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28 September 2010 @ 08:31 pm
5.01 My Bad  
You know... I haven't been very impressed by Dexter as a show for the last couple of seasons. I think it lost its grip on its central character and its grasp of suspense (instead we got boredom punctuated by occasional melodrama). But there are some characters that own my heart and Deborah Morgan is one of them. And holy fuck, that was an amazing performance. Jennifer Carpenter is one of the most compelling actresses I've ever seen on the small screen. If you aren't up for extreme character partisan-ship, this isn't the review for you: I get a leetle bit emotional.

I remember being left rather cold by Rita's death at the end of last season, largely because it was brought to us through Dexter's point of view. The 'previouslies' actually got to me a little more. Then Dexter's voiceover began and I instantly tuned out emotionally again. I know that's bad, but a combination of never having found the character that sympathetic and having found the writing of said character to be a real stretch in the last couple of seasons leads to viewer detachment on my part.

Then Deb came screaming up to the lawn and Dexter handed her that baby and, oh god, I was COMPLETELY lost again... Like Deb, I couldn't really process at first that Dexter confessed to the crime. Then my anger as a viewer took over. Yeah, Dexter, it IS your fault. You SHOULD be in that helicopter spotlight. The thing is i don't even feel much about Rita's death except through Deb, and Deb would be angry as hell that her friend died this way. Yes, all her energy is being spent on protecting Dexter, and I love her to pieces for that, but oh god, it's so WRONG WRONG WRONG.

I love her for asking him what he meant, despite all her love for him.

I love her times a trillion for organising the funeral for him, forcing him along, while she's shaking and barely holding it together herself, for picking up his 'thank yous' for him, for minding his child, for making all the decisions, for scrubbing the blood off the walls.

God, I am so angry at him.

I found myself kind of falling for Quinn just because he was at least somewhat suspicious of Dexter. But what I loved even more was Deb making him clean up Rita's blood. And oh god, when he asked how SHE was?! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, hopelessly smitten. No, I didn't know they were going to fuck but god I needed that.

Astor was the only other character I felt connected to. I know her rage was just what any teenager would spew out in grief, but I found it all entirely fair.

Quinn in a red and white checked tablecloth? LOL! Good work, Deb, darling!

Jennifer Carpenter is just such an amazing actress. Her reaction after Dexter asked her to be Harrison's mother? And after that weirdly inappropriate clingy hug? The one that came across as if Dexter was trying to suction some humanness out of Deb for himself? Incredible!

Ok, shipping Quinn/Deb so hard with him slipping up on her name and hovering around her at the funeral. And at least TRYING to be honest and tell her about his suspicions. I know they are setting it up so Deborah finds out he suspects Dexter and loses her shit at him to protect her brother, I know that. But I am sucked in any way.

WHO. THE FUCK. ARE YOU?! <---best moment of the episode

And DEXTER!!! THE ONLY THING WORSE THAN CAUSING YOUR WIFE TO BE KILLED IS BAILING ON HER FUCKING FUNERAL. Can you tell I don't give a fuck about Dexter's emo self-indulgent martyrdom/escapism? Especially since it was all about him connecting with his inner monster, again?!

God this is going to end so, so badly. 100% of my emotional investment in this show is in Deborah. I will probably be riveted through this season because this is the season where it's all at stake--will she find out about Dexter? Or is the more appropriate question: how will she find out about Dexter?

You are the strong one, Deb, sweetie. You always were.
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Fleegull: Debfleegull on September 28th, 2010 09:58 pm (UTC)
I don't know why Jennifer Carpenter doesn't get the same love from the critics that other actresses do. Dexter as a show, always gets love from the critics but they never seem to notice her.

The part that got me was when Deb said that Dexter was always the strong one which is totally untrue, she has always been the one holding him up. I think he even once said that she was the only thing that kept him human (that may have come from the books) and it's sad that she doesn't see that. People say odd things when coming upon a crime scene, especially one of a loved one, so Dexter saying it was his fault is pretty low on the "let's make him a suspect" scale. The fact is that the spouse is always the first suspect, the only mitigating factor here is that no one else knows that Trinity is dead.
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Dexterbop_radar on September 29th, 2010 12:27 am (UTC)
I have no idea why she doesn't get more love! She is a huge part of what makes Dexter a strong show. Yes, they have a good cast overall, but not so large a cast that she'd be overlooked I would have thought! These things are baffling.

it's sad that she doesn't see that
It's very sad. And she's so busy being sad that DEXTER doesn't see HIS inner goodness! So much of her energy is expended on him and the pedestal she puts him on, and she totally underestimates herself.
Jayne L.: profitcrazyserrico on September 28th, 2010 10:49 pm (UTC)
WHO. THE FUCK. ARE YOU?! <---best moment of the episode

AGREED. Carpenter has this way of delivering Deb's profanity in extremely serious moments that makes me *laugh*. I don't know how she does it, but it's *awesome*.

Deb's my favourite character, too. I like Dexter because I find it fascinating to watch how his character is performed and presented, but that's a very meta-level enjoyment; Deb, though, is a wonderful character to invest in. &Deb;
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!: Dexterbop_radar on September 29th, 2010 12:24 am (UTC)
I know! Carpenter is a genius. I adore her. She manages to be funny while never once for one second losing the seriousness of her character. And considering the shit they've put Deb though, that's amazing--yet when I watch Cerpenter I never for one moment doubt that she isn't holding all that inside her as part of her performance.

Yes, I do get meta-level enjoyment (well sometimes frustration!) from Dexter himself but if it wasn't for Deb providing me an emotional hook in, I'd have stopped watching the show by now.