Dexter: The Fourth Season – DVD Review

With the fifth season of Dexter premiering on Showtime on September 26, I’m sure most fans of the show have already finished season 4 and are eagerly anticipating its return to the airwaves. For those of you who have not made it as far as season 4 and have successfully avoided spoilers, this review is for you. Unlike SOME major publications (*cough cough* Entertainment Weekly *cough*), this review will remain spoiler free.

Dexter Morgan, played wonderfully by Michael C. Hall, is a blood spatter analyst for the Miami Metro Homicide Department. He wooed a single mother, married her, had his own baby with her, and lives happily in suburbia. He also happens to be a vigilante serial killer. In order to mask his serial killer tendencies, he lives by a strict code set in place by his adopted father Harry. In season 4, Dexter attempts to juggle his family, his job, and his “Dark Passenger.”

Debra Morgan, played by Hall’s real life wife Jennifer Carpenter, is Dexter’s sister and a detective with Miami Metro Homicide. She had a passionate fling with FBI agent Frank Lundy in season 2 and now Lundy is retired and back in Miami. He’s been tracking what he calls the Trinity Killer, who has been murdering people in threes all over the country for the past thirty years. The FBI never bought his logic, so he’s come to investigate on his own. Dexter is immediately intrigued by the idea that a killer could kill for thirty years and never get caught, so he tracks him down on his own. Dexter discovers that this killer’s real name is Arthur Mitchell (John Lithgow in a phenomenal Emmy winning performance), and he has a family of his own. Dexter takes on a false identity – something he’s done often in the past – and gets close to Mitchell, slowly uncovering his own Dark Passenger.

Of course there are multiple other storylines going on in the show, adding more and more plates to Dexter’s spinning abilities. La Guerta and Battista have a romantic fling (finally!), Rita is endlessly needy – as she should be with a newborn in the house, and Debra discovers more information about her father’s past. Also, Debra’s partner Quinn gets involved with a reporter who may or may not be using him for information about Trinity. That particular storyline gets a little old by the middle of the season, but pays off in a big way.

But it’s Trinity who steals this season. Those who know John Lithgow for his work on 3rd Rock From The Sun or as Lord Farquaad in the Shrek movies will be surprised to see his turn as Trinity. He is electrifying and terrifying at the same time. We discover more about him slowly throughout the season, but the tension is high; one episode in particular will have your heart racing. The chemistry that Lithgow and Hall have is incredibly intense. Jimmy Smits turn in season 3 was incredible, but this season of Dexter has to be some of the most riveting television in history.

Episode 1: Living the Dream – Dexter & Rita’s new baby Harrison won’t sleep, which means Dexter doesn’t sleep either.

Episode 2: Remains to Be Seen – Lundy returns, the Trinity killer is beginning his pattern again.

Episode 3: Blinded By the Light – Neighborhood watch puts a damper on Dexter’s privacy.

Episode 4: Dex Takes a Holiday – Dexter gets some time alone and discovers a policewoman who murdered her family. He realizes he doesn’t want to lose his own family.

Episode 5: Dirty Harry – Trinity strikes again, and Rita and Dexter have issues.

Episode 6: If I Had a Hammer – Dexter gets closer to Trinity and volunteers with his church.

Episode 7: Slack Tide -The calm before the storm.

Episode 8: Road Kill – Dexter takes a road trip with Trinity.

Episode 9: Hungry Man – The infamous Thanksgiving episode.

Episode 10: Lost Boys – A breakthrough in Trinity’s pattern.

Episode 11: Hello, Dexter Morgan – Trinity gets closer to discovering who Dexter is.

Episode 12: The Getaway – The shocking season finale.

The DVD set has a 2.35:1 aspect ratio and enhanced sound, which is good, but having watched the Blu-ray release, it isn’t TV perfection in brilliant HD and a great sound mix. The DVD is just a little poorer quality, grainy in spots. The sound is also significantly lower.

Californication Season 3 Episodes 1 and 2

The Tudors Episode 401

Lock Load Episode 401

Win a Trip To Miami – gives you a link to a website to enter a  contest


Photo Gallery

via e-bridge technology (aka DVD-ROM):

The Tudors Episode 402

Interviews with: Michael C. Hall, Clyde Phillips, David Zayas, John Lithgow, C.S. Lee, Julie Benz, Jennifer Carpenter, James Remar

Showtime should take some cues from HBO on how to do their DVD/BD extras. Personally, I don’t want to watch one episode from a series that I can’t watch if I don’t subscribe to Showtime. The full episodes take up disc space from what could be cool behind the scenes stuff. Fans of Dexter would rather see more about the show than get Showtime advertising all over the DVD/BD releases. The season 4 finale of Dexter brought in Showtime’s biggest audience ever. Now that the season has been released on DVD & Blu-Ray, they’ll gain an even bigger audience. I for one will be subscribing to Showtime after watching this on DVD. There’s no way I can wait another year to see what Dexter Morgan is up to.

Paramount Home Entertaiment presents Dexter: The Complete Fourth Season. Created by James Manos, Jr. Starring: Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter, Julie Benz, Lauren Velez, David Zayas, John Lithgow. Based on the novels by Jeff Lindsay. . Running time: 632 minutes. Rating: TV-MA. Released on DVD: August 17, 2010.

Tags: , , , ,

Join our newsletter

never miss the latest news, reviews, live event coverage, audio podcasts, exclusive interviews and commentary for Movies, TV, Music, Sports, Comics, Video Games!