Dexter continues to limp towards the finish line as a heavily foreshadowed plot unravels in the most conveniently obvious ways. Thank goodness the writers are on hand to explain every little detail to us!
Let’s bitch it out…
At this point it’s clear that there won’t be a last minute redemption of this final season. Dexter has a clear end game in mind that it is slooooowly moving towards and nothing will change that. Unfortunately the writers have elected to pursue the most dramatically inert course possible, so we get to sit through another episode of people talking about things that they’ll do/are doing while supposedly big pay-offs are tipped off clumsily in a groan-worthy fashion.
‘Goodbye Miami’ is the true start of the end for both the show and its namesake. Dexter (Michael C. Hall) begins listing things he needs to take care of before the magical move to arbitrary Argentina, including selling his boat (nope!), quitting his job (check!), telling Jennifer Carpenter’s Deborah (check!) and killing Saxon/Daniel (Darri Ingolfsson). Well…two out of four ain’t bad.
Ah, yes, the Daniel dilemma. It’s so incredibly frustrating to hear Dexter mutter to himself that Daniel may be the perfect psychopath because Daniel is SO.DAMN.FORGETTABLE. There’s nothing memorable about this character, and yet we’re meant to believe that he’s nearly impossible to track and that makes him a worthy final adversary for Dexter. Obviously this would be much easier if Dr. Vogel (Charlotte Rampling) weren’t protecting her eldest son. If this Daniel business has done nothing else, it has figuratively murdered any goodwill audiences may have once held for Vogel. The writer’s disdain for the psychopath whisperer is nearly tantamount to character assassination.
At the start of the season Vogel was a menacing, intelligent, methodical woman. In ‘Goodbye Miami’ she’s little more than a quivering idiot, prone to making statements about wanting to save her son. It’s the same spiel we heard last episode, only now it sounds even dumber because she’s had several conversations in which Daniel does everything except slit her throat (which he does in the not-at-all-shocking conclusion of the episode).
Will I miss Vogel? Sure…but only because Rampling did some good character work in the early parts of the season. But ever since she helped heal the rift between Dexter and Deborah, she’s been a largely perfunctory character, advocating first for the doomed Zach (Sam Underwood) before all of this mopey BS for her dead son the last two episodes.
The stuff with Zach had potential. This stuff with Daniel is bullsh*t. We’re obviously meant to roll our eyes at Vogel’s stupidity (because we identify with Dexter, who thinks she’s making a huge mistake). The problem is that even as we judge Vogel, we’re also clearly meant to sympathize with her position because no matter how dumb she’s acting, she doing it because she’s a mother and her dead son is back. ‘Cause, didn’t you know, motherhood makes you a complete moron? (See also: Yvonne Strahovski’s Hannah). The problem is that none of this is earned. We didn’t even know that Vogel had a son until last week and while we can assume she would feel a certain love for a long-dead child, it’s dramatically DOA. In the final moments of ‘Goodbye Miami’ when Dex breaks down the door and holds his dead surrogate mother in his arms, all I can do is curse how stupid this show has become.
Remember at the beginning of the season – when there was so much potential in that first episode – we wondered if the series would end with Dex escaping, incarcerated or dead? Who would have thought that those were the glory days? Instead it looks like we have another two episodes of Hannah sitting around telling Dex they need to leave while he talks about his Code, and his responsibility, and all of the other junk.
On the plus side, Dexter doesn’t need to pack for his series finale journey to Argentina: he’s already got a sh*t ton of baggage.
- Your Dexter drinking game for the week is the word “family.” Everything comes back to family: Vogel wants to be a mother to Daniel, who implores her to “choose the right son”. Meanwhile Deb is scared of being without Dex, but Angel (David Zayas) comforts her with clichés about coming home to Miami Metro. He makes a similar statement to Dex when the blood splatter expert quits. It’s all so beautifully connected thematically! <sarcasm> It’s more like a novice writer read a book on how to put together a script and it sucks
- If you carved Jamie (Aimee Garcia) and Quinn’s (Desmond Harrington) names in a tree somewhere, you were probably quite sad when Quinn dumped her. I appreciated the fact that he acknowledged things with Jamie weren’t working, though it’s still pretty hilarious that he and Deb are playing tonsil hockey about two seconds later
- Just in case you still didn’t get it, Elway (Sean Patrick Flannery) is still a total a*shole. I get that he totally saved Deb’s butt professionally and financially early in the season, but his refusal to let her pack up her office is still a pretty dick move
- Shocking no one at all, Deputy Marshal Clayton (Kenny Johnson) has pretty much figured everything out about Hannah and Dex. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to put two and two together after learning Dex is leaving town and an eye witness IDing Hannah posing as Harrison’s mom at the hospital.
- Which was the more laughably convenient plot point in the Hannah storyline this week: Clayton standing outside Angel’s office at the exact moment Angel places the ad for a new lab tech or Harrison falling on the treadmill after being told earlier that it is dangerous? They’re both so inherently groan-worthy that they’re embarassing
- Finally, Dex’s line to Ghost Harry (James Remar): “I’ve come a long way. It feels like I’m a different person since I was last in this room” Gosh, I love it when the writers think that we’re so stupid that they need to literally spell things out
- Hannah (when Dexter confirms they’re moving to Argentina): “That was always such a fantasy. I never thought it would happen.” Umm…didn’t this plan come together less than a week ago?
- Deb (when Dexter tells her they’re moving): “Do you know how stupid that sounds?” Thank goodness for Deb
- Quinn (when Deb tells him Dex is leaving): “Good for him.” (Sees Deb’s reaction) “Or not”
- Deb (admitting she’s scared of Dex leaving): “I don’t know what my life looks like without you”
- Jamie (passing Deb after Quinn has dumped her): “Go fuck yourself” A) Hilarious! B) Did Jamie come to see Angel just to tell him she got dumped? Why is she there?!
Your turn: are you as disappointed as me with these recent poorly written episodes? Are you annoyed at the glacial pace it’s taking for Dex to kill Daniel? Do you want the endlessly repetitive conversations between Dex and Hannah about leaving soon and responsibility to end? Are you SHOCKED that Deb and Quinn hooked up 5 seconds after he kicked Jamie to the curb? And what will happen in the remaining two episodes? Sound off below
Dexter airs Sundays at 9pm EST on Showtime