There aren’t many series that capture the beauty in the macabre quite like Hannibal. What could have been a flop of a series, if it had been handled by anyone else, is hands down one of the best horror series of all time. It also gave us one of the most twisted, beautiful queer love stories (Hannibal and Will) and many other moments that are delightful for horror fans. Including the deaths and violence that are displayed so artistically that it could put an eerie 18th century painting to shame.
So exploring what are evidently some of the most memorable deaths in the series is apt to me. One could argue that Hannibal (Mads Mikkelsen) and Will (Hugh Dancy) died in the season 3 finale, but considering it’s not confirmed (as season 4 continues to be something people demand) they are not going on this list as I don’t think they’re dead. So without further ado, here are what I consider to be some very memorable deaths in the series.
Georgia Madchen (season 1)
Despite how she wasn’t a crucial character in the grand scheme of the show, Georgia’s (Ellen Muth) death is wince-worthy. Her condition made it so that she couldn’t distinguish faces, causing her to kill her best friend. Unfortunately for her, she witnessed Hannibal kill someone and since he wasn’t in the business of getting caught, he framed her for the murder and then killed her by way of a comb that sparked inside the chamber that she was healing inside. She was literally engulfed in flames and burned to a crisp. Forgetting that death is just not possible.
Beverly Katz (season 2)
It’s hard when likable characters get killed because of one or more poor decisions. Beverly (Hettienne Park) was smartly catching onto Hannibal after Will convinced her that he’s the killer they’ve been hunting, ultimately leading her to break into Hannibal’s home to find evidence of his cannibalism, etc. Hannibal does end up finding her in his basement and chokes her to death, freezes her body, and removes her organs, then puts her on display in glass slabs. The way her body is displayed is very much in the vein of macabre artistry. It’s hard not to find it disturbingly beautiful.
Wearing animal skulls and claws in order to murder people would be handled in the kookiest way possible in a lesser series. Meanwhile, Randall (Mark O’Brien) as a serial killer, is frightening because of how he murders his victims. Therefore, his death and the display of his body had to be equally startling. He’s a memorable death because he’s Will’s second victim, and it marks a point of no return within him. Will murders him with his own hands (making the murder more personal in nature) and parts of his body are displayed in the same museum where Randall worked. He’s not a memorable character per se, but his death is an important narrative device.
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Aside from being a memorable death, Abigail’s (Kaley Rohl) death is so heartbreaking because it’s incredibly unnecessary in the grand scheme. Both Hannibal and Will become surrogate fathers to Abigail after Will killed her biological father because he was a serial killer. And she went through many events that led her to faking her death (with help from Hannibal). Just when Will gets his brief reunion with her in the season 2 finale, Hannibal slits her throat in front of him because he felt Will didn’t actually want to be with him and run away with them as a family. The way she bleeds out as Will tries to save her, as he’s struggling to survive his own wound, is painful to watch. She not only didn’t deserve to die like that, she didn’t have the easiest life and never got a semblance of a happy ending.
Occasionally there are characters that get what’s coming to them because they suck so much. Mason (Joe Anderson and Michael Pitt) was an entitled sadist that delighted in sexual violence and the power he could hold over others. So him dying at the hands of his sister Margot (Katharine Isabelle) and her lover Alana (Caroline Dhavernas) is fitting. After his failed attempt to slowly torture and later murder Will and Hannibal, he drowns and eels enter his body through his mouth. No sympathy could possibly be had for him, but his death is absolutely one that sticks in your brain because of that.
Without a doubt, Francis’s (Richard Artimage) death is one of the most poetic, as he dies at the hands of Hannibal and Will. He’s a terrifying villain and serial killer because of his Great Red Dragon alter (Francis suffers from D.I.D.), but in the end he’s no match for them. During the season 3 finale (which can be considered the series finale if we never get a season 4) he tries to murder Hannibal and Will at a safe house. Of course, due to their feelings for each other, neither of them could let the Great Red Dragon murder the other. So they tag team him and rip his throat out and stab his chest. His death happens in a way that’s so ultraviolent (much like the rest of the show) and hypnotic. And he’s the final death of the series.