Hannibal Lecter: Profile of a

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Profile of a Monster: Hannibal Lecter

"A census taker once tried to test me. I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti. 

Of all characters in literature, few come close to the complexity and evil that is embodied by Hannibal Lecter. Thomas Harris took several characteristics of serial killers in the creation of Lecter, cannibalism being the key aspect of Lecter's psychopathology. Harris also based the character Jame Gumb, or Buffalo Bill, on the real life serial killer Ed Gein. Gein liked to dress up in the skins of his female victims, just as Buffalo Bill did. This was Bill's signature, whereas Lecter's was cannibalism. Lecter, however, is not satisfied to just eat his victims, he must feast on them. This usually involves elaborate preparations of five star meals, as exemplified by Lecter's victim Paul Krendler, who had his living brain served to Agent Starling by Lecter.

Most serial killers also personalize their victims, that is, mutilate or position their victims in certain ways. Lecter seems to have a penchant for personalization, as demonstrated by his killing of Italian inspector Rinaldo Pazzi. Lecter disemboweled and hung Pazzi in the same Venetian plaza

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