Dexter Recap “Did it work, did it make you feel better?”

WOW! What a finale. I could write for eons about intricacies of the fifth season and it’s dazzling finale but I’m recovering from spinal surgery so I’m gonna keep it relatively short.

First of all I need to say that coming off a season like Dexter’s 4th would be a daunting task for any creative team. I think Clyde Phillips and company did a stellar job of not only creating an interesting Big Bad, but also with Lumen. I can’t recall a more polarizing character in recent TV history. Many compared her unfairly to Rita and Lila, Lumen was something completely different; a broken entity in even worse possible shape than Dex. Team Dexter was never coy about their intentions with Lumen – from the beginning we knew she would be helping Dexter get over Rita’s death, but the way in which it was handled felt so true to Dexter’s character, I couldn’t help but fall for Lumen also.

Julia Stiles needn’t worry about her career trajectory anymore, Lumen is the kind of role that could have revitalized anyone, and it was not an easy role at all. The torture both physical and emotional that she went through was engraved in Stiles’ nuanced performance. She should hear her name come Emmy time for at least a nomination.

The final standoff between Dexter, Lumen and Jordan was great. We knew that “tick tick tick” Jordan’s life was gonna slip away and that Lumen was going to be the one to stab. I love when she grabbed his mouth and said in a calm and very intimidating manner “You dont get to use my name”. The best moment of the episode came after they killed him during the cleaning. The standoff with Deb.

I think we all kinda saw this coming, but that didn’t make it any less enjoyable. We’ve seen the effect the Barrell Girls had on Deb, and since she came up with her vigilantes in love theory it lead to the standoff behind the plastic. In the end, Deb caught her vigilantes and ultimately decided to let them go. A move she later admitted to Quinn she didn’t understand. Now – I really hated Jennifer Carpenter in the first few seasons, I hated her acting, her cadence, really everything, but this season she was a standout. Her relationship with Quinn allowed Carpenter to add a few layers to character we’d yet to see in her romances with Lundy, the weird musician, and Rudy the ice truck killer. Kudos to Carpenter for continuing to grow as Deb does.

The other plot of the episode had to do with Quinn getting the blame for Liddy’s murder. With his name on the equipment, and the calls and blood on his shoe, it looked like Quinn was gonna get the rap for Liddy’s death. The moment they arrived on the scene Quinn knew he was in deep shit. The main evidence was Liddy’s blood on the shoe which Dexter had to test. I think he faked the results for Deb. He saw what Quinn means to her and acted out of love even though he has been completely transparent in his feelings towards him. Quinn knew Dex did something to help him out, and even subtly let him know that he owes him one. I think that Quinn will be the focus of the next season and that’s great with me, his relationship to Dexter is one of the series more interesting components. He is leagues and miles above the cartoonish Doakes.

In the end Lumen left, her Dark Passenger’s thirst quenched by killing the Electro Barrel Murder Club. Again this was kind of predictable, but that didn’t infringe on the moment of her leaving. Sitting, waiting with bags packed. It was really hard to watch Dexter being momentarily happier then we’ve ever seen him knowing she wasn’t going to stay.  Dexter liked having a partner, someone who saw him for who he really is and more importantly and “the certainty that nothing, nothing is set in stone, not even darkness” Does Dex believe that there is a possibility for him to extinguish his dark passenger? Maybe. But I think he’ll sooner realize his “Dark Passenger” is simply a construct of his mind, an excuse to continue doing what he does.

Overall this was a great season, not comparable to the last, but then again few season as a whole are. I can’t wait for next season (Dexter got a season 6 pickup last week) which may be a little weird with the news that Michael C. Hall and Jennifer Carpenter are divorcing after two years of marriage. What do you think is gonna go down next season?

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