He’s smart, suave, psychotic…and he’s back! Dr. Hannibal Lecter is returning to our screens tonight at 10 pm on NBC in Bryan Fuller’s new drama, Hannibal.
Somehow, between face-biting and brain frying, we still manage to love Hannibal Lecter, or at least, we love to be absolutely terrified of him.
Brian Cox was the first actor to slink into the role in Michael Mann’s brilliant 1986 thriller, Manhunter, and Sir Anthony Hopkins made the part legendary in The Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal and the Manhunter remake, Red Dragon. (And French actor Gaspard Ulliel played the young Hannibal in a terrible movie with Samurai swords we don’t care to mention…) Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen will be the new guy serving up the delicious one liners and the dangerously seductive charm as the “good” Dr. Lecter in NBC’s Hannibal…and we can’t wait for more delectable Lecter moments.
Here are the 10 moments that made us love (to be terrified) of Dr. Hannibal Lecter.
[Photo Credit: De Laurentiis Entertainment Group, Orion Pictures, NBC Universal]
1) Meeting the Man in Manhunter
Manhunter isn’t supposed to be about Hannibal Lecter (or Lecktor). It’s supposed to be about super noble criminal profiler Will Graham’s (William Petersen) return to the FBI after being shellshocked by his former run-in with Dr. Lecter. Brian Cox is technically not even a part of the main cast. However, from the moment Will Graham visits his former ally and attacker in his high security prison cell, you can’t stop thinking about Hannibal. He’s smart, he’s contained…and he’s insane.
2) Lecter’s Chilling House (Address) Call
We’re not really sure what Hannibal Lecter’s insidious intellect is really capable in Manhunter until we see him with a telephone and stick of gum. Lecter’s not supposed to be able to dial any number he wants on the prison phone, but he uses the foil from chewing gum to “hack” the wires and get the operator. The call he wants to make? To Will Graham’s psychiatrist friend in Chicago to get some very dangerous information…
[Film Credit: De Laurentiis Entertainment Group]
3) Come “Closer”…Clarice
In Jonathan Demme’s The Silence of the Lambs, our hero isn’t Will Graham, but young F.B.I. cadet Clarice Starling (Jodie Foster). Even though she and Lecter don’t share the history that he has with Graham, their very first meeting is just as fraught with tension as they psychologically dance around each other.
Please note, as chilling and awesome as this scene is, there is some very adult language that’s not suitable for all audiences.
4) “Some Fava Beans and a Nice Chianti”
No other description necessary.
[Film Credit: Orion Pictures]
5) A Man of Style (“Love the Suit”)
Hannibal Lecter’s sense of style and breeding makes him an enticing villain. His uncanny knack for getting under people’s skins is what makes him so chilling. His ruthlessness and appetite for human flesh is just a blood-curdling bonus.
In this scene from The Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal interacts with a U.S. Senator and the mother of a serial killer’s victim. With Will Graham and Clarice Starling, his tete-a-tetes were stunning psychological waltzes. This is just a cat playing with a mouse.
[Film Credit: Orion Pictures]
(N.B. – If you’re squeamish around violence, you may want to skip ahead to the next page.)
6) The Escape Artist, The Silence of The Lambs style
In Manhunter, we saw what havoc Hannibal could pull with a stick of gum. In The Silence of the Lambs, we see what he can do with two dull-witted security guards and a plate of food.
7) The Escape Artist, Hannibal style
Want to know why he wears that weird mask with the cage mouth? NO, BEFORE YOU CLICK ’PLAY’, DO YOU REALLY WANT TO KNOW WHY HANNIBAL WEARS THE MASK?
[Film Credit: Orion Pictures and MGM]
(N.B. – If you’re squeamish at all–not just “easily squeamish”– you may want to skip ahead to the next page.)
In this horrifying scene from the climax of Hannibal, Dr. Lecter doesn’t give Ray Liotta’s character, Paul Krendler, a “taste of his own medicine”, but rather…uh…a taste of his own brain. And Clarice Starling (Julianne Moore)–and all of us–have to watch on in horror.
9) MORE BRAINS
There’s nothing like a man who’s good with children. It’s endearing. What’s not endearing is when Hannibal Lecter is good with children. Sure, you’ve always got to try new things, but in this case, eating brains isn’t the same as trying Brussels Sprouts.
[Film Credit: MGM]
10) Hannibal’s Perfect Promotional Photos
So, after all that, can NBC’s new show Hannibal live up to the legend and serve up equally dishy scenes? Well, judging by these AMAZING promotional photos of Mads Mikkelsen as Dr. Lecter, I have the highest of hopes.
I mean, look…now we have emo-Hannibal and his skull hoping you’ll come to his dinner party:
And we have Hannibal and his pig and Hannibal and his fork…still hoping you’ll come to his fabulous dinner party:
Look at this photo show creator Bryan Fuller tweeted out. Hannibal is just lounging around like a bored and lonely cad, waiting for us to come to his dinner party:
I mean, I realize Hannibal Lecter is a terrifying, face-biting, brain-frying psychopathic serial killer, but after seeing those images, how can I resist his tempting invitation?
Hannibal Lecter is just too delectable.
[Photo Credit: NBC Universal and Bryan Fuller’s twitter]