Dexter – Episode 5-3 Review

Wow. I was looking forward to a guest spot from Julia Stiles this season, but I had no idea her role would be this good. On Sunday night’s episode of Dexter our favorite fictional serial killer made his first kill since the death of his wife…and someone saw him.

Remember creepy animal pick-up guy? The one who stores dead women in formaldehyde and then dumps them in a lake? Yeah, Dexter got him. But just as the ghost of Harry warned, Dexter was sloppy. It meant too much to him. And he made mistakes.

Nanny Diaries

Deb interviewing candidates for the position of Harrison’s nanny as though she was interrogating a criminal was a perfect example of what I love about Dexter – humor amidst all the darkness. Some of the applicants were OK, like the poor girl who admitted to “maybe” doing drugs back in college, and others were all kinds of horrendous, like the woman who was obsessed with cheese. Hey, I’m a huge cheese fan. I eat it all the time. It’s probably my favorite food. But even I wouldn’t have hired that lady.

Then they found Sonya, a soft spoken Irish lady who used to work as a nurse, until there was downsizing at the hospital. She seems too good to be true…so is she? This is Dexter. Nothing can ever be perfect. I wonder what her dark secret will be?

Saint Death, not Saint S***

I like this new cop on the show, Officer Manzon. She bugs Deb, but that’s because she is Deb. When Deb was a lowly cop just trying to work her way out of vice. She helped Den question a Venezuelan neighborhood she had connections with about some possible gang killings, and one of the people she spoke to ended up dead. Dexter is always pretty gory, but these religious killings were especially icky. As if headless with the eyes gouged out wasn’t enough, there was a cat licking up the victim’s blood at the crime scene. I’m shuddering even writing about it. And wondering if now that cat will have a taste for human blood and become an attack cat. Does that happen?

Meanwhile, Dexter was relieved to find out that Harrison isn’t expected to have the same reaction to his traumatic experience that Dexter did years ago. While Dexter was three years old when he saw his mother get killed, Harrison is only ten months. Not old enough to absorb what had happened. The crisis counselor also told Dexter to go out and do something for himself to help release energy. She probably meant golf, but he took it as a green light to make his first post-Rita kill.

Take it now

Dexter orchestrated a coincidental run-in with the dead animal pick-up guy/serial killer, Fowler, where he perfectly played the part of a guy desperate for work. Fowler told him of an open position with his department and invited him to ride along in the truck the following afternoon. Dexter prepared his kill room, an abandoned tourist center far off the beaten path, but Harry thought he was getting too sloppy. He shouldn’t be killing in daylight, the room was too big. Dexter was attaching too much meaning with this kill and it wouldn’t set things right again.

And things went wrong. Just as Dexter stuck Fowler with the needle to knock him out, Fowler shot Dex with his tranq gun. Both guys ended up passed out on the side of the highway. Dexter awoke in an ambulance alongside Fowler who inexplicably covered for him. Why? Because he figured out that Dexter knew he was a murderer? Because he wanted to deal with Dexter on his own? He didn’t get the chance to find out – Dex bolted from the hospital before Fowler could find him and attacked him once again in his home.

But since Dexter didn’t have a kill room prepared near by, he had to improvise. And improvising is sloppy. He killed Fowler, but someone saw. Julia Stiles saw. She was supposed to be Fowler’s next victim and was in pretty rough shape, but she saw everything. What will happen? People have known about Dexter before – Lyla, Miguel, Trinity – and it never ends well.

Overall I thought this was a fantastic episode. I like the slow, suspenseful pace with which this season is moving – and I’m shocked by the way Julia Stiles has been introduced to the show. The stuff about Batista and LaGuerta felt kind of lame until the end, when it was revealed that the cop Batista beat up suffered from internal bleeding and Batista could do time. The Quinn storyline is getting interesting too – he’s feeling pretty sure that the sketches of “Kyle Butler” look like Dexter (or maybe Justin Bieber) and put in a request to show Dexter’s photo to Trinity’s family. Quinn is being careful, but he could really screw things up for Dexter. Of course, Julia Stiles could beat him to it, who knows?