Dexter: Dex, Lies, and Videotape

Lundy: "Maybe the Butcher is having an identity crisis."
Dexter: "It's entirely possible."

This episode was obviously about confusion, defiance, and angst, and pretty much at a teenage level. Dexter didn't have a normal adolescence; this emotional chaos and loss of control is a whole new thing for him. (Lila even said maybe Dexter was a late bloomer.) And he made some interesting choices at a time when his secret life was in serious danger of discovery.

Dexter had passionate, emotional, crazy sex for the first time... and with Lila. (At least he wasn't technically unfaithful, since Rita conveniently broke up with him first.) Lila acted so sweet and friendly at dinner with Rita and Gail, but I was certain she wanted Dexter to break up with Rita, and voila. It was hard to tell what Dexter wanted. He told Rita the (abbreviated) truth about his mother's death, but then he admitted, again, truthfully, that he'd been with Lila. Did he want Rita to show him the door?

Maybe he did. Maybe that's what all the rain symbolized. Dexter was being washed clean of the past and of his lies. He's always been so guarded, careful, secretive. It's protected him for nearly his entire life. And now he's confiding in Lila, and she is a total wild card. He's going to make a mistake, isn't he?

It felt a lot like Lundy already knew Dexter was the Bay Harbor Butcher and was just playing with him... but no, it was just that he preferred working with Dexter instead of the revolting Vince Masuka. Dexter can't screw up the investigation in an obvious way because Lundy will absolutely notice. But he has to keep throwing Lundy off the trail. It's like chess. Or maybe poker is a more apt analogy. Maybe Battleship.

Like Dexter didn't have enough problems, Deb let the cat out of the bag and Doakes found out that Dexter lied about being an addict. Dexter actually lost it when he found Doakes listening to the Harry/Laura tapes. And then he found his control level again when he took out the copycat vigilante, and left the body for his workmates. Is Dexter truly in recovery? Is it true that he doesn't need to kill anymore? To go with the teenager analogy, was it discovering Harry's lies that finally allowed Dexter to rebel against his father? That's what teenagers have to do, and Dexter never did. Until now.

Deb's frustrated longing for Harry's approval has apparently turned into a crush on Lundy. She was piqued that Lundy was paying attention to Dexter, just like Harry did. (I love Deb. She didn't even try to hide her jealousy.) Is this a trend? Is Deb always going to be romantically involved in some way with Dexter's antagonists?

Bits and pieces:

-- Great episode title. And yet another take-off of a movie title.

-- More teenage behavior. Dexter pulled the fire alarm.

-- Vince was even funnier and more repulsive than usual. What a terrific character he is.

-- Internet searches? Doesn't Dexter often search for relevant information at work? Will his search history connect him with the Bay Harbor Butcher? I'm sure Dexter deletes it, because he's way too careful and smart. But is there a log still existing somewhere?

-- Lundy knew about the plastic wrap. He's good.

-- Did Harry turn Dexter into the Dark Defender on purpose, to avenge his Laura's death... and without ever telling Dexter? We'll never know, will we?

Quotes:

Dexter: "It's times like this I wish I really were a drug addict."
Vince: "I hear a rumor you're tracking all our internet activity. So is it true? 'Cause I can explain all that she-male stuff."

Lundy: "Rumor has it you have a knack for attracting serial killers."
Dexter: "I hear the same about you."
Deb: "Dexter also enjoys long walks on the beach and foreign films."

Deb: "You're such a guy. When I get pissed, I say stuff I don't mean all the time. I hate you, I faked it, you're hung like a grape..."

Dexter: "I've got to make sure Lundy gets his man. After I figure out a way to erase the marina files. And make up with my girlfriend. And then maybe I'll tackle world hunger, because things can't really get much worse."

Dexter: "Which step was that?"
Lila: "The naughty one."

Dexter: "Apparently my new life involves a love triangle. I'm that guy. (pause) The voices are back. Excellent."

Vince: "Respect the vest. Don't make me take out my hose."

Lundy: "Hearing's the first thing to go. Or is it memory? I always forget."

Really, really good. Was this a four? I find it very hard to rate Dexter because it's almost always excellent,

Billie
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Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.

2 comments:

Gus Brunetti said...

I've just realized that if Lila married Dexter Morgan, she'd be http://www.imdb.com/character/ch0004953/

It makes sense.

ChrisB said...

I had the same reaction to this episode as you did, Billie. It did feel as though Dexter was behaving like an adolescent, to which I say, about damn time.

Telling Rita the truth about Lila was an interesting choice. As is the way Dexter keeps referring to the "new" him and the fact that he is in "recovery." How much of this is driven by the fact that he wants to change and how much by his fear that he may be caught? Fascinating.