The latest episode, titled Blinded By the Light, begins with Daiquiri-delivering Dexter at a backyard barbecue, slicing strawberries rather than grilling the ungodly amount of meat on display. That Dexter: hes never far from something red. Given that their neighbor has not just a swimming pool but a waterfall, the Morgans clearly have moved to a tony address. Well probably never know how Dexter supports a wife, three children and a boat on his blood-spatter salary.
With the Trinity subplot still ramping up, Dexters A-story this week feels like a place-holder and has more of that Desperate Housewives quality. Both shows feature ironic voice-over narration about suburban dynamics and appearances vs. reality, along with a dead character who serves as a Greek chorus. The dismemberments on Wisteria Lane just tend to be figurative, not literal. (Most of the time.) The community themes may be a little too explicit. Dexter would probably be surprised to know how many people could identify with his alienation, which strikes a chord with anyone whos struggled to talk to a sullen teen or groped for small talk at a block party.
Its kind of a humiliating week for Dexter, which finds him prohibited from driving after last weeks concussion, hassled by the streets beautification association and pursued by the neighborhood watch. Hes like a declawed lion, or maybe Gulliver pinned down by the Lilliputians. (A huge laugh accompanies the revelation that Matsuka drives a pimped-out monster truck.) Laguerta and Batista face more peril in that near-ambush than Dexter did this week.
Dexters frustrations come to a head in the final scene, when Rita catches him smashes his neighbors floodlights. Its kind of like one of those Mad Men moments when Betty sees Don Drapers mask slip. Much as I enjoy Michael C. Halls narration, the lack of dialogue gives the scene greater punch, like the final lines of a John Cheever short story.
This week the Trinity Killer commits another horrifying murder, which may be not even be a murder -- coerced suicide, maybe? Lithgows solicitousness (Careful now, you wouldnt want to hurt yourself) and fatalism (Its already over) prove nearly as upsetting as him forcing the terrified soccer mom to jump off the building. Based on what we know that he kills in threes, culminating with a middle-aged man it seems highly likely that Trinity symbolically slays a family each time. Whether his victims represent his actual sister, mother and father, and whether he was the one to kill them, remains to be seen. Could those initial deaths all have been suicides? Its hard to imagine someone fatally bludgeoning himself, though.
Ill bet the answers lie in Trinitys other rituals: the substance he smeared next to the body, the urn filled with (presumably) cremains. At any rate, if theres only one death to go, that doesnt seem like much time for the fourth season but maybe theres more involved with the kill-cycle than Lundy knows about. Speaking of Lundy, whats with the hat? Maybe they want to make his cowboy quality explicit, but it fit him like a giant novelty prop.
Quinn commands more attention this week, and boy, he comes across as dumb, with a capital D-M-U-B. The nude reporter turns him into a helpless blabbermouth, even when his boss tells him to keep his mouth shut. Its funny when Quinn tries to curry favor with Dexter, who couldnt care less about his seemingly corrupt behavior. Quinns big speech, though Just dont fuckin call me dirty! took self-pity and righteousness to laughable levels. It was like the moment in the previous season when the undercover cop busted Batista for solicitation, and he whimpered about just wanting a little closeness, or something phony-baloney justification like that. Come on guys, would a little dignity be too much to ask?
Viewers can excuse "Dexter" the occasional comedic, less-eventful episode in the name of laying the groundwork for a bigger one. Let's home that next's week's installment, though, is serious, not desperate.
Are my nards going to get irradiated?
sarcasm, and the lost art therein.
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