This post contains spoilers. And lots of ranting.
I know that Dexter has been over for almost a year, and I’ve effectively missed the series finale rage boat (you know, the one that got ripped to shreds after Dexter drove it into a HURRICANE?), but I’ve got some grievances to air.
Hannah– I still don’t see what bringing Hannah McKay back into the picture serve, other than being a convenient (if annoying and lazy) plot device. After Dexter and Deb patched things up, they needed some sort of conflict, and it came in the form of this man-hunt for Hannah. It also facilitated the ‘Argentina Plan.’
I never really bought that Dexter’s and Hannah’s love was as pure and true as it was made out to be. We’re supposed to believe this because Dexter says , constantly, “You’re the only person I can be myself around,” but let’s be honest, Dexter has made a lot of bad judgment calls when it comes to relationships. Remember Lila and Prado? I kept waiting for Hannah to show her true colors.
The only love interest I found believable in Dexter was Lumen. I was about as torn up as Dexter himself when she left. They should have brought her back instead of Hannah.
Deb– Even though Deb was my favorite character (not to mention the best-acted character), I would have been able to accept her death if she had been allowed to go down with a little dignity. Shot in action as collateral damage for one of Dexter’s schemes. It’s what her character deserved. There was nothing of value gained by having her survive the initial shooting then turn into a vegetable because of a blood clot. The exchange between her and Dexter at the hospital was just a re-hash of a previous scene, which was itself a rehash:
Dexter: How can I leave you like this? This is all my fault.
Debra: Don’t you blame yourself, even though it’s technically all your fault. Don’t you have a plane to catch? You need to be in Argentina with Hannah, my sworn enemy. Don’t worry- I’ll just be here coughing up blood and going through months of physical therapy without any family around to take care of me.
Dexter: Well, ok! If you insist!
Some people might claim that she needed to be brain-dead so that Dexter would have to disconnect her breathing tube. I don’t think this is the case- we all know Dexter is responsible for Deb’s demise. There was no need for him to literally kill her. The impromptu burial at sea would have been just as relevant and heart-wrenching if she had just bled to death after the Brain Surgeon shot her.
Too Many Shoe-horned characters: Let’s see: Elway, Marshal Clayton, Evelyn Vogel, Masuka’s daughter… Suddenly they were all just there, simply to plug up the plot-holes. Except for Masuka’s daughter. She was there for no reason at all. Apparently the cast didn’t include enough scantly covered boobs.
The Ending: They had two endings to choose from- just two! Everyone finds out about Dexter and he gets killed (possibly executed), or everyone finds out about Dexter and he gets away to lead a life elsewhere.
Notice how both of those options included the words ‘everyone finds out about Dexter’? Through eight seasons of this show, Dexter has prepared himself for the day he was found out, and so did we. I wanted to see how everyone reacted, who would be on his side and who would think he’s a monster. The writers denied us this.
Instead, we have the crappiest ending possible. I would have been ok with Dexter driving his boat off into the hurricane and killing himself because he thought he deserved it. It would be fitting for Dexter to end up where he had left so many of his victims.
But then they showed us the glimpse of him as a lumberjack. A lumberjack. The writers offer up that reasoning that Dexter has spent his life doing bad things, and doesn’t deserve to live happily ever after. Dexter has always wanted to connect with others, and so it’s the greatest punishment for him to spend the rest of his life thinking about what he’s done.
Seriously? We’re putting Dexter in a time-out? Like a three-year-old? That’s worse than all of his friends and family turning on him and hating him as he waits for the electric chair? Really?
I don’t buy that Dexter doesn’t deserve Happiness. The whole series has pivoted on this question: whether the good we do in the world can cancel out the bad. Dexter did the best he could with what he had been given, overcame obstacles most ‘good’ people wouldn’t in the same situation. Dexter saved more lives than he took, innocent lives. Doesn’t that deserve a little redemption? We’re made to believe so in the rest of the series, and then in the last ten minutes of the last episode, we’re supposed to buy that all of that isn’t true.
Also, how does Dexter sacrificing himself save Hannah and Harrison in any way? Hannah is now in Argentina, a wanted fugitive. She’s stuck with a child who isn’t her own. I never really believed that Hannah liked Harrison as much as she claimed. She always seemed like ‘dad’s girlfriend who tries too hard to be nice’ to me. The only real interaction we see between her and Harrison is before he took a spill on the treadmill, when he doesn’t listen to her. And we all know how that turned out.
I suppose I should have spotted this ending, since they seemed to be working so hard to set up the happily ever after scenario. Masuka gets a daughter, Quinn and Deb get back together, Jamie gets accepted into a great college, Harrison says he loves Hannah. It was all too neat. I should have seen it coming.
So, I’ve taken it upon myself to construct a new, better ending. It starts right after Dexter unhooks Deb from the ventilator and takes her onto his boat to go dump her into the ocean. It may be a little rough, but with the hunk of crap I had to work with, can you blame me?
Dexter Finale, Take 2
Dexter cradles Deb’s lifeless body over the roiling blue ocean. Dark storm clouds can be seen in the distance. He is crying like a baby.
Dexter: Oh, Deb! Why? Why did I hurt you like this with my evil, serial-killing ways? Deb… (He kisses her on the cheek, and whispers in her ear) I love you, Deb.
Dexter, still crying, lowers Deb’s shrouded body into the ocean. She drifts down below, out of sight, the sheet billowing around her like the wings of an angel. He stands, crying for a few moments.
Finally, he turns from the water, and starts to dial his cell phone, but a sputtering and splashing sound from the side of the boat makes him turn back.
Deb: Holy Franken-fuck…
Deb: Shit a brick and fuck me with it, jerk-face! What the motherfuck is the big idea?
Dexter reaches and pulls her back into the boat.
Dexter: but the doctor… she said you were brain-dead… I pulled your breathing tube… Deb, I killed you!
Deb: Well, it’s a motherfucking miracle, isn’t it?
Dexter: but how?
Deb: The first thing I remember is you kissing my cheek, and whispering ‘I love you.’ It took me a few minutes before I could move. I almost drowned, Dex! Hey- How’s that for a spell broken by true love’s kiss?
Dexter: The cold water probably revived you.
Deb: Oh, Dex. you were never able to see anything that wasn’t backed scientifically!
Dexter: So… what now?
Deb: Well, being shot and turning into a vegetable and all has given me a new view of life. I’m done stewing over whether I’m a good person or not. Life is a gift, you know?
Dexter: That’s great! I’ve had a revelation as well. Hannah’s love for me has replaced my need to kill.
Deb: You mean…?
Dexter: Yep. I’m not a serial killer any more. I guess I’ll have to find a new way to make the world a better place. Hey- I have an idea- since you’re living in the moment now, why don’t you move to Argentina with us?
Deb: You know, that’s not a half bad idea. I mean, I’ve always wanted to go the South America, and I don’t have any family here… oh, bacon-wrapped fuck on a stick. Quinn!
Dexter: What about him?
Deb: Well, we just had this whole thing where we decided we were gonna make it work…
Dexter: Well, gosh. Bring him along.
Deb: You know, that might not be a half bad idea. He’d be much more comfortable living with fugitives and killers. I don’t think he was really all that into the cop thing, to be honest. Let me just call him.
Dexter: Ok! I better call Hannah. They’re plane is about to board. (both dial phones)
Dexter: Hi! How’s it going?
Hannah: Oh, you just caught us. We’re about to board.
Dexter: Great! I can’t wait to meet up with you guys! Just a heads up- Deb is coming, and possibly her cop boyfriend.
Hannah: Oh, ok! (pause) Listen, Dexter. There’s something I wanted to tell you before we get to Argentina. It didn’t seem right to start our new life without you knowing…
Dexter: What is it, Hannah?
Hannah: That’s just it… I’m not actually Hannah. I’m Lumen.
Hannah: Yeah. After I left, I never stopped thinking about you. Minnesota was lame. I tried to come back, but you were so hung up on that Hannah chick that the only way I could get your attention was to get plastic surgery to look like her.
Dexter: That’s a lot of surgery. How did you afford that?
Hannah Lumen: My millionaire husband, Dexter. I married him just so I had enough money to change myself. For you.
Dexter: oh, that’s so sweet! And to be honest, I’m kind of glad. It was getting kind of hard to switch my plate with Hannah’s- I mean your- plate every time she-you- cooked. And you were always my favorite love interest.
Lumen: Oh, great! Listen, I gotta go, we’re boarding, but we’ll meet you in Buenos Aires in a few days. Oh! Did you want to talk to Harrison?
Dexter: No, that’s ok. I’m going to see you guys in a few days. I don’t have to tell Harrison I love him in a way that will haunt him for the rest of his life!
Lumen: Ok! bye! (Dexter hangs up the phone. Deb is also done talking to Quinn)
Deb: Good news! Quinn said he’d be glad to move to Argentina! (starts to look worried) But he’s going to find out about Hannah, and maybe you. Do you think that’s a problem?
Dexter: Naah. He was totally ok with the fact that I killed Oliver Saxxon with a ball point pen. While he was in police custody. On camera.
Dexter: It’s a long story. I’ll tell you later.
(They both stare off into the storm)
Deb: Hey, we should probably go before this hurricane destroys the boat and we die. Or become lumberjacks.
Dexter: You’re right! (he starts the boat, and they head to shore) So, what now?
Deb: I’ll have to quit the force. get plane tickets. but first…
Dexter: Steak and beer?
Deb: (nods) yeah. Steak and beer.
Dexter, Debra, and Quinn all meet Lumen and Harrison in Argentina where they all live off of the money Lumen got from her dead ex-husband. Dexter never feels the need to kill Again. Back at the station, everyone leads long, productive lives. They get raises after the murder-solve rate mysteriously triples. No one connects this with the fact that Deb and Dexter have moved away.
Ok, so it might need some work, but it made at least as much sense as the one they actually aired. Now the only problem is, what am I going to binge-watch on Netflix now? I’ve started the second season of Orange is the New Black, but somehow it’s not the same.