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Dexter Season 5

Dexter: Season 5

What he said:

She

Dexter is hands-down one of my favorite shows on television right now.  I have to admit I didn’t start watching the show until last summer, when I started renting it from my local Blockbuster.  I am sorry it took me so long to find it!

Here are the basics: Dexter is a serial killer, he also works forensics for the Miami Metro Homicide Division.  Seem like an unlikely combination?  Well it is.  As you learn watching the show, it is possible to be a serial killer with a bit of a heart.  Or at least one who works the gray area between right and wrong, good and evil. 

In season 5, Dexter takes on Jordan Chase and his group of sick friends who abduct, torture, rape, and kill women.  He also strikes up a bond/friendship with one of their victims named Lumen (Julia Stiles).  Meanwhile, Dexter’s sister, Deb, struggles with her own conception of right vs. wrong while also exploring a relationship with a coworker.  Angel/Batista and LaGuerta are over their newlywed bliss and spend most of the season fighting.  Peter Weller guest stars as the corrupt cop Liddy, and he is downright creepy.

While not the strongest of the series, season 5 successfully engages the viewer and keeps them wanting more.  There is a good balance of mystery and several interesting characters this season.  Major weaknesses were a sometimes meandering story arch with some serious dead-ends, and some rather flat episodes.  But there were some very thought provoking moments this season, and breakthroughs with Dexter’s character.  Overall, the show remains pretty stellar, and I am certainly looking forward to season 6. 

Diagnosis: Thumbs up.

 

 

What he said:

He

The cliffhanger of season 4 left me hungry for more, however I knew *MAJOR SPOILER ALERT* trying to one up Rita’s death and John Lithgow’s performance as the Trinity killer was going to be impossible. It was one of the most entertaining guest performances I had ever seen. Having also recently watched Cliffhanger it served as a reminder for just how well John Lithgow does these cold, sick types.

In addition to that, I simply had no idea what they planned next for Dexter. Rita was dead; Dex had failed as a family man. Sure, he was free from some of his more domestic responsibilities, but how would he react? Being a serial killer, Dex feels things differently than most people. So, I was really up to the challenge they had set themselves up for.

The biggest way Dex tried to cope with Rita’s death was by helping a young woman named Lumen (played by Julia Stiles). Lumen was one of a number of women who had been abducted by a group of sickos who liked to rape, torture, and kill their victims. It was apparent that he felt some guilt about Rita’s death and wanted to do something to try and "make up" for it.

He couldn’t save Rita, but could he help this new woman? How would this woman affect Dex and those around him this season? As someone whose actually really grown to like the character of Dexter (sick, I know), these are the kinds of things I wanted to know.

Boyd Fowler (Shawn Hatosy) was member of this group and served as their finisher (he killed the women after the others had their way with them). I really wish they kept him around a little longer. The actor did a wonderful job portraying him. His interactions with Dexter – though brief – were really very funny in only a way Dexter can be.

Anyways, Lumen was about to be the next victim to be killed when Dex intervenes. Though clearly troubled due to the traumatic experiences she’d been through, Dexter pities Lumen and wants to punish those who did those horrible things to her. So he decides to help her get some vengeance against this group, who’s led by Jordan Chase (Johnny Lee Miller).

I thought the biggest strength of this season was the ability to make the viewer truly hate the antagonists. What were they going to do after the legendary Trinity killer? Trying to upstage Lithgow’s performance would have been a huge mistake, so having Dex battle a group (of truly sick individuals) was an excellent idea. You want to cheer (and sometimes do) whenever he catches one of them.

There were several good guest performances. My personal favorite was none other than Mr. Robocop himself, Peter Weller. He played crooked cop Stan Liddy. He was a sleazy, scheming, throwback type of guy.

The season wasn’t without its flaws though. The Santa Muerte storyline was completely dropped towards the end. In the beginning, it came off like it was going have some kind of greater impact on the characters, but in the end it was utterly pointless.

I also wasn’t crazy about the LaGuerta/Batista stuff. Angel is one of my favorite characters, so I don’t mind seeing more of him, but at times the constant drama almost felt forced.

Rating: Thumbs up.

This movie review was written for your reading pleasure on January 14, 2011.

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