many great stories still to be told.”

Alan-sepinwall-sm
Alan Sepinwall
Sr. Editor, What's Alan Watching
Alan Sepinwall has been reviewing television since the mid-'90s, first for Tony Soprano's hometown paper, The Star-Ledger, and now for HitFix. His new book, "The Revolution Was Televised," about the last 15 years of TV drama, is for sale at Amazon. He can be reached at sepinwall@hitfix.com
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