Television on the Spectrum: The Best (and Worst) Depictions of Asperger Syndrome on TV

will hannibal

Will Graham, Hannibal

In Hannibal’s pilot episode, Will diagnoses himself as being “closer to Asperger’s and autistics than narcissists and sociopaths” and gives the most eloquent description of eye contact issues that has ever appeared in pop culture. Creator Bryan Fuller has since insisted that Will’s problem is a result of too much empathy, which he calls the opposite of Asperger’s. That statement is both inaccurate and a shame. Some recent studies have suggested that many people with Asperger’s do struggle with an overabundance of empathy, and Will — or at least pre-hallucination Will — really seemed like a fascinating take on that.