10 Best Hannibal Episodes

What's on the menu tonight, Doctor Lecter?

Hannibal Will Graham
Sony Pictures Television

Developed by Bryan Fuller for NBC and based around the infamous characters introduced on paper in the Red Dragon series and on the big screen in the trio of films starring Anthony Hopkins, Hannibal is a series that began in 2013 and that, at the time of writing, ran for three seasons. But, which of the show's 39 episodes are the best?

From the collection of memorable one-time villains at the centre of the early seasons, the familiar foes of Mason Verger or Abel Gideon or the more complex instalments that are stacked full of intense psychological manipulation and distrust, it's fair to say that all the gore is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Hannibal's best episodes.

Starring Hugh Dancy as FBI profiler Will Graham and Mads Mikkelsen as his cannibalistic arch-enemy, it is easily the best horror series the world of television has ever produced and has an active cult following still praying that a fourth season might soon hit their screens.

From stunning performances to bloody fight sequences and outrageously gory kills, here are the 10 greatest Hannibal episodes. (So far, hopefully.)

10. Digestivo

Hannibal Will Graham
Sony Pictures Television

Ending on the cliffhanger that Hannibal has started sawing into Will's skull, Digestivo immediately earns points for having audiences on the edge of their seats before a single scene has been shown to them. Following Mason Verger's bribing of the Italian police, both Hannibal and Will are seized and brought to the one-time Lecter patient.

Seeing the genuine terror in Crawford's face as Hannibal slices into Will's head in the opening sequence is more than a little bit heartbreaking, but even when the torturing is ended by the police there's never a sense of things getting better for the good guys here.

Once again Mason Verger proves himself to be a wonderfully horrible character, but seeing Alana Bloom meet up with Will again does at least offer a heartwarming moment or two. Nevertheless, Verger's plans of eating Hannibal by using Will's own sawed-off face makes this whole dinner party one to keep away from.

For fans of the 2001 Hannibal film, Digestivo is perhaps the greatest homage to go to for a recreation of the Hopkins-Oldman portrayals of Lecter and Verger. Hannibal's slightly curious, almost amused response to Verger's terrifying threats is a testament to the legendary character he is, and the final fates of each of these major players in the show at the end of the episode makes Digestivo one of the most important moments in the season.

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Horror fan, gamer, all round subpar content creator. Strongly believes that Toad is the real hero of the Mario universe, and that we've probably had enough Batman origin stories.