Monday, September 23, 2013

My Review of Dexter's 8x12: "Remember The Monsters?"

Written by Scott Buck And Manny Coto
Directed by Steve Shill

Deb (to Dexter): “Remember the monsters?”

Oh boy – I was hoping for so much more here. I knew the writers weren’t bullshitting when they said the last ever episode was going to polarising for viewers but this was something else altogether. Much as I loathe to admit, I can see why there are a load of annoyed viewers right about now and I’m including myself in the mix of them too.

For a show that has ran for eight seasons and had more than enough time to come up with a satisfying ending, you have to wonder what the writers were thinking here. I could handle Deb dying, just about and I certainly wanted to cry when Dexter took her body out of the hospital to dump in the sea but it also pissed me off too.

Deb didn’t deserve to be dumped at sea like many of Dexter’s victims in the last eight years. She deserved a proper funeral where Dexter could visit a grave and where her friends and colleagues could also see her. I think what Dexter (much as I understand it) was rather cruel in a way. Yes, he was guilty for Deb’s ultimate fate and felt terrible for it but dumping her at sea wasn’t the way to honour one of the few people he genuinely loved. Basically, Deb deserved more here and so did we as viewers.

Then there’s Harrison and Hannah. I think Dexter ruined their lives too in his own way. Letting the world believe he was dead was fine and feeling guilty that he might ruin both his son and girlfriend’s lives if he was a part of it, I could believe but ultimately abandoning them in Argentina was another unsatisfying resolution here. I did like that Hannah was able to outsmart Elway but that wasn’t enough for me either.

As for Dexter’s actual fate – a lumberjack in the arse end of nowhere, really? That was the best thing they could’ve come up with him. I think this finale had the misguided intention of trying to have Dexter get away with his crimes but pay some kind of a price (losing Deb, Hannah, Harrison) but instead of satisfying either side of the audiences (those who wanted Dexter to pay and those who wanted him to get away), it failed to satisfy either, myself included.

Having read former show runner Clyde Philips intended ending for the series, I actually think this show should have manned up and killed Dexter off in death row. It might be the more grim alternative but it would’ve given this show a sense of closure that overall this episode lacks in spades and that would’ve gone down better with the audience I think.

As for Saxon though, he managed to finish Deb off completely in the hospital before learning that the pen really was mightier than the sword. Killing Deb should’ve made Saxon more of a memorable villain but overall his scenes felt more like fodder and the fact that both Angel and Quinn witnessed Dexter murdering him and glossed over it just proved that as a final antagonist, Saxon was a disappointment.

Also in “Remember The Monsters”

We got two flashbacks between the third and fourth seasons where Harrison was shortly born and Deb got Dexter to hold him.

Deb: “I thought I was getting what I deserve.”
Quinn: “What you deserve? Why would you think that?”

I’ve never been Quinn’s biggest fan (has anyone really?) but I really felt bad for him in this episode. I think I could’ve gotten used to him and Deb back together had things ended differently.

Dexter: “Deb.”
Deb: “Next word I wanna hear you say is goodbye. Say it already or I’ll crawl out of this bed and kick your ass.”
Dexter: “Goodbye.”
Deb: “See you soon.”

Dexter: “Stay away from me.”
Elway (re Hannah): “Storm’s coming buddy and it’s gonna be real hard to find a way out. Don’t go down with her, Dexter.”

Are there wild penguins in Argentina? I think it’s the most interesting thing from this episode I learned really.

Dexter: “What you’ve actually done is open my eyes. Forced me to look at myself.”
Saxon: “And what do you see?”
Dexter: “A trail of blood and body parts.”

Hannah: “I am happy right now, Dex.”
Dexter: “Me too.”

It’s a shame we didn’t get past character cameos in this episode, wasn’t it?

Dexter: “I destroy everyone I love. I can’t let this happen to Hannah, to Harrison. I have to protect them from me.”

Chronology: From where “Monkey In A Box” left off.

“Remember The Monsters” will succeed in being a memorable series finale for the show but sadly, it will be for the wrong reasons. Maybe in time, people will be kind to it but I also have a feeling in time even the producers themselves will have wished they had given the show a better send off than this.

Rating: 6 out of 10

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