This week's episode, "The Dark ... Whatever," has Dexter wrestling with his Dark Passenger, his reason for killing, as Hannah tries to convince him there's no "dark ... whatever," but that it's a choice for him to kill. And it leaves Dexter at a crossroads.
Dark Passenger No More
All this time, Dexter had killed because of this need, his Dark Passenger. But really, it was just a convenient excuse to commit murders and go to bed without feeling guilty and wake up the next morning to do it all over again.
Hannah tells Dex she has no need, no passenger. She did it by choice. That seems to really hit home with him, especially when Harry tells his son that the Dark Passenger was all Dexter's idea, unlike Harry's code. It's also a nice pointed touch when Harry says the Dark Passenger is no more real than he is. Touche, Harry.
Everything is put to the test with the Phantom. Dexter at first believes it's the creepy arson investigator who's setting people on fire. He sniffs dead bodies and doesn't seem to be affected one bit whenever there's a dead body. But it turns out he's just plain weird. But not an actual arsonist.
After the police get a print off the bus, Dexter tracks down the juvenile records to a guy who as a kid had set fire to his school. Dexter has the guy all ready to be killed, knife in the air -- and then he stops. He frees the Phantom, leaving him to be found for the police. He makes a choice not to kill.
When it comes to Hannah's father, however, that's a different story. He shows up unannounced after being released from prison. He's sorry -- and seems to mean it, too. And then his real intention comes out: he wants $20,000 for a crawfish business, and he blows up -- even destroying her garden -- when Hannah refuses to lend him the money.
Then the loser threatens Dexter at his own home, with the pretty fact that he was the one feeding secrets to the writer, Sal Price, in exchange for money to pay down his gambling debt. But Hannah's dad had yet to tell Sal the name of Hannah's roommate behind bars who witnessed her putting poison that eventually killed the guard.
With that new piece of evidence, Dexter makes the decision to kill him. Even though he doesn't fit the code. He's doing it for ... love? Letting a killer go and then killing someone who isn't -- this isn't the Dexter we've come to know.
Although Dexter "delivered" the Phantom, Deb won't pay him back by cooling off on Hannah. And at the end, Deb reveals to Batista that she has the name of Hannah's roommate who saw the poisoning -- thanks to her dear old dad.
Closer than Ever
With each episode, LaGuerta continues to close in on her theory of Dexter being the Bay Harbor Butcher. It takes another giant step forward when she and Matthews track down the man who owned the land where Doakes spent his final days. The man reveals that he was renting the place out to a Colombian drug load, who Matthews realizes is one of the men responsible for killing -- who else? Dexter's mother.
LaGuerta finds out everything, even that the Ice Truck Killer was Dexter's brother. And they both realize how Dexter's mother died. She was chopped up. How did the Bay Harbor Butcher kill? By chopping up people.
If there was to be a huge reveal with Dexter's downfall, I see it not happening. Especially since the previews show Matthews telling Dexter what the theory is.
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