Regarding divorce...not that you're getting one; just, I can see the clock in your eyes. Word of advice: it's easier just to kill 'em. Kill 'em, kill everyone at the table. Less paperwork. Worked for me.
~ Gideon antagonizing his prison guards

Abel Gideon is a recurring antagonist in television series Hannibal.

He is portrayed by Eddie Izzard, who also played Sir Miles Axlerod in Cars 2, Nigel Bakerbutcher in The Simpsons, Professor Bedlam in My Super Ex-Girlfriend, Dr. Schadenfreude in Igor, and Hervnick Z. Snerz in the 2019 Netflix series Green Eggs and Ham.



A pathological narcissist with psychotic episodes, Gideon was convicted in the first degree of the murders of his wife and her family and was institutionalised in Baltimore State Hospital for the Criminally Insane. After killing a nurse he begins taking credit for a series of murders perpetrated by the "Chesapeake Ripper", who hasn't committed any (known) murders in two years, the same number of years Gideon has been incarcerated. Dr. Frederick Chilton was already confident that Gideon was the Ripper and had planted the thought in Gideon's mind during a session, implying that Gideon is not the Ripper but believes himself to be. He found Frederick responsible for the nurse he had killed. However, he takes responsibility for his wife's death.

Gideon's revenge

After the events of Entrée, Gideon realized that he was not the Ripper after all, and experienced an identity crisis. During transport to his cell, he broke free, killed three orderlies and escaped, intending to take revenge on all of the doctors manipulated his mind, including Dr. Alana Bloom. He calls Freddie Lounds pretending to be one of his own previous doctors, Dr. Carruthers, and when the two meet for a supposed interview at Dr. Carruthers' office, Gideon, who has already killed Carruthers, takes Lounds hostage. He forces her to write an article about him and also watch and "assist" while he was "operating" on Dr. Chilton, saying that it's only fair that, after Chilton got inside his head, he gets inside Chilton's belly. Gideon removes a number of Chilton's less-than-vital organs and has Lounds keep him alive by pumping a respirator.

As he prepares to escape from the scene, Will Graham arrives and holds him at gunpoint, hallucinating that Gideon is the deceased serial killer Garret Jacob Hobbs. Will forces him to drive to Hannibal Lecter's house. When Will pleads with Hannibal to tell him whether the "Hobbs" he was seeing was real, Hannibal lies by saying there was no one there at all, rather than telling him the man was actually Gideon. Will has a seizure and passes out, and Hannibal takes the opportunity to tell Gideon where to find Alana. Gideon is gone by the time Will wakes up, and Hannibal tells Will he's worried about Alana because Gideon was on the loose. Apparently intending to use Will to kill Gideon, Hannibal sets Will's gun down on the table and pretends as if he intends to check up on Alana himself, and after he leaves the room to "grab his jacket", Will takes the gun and leaves. Will soon catches up to Gideon standing outside Alana's house, and he shoots him. While Gideon appeared to be dead, series creator Bryan Fuller confirmed on the Kevin Pollak Chat Show that the character had survived his wounds.

Attempted Murder of Hannibal Lecter

Gideon reprised his role in Season 2. Will, who by now was institutionalized Baltimore State Hospital for the Criminally Insane, convinced Chilton to reinstate Gideon so they can catch Hannibal. Gideon was put in the cell next to Will's. He overheard Will's plot to use Matthew Brown to kill Hannibal, and he told Alana about it. Alana and Jack Crawford saved Hannibal and arrested Brown.

Murder of Sheldon Isley and Death

Days after Hannibal killed Sheldon Isley, an officer of Baltimore government, Gideon was beaten by hospital guards for what he said about the dead nurse and was sent to hospital; it is later revealed that his back was broken. Hannibal kidnapped Gideon and killed the guard. He then had Gideon for dinner (literally) with Gideon himself being the guest of honor. Hannibal amputated one of Gideon's legs and served it for both of them. After some reluctance, Gideon ate a piece of his own leg, and said to Hannibal, "My compliments to the chef." Lecter later killed him and framed Chilton for his murder.

Known Victims

  • 2011: His wife and her entire family
  • 2013:
    • Nurse Shell (blinded, then stabbed and impaled with numerous objects in a Chesapeake Ripper copycat murder)
    • The driver, guard and orderly who transported him (killed them and hung their organs from treebranches)
    • Dr. Paul Carruthers (drained his blood, cut his throat and pulled out his tongue to form a Columbian necktie)
    • Frederick Chilton (operated on him while alive and removed several of his internal organs; survived)


           HannibalTitle Villains

Hannibal LecterGarret Jacob Hobbs† • Abigail HobbsFrancis Dolarhyde† • Paul Krendler† • Buffalo Bill† • Mason Verger† • Rinaldo Pazzi† • Cordell Doemling† • Vladis Grutas† • Grutas' Group† (Petras Kolnas† • Zigmas Milko† • Enrikas Dortlich† • Bronys Grentz† • Kazys Porvik†) • Paul Momund† • Dieter

Hannibal LecterFrancis Dolarhyde† • Paul Krendler† • Buffalo Bill† • Mason Verger† • Rinaldo Pazzi† • Cordell Doemling† • Vladis Grutas† • Grutas' Group† (Petras Kolnas† • Zigmas Milko† • Enrikas Dortlich† • Bronys Grentz† • Kazys Porvik†) • Paul Momund† • Dieter

Hannibal LecterAlana BloomGarret Jacob Hobbs† • Abigail Hobbs‡† • Abel Gideon† • Tobias Budge† • Randall Tier† • EvaClark IngramEldon StammetsElliot Buddish† • Tobias Budge† • Lawrence WellsKade PrurnellMason Verger† • Rinaldo Pazzi† • Matteo Deogracias† • Tommaso† • Francis Dolarhyde

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