Last night was the night – the eighth and final season premiere of the Showtime phenomenon Dexter. If you’ve been living under a rock for the past eight years, the show follows Dexter Morgan (Michael C. Hall), a blood spatter analyst at Miami Metro Police in the Homicide Department, who abides by a strict moral code set up by his foster father to quench his thirst to kill.
Last season, Dexter’s sister, Deb (Jennifer Carpenter), finds out about his “dark passenger” and her guilty conscience tips her life out of balance, causing her to take her first life, that of her Captain, Maria LaGuerta.
Season eight jumps six months forward from the fateful day in the shipping container, and it’s “A Beautiful Day.” Deb has moved on from Miami Metro and serves as a private detective for a consulting firm and Harrison, Dexter’s three-year-old son, is talking now – which will definitely come to bite him in the butt.
Miami Metro’s new case is that of a serial killer who cuts into his victim’s brain post-mortem and scoops out the anterior insular cortex, which is the part of the brain that controls empathy – something that psychopaths don’t possess. Deputy Chief Matthews, who has taken LaGuerta’s death as a sign to come out of retirement, has called in Dr. Evelyn Vogel (Charlotte Rampling), a famed neuropsychiatrist, to consult on this very gruesome case.
After a few run-ins with Deb and a fit of unwarranted road rage, Dexter chats with Vogel about the killer’s motive, where she proceeds to question Dexter extensively on the Bay Harbor Butcher. She admits that the killer is likely to be one of her former patients, though she does not say whom.
Later, Dexter finds himself in the middle of Deb’s drug bust, and in one of his animalistic rages, he stabs and kills Deb’s perp, only this time he doesn’t meticulously cocoon him in plastic wrap.
At the end of the episode, Vogel passes by Dexter and hands him a sealed envelope; enclosed in it are disturbing drawings from his youth. Immediately, Dexter pounces on her, but the unflinching Vogel simply spits out, “You can’t kill me… I don’t fit Harry’s code.” Consider my jaw dropped.
Once again, the supporting cast lagged, and has been lagging for the past few seasons. After both critical and viewer complaints about the unnecessary side stories for the various members of Miami Metro, the writers lumped Quinn in with the Batista clan, as he’s now seeing Jamie, unbeknownst to her brother Angel, who gave up the whole restaurant gig after LaGuerta’s death sparked his passion for law enforcement.
Regardless, I still have great prospects for the final season, as the Dexter/Deb relationship is flawlessly portrayed by the real-life divorced couple of Hall and Carpenter. With only eleven episodes left, what do you think will happen? Will Dexter get caught? Will he change his ways for Harrison? Will Angel die (fingers crossed)?