No sooner than the digital ink was dry on my reporting on the cast additions to Hannibal's season three last week, where I queried as to when we might actually see the third season, when NBC announced that it wouldn't premiere until this coming summer. This is the third change to the series' premiere, with season one appearing in the spring and season two airing in the winter. Because NBC doesn't pay for Hannibal, and because it is one of the network's lowest rated series despite the critical acclaim, they loose nothing by airing it over the summer, where they also have less competition from the other networks. NBC seems to be introducing a summer season to their network, in a desperate attempt to remain relevant, as this summer will also see a David Duchovny-lead Charles Manson series, Aquarius and the Heroes reboot Reborn starring Zachary Levi.
This also provides the Hannibal team an extended period of time in which to put the season together. Last season was a tightly scripted, highly focused story that played out with style and grace. With a year in between the seasons, it means the Fuller and his writers have that much more time to make certain the scripts are at the height of excellent. And because the series is going to Europe for at least part of the season, it also gives them time to make certain the production values are on par, if not an improvement on last year. It'll be a disappointment to have to wait another six months to see who survived the laughter at the end of season two, but if it means season three can exceed it, I'm willing to give it the time.