Diego Lafuente’s personal blog

December 27, 2007


I started watching the series Dexter by chance. A friend told me I had to watch it, but I was already on the sixth episode of the first season. "Dexter" is one of the few series with a storyline that goes beyond the norm. Normally, you would just watch a series about a serial killer, but Dexter is much more than that.

It all starts with Dexter Morgan, a blood spatter analyst for the Miami Metro Police Department. Dexter had a rough childhood —his mother was killed with a chainsaw while he was in the shipping container, and he went through a lot of other things during his childhood and adolescence. As soon as his adoptive father, Harry, an honest cop, discovered that Dexter was a "special" boy who displayed signs of psychopathic behavior, such as killing neighborhood pets, he began teaching him how to deal with his violent impulses. Harry taught him how to kill without leaving any evidence, how to appear normal in society, and how to channel his urge to kill, always doing it to serve the greater good, following a set of ethical codes. Harry's code is an unbreakable set of rules that he taught Dexter to help him control, mask, and channel his killing impulses.

According to Harry, Dexter learned from life, from good and bad, this set of rules:

  1. Remember rule number 1: Never get caught!
  2. Killing innocent people is never allowed.
  3. Always take the time and make sure it's the right person. Evidence.
  4. Be extremely cautious about killing and most importantly, be prepared!
  5. Remember: you control the urge to kill, it does not control you.
  6. Falsify emotions and normality to fit in.
  7. When taking a psychological exam, always answer the questions with the opposite answer of what you think you feel.

And on death:

It's real, and it will happen to everyone. It's just a matter of how and why it happens.

The whole story of Dexter is based on his father's work. Everything Dexter does is based on these codes, on the love and protection that Harry had for Dexter, and all the effort he had to endure to ensure that Dexter didn't make any serious mistakes in his life. Dexter doesn't kill innocent people; he only kills serial killers or killers who have escaped the legal system. In many cases, Dexter will make sure they don't go to jail so that he can commit the act of justice himself. The character fits perfectly into the anti-hero mold. Dexter enjoys feeling like himself, rather than the normal person everyone thinks they know. As I said at the beginning of this post, this is not just a simple story of a serial killer but an ongoing battle against humanity and a constant rethinking of human moral and ethical values.

Apart from all this, the seasons have a script that makes the role of the killer Dexter not boring for the rest of the cast. He is a beloved person in his circle: a great stepfather, an excellent boyfriend, a good brother... thus providing the series with micro-stories and two main storylines that will keep you hooked episode after episode, with two really great endings.