Dexter Review: Brotherly Love

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Dear producers of Dexter: I think you misunderstood the memo. Yes, fans of this Showtime hit have been waiting for awhile for Deb to come to a realization about her brother. But not this one.

Yech. Seriously. NOT this one.

Deb and Dex

While "Talk to the Hand" featured an attempt on both Dexter and Batisa's life, as well as a professional manipulation by LaGuerta and the teasing of Lucas as Dexter's next nemesis, it's impossible to review this episode without first focusing on the show choosing to take Deb's feelings for her step-sibling to a whole new direction, one I can't imagine any viewer is excited about.

Why are we going there? The bond between Deb and Dexter has been one of the most consistent, refreshing aspects of the series throughout its run. It's really unlike any relationship on TV. Where else do we see this sort of non-romantic connection between a male and female lead? And what would be the impetus for destroying that? Just so Deb can have an even more visceral reaction to Dexter's Dark Passenger when it's finally revealed?

Aside from creeping me out, the storyline just comes across like another desperate attempt by the writers at shock value. Shock value that's grosser than any blood-covered crime scene at that.

Elsewhere, Travis acted like every other idiotic, cliche-filled villain in history. I expect a lot more form Dexter than to have its bad guy focus a gun on his prey; agree to that prey's last-second request; and then hold that gun up just long enough so he can distracted from pulling the trigger... and yet somehow have time to start a fire?!?

As if the first instance of Travis teasing a kill wasn't enough, he then chose to make Dexter's death into some kind of fancy escapade, as opposed to simply putting a bullet in his enemy's skull. Seriously, theses were the sort of antagonistic moves mocked by Dr. Evil in Austin Powers. I'm just surprised Travis didn't use sharks with lasers on their heads to take Dexter out.

At least the episode didn't conclude with that explosion, however. At least it didn't try to pretend that Dexter was actually dead. Heading into next Sunday's season finale, though, it did leave us with a cliffhanger that doesn't feel very... cliffhanger-y. As I've asked all season long, where's the suspense here? What are the stakes? Yes, Travis is still out there and it would be nice if he were caught - but his plot to gas the police station has been foiled, he doesn't have any other acolytes or plans that we know of. What, right now, is making you anxious as a viewer to tune in next week?

Sadly, the writers almost seem to be writing this season off before it's over. They appear to be setting storylines up for next year, whether it's Deb's strange new feelings for her brother, LaGuerta serving as Deputy Chief or Louis being lined up as a taunting new serial killer. Those might have potential, but it would be nice if they focused on making this season remotely interesting first, wouldn't it?

Do you want to see Deb and Dexter hook up?


Editor Rating: 3.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.6 / 5.0 (109 Votes)

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


If I've said it once I'll say it a thousand times. Clyde Phillips please come back & save this show & send it out on a high note PLEASE!!!!!!!!!


First of all: I loved this season and i loved this episode. But this Deb/Dexter story is just creepy.
I have got an awesome brother. He is just awesome. He helps me when i need him, I can cry on his shoulder,
I could ring him at 3 in the morning, he always listens to me BUT I wouldnt fall in love with him - he is my brother
he is supposed to be nice and helpful. I am aswell, thats what sisters and brothers and your family is for.
I mean of course there are moments when you realize how good they are for your life, yes, but still not a reasing to fall in love
2) Dexter is a shit brother. No i wouldnt say shit, but he is not that awesome brother you
would like to have. When Deb rings him, he doesnt answer the phone or doesnt have time no matter
if she cries or whatever. When she talkes about him its sounds like he is soo good, of course he is,
but i think she over rates that a little bit too much, if you wanna fall in love with a brother
i wouldn take him ;)
3) whats wrong with this docter? Deb comes sad and depressed cause she just broke up with her boyfriend
who asked her if she wants marry him, cause she has a better job, but doesnt feel so good about it etc etc..
and in the end the docter thinks thats cause she is in love with dexter? whaaat?? come on.... please stop this story line... cause thats just wrong


The Dexter/Deb romance innuendo is fucking retarded. The writing this season is garbage. As far as I'm concerned, this series ended after season 4. That's where it should have ended. I can't wait to see how the writers will fuck up the inevitable moment of Deb finding out about Dexter's dark passenger. Well, wait, they've already fucked that up because they've shat on 5 season of character development by injecting this thread of incestuous bullshit into the picture. Dexter seasons 1-4, best show of all time. Season 5 and on might as well be a spin off.


I think Louis seduced then killed the blonde intern who initially nabbed "the hand". I just realized - I don't care about any of the characters anymore! WTF? Batista, his sister, Quinn, LaGuerta...they're just irritating in their own way, but you don't love to hate them. I just wished they were gassed along with the crazy chick. And Masuka, *sigh*. He was the comic relief with his leering, annoying laugh and off-color jokes. Now he's bland, bland, bland. I'd hope he would have a larger role in the Louis storyline, but it's like he's phoning in his lines.


The whole LaGuerta storyline felt contrived from the get-go; just a way to build false tension and get rid of some dead weight (Chief Matthews, reduced screen time of LaGuerta). Both LaGuerta and Deb move up the dept. food-chain, Deb is now Dexter's boss so "the stakes are higher (gasp!) if she finds out about Dexter!" It was only a matter of time they addressed the Deb/Dexter dynamic, it's been an elephant in the room since the Ice Truck Killer season (Dexter's brother). But the writers kinda fumbled it, going for cheap shock value instead of developing it over time...maybe the actors asked it be addressed after news of their divorce was final.


Remember, the two actors briefly dated/married (2007-2010). Most fans did not know until after the divorce was filed...for a while after that it was kinda weird watching them on screen together.


I think the whole Debra-Dexter is actually ok . I do think they have a great chemistry there, and that might be deeper than we expect .
Dexter isnt supposed to understand love, maybe she'll give him a hand with that. I thought the whole season was about love and relationships anyway (therefore, religion) Like some kind of Oedipus complex they're working on or something . Maybe it was also like a tease for viewers, knowing those two were married and stuff .

Strawberry fields

Whether Deb has non-sibling feelings for Dex or not, what the therapist did was a bit cruel. She is totally fucking with Deb's head right now. When someone plants a thought in your brain, it doesn't go away easily. From that moment forward you think about it obsessively and at some point you start thinking it's true. Deb was already in a delicate state. I'm not sure what I think about this. Like I said last week - I wouldn't be surprised if Deb's feelings were more complex. But I don't see them together. To me, they don't have to be related to be very much "brother and sister". I don't want Louis to be the new killer next season. He's totally green, Dexter should catch him in five seconds. I wouldn't mind if the writers explored this character in some different way though. LaGuerta is a bitch, I want someone to kill her.


when i saw that, i may have thrown up in my mouth a little. i so agree, this is a desperate attempt to deliver shock value to the viewers. but honestly, i think it just grossed us all out.


Yeah, they're already setting up next year's serial killer, the video-game developer, Louis. Crushed by Dexter's rejection, he goes on a state-wide killing spr...I don't even have the patience anymore for this nonsensical turn of his character. Somehow, he knows Dex's involvement with Ice Truck, evidenced by his love for the plastic hand/gifting...enter Season 7's BIG.

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