Mads Mikkelsen as Hannibal in Hannibal

Yes, Bryan Fuller Knows Exactly What He Did to Us by Casting Mads Mikkelsen in ‘Hannibal’

Look, we’re not all proud of it, but many of us realized we were in love with Mads Mikkelsen because of the show Hannibal—yes, that one. About Hannibal Lecter. Where Mikkelsen played … Hannibal Lecter. The problem is simply that Mads is very hot and good at what he does, and thus our problems began. If we didn’t want Hannibal making out with Hugh Dancy’s Will Graham, we wanted to be smooching Hannibal, and round and round the warped cycle goes.

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While the love for Will and Hannibal has continued on in the internet’s obsession library long after the show’s end (its having concluded on NBC in 2015), there is an everlasting hold that Mads Mikkelsen’s take on the cannibal has left fans with. That hold? A lot for a cannibal, and oh it just gets messy the more you look into yourself. Because we all have daddy issues, and the source of our problems (while varying) can all connect, in part, to our love of the NBC series.

In essence, we have Bryan Fuller to blame for our Daddy issues, and he is aware of it. “Daddy Issues” tends to be an all-encompassing phrase meant to simply note that a woman (most of the time) has a complicated relationship with men. It exists within our real relationships, but it is very obviously pointed out in the fictional characters we end up “stanning”—Hannibal being one of the major talking points.

So when a fan on Twitter asked “Is Bryan Fuller aware that he gave everyone Daddy issues by casting Mads as Hannibal?” Fuller replied in his all caps way with “YES, I AM AWARE,” and honestly if this was anyone else’s Twitter (meaning someone who didn’t capitalize everything), it would read in a way that has me cackling.

But it’s still hilarious because … well, at least Fuller is taking the blame for our issues.

To be fair, I think that Bryan Fuller has a lot to answer to (for me personally) because his shows tend to consume my waking thoughts and plague me long after they have ended. This is also a sentence about my love for Pushing Daisies as well as Hannibal.

But let’s get into the appeal that Mads Mikkelsen has and why it has left so many of us with self-assigned “daddy issues.”

The Mads appeal

Here’s the thing: Mads Mikkelsen as Hannibal Lecter has a special power, in that it made someone who was terrified of anything to do with Silence of the Lambs watch as Mads ate people week in and week out and think, “Okay, that’s not that bad.” (Me, “someone” is me.)

It had a chokehold on all who watched it as it aired, and by the new burst of fans of the series, I’m assuming that it is applicable to those who streamed it later, as well—point being that there is a magnitude that Mads Mikkelsen has as Hannibal Lecter that will leave fans questioning things about themselves. At least now we know that Bryan Fuller knows that it is his fault.

(featured image: NBC)

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Rachel Leishman
Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. She's been a writer professionally since 2016 but was always obsessed with movies and television and writing about them growing up. A lover of Spider-Man and Wanda Maximoff's biggest defender, she has interests in all things nerdy and a cat named Benjamin Wyatt the cat. If you want to talk classic rock music or all things Harrison Ford, she's your girl but her interests span far and wide. Yes, she knows she looks like Florence Pugh. She has multiple podcasts, normally has opinions on any bit of pop culture, and can tell you can actors entire filmography off the top of her head. Her work at the Mary Sue often includes Star Wars, Marvel, DC, movie reviews, and interviews.