My Dexter binge watch is at the end as I’m wrapping up Season 8. Here are some more thoughts.
#1 – Making Deb an Accomplice was Just Plain Stupid
Deb (Jennifer Carpenter) was always a weird yet interesting character. She says “fuck” constantly to a ridiculous degree, sometimes as a crutch the writers used to give her character development. Her main arc was always that she has spent her life trying to impress her late father Harry (James Remar) and alive brother Dexter (Michael C. Hall), often to her detriment as she suffers from self-confidence problems in that she feels like she can never match up.
I think the show screwed up by making her Dex’s accomplice. There’s a part of me that gets it. While we have never covered up for serial killing, we all probably have stories of how are loved ones disappointed us in some way but we put up with it because hey, they’re family. So Deb discovers her bro is a serial killer and covers for him isn’t that far fetched.
But I think what would have completed Deb’s arc is that she eventually realizes that her Dad and bro weren’t so great after all, that she has to stop wasting time trying to live up to her fake idolization of them and be her own person…and take Dex down.
#2 – Dexter vs. LaGuerta
LaGuerta was always one of those love her/hate her characters. She was always less about the investigation and more about playing politics. Often, she put her career advancement over doing the right thing. However, there were many times when her political skills helped an investigation i.e. getting resources or convincing a higher up to give their support.
I always thought the better way would be for Dex’s homicide colleagues to slowly but surely, drip by drip, discover evidence that incriminates Dexter and shore up a case against him before confronting him and taking him down.
LaGuerta on the other hand, comes hard against him. In so doing she plays her cards early. Also, it kind of exposes major plot holes in the series. For example, all these cops working on the Bay Harbor Butcher case in season 2, none of them ever discovered before that Doakes was blown up inside a cabin rented by the guy who killed Dexter’s mother? How is that possible?
Dexter trapping Laguerta and about to kill her is outside of his code and maybe it was inevitable he’d kill an innocent to cover for his crimes but throughout the series he’s usually always found some other way to get around an innocent closing in on him without killing him because that’s his big thing – he only kills bad people.
It seems unlikely Deb would kill Laguerta. Again, who knows what a person might do for family until put to an extreme test but it seems unlikely.
But the big plot hole is Laguerta arrests Dexter and all her police colleagues immediately think she’s just a dumb asshole trying to frame Dexter. Angel Batista, the conscience of the show, and no one else for that matter – no one bothers to go to Laguerta and be all like, “OK this strange because Dex is our friend but show me the evidence you have against him.”
#3 – The Vogel Storyline is Just Dumb
Dr. Vogel advised Harry on how to teach Dexter to become a serial killer? Why weren’t we told this before in 7 seasons?
#4 – We Needed More Hannah
I said it before in another post but I’ll say it again. Dexter needed a killer wife. The trope of Rita and others in Dexter’s life wondering where he is when he goes out at all hours of the night and harping on him was natural but eventually got tedious. Hannah understood him and could have even join in on the murdering.
If they had kept Deb in the dark and not made her complicit, and had Dexter marry Hannah, they could have had a few more interesting seasons of Dex and Hannah living in suburban bliss, raising Harrison by day and wacking bad guys by night.
#5 – Aren’t Harry and Dr. Vogel psychos?
A plot device to explain how Dex became a killer i.e. he was guided to kill bad people rather than kill anyone but seems like the normal response for anyone who thinks a kid has homicidal tendencies would be to get them psychiatric treatment, maybe even institutionalization. True, this path has a lot of faults and may not even lead to a cure but I doubt any law abiding citizen would have taught Dex to become a vigilante – but I get it without that there wouldn’t have been a show.