A quick review of tonight's "Hannibal" coming up just as soon as it occurs to me to send you an ear...

It's a tricky thing when a show in one genre tries to tell a story set in another. Sometimes, cop shows can tell good hospital stories and vice versa (in the '90s, "NYPD Blue" and "ER" both dabbled effectively in each other's specialties), but at other times it's simply taking a show away from what it does so well to tell the kind of story it's not well-suited for.

In "Hassun," "Hannibal" temporarily turns into a courtroom drama, and for the most part seems supremely disinterested in all the tropes that come with it. Now, it's an episode of "Hannibal," which means on some level it's still going to be freaky and fascinating and cool — Mads Mikkelsen doing his icy walk to the stand and turning into the antler man certainly spiced up that bit of testimony — but things like the judge's capricious rulings on what would be admissable (played with bored indifference by the actor) made the story as a whole play out as something obligatory. At a certain point in this arc, Will needed to have his day in court, and then the show needed to get him back into the psychiatric hospital so he could continue playing Dr. Lecter circa "Manhunter" or "Silence of the Lambs."

Also, the episode brought back Freddie Lounds and made me realize how little I had missed her in her absence. Obviously, we can spend a lot of time discussing the identity of this episode's killer — and whether it's Lecter himself deliberately changing his MO just enough to keep it from saving Will, or if it's a copycat whom we have yet to meet — but "Hassun" as a whole was more functional than it was good, especially compared to this season's previous episodes.

What did everybody else think?