Reviewed by Patrick Cooper
Since the Trinity Killer arc wrapped up in season 4, Dexter has gotten progressively worse. Before the announcement of the 8th being the final season, it seemed like the show’s goal was to just stay on the air as long as possible, rather than tell the best story possible. Aside from the gruesome Doomsday Killer story, which was at least bonkers enough to be slightly entertaining, there hasn’t been that much interesting stuff going on.
The biggest problem dragging the show down is that aside from Dexter himself, NO ONE on the show is engaging to watch. The supporting cast – from Deb down to LaGuerta – is absolutely miserable and easily one of the worst ensembles on television. Okay, Angel is a cool guy I wouldn’t mind having a drink with, but other than him and Dex everyone else can jump off a pier for all I care.
See, the difference between Dexter and a show like, say, Game of Thrones or Justified is that the latter two have strong enough supporting characters to back up the primary ones. Timothy Olyphant doesn’t have to be in every scene of Justified because it’s just as fun and interesting to spend time with the rest of the cast. Or like how The Simpsons has such a deep stable of characters to draw from that the audience gets stoked when one we haven’t seen in a while makes an appearance. That’s called being well rounded, a concept the writers of Dexter seem to ignore.
Going into season 7, this wasn’t anything new for Dexter. I never liked any of the supporting characters since the beginning – especially Deb and LaGuerta, who makes my skin crawl. But the difference back then was that the villains were interesting enough to carry a huge chunk of the show on their own, so it was easy to overlook painfully dull story lines like Deb and Quinn’s relationship. Now who do we got? Hannah? Her relationship with Dexter started out interesting but then she turned into an unstoppable supervillain. Isaak Serko? That huge Speltzer dude who dressed like a minotaur and set up a labyrinth in his tiny apartment?! Ok, that motherfucker was pretty cool.
On top of the dull characters, the season 7 sideplots were barely memorable. Remember Hannah’s dad? I love Jim Beaver as much as the next guy, but who cares about her dad. And how about that phantom arsonist? He sure had me worried for a while. And who can forget that crime writer investigating Hannah for his book. What a thought-provoking character he was.
Season 7 wasn’t all bad though. I am glad that Deb finally found out about Dexter’s secret and it was nice to see his “dark passenger” excuse get thoroughly deconstructed. His real motivations haven’t really been examined since season 2, which was nicely touched upon during the Doakes flashbacks. The most important event of season 7 though, hands-down, is the death of LaGuerta. Good riddance to you, your pantsuits, and your bad attitude. More than Deb, more than Quinn (who looks like he’s dying of consumption), more than anyone else on the show, I deeply hated LaGuerta. She was entirely unlikable since season 1 and overall I think she was just poorly written and provided nothing of substance to the stories.
The final season starts next month and I sincerely hope it’s an improvement on the last couple. We’ve seen what the show is capable of, so here’s hoping for a return to form. In the meantime, at least the Blu-ray looks and sounds really, really good.
The Dexter season 7 Blu-ray features a crispy 1080p AVC-encoded presentation. The soft, vibrant colors of Miami pop while the deep shadows are sharp and detailed. The HD 5.1 surround track also brings the heat.
The set is terribly weak in this department. The only feature included with the Blu is an UltraViolet copy of a new Showtime drama, Ray Donovan. That’s it!
Overall Score: 3.5 outta 5