‘Dexter’ 6.01 Recap: “This Is No Amateur”

Showtime’s most popular series returned this past Sunday. As ‘Dexter’ enters its sixth season, the character finds himself searching for meaning in life, and maybe a belief in God. Meanwhile, we find that serial killer life is still flourishing in the Sunshine State.

Seriously, how many serial killers can one small section of a state have? Yes, I realize that this is Florida, but each season of Dexter has featured its own serial killing bad guy that Dexter has had to match wits against. With the introduction of the deadly duo of Travis Marshall (Colin Hanks) and Professor Gellar (Edward James Olmos), we now have a team of crazies who are going around chopping people up. We don’t know their names yet (I pulled those character names from IMDb), but we do know that they’re religious fanatics. Quoting Biblical passages, Gellar seems to be grooming young Marshall for something big. Killing a fruit stand vendor, cutting out his entrails and filling the empty cavity with baby water snakes is only the beginning. Yeah, things are already getting weird.

Last season seemed to push the reset button on the show, with no one being the wiser about Dexter’s true intentions or what he does with his nights. Everyone close to Dexter lives in a world of blissful ignorance. In ‘Those Kinds of Things’, Dexter has found a new drive and zeroes in on an old high school classmate who he believes killed his own wife and then made it look like a suicide. Ah, the Dexter of old is back, dispensing vigilante justice, but only after he gathers the proof he needs to make sure he’s right. That’s why Dexter has to revisit his old high school for his twenty-year reunion. Hopefully, he can piece together the evidence, maybe get a DNA sample and match it to the blood found under the deceased wife’s fingernails.

As always, Dexter’s inner monologue is the subdued star of the show. Dexter narrates his feelings about returning to school in such succinct, hilarious terms: “High school. A small world unto itself, combining all the warmest elements of a federal work camp with those of a Third World poultry farm. It’s a miracle I graduated without killing anyone.” Doesn’t that perfectly describe high school for everyone?

As for the other characters, we find that Masuka is teaching a class at the local college and is looking for a new intern. When the smartest guy can’t actually handle the grizzly nature of the crime scenes, Masuka is forced to hire the runner-up, the girl with nice breasts.

Deb is content where she’s at, but everything is going to change for her, drastically. Quinn tries to propose to her. Near the end of the episode, Deb and Quinn are attacked at a restaurant by a nutbag who starts shooting up the place. This is for sure going to factor into the story, as Deb takes the shooter down, hero-style. No doubt she’ll move into the vacant Lieutenant position left by LaGuerta, who has now been made Captain. Angel thinks he has the Lieutenant position locked down, but after Deb’s heroics, it’s obvious that she’s going to get the job.

It’s also clear that the overriding theme of this season is going to be religion and Dexter’s quest to find out if there’s anything to this “higher power” stuff he keeps hearing about. He feels that it’s a normal thing to go through in life, and would like Harrison to learn about religion and God at his new pre-school. However, when Dexter inevitably comes face-to-face with the religious murderers, I wonder if his views on the subject will change. Only time will tell.


  1. JoeRo

    I dug the first episode but I’m extremely concerned about the trajectory of this season’s storyline. It bears mentioning that the source material for the show, the alliteratively titled Dexter books, are terrible, and yet somehow Showtime has managed to make a television series that transcends these awful awful books.

    That said, this season seems to be following, loosely so far, the third book “Dexter in the Dark”. This is worrisome for me because that book takes a detour from plausibility-land directly into bat-shit-crazy-town. In the book Dexter’s dark passenger is revealed to be a manifestation of an ancient evil entity. Yup, it’s about monsters, and demons, and all sorts of magical bullshit. While Admiral Adama’s ritualistic killings seem to be firmly rooted in the judeo-christian tradition, the parallels between this story – even at this early point – and the nonsense of “Dexter in the Dark” are very strong. I hope Showtime can pull this season off without resorting to the weapons grade bullshit seen in the third book, but if not I’ve got a bunch of sadface emoticons waiting in the wings for a later post.

    • Aaron Peck

      I only ever read, well listened to, the first “Dexter” book. I didn’t think it was horrible, but thought that the show was much, much better. Concerning the demon crap you talked about, yeah, I really hope it doesn’t go down that road. I don’t think it will. I think the show’s writers are too smart for that.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *