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Despite the hype that this show received from the web and my friends alike since it's release, I have only begun watching within the year. My only regret is not listening to people sooner, Dexter is a top class series which focuses on your friendly neighborhood psychopath and serial killer with a heart, Dexter Morgan. By day, he works as a blood spatter analyst for the Miami Metro Police, while by night he is dishing out justice by hunting down serial killers, all while balancing his sister, girlfriend and her family.
The writing for this show is fantastic, the plot is full of twists and turns which keep surprise and suspense at all times. It can get a little slow at times, while the characters are catching up on areas of the plot which the viewer is already aware of, but these moments are short and soon speed back up to the expected pace. Many times I watched multiple episodes when originally intending to watch just the one due to the episode cliffhangers leaving me no choice but to keep watching.
Michael C Hall's portrayal of the socially awkward and emotionless Dexter Morgan is fascinating, and truly believable, and really supports the feel of the series. He is also joined by multiple talents on the cast, no characters seem flat or meaningless. The score is also brilliant, from the memorable intro scene throughout, actively adding to the video in the way more and more shows nowadays seem to miss.
A friend introduced me to Dexter a couple of months ago and immediately I loved this show and was addicted to finding out what would happen next. I have quite a few DVD boxsets, and I knew Dexter would have to be added to it soon, so after watching a couple of episodes and finding myself hooked I bought the Season 1 boxset on Amazon for around £10. I'm really glad I did as Dexter has put itself in my Top Ten Shows List. It;s based upon the books by Jeffrey Lindsay (which I'm currently reading and love even though I've watched the show)
There are so many crime shows about, and while I also am a regular watcher of CSI and Criminal Minds type of shows, they all do get quite samey after a while. Although Dexter is a crime show, it is from a totally different perspective. While Dexter works for the police, he is also a serial killer, and although you technically should hate him, you just can't, because he's not a killer of innocent people, but a killer of other serial killers! As the series goes on, you'll find you just can't hate him, because what he's doing just ends up seeming like its a good thing.
Dexter is a blood spatter analyst with Miami Metro Police, and to most people, he seems like an ordinary guy who is quick witted and great at solving problems within the police department. His gift of analysing a crime scenes blood stains are one of his best features and help solve many cases, however they also lead him to some of his "victims". Joining him in his work with Miami Metro Police is Debra, his sister, who knows nothing of his "Dark Passenger" and sometimes seems quite jealous of Dexter's ability to solve murders and think of things no one would ever have (even though this is just due to the fact that he also can think like a murderer). He also has his partner, Rita who has two kids Cody and Ester, who is sweet and always smiling even though shes faced a bad past and like Debra, knows nothing of his secret and he intends to keep it that way for both of them.
Dexter feels no emotion, and this probably what makes him great at what he does. Throughout the series, we often see him converse with Harry, his father who has passed away but knew of his secret and trained him using "The Code" to only kill those who deserve to be punished. Usually, when he is talking to Harry it shows the struggle Dexter faces to balance his "Dark Passenger" and his ordinary life. These conversations are usually a great insight in to Dexter himself, and the two together are great actors and have made some of my favourite scenes within televsion.
As the series progresses, a new serial killer hits Miami and becomes interested in Dexter. He sends him clues throughout all the episodes, either through the murders or directly to him. At the end of every episode, it seems like we are always left with a cliffhanger about what will happen next. Will Dexter get caught? Will he ever find the Ice Truck Killer? Do we ever find out why he has to kill? How does the Ice Truck Killer know what he does?
The series is brilliantly directed from the title sequence to the ending of the episode. The opening sequence guides us through an everyday morning routine for Dexter with basically the whole thing having metaphors for his secret life and his normal life colliding e.g. when Dexter awakes he kills a mosquito on his arm and smiles. Then throughout the episodes, the locations the series shot in are always so simple yet effective. Nothing is ever rushed in Dexter, which makes for episodes that just flow.
The acting is great in Dexter, and Michael C Hall, really makes his character shine through. With his calm and simple voice that he uses when describing humans as he sees them or killing them, you see Dexter for who he is and how he's quite emotionless yet you can't help but sympathise with how he thinks. The support cast are great at showing how Dexter can hide his "Dark Passenger" in front of people, and all the characters mesh together quite well making their performances believable.
The storyline never gets boring or dull, as there are so many plots that fit together with so many twists and turns that something is always going on. You are constantly wondering if Dexter will ever be found out, how his relationships will last, and in this season, who is the Ice Truck Killer? As soon as you watch into the first seasons, you will want to watch them all, just to find out the answers to all these questions! Dexter has definitely been well researched as the scientific evidence they provide for both the murder scenes and a serial killers mindset don't seem too far out there and believable.
Overall, Dexter is a great show that almost everyone will love (well..except kids!). It has just the right amount of drama meets crime meets romance, so there is always something to keep you interested. Balanced with great acting and storylines, Dexter never dissapoints and will have you dying to know what happens next. Even though there aren't that many suprises when you rewatch Dexter, the way it is shot is just so great, you won't mind!
Dexter is one of those rays of sunshine within a cluttered mess of current Television Crime themed shows. It gives you an in depth look into Dexter, a man who on description you should hate, but with each passing episode you become more and more supportive of his cause. The show is based on Jeff Lindsays Darkly Dreaming Dexter and is one of the best shows to grace out television boxes for a very long time.
The series follows Dexter Morgan, a blood spatter analyst for Miami Metro Police Department. His unique skill of reading blood patterns helps lock away some rather fiendish characters, but this 'gift' you will soon realise is key to his greatest secret. He is closely followed by his foster sister Debra who despite somehow managing to climb the ranks of Miami Metro with imperative ease is in fact a pretty dim cop who has little imagination and most all of her decisions are either based on her brothers views or someone else's. He also has a companion of sorts, the lovely Rita, a woman who has gone through hell on earth and yet has come out smiling on the other side.
From the outset Dexter is your average everyday cop, helps save lives, goes home to a beautiful girl and enjoys going out on his boat feeling the ocean breeze ruffling his hair. You will quickly learn there is a lot more than meets the eye when it comes to Dexter Morgan. Dexter is in fact a serial killer, with motives and reasoning. He preys on those who have done wrong and shows them what it feels like to get a taste of their own medicine. He is not your average killer either for Dexter has no emotion; he feels nothing and has to balance his 'Normal' life with his alter ego. Things soon change when a new serial killer hits centre stage at Miami. The infamously titled Ice Truck Killer gifts Dexter with a series of corpses all of which are clues to Dexter's traumatic and until now forgotten past.
As the series progresses he slowly begins to realise why he has to kill and why he feels nothing. The key to this show is the show putting the viewer basically behind the eyes of a killer and what's more getting you to like it. Despite knowing that he is murdering a countless amount of people and even with the curse of having no emotion you would think it hard to relate to such a character. Yet as you watch him stumble through life you have a certain admiration towards his ability to fake every known human emotion. You'll watch him pretend to be happy and sad with imperative ease or at least well enough to get by, then you'll chuckle to yourself as you watch poor Dexter attempt to comfort his girlfriend despite not having a clue what to do in such a situation.
You sympathise with the killer for being alone and despite a number of colleagues calling themselves his 'friend' he still is unsure what constitutes being a friend much like his dilemmas with female relationships. As the series progresses you'll begin to learn why Dexter feels nothing. What's more amazing is that this admiration for a known killer only grows as his past is uncovered. Through the shows expletive narrative you know every thought, urge and decision Dexter makes on his way to learning the truth. The main plot behind the show is the battle, should I say relationship between Dexter and the infamous Ice Truck Killer. There are other sub-plots, but all minor and barely memorable in comparison to the Ice Truck Killer who kills prostitutes and attempts to turn there body's into art, not for the average Joe, but for Dexter, herein lies the clue to his past.
Michael C Hall does an above exemplary job of playing Dexter, I cannot think of a more perfectly cast part. He plays the role with a nice balance of everyday humour towards human emotions and at the same time a certain disgust for the way people go about their lives. He almost makes the art of cutting up someone's body acceptable, a very hard feat to pull off Indeed. The one weakness to Dexter is his sister, as mentioned before she seems to be a pretty useless cop, almost a puppet or copycat. What's more Jennifer Carpenter isn't that good, her Stallone like mouth get's annoying after one episode and like every other part she plays all she can do it seems is yell very loudly and throw in a few random curse words. The fact that she's meant to be a cop who within an episode is promoted to homicide (because of Dexter), and yet she couldn't solve a game of Cluedo let alone catch a serial killer.
On the upside Sgt Dokes is the perfect colleague, he may be rude, but the fact that he simply 'knows' that there's something wrong with Dexter makes their work relationship intriguing to say the least. Also Julie Benz does a great job of playing Rita, Dexter's companion, the two play off each other perfectly and it will give you a giggle watching Dexter attempting to 'seduce' Rita, with varying results.
Really though the entire series is carried by Hall from start through to finish, he is the key to Dexter and why it is just that good. As for the camera work it will amaze you. Scenes are generally very white which makes for a very clean looking show, to add when blood starts entering the equation it stands out all the more due to the sublime videography. Scenes are stitched together with seamless ease and each scene leads into the next with the viewer never wondering what's going on. The audio is also a feast for the ears, there is a great mix of music, from dark classical concertos too happy bubbly themes playing in the background whilst Dexter is getting to grips with a screwdriver and a victim's head. The bubbly music doesn't ruin the atmosphere of Dexter's murders, if anything a hint of irony will come over you as he starts carving up his prey.
By the time you've reached the final episode I guarantee you'll be itching to start season two, Dexter is a show that will have you wanting to smash through every episode in a single night. It truly is that good; Michael Hall is the perfect serial killer with a conscious.
An excellent plot, a devilish number of twists and some immersive episodes makes Dexter a must for anyone. The show is a perfect mix of drama, action, comedy and thriller. It puts you behind the eyes and ears of a serial killer and does the wonderful job of making you like Dexter's company, despite knowing it's wrong you'll root for him when he slips up, you'll agree with his motives, you'll cry with him when he realises the truth about his past and you'll be beside Rita as she comforts him. It is the most immersive show to hit TV's in an extremely long time.Dexter Season 1
Having not seen Dexter before until a few weeks ago my friend lent me season one which i watched over one weekend and loved.
Dexter (the charactor) is an anti hero of sorts and without revealing too much plot is a serial killer who only kills bad guys. Ususally crime shows are not my thing but i enjoy the dark humour that is portrayed in Dexter. I always root for Dexter when he is in a sticky situation and love the charactor development that is portrayed for each actor in the show. I feel for Dexter some what as he has a lot to juggle in his life with the main issue keeping his big secret from the people closest to him - his adoptive sister, his girlfriend, his colleagues. I like the way Dexter things as he applys what everyday people think to a serial kill to take out a bad guy and he is good at it!
Season 1 revolves around 'The Ice Truck Killer' who is killing prostitutes around the Miami area leaving the police baffled, the episode guide is as follows:
3) Popping Cherry
4) Let's Give the Boy a Hand
5) Love American Style
6) Return to Sender
7) Circle of Friends
8) Shrink Wrap
9) Father Know's Best
10) Seeing Red
11) Truth Be Told
12) Born Free
I felt the first couple of episodes were a bit slow as i was not really sure what to expect but as the season progresses i found myself wanting to watch the next episode straight away to find out what happens. There are some great twists in the season which i genuinely did not see coming.
Looking forward to season 2 and hope it matches season 1.
Living out in Japan, I'm often on the lookout for a decent TV series to rent for a few days entertainment. I heard about Dexter from a review of the second series I read on here, and was pleased to find my local video shop had the first four seasons. It took four days for the girlfriend and me to watch the entire first series so if it keeps up the standard expect to see reviews of the other series soon.
Dexter is unlike anything I've ever watched in terms of plotline. Dexter Morgan, the central character is a blood splatter expert working for Miami PD by day and a serial killer by night. He followed what is called the "rule of Harry", set down by his adopted father, in which he only kills people who really deserves it, and he does it in a way which leaves no evidence behind.
As a (struggling) writer myself (yeah I know, I mention it every time ...) I really appreciate dramas like this. It's all about the story with special effects and the rest pushed to the side. In Dexter we have an interesting situation, a good, intriguing plot and a number of great characters.
I've never seen any of the actors before so I won't refer to them by name. However, I'll give a short description of the main characters.
Dexter is the obviously the central character, and narrates the series through voiceovers which tell us what he's thinking. He has a unique perspective on every situation, seeing it not from a moralistic point of view but from that of someone who is emotionally empty.
Debra Morgan is his adopted sister, a policewoman. She is cute but can only be described as awkward and dorky. She is struggling to get accepted in the police department, particularly by Maria, her boss, who is disliked by most of her team but has a soft spot for Dexter. Tough, ex-miltary detective James has a soft spot for her (and for Deb) but has a real suspicion of Dexter. Other characters include Angel, a Latino with marital problems, Vince, another forensics guy with a thing for Deb, and Rita, Dexter's girlfriend, the ex-wife of a crackhead.
The whole series follows the team as they attempt to catch the "Ice Truck Killer", someone who seems to be leaving clues for Dexter along the way. There are various subplots and developments between the characters as it builds up towards a dramatic conclusion.
I really enjoyed this series, and hope that Series 2 can live up to it. I've heard that it does - which would make a change as most US dramas of recent years that I've seen, such as 24, Lost, and Prison Break have all fallen away after a great first season. The strength here is in the writing and the character development. The plot is intelligent and keeps you guessing, with enough secrets uncovered along the way to keep you interested. Dexter, constantly questioning himself, really impresses as a character while the conflict between him and the other characters (and between them) makes for great viewing. The overall tone is one of dark humour, and with some swearing, a little violence and a bit of blood (it's about a serial killer after all) it is certainly not for young kids.
Dexter, a drama which originally aired in America is about a blood analyst named Dexter, who at night becomes a serial killer, or similarly, a vigilante. The first season aired in 2006, and since the very first series I have been a fan of this excellently acted, horror and mysteriously dark drama. I won't ruin the general plot for those who have never seen the show, but it basically evolves around Dexter, who suffered a traumatic experience when he was younger, and follows a code ('Harrys code') when killing men who have committed horrifying crimes such as murder and rape.
Dexter is very dark, and rather gruesome, but it is, in my opinion the genius story lines, the amazing acting and the gripping tension which appeals to the audience, making it a loved drama by many people, including myself and many of my friends.
Now, whilst this review is about the Series 1 box set, I would like to add that I have watched all series up to series 5 so far, and if I was to recommend which series to watch, I would watch them all apart from Series 3. Series 3 in my opinion was very slow, dull, and seemed to lack the ingredients which the other series have to make it so successful.
Anyway, more about series one:
This series aired from 1st October 2006 until December 17th 2006. Dexter's main focus is of the 'Ice truck killer', a man who murders and cuts up prostitutes' bodies after befriending them. As the series progresses, the audience notices Dexter's intriguing interest in the 'Ice truck killer', the amount of murders increases, the tension reaches its highest peak as the search for the killer escalates, until Dexter realises who the killer is, and deals with the killer in a horrific style. As well as being gripped with the murder cases and being engaged with Dexter's mind and sociopathic thoughts, the audience also begin to learn more about other characters, including Dexter's sister Debra Morgan who also works for Metro Miami Police Department (where Dexter is a blood analyst) and the troubled life of Rita, Dexter's girlfriend.
As far as the box set goes, series 1 is split into 2 boxes and 4 discs, all which give
the episode title and a small description of the episode's plot. On each disk is a picture of Dexter, in his typical serial killer or work clothes, striking an innocent yet deadly pose. There is also logos, such as 'showtime' to display what channel Dexter aired from. The writing style is in a big bold red, to symbolise blood. The immediate impression from looking at the box set is 'yep, this is a dark, bloody drama'.
The acting is as expected, absolutely stunning. the audience can clearly see the focus Michael C. Hall (Dexter) has to appear not only as a sociopath vigilante, but a level-headed, regular guy with a regular occupation.
Similarly, Jennifer Carpenter, as Debra Morgan, becomes in my opinion a very likeable character due to her ability to perform as a clever yet naive, ambitious individual.
Rita, is also played superbly as the gentle, girlfriend, which I think makes her likeable due to her juxtaposition with Dexter who is virtually the opposite of her.
The special effects:
Incredible. The blood looks real, The deaths look fairly scary and with the great acting they do not look too fake.
Dexter has generally had very positive reception, and with it going into its now sixth series, it is no surprise that Dexter has proven to be a very successful hit drama which appeals to teens who like a bit of gore and adults who like an interesting, suspenseful and completely unpredictable drama.
I personally think that Dexter is one of the best dramas to be aired on TV. It just has the perfect blend of suspense, horror, thrill and romance and every time I watch Dexter I am completely gripped. I would definitely recommend this show to anybody excluding children.
Price for Series 1 Box set can be found online or in music/gaming stores for as little as £10 now which in my opinion is an absolute bargain, however, I would probably recommend buying other box sets too for a cheaper deal. For example, buying seasons 1-3 as a box set can be found for as little as £25 which is a great deal.
Dexter Morgan (Michael C Hall) is the sociopathic adopted son of an astute and focused Miami police officer, now deceased. His day job is working in forensics at the Miami Police Department, specializing in blood splatter analysis. By night he hunts down and carefully dispatches murderers who otherwise would have escaped justice. The girl who grew up as his sister, Debra (Jennifer Carpenter) works in the same police department as him, in vice, but with strong aspirations towards the homicide division. The same department is also occupied by several other complex characters. An officious and strong headed lieutenant (Lauren Velez) who has unsettled relationships with her superiors and varied obvious emotional attachments to her subordinates; a sergeant (Erik King) who has strong suspicions about Dexter and a dark past of his own; a detective (David Zayas) who is in denial over the break-up of his marriage and a forensics investigator who has small qualms about admitting his obsession with kinky sex. Season one sees this dysfunctional police department take on the infamous Ice Truck Killer, a serial killer who taunts the police with the bloodless remains of his victims carefully arranged. However, Dexter has deeper problems as he does his best to hide his darker side from his girlfriend and protect her and her children from her abusive former-drug addict husband who returns from prison. Worse still, the Ice Truck Killer knows Dexter's secret double life and chooses to use the murders to play a game...
Dexter is a delicious juxtaposition of the everyday with the abnormal. This is reflected in the series' very clever opening titles that take us through Dexter's "average Joe" morning ritual whilst constantly hinting at his two lives with the use of blood references - Dexter awakes to kill a hungry mosquito on his arm, then he cuts himself shaving, there is a close up on his fried pork, we see a splash of ketchup on his egg, the camera lingers over the reddish brown of the coffee and, of course, his breakfast fruit juice has to be squeezed from a blood orange. Actually food is also a regular occurrence throughout Dexter. Try counting the number of scenes in an episode that has an item of food or beverage in it. Perhaps it has something to do with the lives of US cops - as whole catering companies seem to be called in to set up portable donut snack bars at murder scenes - or it is there to indicate compulsion.
The episodes seem as meticulously plotted as the crimes committed by Dexter or his Ice Truck Killer nemesis. Plot points start in one episode and then are given a rest only to appear again to be concluded a few episodes on. All the way through we are guided by the calm and controlled narration of Dexter Morgan, as he examines himself and those around him. Taking the Alfred Hitchcock concept further in creating empathy for the main murderer, you cannot help but like Dexter and root for him. The plot device of making his victims irredeemable killers helps ease your conscience, but at the same time we are not kidded that Dexter is a conditioned and natural serial killer. Only the code fashioned and drummed into him by his adopted father stops Dexter from killing people other than those who deserve it. Dexter comes across as detached from other humans and tells us that his interaction with anyone other than those he kills is merely a front. However, as the season develops so does Dexter, showing that his personality has far more complexity than first seemed apparent.
This is what makes the series so original and interesting, but what really puts it up the top for me is the time it takes from the very beginning with the other characters. Not one of them is a stereotype or a two dimensional device. Outside of the cast that inhabit Miami PD, any character that lasts for more than one episode comes across as a believably human individual. This might have something to do with the series theme of duality. So, even the violent rapist husband of Rita's is a genuinely caring and loving father. Dexter's probing personality uncovers flaws and surprising strengths in all his contemporaries. His calm and composed voice over comes across as a voyeur looking at another species as he finds difficulty empathizing with emotions, but at the same time he cannot help but see reflections of himself in everyone from his closest friends to the criminals he dispatches.
The 12 episode series is compulsive viewing and I would say that most who enjoy the first few episodes will find it hard not pig out on as many episodes as time permits. At the time of writing and recent reflection I find very little at a miss with the first series. There isn't a single weak cast member, including the child actors, and the story never sags given the great way it staggers and links multiple new sub-plots. It is well-researched both from the forensic scientific perspective and in its insight into the psychology of the serial killer. The only thing I really feared was that dramatic stakes were set so high for the season climax that I couldn't see how it could credibly keep the momentum for the next season.
My only real grudge with the DVD set is that it is completely devoid of any extras. This is a shame given the huge critical and commercial success the show has enjoyed. However, I am happy to say this is more than compensated in the Season 2 box set, but that is another review...
Not many shows have a truly original concept many subscribe to a ready made style and change minor aesthetic features and call it original. But I can honestly say that Dexter is original and brilliant.
Watching the title sequence you learn everything you need to about Dexter. He's methodical, smart, stuck in routines yet there's something very primal lurking underneath. The monologues from Dexter are brilliant at setting the scene and also giving a rationale to the audience at why he's doing the things he does.
The actors are all brilliant supporting and regulars are all perfect for their roles. The writing is dark, gritty and compelling. The music is awesome it fits so well it's unreal; many scenes are improved immeasurably by the music.
The DVD contains all the episodes which are longer than your average US show at around 55mins compared to 42mins. Unfortunately the series are shorter than I'd like at 12 episodes.
This DVD is cheap and well worth the money for a funny, smart and original show.
This is a review of Series one of Dexter the programme, not the actual DVD.
Dexter was recommended to us by a family member but we missed the first few episodes, so we are just now watching the first season on FX as it is being repeated, but it is a great show, and I think it's now on it's 5th season, so I am hoping to watch them all on repeat, but may end up buying the box sets if not.
There are 12 episodes in season one.
The show is based around a character called Dexter obviously, played by Michael C. Hall who was also in the show Six Feet Under.
In the very first episode Dexter is introduced and his story is told. He works for Miami police department as a blood spatter expert, but he also has a dark secret, which you do learn about in the first episode and you get an insight into how him mind works. The first episode also introduces the few people that Dexter actually interacts with. Most of these people are his colleagues including his sister Debra who also works for the police. Dexter does have a girlfriend called Rita but it is blindingly obvious he is with her as a cover to make him look a bit more normal.
As the season progresses you learn more about Dexter's character and his past, and how his Dad (who fostered him and Debra) had a huge hand in helping him hide his secret. Dexter is the sort of character that you know you shouldn't like and want to do well, but you do, the programme is made in a brilliant way that makes you sympathise with him, and sort of agree with what he does.
The main story line of the first season is about a man called the ice truck killer, who is a serial killer that the police department are trying to catch, Dexter has his own little theories and insights into the case and the whole scenario turns out to be very interesting.
I would say that the show can sometimes be a bit gory, but it's not too bad, and it's not constant, and the story is so different and interesting it's really worth putting up with.
This is a great show, and I would really recommend it, it's so different and also it's not predictable, which is good for this type of show. A great watch.
Some American programmes annoy me and I can't stand watching them but this is most deffinately not one of those!
I noticed adverts on the FX channel that they were going to run the whole of the first and second series again and as I had heard such good things about it my other half and I had planned to watch it but on the first night he went off as he had things to do and I sat and watched alone only to shout (and I do mean literally) when the episode finished.
As my other half hadn't seen the episode with me and because we hate being tied to watching something every week we decided to buy the first series and watch an episode when the fancy took us.
We bought it on Amazon for just over a tenner, bargain!
Well, the first weekend we had it (I should point out that it arrived on the Friday) we watched the first three!
This is a compelling series about a serial killer that uses his urges to kill in the 'right' way. He kills bad people to make the world a better place. Can killing ever be a good thing?
Played by Michael C. Hall, Dexter Morgan is a deep and strange man who works by day as a blood expert with the Miami police department. At night he kills!
There is plenty of story and character development through the series. We learn how he bacame so adept at what he does and why and how he decides who to kill and when. His relationship with Rita his girlfriend and his sister Debra are interesting and as you have an almost constant narative from Dexter it explains things about him and the way he feels.
Think CSI meets Saw without the gory scenes. For a programme all about murder there isn't stomach churning scenes of gore all the time, if anything it could have done with more!
I highly recommend this to anyone and I am about to buy series 2 as we cannot wait to get into it again!
If you would be sickened by the sight of Clingfilm-wrapped humans being mutilated, as, I think we can agree, most people would be, then this may not be the series for you. Fortunately though, these scenes, which occur less frequently as the series progresses, only form a minor part of the whole plot, and said scenes are actually not too graphic. However, if, like me, you're put off after the first 2 episodes by the serial killer element, keep persevering, as this is in actual fact a great series.
The character who gives his name to the series, played by Michael C. Hall, works as a blood spatter analyst for the Miami police department, but is a serial killer on the side. Despite his tendencies towards a solitary existence, however, he realises he needs to appear 'normal' and so he has a girlfriend and tries hard to imitate normal human behaviour. Having said this, he has purposely chosen a girlfriend who's a bit of an emotional wreck because she's less likely to want to get close to him quickly, or to have sex with him- he mentions early on that whenever he has had sex with a woman in the past, this is the point where she realises he's empty inside and breaks up with him.
The interesting thing about this series, and what sets it above others of its genre, is that it isn't purely a police drama, nor is it fly-on-the-wall style dissection (metaphorical this time!) of one particular character, at the expense of all else, but a gripping mix of the two. The series not only sees Dexter's character develop from a sketchy outline into a fully-rendered portrait, but it is also a cop show of the highest calibre.
There is a so-called 'ice truck killer' on the loose who drains women's blood and then leaves one or two of their body parts in obvious places for the Miami police department to find. It quickly becomes evident that that this ice truck killer has an intimate knowledge of Dexter and is playing some kind of a game with him, but it isn't clear who he is or why he would be doing this. Although Dexter manages to keep his personal involvement a secret from his colleagues, his sister, Debra, determined to break into the world of homicide, gets onto his scent, determined to prove her worth.
Aside from Michael C. Hall, Julie Benz and Jennifer Carpenter- Dexter Morgan, Rita Bennett (Dexter's girlfriend) and Debra Morgan respectively, who are all deserving of the highest praise for their acting abilities, there are a wealth of supporting characters, many of whom are also well-developed, with personal lives, achievements and fears of their own.
This is really what makes Dexter such a great series- I would say that this is what turns it from a '24' into a 'Lost.' In '24' only 3 of the characters are developed at all, and this terminal lack of characterisation means that there is really only one plot strand, which quickly becomes tedious and virtually unwatchable. 'Lost', on the other hand, kept me gripped for series after series, due in part to its excellent characterisation and the in depth background development of several key characters. Dexter definitely veers towards the second of these descriptions.
Michael C. Hall, however, deserves an extra special mention for his role as the main character, as he portrays perfectly Dexter's ice-cold killer instinct, yet extreme vulnerability and lack of understanding for the world around him.
It is also some very talented writing on the part of a set of various script writers that creates a personality that is at once repellent yet also charming, appealing and highly likeable. I found myself feeling slightly guilty for actually liking Dexter, but he comes across as a very morally ambiguous character, rather than one who is out and out bad. Like anyone else in the world, he can do some terrible things, and he has his foibles, but he can also be kind-hearted and generous, and this is what makes him so real and so believable on screen.
The only thing that concerns me slightly after having watched series one is that the story now has nowhere to go. It is really a perfectly formed microcosm all on its own, in terms of character development and plot. However, I sincerely hope the writers do find a new route to go down, and will be very interested to see where season two ends up.
Overall, this is a series encompassing action, the odd bit of horror and plenty of black humour, mixed in with a sizeable dollop of Miami-Cuban culture, including the language and music. Makes for a great soundtrack.
** This is a review of Series One rather than the DVD itself **
** Synopsis **
Dexter Morgan, played by the talented Michael C Hall, is a thirty-something forensics expert who works for a Miami police force, where he is able to put his specialisation, blood-spatter profiling, to good use. So far so normal. What makes Dexter a rather unusual character is the fact that, when not helping the police catch murderers, he is a serial killer himself. Rescued from a crime scene at the age of 3 and adopted by a kindly policeman, Harry, Dexter has always known there was something different about him. As a teenager he managed to gain some sort of control over his persistent urges to kill, thanks to Harry's loving advice and commitment to help him. Now Dexter only kills people who deserve it - and thanks to his scientific training, he's able to cover his tracks. When Harry died, Dexter's secret died with him and now there is nobody who is aware of Dexter's double life... or is there?
Season One follows Dexter's journey of discovery as he tries to put together the pieces of his past: what happened to him as a young child to make him a murderer, and why did Harry make it so difficult for him to find out the truth? At the same time, Dexter's colleagues are trying to solve a series of fiendish homicides carried out by a serial killer who is nicknamed "the Ice Truck Killer" due to his predilection for cutting up and freezing his victims' body parts. As Dexter helps the police track down the mystery murderer he begins to think that the Ice Truck Killer is trying to communicate with him and maybe even knows his secret. But what does the mysterious killer want from Dexter, and how can our hero make sure that his colleagues never find out about his own extra-curricular activities?
** My opinion **
This series was absolutely gripping from beginning to end. Each of the 12 one-hour episodes follows a similar pattern, with the police investigating a new murder and Dexter (usually) carrying out his own meticulously-executed murder after a work - a human trafficker here, a hit-and-run driver there. The plot is full of twists and mystery. Although I did work out fairly early on who the Ice Truck Killer was, this didn't prevent me enjoying every episode right up until the end. The mystery of Dexter's background was less obvious and kept me guessing until the final scenes.
This is a violent show, and anyone who doesn't like the sight of blood probably shouldn't bother watching it, but I never found the gory scenes gratuitous - they were all relevant to the plot. If anything, it's the less gory scenes that are more chilling. Dexter carries out his own killings with an almost medical precision, always following the same procedure and using the same highly-tuned instruments. It's easy to feel the terror of his victims and feel sorry for them, no matter how much we might think they deserve their fate.
Probably the most amazing feat that the creators of the programme achieved was to make Dexter a wholly likable and sympathetic character despite the fact that he's also a killer. There is a lot of aside narration by Dexter; he tells us he is something of a misanthrope and doesn't experience feelings and emotions the way 'normal' people do. For example, he specifically seeks out an emotionally damaged girlfriend, Rita, so that he won't have to try and get too close to her but can still appear socially normal by being in a relationship.
The characters are all well-drawn and the dialogue believable; there is chemistry between Hall and Julie Benz, who plays Rita, as well as Jennifer Carpenter, who plays his sister Deb, an up-and-coming homicide detective (and Hall's wife in real life). Dexter's colleagues are also very well portrayed, and their characters are integral to the main plot and the smaller sub-plots revolving around office politics: from the menacing Sergeant Doakes, who seems to know there's something not quite right with Dexter; to the headstrong bully and head of division Maria Laguerta, and the constantly lovelorn detective Angel Batista, who's obsessed with "la pasion", they are all perfectly cast. Even the bit-part actors do a great job.
Quite unbelievably, considering the topic of the series, there is also a strong current of humour running through the episodes. You only need to look at the opening sequence to see the most obvious evidence of this: Dexter prepares his breakfast and gets ready for work, serial (or should that be cereal?) killer-style.
The only negative things I can think to say about Dexter are: 1) The little boy who plays Rita's son Cody is very wooden. I know this makes me sound really picky as he can't be more than five years old, but still, every scene with him reminds me that what I was watching isn't real. 2) There are several scenes where characters speak Spanish, especially the Cuban characters, who often start a sentence in English and finish in Spanish. Apparently this is the way some people talk in Miami, and of course that should be included in the series to make it true to life, but I think there should be English subtitles when the Spanish dialogue lasts for more than a sentence. The accent is very different to European Spanish, so much so that I even know people from Spain who don't always catch what's being said. 3) I don't want to give anything away, so I'll just say there's a twist in the plot near the end involving a shoe that I found very unlikely!
In the grand scheme of things, though, these are minor niggles which didn't really spoil my enjoyment of what is a fast-paced, thrilling and absorbing crime show. Now I'm off to get stuck in to Series 2...
If you want to give your eyes a real treat I would recommend watching the whole Dexter series up to date but you'll need to start somewhere so Series 1 would be a great start. My friends made me watch one episode and that was it I was hooked and just can't get enough of it. I now have to attend monthly support groups and watch repeats to keep my addiction under control. We even have have a Dexter club where we get together to watch new episodes as and when they come out. I know what You're are thinking, NERD!
Dexter is an American serial crime drama series developed by James Manos, Jr. The show is based on characters created by Jeff Lindsay for his series of Dexter novels. The series is set in Miami and revolves around the life of a blood spatter analyst who works for the Miami Metro Police department and did I mention he just happen to be a serial killer.
Dexter is your classic bachelor who is a cool character and quite private as a person. He has a good reponsible job which he seems to enjoy. Dexter hides a secret, he hungers the buzz of a kill. As a youngster his adoptive father new that he had this hunger and turned it into a postitve by training him to kill those "who deserved it",mainly other killers that seem to be getting away with their crimes.
Let me start by saying "My name is Taz and I'm a Dexterholic". So you can see where this one is going and if you haven't guessed it, I'm a big fan. Firstly lets begin with the concept of a serial killer who in all sense of the word is a normal guy who doesn't fit the profile of a serial killer. Let's go one futher, he works for the police and so does his sister and so did his adoptive dad. Crazy isn't it? You haven't heard nothing yet. This guys is the perfect killer because he knows how to leave a crime scene and if a murder is discovered he is normally involved in the investigation.
What makes it even more entertaining is watching this guy balance a normal life around being a serial killer and how he convinces all those around him that he is just your normal Joe. They've done such a great job creating this original idea and it's full of suspense, drama, gore, action and very witty and sharp dialogue. In fact you could say it's also a dark comedy. The cherry on top of this cake is the character Dexter played superbly by Michael C. Hall. Who they got to play this lead character would make or break this series and luckily their choice was solid. Dexter is a likable character and you find yourself supporting him and not wanting him to get caught because in your eyes he is not bad, he is a hero. So let us get this right they've managed to turn the villain into a hero. It is such an amazing and bold idea that luckily works with the majority of audiences.
Dexter is supported by an excellent cast like Debra Morgan (who is his real life wife) and Julie Benz plays Dexter's wife Rita Bennett Morgan. We've also got Lauren Vélez as Lt. Maria LaGuerta, Dexter's supervisor and David Zayas as the friendly Detective, Sergeant Angel Batista, and C.S. Lee as the perverted lab tech Vince Masuka. When it is all put together this just works on so many levels don't ask me why, it just does.