Will Graham is the anti-hero of the novel Red Dragon and the two movie adaptions, Manhunter and Red Dragon. He is also the main protagonist of Hannibal TV Series and a mentioned character in The Silence of the Lambs.

History

Background

Born to a poor family in Louisiana, Will moved to New Orleans and got work as a homicide detective and eventually became a teacher at the FBI Academy and a skilled criminal profiler.

The Minnesota Shrike

Will's first life-changing case was the co-ed killer know as The Minnesota Shrike. After several months working on the case, Will discovered the Shrike's identity, pipe threader Garret Jacob Hobbs. Will goes to Garret's house only to find his wife dead and his daughter being stabbed in the neck area by Garret, Will shoots Garret to death and saves his daughter, Abigail Hobbs. This incident caused Will to go temporaly insane and sent to the Bethesda Naval Hospital, Will was released a month later and returned to the FBI.

The Chesapeake Ripper

Five years later, Will investigated the murders commited by the master serial killer know as The Chesapeake Ripper. While investigating the case, Will came across Hannibal Lecter, a mysterious and manipulative doctor. After spending time with Hannibal in his office, he realizes that Hannibal is in fact, the Ripper himself. Will was brutally stabbed by Hannibal but was saved in time by two officers. Hannibal was arrested and Will was sent to the hospital and later retired.

The Tooth Fairy

Three years later, now living with his wife Molly and his stepson Willy, Will returns to the FBI after being manipulated by his boss Jack Crawford with the intention to catch and arrest the family annihilator and serial killer know as The Tooth Fairy. However, Will is forced to work along with Hannibal Lecter in order to catch the Fairy. Hannibal then tries to ruin Will's life by sending his address to the Fairy and thus putting the life of Molly and Willy in danger, Molly and her son are then sent to a different and more safe place. Will soon discovers the identity of the Fairy after Freddy Lounds' brutal death, Francis Dolarhyde, a local film developing company employee. After realizing that FBI Agents are coming for him, Fancis sets his house on fire with his blind girlfriend, Reba McClane inside. Will saves Rebe and Francis supposedly kills himself. However, Francis faked his death in order to get revenge on Will by killing his family. He arrives at Will's house and attacks him, desfiguring his face in the process with a knife. Francis was then killed by Molly with a shot in the head.

Aftermath

Will was left badly scarred after the attack by Francis Dolarhyde. Years after the incident it was mentioned by Jack Crawford that Will is an alcoholic.

Other appearances

Hannibal (TV Series)

Main article: Will Graham (TV)

Will Graham is the main protagonist and anti-hero of the NBC Series Hannibal in which he is played by Hugh Dancy. The show explores his relationship with Hannibal Lecter prior to the events of Red Dragon and acts as a retelling of the books.

It is revealed near the end of the series that Hannibal is in love with Will, and it is also hinted that Will feels the same. Tweaking events of Red Dragon, Will decides to use Hannibal as bate to lure out Francis which leads to the police escort being killed. Will and Hannibal head to a house a cliffside where the both of them team up to overpower Francis and kill him. Will and Hannibal embrace near the cliff edge, and both fall off and into the sea below.

Trivia

  • Although badly mutilated in the book, in the 2002 film Red Dragon Will isn't stabbed in the face.
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