Thursday, October 04, 2012

My Review of Dexter's 7x01: "Are You?"

Written by Scott Buck
Directed by John Dahl

Deb: “Are you ... are you a serial killer?”
Dexter: “Yes.”

Now there’s how you do a great cliff-hanger moment. Okay, so when Deb caught Dexter ending Travis, it should’ve maybe dawned on her straightaway that he’s got form for the killing but it took pretty much all of this episode and remembering past events in order to face a rather ugly reality.

Deb has always had a massive faith and trust in Dexter that she hasn’t with other people in her life and even after catching him kill Travis, she wanted to desperately believe that it was a moment of temporary insanity and I think that was why she compromised herself by actually helping Dexter burn the church down in order to make Travis’s death look like a suicide.

I was a little disappointed that Deb actually went along with Dexter’s plan to solve the Travis problem but I wasn’t actually surprised that she did either. Deb really wanted to believe Dexter but unfortunately for her, everything else in this episode forced her to confront the truth about her brother in a big way.

I liked that Deb had noticed everything – Dexter’s attire, the collection of knives, the plastic wrapping and the way she linked it back to her own horrifying experiences with the Ice Truck Killer/Brian Moser. It certainly made the last scene of this episode pop even more than it was going to anyways.

Deb doing her own investigating, finding Dexter’s knives and then confronting him with the dangerous question was a brilliant moment of tension. Dexter actually admitting to it in the end that he was a serial killer was a shocker too but at the same time, he had to have known there was no way out of this.

Deb caught him in the act with Travis, had been grilling him throughout the episode and in the end, Dexter had to admit defeat on this one. Now that Deb really does know her brother’s true nature, it is going to be interesting to see where their dynamic goes from here. As long as the annoying incest angle from last season is dropped to, that would also be a great thing.

Of course, the most interesting about this episode was that even after being confronted by Deb on his actions, Dexter still couldn’t resist a kill either. Killing the likes of Viktor Baskov showed that even Deb being aware of his actions isn’t going to halt him from actually carrying them out, not that I thought it would do.

I really liked Enver Gjokaj from Dollhouse and I was pleased with him cast as Viktor but the character wasn’t a particularly interesting guest character. Yes, he killed a poor stripper and he seems to be working for a bigger villain in Isaak but we’ve seen too many characters like Viktor that as a baddie, he didn’t really stand out in a significant way.

Of course, Dexter did rather unwisely ignore Viktor’s threats of repercussions over being killed (before asking Dexter to get it over with – a first for a victim on this show?). I supposed that does probably mean that Dexter will have more to worry about than Deb as soon as Isaak makes his way into the United States. Ray Stevenson is a good casting choice for the show. I just hope that after last season being disappointing with Travis that Isaak will be a better villain for the series.

Speaking of villains – can Louis just end up in one of Dexter’s slide collections now please? The fact that he got annoyed after Dexter rightly got pissed off with him for using his computer with permission was ridiculous and his attempts of messing with Dexter’s accounts as well are also bizarre. I just hope this storyline actually goes somewhere interesting before long.

Also in “Are You?”

The cast credits are still the same but with Ray Stevenson mentioned as a special guest star.

Dexter: “I snapped.”
Deb: “You snapped? What the fuck does that mean?”

Harry’s flashbacks this week involved him stopping Deb from owning a dog in fear of Dexter killing it. Poor Deb yet again.

Dexter: “How does this look?”
Deb: “Pretty fucking weird.”
Dexter: “Exactly.”

Dexter (to Harrison): “It’ll all be okay.”

Maria found a blood slide at the scene of Travis’s death and Masuka made the link back to Bay Harbour Butcher or Doakes as everyone else assumes. Now, this could be a good story arc for Maria this year.

Deb: “This doesn’t feel right.”
Dexter: “I know it doesn’t, Deb. I never meant to get you involved in any of this.”

Deb (to Angel/Quinn): “Hey, we do everything by the book. We’re cops, not killers.”
Dexter (to himself): “But being a killer would feel so very good right now.”

Mike ended up being a casualty thanks to Viktor. It’s a shame because I enjoyed him as a character. Why couldn’t have been Quinn instead?

Deb: “I’m sorry for all the questions, Dexter. I’m trying to make sense of all this.”

Dexter (to himself): “It never matters your destination. The smart traveller must be prepared to make last minute adjustments.”

I noticed that Viktor’s actual birthday matched Enver Gjokaj’s as well. Was that a happy coincidence or totally intentional?

Quinn: “I’m a sensitive guy.”
Angel: “I’ve lost two wives and countless girlfriends and somehow I manage to keep my shit together.”

Harry (to Dexter): “Son, your mother and I aren’t gonna be around forever. Someday, Deborah will be you have left. You don’t want to lose her, do you?”

Chronology: From where last season’s finale left off.

“Are You?” was a good way of opening the season and definitely a better episode that most of what we got last year. It is going to be interesting to see the shift in the Dexter/Deb dynamic and I do hope this European gangster plot with Isaak, George, etc is a worthwhile storyline but so far, this year does look good.

Rating: 8 out of 10


Evi @ sexta-feira said...

Nice review.
I liked the episode but I didn't go crazy over it, like I used to.
Let's see what this season will bring.

shawnlunn2002 said...

Here's hoping it's a good one.