So, it turns out I may be slightly addicted to television...

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Discovering Dexter

The new season has officially kicked off! And I've managed to pick up a few good shows this year to replace some of my old favourites. Glee has certainly turned my head. Strangely enough so has The Vampire Diaries. But today I'm finally going to write the confession I've been meaning to write all summer. I'm in love with Dexter.

Well, in love with the show anyway.

Over the summer I got kind of bored. I mean, there's only so many times you can watch re-runs of Law & Order... so I started looking for a new series. I had heard very little about Dexter. A couple of years ago a friend of mine made a comment in passing about this show she had started watching where a guy who works for the police is actually a serial killer who murders the bad guys who got away. It was a 1min conversation max, but for some reason that struck me as a pretty interesting premise, so I filed it in the back of my mind.

And this summer I went looking for season 1. I knew that way I'd have at least 3 seasons to watch, so it would get me over the summer and it wouldn't leave me heartbroken after 1 season to find out a network had killed another great show.

My hubby was busy discovering his own show this summer, The Sopranos (something I could never get into. The one episode I watched is where his shrink gets raped in the parking garage and to this day I refuse to go into those stairwells alone, but I digress...) Anyway, so hubby was busy with his own laptop, so I was on my own. He also thought the premise was kind of creepy and didn't really want to explore the dark side of Dexter Morgan.

I loved the premise. I loved Michael C. Hall even more. I was a huge fan of Six Feet Under back in the day and I wondered how Hall would do transitioning into a new role. Often I find TV actors get stuck in a character and never make it out. (John Krasinski for instance, who I love, is still Jim in everything else he does. It makes me sad.) I have to give Hall credit - he is amazing as Dexter. I actually believed he must have been gay to give such a portrayal on Six Feet Under, but turns out he's married to his very female co-star (who also plays his sister on Dexter - something I think must make for weird moments on set.)

Dexer aside, I loved all the other characters too. This is the kind of show that works because the ensemble cast works so well. I know Dexter is the "star", but he wouldn't shine so bright without his little sister Deb, his friend Angel, or his forensics sidekick Masouka. It took me a little longer to warm up to Rita, but by season 2 even she had won me over.

I also love the writing. It has all the elements of my favourite shows - a mystery to solve, some of that cop drama I'm a sucker for, and a touch of biting sarcasm. (Hmmm, I could have just described Veronica Mars. A moment of silence to remember a show killed way too soon.)


Okay, back to the topic at hand. I watched all 3 seasons in the span of about 6 weeks - and only because I was so busy with work I had to take 2 weeks where I couldn't allow myself to even go to my tv streaming website for fear I would spend hours watching episode after episode. Season 2 stands out as the strongest of the 3 seasons for me, but I might be biased because I didn't like the character of Miguel Prado and I didn't feel his friendship with Dexter. Not the way I felt about Rudy, and certainly not the way I felt about Lila. I loved the Lila character. Don't get me wrong, I hated Lila, but I loved the drama and tension she brought with her. I loved how f***ed up she was, and I completely understood how Dexter would have let his guard down with her. When he killed her, it felt good and right and like it was closing a chapter. Miguel Prado felt wrong from the start of the season all the way through. I didn't feel anything when he was killed, except some relief that he wouldn't be on the show anymore.

But season 4 shows promise! From the blogs, I know some people don't like the direction taken with Dexter being a new dad, but I think we're in for a whole new host of plot twists and turns. This takes the show in a new direction - and why not? Life often twists in new directions. Dexter is human after all, some of the show's best moments are the ones that showcase his humanity. He loves, whether he realizes it or not. The best part of season 3 was when he realized he didn't want to die at the hands of the skinner because he wanted to raise his son.

From the season premier, I have to say I loved the spoof on the opening credits the most. Watching my sister in law with her new baby I can say it felt true and funny at the same time. And I love a show that doesn't take itself too seriously but is also confident enough in itself to mock itself. Genius! I'm left with baited breath for tonight's episode - to see what happened to Dexter after he rolled his car - and also because I think we're in for a treat with the Trinity Killer.

What remains to be seen is whether I can get used to LaGuerta banging Batista...


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