Dexter, I Wish I Was on Your Table

The final season of Dexter is coming to a close after a run of some of TV history’s most disappointing episodes. Season 8 started rather forgivingly, and rather promisingly, and set the season up to be a thrill ride, and a troubling endeavour into Dexter’s crumbling world.

But a few episodes on, and Deb Morgan, who started the season a deeply depressed crack fiend, is back to her usual self, following a mess of contradicting events and irrelevant sub-plots. And the season kept falling deeper into dangerously dire territories. The writing is sloppy, clumsy, and amateur – not what you expect from writers who gave us fascinating villains such as the ice-truck killer from Season 1, or the fourth season’s Trinity killer.

Episode 9 included a variety of sequences which made me laugh out loud at the screen – it was virtually a comedy for me. One of which included Dexter following a suspected killer. He stood outside a diner window, watching his target, in plain sight, without moving, for over fifty minutes. There are even close up shots of the clock to show time passing, and Dexter doesn’t move from his exposed position, let along adjust the way he is leaning. The target eventually turns around and exits the establishment, looking at Dexter. When Dexter’s tire is revealed to be punctured, the so-called protagonist remarks: “He’s good at this.”

The fact of the matter is this: I don’t care about any of the characters any more. They are so unconvincing and unrealistic, I’m left with no worry of whether they live or die. When a new character is introduced, such as Zach Hamilton, a teenage serial killer, he is killed off before we learn anything about him, and replaced by a new character, three episodes from the end, who is likely going to play a big part in the end of the show. I must repeat myself: We meet someone who will help close eight years of a TV show, three hours before the end.

But while the writing is diabolical, the production is also poor. The show has lost any interesting cinematography that made an appearance in early seasons, and the editing is sloppy. There are often long, extended scenes of people walking in silence, followed by an abrupt cut to another scene. I cringe when watching it. Music is also placed in all the wrong places. Creepy music undermines what has the potential to be an emotionally rich scene, and boring dialogue is left in silence.

Dexter used to be excellent. Impressive and unique. Smart and of high value. Now it’s a show which I struggle to sit through. I’m so glad it’s ending, as I’d rather die than sit through more than three more hours of this guff.