Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Dexter says, “I Love You”

The season is quickly coming to an end and as it is the ninth episode in a twelve episode arch some things have begun to reach a boiling point. First things first, it is blatantly obvious that the Santa Muerte murders are not the key serial killer arch as I though in the first few episodes, but rather it is the Barrel Girl killings. The audience knows it is Jordan Chase and his fraternity of killers carrying out these murders, but the fallout has yet to occur at Miami Metro.

Most importantly, this episode saw the introductions of many of the key characters. Astor shows up at her old home, where Lumen is staying, completely drunk and, unfortunately, looking like a prostitute. She does not take kindly to the fact that Dexter has a new “tenant” so soon after Rita’s death. Yet again Dexter has to play the role of daddy to someone old enough to observe what is going on, and be angry about it.

Deb also meets Dexter’s beautiful, young new tenant. It was exciting to see Lumen hold her own against Deb. When Deb says, with her typical attitude, that she didn’t know Dexter had a new tenant, Lumen responded, with attitude, by saying she didn’t know Dexter had a sister. Naturally no one believes it is exclusively a tenant/landlord relationship, which at this point it is.

But it was so refreshing and wonderful to see Dexter play the overprotective, devoted father again. He beats up the step dad of Astor’s friend when Lumen discovers she has bruises all over her body. This actually brings Astor closer to Dexter again, and she asks a really insightful question, does helping Lumen make Dexter feel better about what happened to Rita? She finally accepts that Dexter may not have been to blame, and he is hurting from the loss of Rita as well. And then it comes, the words that make this show so multifaceted and wonderful, “I love you.”

Dexter is capable of love, as we have known for some time now, but he is finally accepting what he is and redefining what he isn’t. In one of the most heartwarming father-son moments, Harry says he is proud of Dexter for protecting his daughter and he finally admits that he may have underestimated Dexter, that he is so much more than just a monster, and had he seen this years ago he may not have lead Dexter down this path. Again, this is why this show is successful. Dexter is not a monster, despite his questionable extracurricular activities. He is one of the most fleshed out characters currently on screen, and I think this show will go down in history as one of the all time bests.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Dexter 5.8: Dexter Revealed

As Dexter attends a seminar hosted by the charismatic if not zany Jordan Chase, he speaks of following your primal instinct and not being afraid to “take it!” This is something Dexter can understand all too well, further solidifying the reality that Chase and his chief of security Cole are cold-blooded killers. Chase makes a comment that everyone will die, “some of us sooner than others,” right as Dexter thinks these words. There appear to be startling similarities between Chase and Dexter – although we know Dexter is never to kill an innocent and as far as the audience can tell the fraternity of killers pictured as teens in Cole’s house follow no such code.

Hilariously, as Dexter surveys those in the audience, he states in inner monologue, “I’ve never been around so many people that made me feel normal.”

One scene I found to be particularly telling of what may be to come in the end occurs in a dialogue between Deb and Dexter. She admits to Dexter that she doesn’t feel bad about killing Fuentes, in fact she doesn’t feel anything. Deb concludes that maybe some people do deserve to die. We know that she and Dexter are not related by any blood lines, but could she have Dexter’s sociopathic gene? What this makes me think for the first time is perhaps in the end she will find out Dexter’s secret and be able to come to terms with it. Before this moment I would have never thought this possible. Above all else she cares for Dexter and the law, and as much as she loves him I always thought finding out the truth would shatter her – make her choose law over loyalty and love. But now? Perhaps there can be a happy ending for these two after all. This is all assuming she will one day find him out, which I think is inevitable.

There was another important scene in this episode which occurred between Dexter and Lumen. He allowed her to be in on the Cole kill, but only if she wanted to be. It has become apparent that he needs her and no longer wishes for her to leave Miami. It also no longer has anything to do with him thinking she would rat him out, which is interesting because she now knows EVERYTHING about his life. She knows Boyd wasn’t his first kill, he’s done this all before. She even holds his latest blood slide, Cole’s blood. Now she has even helped prepare a kill room, something no one has ever been party to. “This is who I am,” Dexter says. And Lumen accepts him, gaping character flaws and all.

As the two dump Cole’s severed limbs into the deep blue, (and Lumen takes active part in this aspect of the ritual) Liddy captures it all on film. There they are, Dexter and Lumen, disposing of their latest kill.

All in all this episodes is one of the most crucial to the overarching Dexter storylines that I have ever seen. This season is destined for TV hall-of-fame greatness.

Dexter 5.7: Traffic Violations

While this season still continues to impress, this is probably the weakest of the episodes to date. However, it was still enjoyable and propelled various plot points forward.

Lumen has now been free for a month but can’t take her mind of the obsession of tracking down her captors. She barely eats and she can’t sleep. She explains to Dexter that they still need to find “watch guy” and “suit and tie guy.”

In a serendipitous twist of fate, for Dexter and Lumen, these two men find themselves right in the middle of the Miami Metro Police Station after a truck carrying the body-filled containers from the landfill winds up in the middle of an intersection. The viewer knows that it was indeed suit and tie guy who was driving the vehicle.

Dexter decides that if he and Lumen are going to be the ones to deliver justice to these men he must lead the police off their scent. He places Boyd’s wallet in the truck and now Miami’s finest are searching for a man they will never find. One other interesting fact: apparently all the killers knew each other as teenagers…this is one story I can’t wait to hear more about.

Quinn decides he doesn’t want to be part of the Dexter investigation anymore as his investigator seems to be spinning out of his control, but leaving their arrangement proves to be impossible for him. He’s stuck just where he is.

In a tragic twist, the stake out at the club goes terribly wrong when one of the Fuentes brothers discovers a gun strapped to her thigh. Batista and Deb promise nothing will happen to Yasmine but she is shot in the back and killed instantly when LaGuerta makes what Deb and Batista consider a bad call. Deb ends up shooting and killing Carlos Fuentes when he had a gun held to a hostage’s head.

I never thought it would happen but I am begging to question LaGuerta’s sanity. She seems to be slowly losing her grip. I’m wondering how much longer she can actually hold on to her job.

One more important thing to point out is how quickly Lumen is becoming the only person in Dexter’s life, other than Harry, who knows all aspects of his life. He introduces Harrison to her, and admits in inner monologue how much he needs her. But will she ever truly know everything about Dexter’s private life? My guess – absolutely. Dexter is about to finally let someone fully in on his secret life.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Dexter 5.6: "Autoerotic Mummification"

The episodes this season are growing increasingly stressful as Lumen continues to complicate Dexter’s already complicated life. She calls Dex in the middle of a kill and requires his assistance to clean up her mess – she tried to kill one of her rapists and botched the job, claiming she had no idea how hard it would be to kill someone. Dexter at this point is a natural.

This is not a distraction that Dexter can afford. As it is he is already stretched so thin trying to do his job at the station and take care of Harrison, as well as allow time for his extracurricular activities. In a somewhat comical moment, Harrison said his first words “die die” and Dexter can’t help but be worried yet again that Harrison will turn out like he has.

As he and Lumen search through the warehouses to find Lumen’s injured attacker the two bicker back and forth. All Dexter wanted was for Lumen to leave Miami but she stayed and tracked down her attackers instead. Now he’s in trouble, something she doesn’t seem to understand, because everything Lumen does is traceable back to Dexter. She said she had to catch the men herself because Dexter wouldn’t help her, yet she still calls on him to help her when she fails.

In what was arguably the most stressful scene in the entire series thus far, Dexter sprints after his wrapped-up would-be next kill as Masuka and Deb are wandering through the warehouses looking for a possible homicide (Lumen’s attacker). They come within inches of catching him, but yet again Dex thinks quickly on his feet and poses the two dead men in what looks like the throws of a strange sex act, to which Masuka determines it was “autoerotic mummification.”

Meanwhile Debra decides she likes Quinn more than she had anticipated and looks on with jealousy while Quinn flirts with young women in the club while undercover to find the Santa Muerte killers. The two decide that they will become a couple – all the while Quinn continues his investigation of Dexter. Can’t imagine Deb will be too pleased when she finds out – and I have no doubt that she will. I can’t imagine where this season is going but there is no denying that Dexter is becoming all too sloppy and that is not a trait that he can afford.