Dexter Review: Softcore Cornography

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What a tease, huh?

Granted, I didn't buy the premise that brought Brian Moser back into the mind of Dexter Morgan last week. I didn't see the latter's murder of Nick as anything different from the code by which Dexter had been abiding for years: kill the definitively guilty who have gotten away with their crimes.

But I did my best to overlook that throughout "Nebraska" and I was very much on board with the intriguing concept of Dexter fully embracing his Dark Passenger after he killed that motel-running pot grower*. Think of the rich possibilities that would exist if Dexter truly shut off his light for a bit.

Brian and Dexter

(*And let's not even talk about the plot contrivance of that gun. Why did Dexter steal it? Just so he could go on that weird, out of control joy ride? He's killed countless individuals without a gun and suddenly decided now that he needed one?!?)

Alas, the show has never been able to go there. It might tease the storyline occasionally, but Dexter always returns to that happy medium of someone with an urge to kill... who also wants to live a regular, worthwhile existence.

So that's where we ended up this week, following an episode that felt full of potential - only to conclude with the same old, same old. It was really nothing more than filler, an hour spent revisiting the past that came across as more desperate than nostalgic.

Didn't seeing Brian and being reminded of Trinity just drive home how inane the DDK case has been this season? How much Gellar and Travis simply cannot compare to past villains? They talk about God a lot, Travis is always unsure about their mission, and that's pretty much it. There's been no real progress at all here, although Dexter did do a solid job of showing how and why Deb is anxious to close the investigation.

I don't say all this to complain, I say it to make a point: stop making this season an internal struggle over who Dexter Morgan is and what he believes. It's rather clear at this point that he's a killer with a conscience, a disturbed individual with a Code. And he actually balances it all very well, all things considered. If Rita's murder was not going to send him over the edge, ignoring Sam's advice to forgive and forget certainly won't do it either. Let the man live his life and give us some action instead.

Can we please do away with these questions now? Can we up the suspense ante? Deliver a sense of urgency? A cliffhanger that leaves us wondering what will happen next and leaves character scrambling for their lives? We've seen none of that this season. I've been a fan of Dexter since day one, but the contemplative, angst-ridden act has grown old.

There's a seriously effed up serial killer out there, dude. Isn't that your thing? Get in there!


Editor Rating: 2.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.6 / 5.0 (91 Votes)

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.


Wow, looks like I've found a Dexter support group, bonus. Ok long story short, I was really late getting in the game, primarily because I never have time for TV and never watch any shows. The show "Dexter" had always intrigued me, but I just never got around to it. Well, last year I ended up watching 1 episode of Season 1 and I was hooked. That launched me into playing catch-up and watching 5 seasons, like some sort of meth-addict.
ANYWAYS...........This season is unlike the others. Every season had additions of new characters, some unforgettable (ie Brian, Dokes, Trinity, Lumen and the list goes on) and those characters seem to always go as well. I can get past all of that and I do welcome new peeps, Mike from Chicago taking Deb's place is a good addition. But this season lacks that certain something. The conflict of who Dex is, I can handle, cause of course that's the nature of the show. But the lack of victims, the lack of twisting storylines that follows multiple episodes (outside of the main line) and ultimately, the lack of suspense. I used to get so excited about that knot I would feel in my stomach almost every episode, because the suspense was masterful (The end of the Trinity season as it all started tying together was absolutely awesome). But this season is kinda blah, so far. Ok, that's out of my system. I'll try not to recap everything next time, lol.


people, people, people... change will happen in life as time goes on, like it or not. Dexter as a father is a good thing. He can't completely go dark side and lose all of the light, the show would be over because he wouldn't have a job and he would get caught


I am such a huge Dexter fan....but this season leaves me with a WTF feeling! Seriously Dex, get in the game here. Sure we had 2 kills in the last 2 weeks, but they were sloppy spur of the moment anti climatic kills. Have we seen a good kill room since he spilled his slides? I wish that Lumen had not left. I loved Julia and she played the roll so well. She could have really rocked this season, being the supportive partner, helping him with plots and plans whilst being a mother to Hsrrison. Big mistake letting her go.


Pretty lame episode - Brian was getting really annoying by the end. I'm guessing if Dexter hadn't killed him when he did and they had formed a partnership, Dexter would probably have ended up bludgeoning him to death anyway to get rid of his incessant whining. When Masuka's intern did that good work for Deb, I was kind of expecting Dexter to get fired at the end of the episode and replaced. Seriously, how does he still have a job? He's constantly disappearing off to stalk potential kills, and seems to spend a lot of his time in the station carrying out analysis for his own private murders. Also, I thought the pitchfork killing was a bit dubious. From the looks of it, Dexter didn't have the pitchfork in his hand when the guy pulled the gun on him; he would have been hard pushed to grab it and stab the guy before getting his head blown off. Even allowing for that, the wound wouldn't have been instantly fatal. Dexter was pretty lucky his victim didn't fill him full of lead in a final act of retribution.


I've tried to remain interested in the series.. but this last show about put me to sleep. The visits from dear old dad and his brother appear to be desperate tries by the writers to show something, but it's nothing I really care to see. Apparently they can't figure out how to write so Dexter can debate the issues, so they have to bring in fantasy figures. I think Dexter has become the thing that kills a series - boring. It's gotten so there isn't anything interesting going on.


I thought the greatest line this episode was "You don't turn the other cheek. You slice it!" That is until I realized that Dexter doesn't do that much slicing anymore. He has these unplanned, "sloppy" kills, but I had to think really hard as to when the last time Dexter even set up a kill room or sliced someones cheek. That's the problem. When showtime promoted this season with Dexter saying that he was "feeling like his old self again" I guess he meant the boring, drab Dexter we watched during season 5. Too bad.


I was just getting into Dexter being his dark side, but now it's all about family and being a father in between the dark character revenge. please bring back the dark dexter! it is more interesting then the father character and how he's balancing both at the same time.


I think it's pretty clear that Edward Olmos is a figment of Colin Hanks' imagination. Seems like the theme of the season.


@Tommy Shelton -- OOOHHH! I must have mis-heard! Thanks for clearing that up, it's been driving me nuts! hahaha!


At the end of season 5 Astor & Cody asked Dexter if they could spend the SUMMER with him,not move back in.Since this season jumps a year ahead of time their already back at the grandparents for school

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