Review: Dexter - Season 6 / Director: Various / Teleplay: Various / Starring: Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter, Desmond Harrington, C.S. Lee / Lauren Velez, David Zayas, James Remar, Colin Hanks, Edward James Olmos / Release Date: Out Now
Dexter season 6 drew some of the harshest criticism levelled at the show so far. Sure it’s not as good as the five seasons that preceded it and they make some pretty questionable decisions regarding some of the characters, but Dexter firing on half burn is still better than most TV. The trouble is now we know that there is a two season endgame in sight, season 6 feels much like it's treading water, and a mid-point between whatever is to come.
You probably know the set up by now even if you don’t watch the show, season 6 finds Dexter’s bond becoming even closer with his son, his sister Deb is promoted to Lieutenant and has to learn the politics and the culture pretty quickly. Deb’s relationship with Quinn breaks down causing him to go off the rails. Dexter meets an ex-convict by the name of Brother Sam (played by Mos Def) whom he bonds with, forcing him to question his religious belief and his journey just as a new serial killer by the name of ‘The Doomsday Killer’ starts murdering people, staging bizarre tableaux’s straight out of the Book of Revelation.
Over the last two seasons, we as an audience have become comfortable with the format of the show and more importantly the supporting characters who previously took focus away from Michael C. Hall and his compelling portrayal of Dexter. Season 6 makes a near fatal error with the support cast who we have since come to like. After being dumped Quinn is reduced to a borderline comic relief character whereas previously he was the only person who suspected Dexter wasn’t who he appeared to be. This arc has gone completely out of the window in favour of someone who constantly ends up getting thrown out of bars and rolling around scrapping with Batista. There is also the introduction of the ‘interns’ who are taken under Masuka’s wing and who he either ignores or sexually harasses. This eventually gives way to an intriguing sub plot which harkens back to the very first season but it is ignored or not given enough screen time and will leave you scratching your head and even more wishing the next season was here already. There are other missteps with characters like LaGuerta, who is fast becoming a parody and Chief Matthews which make the show seem more and more like a soap with lots of blood.
What is good about season 6 is Dexter’s spiritual journey of sorts and the ‘Big Bad’ for the season, The Doomsday Killer. The murder set pieces are really well staged and in one or two instances actually shocking which is something that has been missing from the show since season four. The bad guys, as played by Colin Hanks and Edward James Olmos, are well portrayed and even though there is a reveal that you can work out from episode one, there is still lots of great work here.
If you've been on board since the start then it’s worth the sometime slog of watching this to get to the ending which will change the show forever. For others just starting watching this, season 6 is something of a low point, you have been warned.
Extras: BD Live extras linking to interviews and free episodes of other shows.