Thursday, August 29, 2013

My Review of Dexter's 8x09: "Make Your Own Kind Of Music"

Written by Karen Campbell
Directed by John Dahl

Vogel: “I think you misunderstand my point. Straddling two worlds as you are, it’s dangerous. Killers cannot have a full, emotional life.”
Dexter: “I think you underestimate me.”

I think the other point that should be raised isn’t whether or not Dexter and Hannah can run off with Harrison to Argentina for a full, emotional life but more it should be whether or not they deserve to have that kind of happiness together.

Yes, they’ve killed some awful people between them but they’ve also killed some innocent people and their actions have had consequences on the ones they’ve loved as well. Do Dexter and Hannah deserve a happy ever after? I’m not actually sure, which is interesting.

One of the things I’ve noticed about this season is that Dexter has killed far less people and when he has killed, the exhilaration he’s usually felt hasn’t been quite their. Could it be that the events of the last few years – Rita’s death, raising Harrison, Deb learning about his identity and what it’s cost her morality, Vogel coming into his life, Zach as a short lived apprentice as well as his bonds with Lumen and mostly Hannah – have actually lessened his desire to kill?

More to the point, could Dexter actually live a life where he doesn’t kill? Hannah made it clear twice that she doesn’t derive pleasure from murder and even Dexter admitted to Vogel that killing the Brain Surgeon would be the last thing he’d do before leaving Miami. Maybe he meant that it would also be his last kill too. It’s a certain possibility at the very least.

Then there’s the Brain Surgeon himself. Having the identity revealed as Daniel Vogel (aka, Oliver Saxon), the song of Dr Vogel was hardly a shock. It was set up early in the season that there would be a connection between Vogel and the Brain Surgeon and the former had been evasive with her own interest in psychopaths as well. Now it all makes sense in the most obvious of storytelling methods.

That’s not actually a criticism because I actually do like the idea of conflict between Vogel, Dexter and Daniel here. How is Vogel going to be able to protect the son she’s failed (Daniel) against the ‘son’ she’s succeeded with (Dexter) and vice versa? With three episodes left, one of them will definitely die if not both of them but who it will be remains the question though.

I liked that this episode delved more into Vogel’s back-story and her past. The timing was right and it’s one of a few plots that are coming together nicely. Elway making it his business to bring down Hannah is another interesting plot too, especially given that Marshall Clayton poses a decent threat to Dexter’s plans of happy life outside Miami too.

I also liked that this episode saw Deb reconsidering becoming a detective again. Angel more or less welcomed her back to the force and she certainly came alive during her interrogation of Oliver with Quinn as well too. Even the totally predictable kiss between the pair of them didn’t seem to deter her either.

Also in “Make Your Own Kind Of Music”

Vogel had two children and we learned pretty fast that Daniel killed his younger brother and faked his death from a fire in the mental home he was sent to.

Dexter: “Actually I was gonna say I love you.”
Hannah: “I love you too.”

Arlene really did turn out to be a good friend for Hannah. She kept $500,000 hidden for her and pretended to be sleeping with Dexter to keep Clayton off the scent. Harrison also lied to Clayton as well.

Dexter: “No-one else knows Zach is dead.”
Deb: “Now I know. I don’t wanna know because I’m gonna have to explain how I know.”

Arlene: “Aren’t you the asshole that turned her in?”
Dexter: “That would be me.”
Hannah: “Long story. Can we come in?”

I really enjoyed the scene with Deb and Hannah eating dinner together. I think there’s a good idea for a spin-off there, Showtime.

Jamie (to Deb, re Oliver): “We should all have someone who worships us like that, right?”

Vogel (re Daniel): “He’s my son.”
Dexter: “There’s nothing you can do for him now.”

Standout music: Mama Cass’s “Make Your Own Kind Of Music”, played several times during the episode and used to expand on Vogel’s backstory with her son.

Deb: “I can’t believe I’m eating food you made.”
Hannah: “It’s not bad though, right?”

Dexter (to himself): “I’ll kill Saxon and then leave Miami forever.”

Chronology: A few days since “Are We There Yet?”

“Make Your Own Kind Of Music” certainly delivered with revealing the Brain Surgeon and overall it was an enjoyable episode. Some of the other subplots (anything involving Angel, Matthews and Jamie) weren’t as exciting but overall, a good one.

Rating: 8 out of 10

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