A Sashurai’s Review: Dexter – Season 8×05 (Not the penultimate half season arc ender I was expecting)

Every now and again, shows end on notes other than gut-wrenching, mind-boggling, tear-jerking, insanity-driven, and cliff-hanging. This double episode plot makes for a questionable bow-tie scenario and leaves the viewers with a sensible amount of caution, moving forward. Normally I’m left wanting to immediately dive into the next episode, yet, I feel a sense of discomforting closure regarding if a story of this magnitude could, in theory, just end right now. This, my fellow readers, is the definitive head-fake, and now that we’ve seen a “pleasant ending” it’s bound to be nothing but chaos from here on out.

(BEGIN SPOILERS)

“This Little Piggy” begins with a counseling session between a very angry and betrayed Dexter, and a confused Deb, closely monitored by Vogel, who initially sides with Deb for her actions toward saving Dex from the attempted murder-suicide. Dex mocks them both in frustration and leaves, no longer interested in keeping Vogel in his life. Vogel tells Deb that Dex is deeply hurt while Deb agrees “That makes two of us”

At Dex’s house, Jaime commits Dex to a future date with Cassie, the polite and all-too cute neighbor, while Dex is distracted with Harrison and trying to track Yates down.

Dex goes to work and is pulled into the briefing room as the crew discuss our side plot involving the murder of a maid and the possible connection to an Ed hamilton, a rich member of the community who Chief Matthews views as “good friends to Miami Metro”. Matthews warns Quinn to be respectful in their investigation.

At the Hamilton estate, Dex, Quinn, and Miller arrive to cheek-swab Ed, only for him to freely admit to having an affair with the victim. He professes they had sex but that she left the premises alive and has video proof of it. Ed’s son, Zach approaches but is sent off by his father. Dex catches the suspicious expression of the son, and then we do.

Zach finds Dex by his car and informs him he’s wasting his time with the investigation and that his father didn’t kill the victim.

At Vogel’s house, Vogel plays the same song the “Brain Surgeon” played in an earlier ep, and goes through her mail. Yates then bursts into her house and takes her captive.

Deb tries to call Vogel and eventually shows up at her house to see it was broken into. She finds Dex at Yates’s house where the crew are busy digging up corpses that Yates murdered. All contain sequential broken phalanges and a stab wound in the chest, along with a single left shoe buried with each one. Deb finds Dex and tells him Vogel’s been taken. Dex knows its Yates and for the moment, they put aside their grief toward one another to help find her.  They search for Yates’s worklog and use Miami Metro to unknowingly help guide their search for which empty house Yates might be at.

At an unknown house, Yates questions Vogel about who’s after him. Vogel deflects and initially takes the blame for Yates’s surgery. Yates fumbles with sarcasm over the experience and admits he wants Dex to find him.

Miller and Quinn briefly discuss the sergeant position before they ask an outside food vendor questions about the maid murder. They show him a picture and the man identifies Zach as the man who was last with her. He agrees to make a statement at the station later in the day.

At the station, Misuka and his daughter, Nikki, discuss why she’s in town. She explains that her mother passed away and she didn’t want to be alone. She offhandedly asks Misuka about his living condition and as they order from the food truck, she order multiple things and kindly asks Misuka to cover the cost, giving Misuka cause to worry that Nikki is only after his money.

Dex talks to Angel about Yates’s credit history and Angel confirms he’s helping to freeze Yates’s bank accounts. Meanwhile, Quinn tells Chief Matthews that that the eye-witness changed his statement about what he saw and Quinn says he’ll get the confession from Zach himself. Matthews warns Quinn he doesn’t have a case without any evidence and uses the Sergeant position as a means to keep Quinn from making any immediate mistakes.

(END SPOILERS)

At times, I found the tension with Vogel’s kidnapping, unrealistic. It plays off well and each player acted their part with proper, and sometimes, overzealous fear. Yet, for all the possibilities and quick turns they could make, eliminating a strong central character in the final season just doesn’t seem like a move the writers would make, even for an superior awe climax. Yates is a comic and by far, no “Brain Surgeon”. Vogel’s sharp thinking and improv style brought me a few homage’s from older films that have utilized the same impromptu method of control. While appreciated, it’s nothing new.

I do want to take a moment to digest a bit of Misuka’s dilemma. Here we have a character who finally begins to offer slight snippets of concern where none existed before. And, to be honest, I do enjoy seeing this uncertainty come out of Misuka regarding the intentions of this daughter. Had they done this four seasons ago, Misuka would be a much more well rounded character on the show, instead of the one-hit perv wonder we currently know him as. His plot is predictable, but if we want to see Misuka happy, it’s worth investing some time in detailing his last hurrah on the show.

There’s an almost creepy allure to Deb’s facial expressions in this episode, and I think a lot of close shots were dedicated to hit home that she’s really truly beginning to understand what it means to have Dex in her life and what she would be like without him. I’m not expecting too many more crazy fallouts, unless she’s forced to start committing murders herself. The surprise will be if she starts liking it.

Will this show end with Brother vs Sister to the death? I’m not so certain anymore. Jaime teased us earlier by mentioning Hannah, which means she’ll likely be making her final appearances soon (I don’t sneak peek the next ep, so I won’t know till next sunday)

Overall, I thought the episode made it’s mark, but to a tune of players who don’t get the pattern this shows provides us every season. Nothing jumped out and surprised me, except maybe the pre-happy ending that most fans want to see at the actual end. Viewing it now leads me to believe it’s only going to get crazier and bloodier till the final moments take us in, and that in itself is not surprising. Dexter plays on familiar shots, classic narration, and fundamental family values. There’s enough evidence to throw us off on Harry’s death, Vogel’s relationship with the Brain Surgeon, and Deb and Dex’s relationship from here on out. Which means, it’s all going to come back, and in droves. Perhaps little Harrison should have picked the apple.

Here’s a surprise. Dexter finds Hannah over Cassie’s poisoned body. That’d be an entrance.

No more words

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