The third episode of the final season starts with a reminder that sometimes Dexter has a son. His son likes to eat popsicles in the strangest way possible, by somehow smearing them all over the wall and the floor and leaving blood red footprints all over the house. This of course would be okay if Harrison was a small child, but in the 6 months since the previous season he appears to of aged about 15 years. If he continues to grow at a rate that would put Robin Williams in “Jack” to shame, I wouldn’t be surprised if the season finale features Harrison taking on one of the monsters from Pacific Rim.
We catch up with Deb, who is continuing her downward spiral by driving the streets of Miami with a nice mix of whiskey, vodka and beer for company. Unfortunately, she is roused by a police officer who tells her she has hit a parking meter and he needs to take her to the station where she calls the orange skeleton, who used to be Quinn, to come and help her. Quinn attempts to get to the bottom of what has sparked Debs recent behavior but she fobs him off and gets him to take her to work to meet her boss. Elway, who could not look more suspicious if he was wearing an eye patch and stroking a cat, decides that Deb needs more then electrolytes this time and pulls out an ancient Chinese hangover cure. He then goes to spy on a new client’s cheating husband with Deb in tow.
Miami’s finest are called to the Brain Surgeon suspect Lyle Sussman’s cabin. His body has been moved and made to look like a suicide. Here, Masuka again reminds us that he should be getting a lot more screen time or even his own spin off with a few more of his patented bad taste observations. Dexter doesn’t get to enjoy Masuka’s black humour for long as Vogel, who has received his and her boxes containing more brain parts, calls him. This time it is the part of the brain apparently responsible for vision, which Vogel says is a message that the killer is watching them both. Dexter deduces that the killer must not know exactly who he is as all of the items have been sent to Dr Vogel – the killer must not be that smart as almost every time Dexter has been with Vogel he has been working forensics on a crime scene, wearing a large ID badge that says “Dexter Morgan”.
Dexter then begins his hunt for their tormentor by checking through Dr Vogel’s books. He visits former patient Ron Galuzzo, who Vogel had committed to an institution for murdering his best friend in high school. Dexter finds Ron working as a fitness adviser and for some reason channelling Brad Pitt in “Burn after Reading”. With subtle grace and finesse, Dexter begins interrogating Galuzzo by waving a copy of Vogel’s book in his face and yelling, “Do you know this woman?” Galuzzo lies and says he doesn’t, which confirms Dexter’s suspicions that he is hiding something. Dexter then breaks in to his apartment and discovers that the reason Ron is in such good shape is due to his diet of eating body parts. However, due to the delicate way he is storing and cooking them Dexter observes that he could not be The Brain Surgeon – he is still bat sh*t crazy enough to earn a spot on Dexter’s table.
Deb finally caves to Dexter’s persistence and agrees to meet him for dinner. Dexter points to a family at a nearby table and mentions to Deb that the man seated is the one she saved during her nightclub shootout. He tries to reason with her by explaining that the only reason the little girl at the table has a father is because of her and he tells Deb she is a good person. This seemed to get through to Deb, but not in the way Dexter had anticipated as following the dinner, Deb gets wasted and decides she is going to confess to killing LaGuerta.
Fortunately for Dexter, the first person Deb runs into in the station is Quinn who ushers her into an interrogation room before anyone else can see her. Deb confesses to Quinn that she is the one who killed LaGuerta but Quinn misunderstands her and thinks that she means that she is feeling guilty over not being able to save her. Deb tries in vain to convince Quinn she means it literally by saying that she physically killed Maria. At this point Quinn decides that spoken sentences are too much for his tanned brain to handle and asks Deb to write down what she means, while he calls Dexter to come down and sort this out.
When Dexter gets the call he is with Vogel, who has been trying to convince him that he does not have any real emotional feelings towards Deb but in fact only cares for her because he is acting out of his own self interest. He asks Vogel to accompany him to the station so that she can use her super psychology powers to reason with Deb. Dexter explains Vogel’s presence to Quinn by saying she is an old family friend and Vogel tells Quinn that she believes Deb is suffering from a mix of survivor’s guilt and post-traumatic stress disorder. While Deb is screaming that she is going to confess, Dexter injects her with a needle knocking her out, then slings her over his shoulder and slips out the back door with the help of Quinn -who doesn’t seem to find Dexter and a bestselling author carrying an unconscious former police captain out in any way strange. Dexter brings Deb back to her apartment and cuffs her to the couch, instructing Vogel to talk to Deb when she regains conciseness. The episode ends with Dexter murdering Galuzzo, telling the cannibal he’s just like him: “I consume everyone I love”.
This was definitely the weakest of the season so far; everything about the episode seemed rushed and was not put together with any thought or care. Joey Quinn’s devolution into Joey Tribbiani continued and his unbelievable ineptitude is starting to grate. Forget being smart enough to make Sergeant, I am starting to worry the man hasn’t got the intelligence to dress himself. The scenes with him getting simple exam questions wrong along with him letting Dexter walk out with Deb were infuriating and seemed out of place in what is a series by and large rooted in reality. There were some interesting elements to this episode; Elway continues to dance mysteriously in the background, his motives still unclear-for my money I think they will involve Hannah McKay. And the set up for next week’s episode with Deb coming face to face with Vogel will go a long way in deciding what course this season will take.
Worth a donut: Dexter back in stalk and kill mode was good to see. Michael C Hall plays Dexter’s common man act as an awkward delight.
Strap it to the table: Debs confession should have been a tense and thrilling scene but instead was handled clumsily all the way through to its lazy conclusion. Also no Harry this week, boo!
2 out of 5