Sunday, July 7, 2013

Fangirling Dexter: A Sympathetic Serial Killer…Right...

I've been a fan of Dexter since I discovered the series on a desperate Netflix hunt years ago. I wanted to find a series, and Dexter kept coming up in my searches. Once I read the description and realized that it was about a serial killer—a sympathetic serial killer no less, right… and that all the red on the cover was blood, I was like, eww, no way am I going to watch a series about a serial killer.

Gratuitous violence, uh-huh.

I don't think I would have ever ordered the discs if I could have found anything else to watch, but I couldn't. So it was one of those WTF moments.

I was so hooked.
I love dark, dry humor.
Dexter is loaded with that and so much more.

Recently, I wrote a guest post about my top 10 favorite TV shows. Dexter, of course, made the list, because it's not just Dexter. Debra. Debra. Debra. Dexter's foster sister is a magnet from the moment she utters her first off-screen expletive in Season 1, Episode 1.
"Dex, please, pretty f@%king please with cheese on top."

And then Dexter's monologue continues…

That's my foul-mouthed foster sister, Debra. She has a big heart but won't let anyone see it. She's the only person in this world who loves me.
I think that's nice.
I don't have feelings about anything, but if I could have feelings at all, I'd have them for Deb.

We mailed back Season 1 and watched Season 2 in about 24 hours. Finished about 6 am in the morning. Couldn't stop watching Lila—or Dexter wrestling with his dark passenger 12-step program style.

Then we were stuck, waiting…for Season 3. And since then, every year, I'm embarrassed to admit how much I look forward to Dexter.

What's the hook?

Dexter is complex, layered, well-written, and deeply psychological. Aware of his dark side, he's a Peter Sellers Being There-like chameleon.

Debra is his light. A strobe light, a lava lamp, and sometimes just a flashlight that needs batteries, but she has depended on her big brother, counted on him, hoped for him, and believed in him all her life.

When she was sucked into his darkness in Season 7, the finale had me frantic. Would the series violate what I loved most about the show? Would Debra slither down Dexter's dark rabbit hole and drop into his abyss?

Thank god the answer was no.

In Season 8, Episode 1, we learn that she's found her own abyss.

And that felt real and true. I was so relieved. But when Charlotte Rampling came on the screen I almost peed my pants. In that moment, I knew Dexter wasn't going to let us down. Season 8 is going to be epic. And I decided I wanted to do a little fangirling to celebrate.

Forty-five minutes until Episode 2.

But who's watching the clock?

Fangirling pick of the week: Jennifer Carpenter's Interview on the Season 8, Episode 1 "A Beautiful Day" Wrap-Up podcast.