Two quick things to start thingsoff:

  • I envision Catherine to be a projection of Clarice’s youthful self — The Victim — that 10 year-old part of who she is who lost her father when he was murdered. Catherine is being victimized, too, by a murderer. They are about the same age. They are both from the South. Easy to see that projection. And as such, I perceive Catherine as being Clarice’s Attractor. As Lecter suggests, “You think that by saving poor Catherine Martin, you can silence the lambs.” Clarice is emotionally pulled toward Catherine to save the girl… and in so doing save a part of her Self.
  • Crawford is a really interesting character, or at least how his character evolved. In the book and early drafts of the script, there is a strong whiff of Attractor to him, what with his wife in a coma, Clarice obviously seeing him as a substitute father figure, and some lurking sexual tension between them. But most of that got stripped out of the movie, basically all that’s left is their meaningful handshake at the end with a long look at each other, and some words left unsaid. So it’s tempting to see Crawford as a Mentor. After all, he taught Clarice at UVA in a class. He is her superior. She has said her goal is to work with him. And he sets her on the Buffalo Bill case… But looking at this last part more closely — and from a character = function perspective, that really is what Crawford’s role is: the conduit for Clarice into the case — I think of Crawford [finally] as a Trickster. He tricks Clarice with his lie about why he is sending her to see Lecter. He uses Clarice to lure Lecter into becoming a source of information re the BB case. He creates a fake offer for Clarice to present to Lecter in exchange for his cooperation (“Anthrax Island”). And most importantly, Crawford creates test after test for Clarice — meeting Lecter in the first place, having her do the autopsy report on the West Virginia victim, while there pulling the local sheriff aside so as not to involve a woman in their discussions and leaving Clarice surrounded by all those state troopers. That is all to help prepare Clarice for the Final Struggle against BB. Of course, it’s ironic in the extreme that Lecter tricks Crawford by sending him to the wrong house in Illinois. And if one were to really grant Lecter genius status, you would have to think Lecter did that on purpose in large part to allow Clarice the opportunity to solve the case and confront BB directly — because he knows that is precisely what Clarice needs in terms of her personal catharsis.

My breakdown of character archetypes in the next comment.

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