You Got the Devil Inside You Boy…
I had to pick this picture because, check it out Bryan – Hannah’s shirt isn’t see-through! This might be a first for her character (it certainly didn’t happen again throughout the rest of the episode!). I know this has been bothering you, so I thought it worth pointing out. And now on to some more serious stuff – the Dark…whatever. Kathryn, you and I have been questioning Harry for seasons – why couldn’t he see that his son was traumatized, not possessed? Deb has brought these questions up herself this season too. And so I was shocked to hear Harry himself (or, of course, Dexter’s subconscious recreation of Harry) state that very fact – trauma, not the devil, is at the heart of what makes Dex, Dex…and, more significantly, that it was Dexter himself who invented the DP. Harry had only given the code.
Of course, I’m not letting Harry off the hook. It’s precisely the code that convinced Dexter his desires were needs, leading him to the point of needing then to create the DP to manage – or, perhaps, explain – the urges. But this actually makes it seem to me like Dex has some sense of good and evil. Why would you need to create a DP to justify your impulses if you hadn’t pre-judged them as wrong? It was a little exhilarating – in a terrifying way – to see Dexter make the step from ‘needing’ to kill to admitting he ‘wanted’ to kill. It felt dangerous – like something new has been let loose. But I also wonder if that shift offers some form of healing or release as well. Hannah insisted it’s a choice. And sure, once Dex recognizes it as a choice, he quickly chooses to kill – but perhaps with time the recognition of choice will reveal that one can also choose NOT TO kill. Loosening the grip on compulsion seems, to me, to actually open up space for a change – perhaps it’s time for Dex to start up therapy again 🙂
As much as I enjoy the exploration into Dexter’s desire to kill, I also find myself intrigued by the possibility, sometimes raised, that he could stop.
It did feel deliciously old school to me for Dexter’s realizations to unfold around the table – it’s been seasons since that device has been used. I miss the table, to be honest – I miss Dexter’s banter and leaps to self-realization with the people he’s about to kill. And it’s worth pointing out that in the midst of choice, Dexter goes and kills who he wants to, not who he felt he had to – so he’s actually able to let the phantom go (how lucky that guy was temporarily blind, eh…although, given all the plastic etc., and the re-opening of questions around the Bay Harbor Butcher, won’t this guy have something of a story to tell that could implicate Dex in his overdose on the fumes??).
I’m left wondering whether or not Hannah realizes her dad has been killed? Sure, I love you – I think I love you too…lovely (and this leaves me continuing to ponder the concerned look we saw on Hannah’s face as Dex shared his feelings last week). But once she puts it all together, that Dex killed her dad against her wishes, doesn’t that kind of open up permission for her to start knocking off Dexter’s family too? I mean, if you’re a serial killer dating a serial killer, don’t you at least have to have a bit of a chat about whether or not you can kill the in-laws?
Any thoughts as to why the story at the Fox Hole has to keep going? What’s at stake in Quinn shooting what’s his face? Did anyone else feel like Angel was the real one in danger? Isn’t he just a bit too much like the cop who has bought his boat and is ready to sail around the world with his beloved just as soon as he finishes his last few weeks on the force? Is there any chance Angel is going to get fingered as the BHB?
And, speaking of – why is Tom being so damn difficult on the BHB stuff?? No, no, it couldn’t possibly be Dexter – the guy who watched his mother hacked to death with a chainsaw and is brother of ITK…that’s a crazy thought, Maria! You stop your crazy theories, woman!
And finally, why the tight camera focus on Deb’s anxiety meds (that’s what those were, right?). Are those going to figure in the next few episodes?
Your anise smells delicious –
Good catch on the non-see through shirt, Natalie! I didn’t notice that, but I had made a note that she was again wearing a particularly showing shirt during breakfast with Clint and Dexter. I am not sure I’m excited about what that might say about me and what I notice in the female clothing on the show.
More generally, I feel like this is about as good we I can expect from the show from a story developing standpoint. There were moments that were genuinely well done, and others that are pretty frustrating. I am excited about the (as you said, Natalie, terrifying) prospect of Dexter deciding that killing is a choice for him. If we are going back to the addiction metaphor, admitting the problem is the first step, right? The issue here is that Dexter doesn’t seem to think of it as a problem. Your questions about looking at the opposite side of the coin are spot on: there are two options to this choice. He could learn to not kill people. I think the issue you brought about about Hannah maybe wanting to kill Deb could be the device they use to illustrate this to Dexter. If he has a choice to kill and so does Hannah, what guides those choices? Where do you draw the line? Dexter has mostly followed the code strictly and not had to worry about making judgement calls. But now, that door is pretty wide open, right? As of now, protecting a loved one from prison is acceptable motive for murder. What else is?
Natalie, I agree with you about the kill table scene being exciting and fun…until Dexter’s soliloquy became so blunt and to the point. I thought the scene was great up until that point. And, I do like the self-therapy that Dexter does at the table. But, the dumbed down over explanation kind of killed it for me. And you’re right! What is going to happen when The Phantom (one of the best serial killer names they’ve had in a while) tells the police department that he was strapped to a table by someone with a knife who just let him go? It doesn’t point to Dex, but it seems like too much of a loose end. Knowing the show, they will probably write it off as, “The Phantom was unable to remember how he got on the floor because of the smoke.” Problem solved! Or it could something that pushes LaGuerta’s investigation further.
While, Matthews and LaGuerta are bumbling through another Dexter History Lesson, they are getting really close to Dexter. This is the most interested I have been in this story so far.
A couple other thoughts:
– Deb’s medicine: definitely going to come up in the last few episodes. This show has never been one to dwell on an image like that and not follow through.
– The water wings moment with Dexter, Harrison, and Clint was nice, and then they overdid the symbolism with “Sink or swim.” (You know cause that’s what Clint did to Hannah? Remember? We told you last episode and then two more times this episode? Remember? It’s pretty similar to these water wings that Harrison has on now, get it?) If they had just stopped at, “The way they coddle kids these days,” it would have been so much better.
– Why did Dexter, a blood spatter analyst, run the fingerprints in the lab? I’m assuming they have someone for that.
Harrison? Isn’t that fancy?