Warning: Some spoilers from both this season, as well as past seasons will follow. You’ve been warned, so proceed with caution.
Like most people, I found the sixth season of Dexter to be a little ho-hum in comparison to the great seasons that preceded it. There were some interesting ideas, and certainly some exciting scenes, but when compared to seasons in which John Lithgow, or Jimmy Smits turned in outstanding performances as the season’s main baddie, it fell pretty short. Some of the twists within the season seemed rushed, and ill-conceived, such as Professor Gellar, the perceived villain of the series, turning out to be a figment of his “protege”, Travis Marshall’s(Colin Hanks) imagination. I’ve talked to some who had no problem with this aspect of the season, but to me, it seemed like they ran out of ideas, and decided to throw a random twist into the mix. It also seemed to make some previous statements no longer make sense, but I’m open to the suggestion that I just wasn’t paying close enough attention, I suppose.
Problems with season Six aside, it still managed to end on a strong note, and the seventh season picks up directly after the major cliffhanger, in which Dexter’s sister Deb(Jennifer Carpenter) walks in on him in the middle of his murder of season baddie Travis Marshall. So as we begin the seventh season, which could be referred to as the beginning of the end, as it sets up the eighth and final season, we don’t know if Deb is going to bust/kill Dexter, or if she is going to compromise all that she believes in to cover for the man that was raised as her sibling. Ultimately, she opts to assist him in covering up the murder by making it look like a suicide, giving her the ability to close the open case on the Doomsday Killer’s murdering spree.
The fact that Deborah now, not only knows what Dexter is, but has now become his accomplice, both makes Dexter’s existence as a vigilante serial killer extremely difficult, as well as putting Deborah in the position to cover for some of Dexter’s past crimes, which are now under investigation by LaGuerta, who is now a captain. LaGuerta has always had trouble accepting that her former colleague and lover, Sgt James Doakes was actually the Bay Harbor Butcher. One she catches a whiff of Dexter’s scent on the murders, she becomes dead set on clearing Doakes’ name, and bringing Dexter down for the crimes.
Ray Stevenson(Punisher: War Zone) turns in an exceptional performance as crime boss/titty bar owner, Isaak Sirko. Isaak and Dexter both have valid reasons to kill one another, but their chemistry is outstanding. They keep taking shots at one another, but both being men that live by a certain code, a way of conducting one’s self, they find time for sit-down sessions in between incidents of trying to kill one another that offers up some truly great back and forth conversation between the two, and you begin to realize that they have a lot more in common than they think. It gets to the point that, once hitmen from a rival crime boss are dispatched to expire Isaak, and he forcefully enlists the help of Dexter to evade the hit, that you can’t tell whether or not Dexter is preventing him from being killed because he wants to end him himself, or if he no longer wishes for his demise.
Season seven was a huge step up from season six. It wasn’t perfect, and it doesn’t compare to the phenomenal fourth and fifth seasons, but it sets in motion perfectly, the beginning of the end of the world of Dexter that we’ve come to know and love. I’m sad to see the show ending for good starting in June, but with shows like this, you want them to go out on top, rather than jumping the shark and keeping the story going long after it should have ended. Some of the characters you may or may not enjoy might be making their exit within this season, and definitely in the upcoming season. All of the characters are undoubtedly changed in one way or another from the goings on in this, the seventh season. Overall, if you’re a fan of the show, you probably won’t be disappointed with this set, even if you, like me, weren’t that big of a fan of the sixth season.
Dexter: The Seventh Season is available on Blu Ray and DVD as of today, 5/14/2013
Dexter: The Seventh Season is presented, much like the previous seasons, on Blu Ray with a gorgeous 1080p AVC encoded transfer that maintains the purposeful look of the show. The colors are sharp and vibrant, and the blacks are, for the most part, free of artifacts. As always, the grainy, shot-on-film look of the series is preserved, making the anti-blu ray nut’s arguments of the format being “too clear” null and void. No problems at all here, so you can purchase with confidence.
Just like the video quality, the the TrueHD 5.1 audio track of Dexter’s seventh season is without flaws. All channels are utilized appropriately, and the dialog is crystal clear.
It should come as no surprise to anyone that has viewed the previous seasons of this show on Blu Ray, or really any Showtime series in general, that the Special Features are the one thing that the set is lacking. Lacking, as in, there are absolutely no special features or extras. The only thing that could even be presented as an extra, is an Ultraviolet code that comes with the packaging to download the pilot episode of Showtime’s upcoming series, Ray Donovan, starring the always awesome Liev Schrieber. I’m looking forward to that show, so I have no complaints that they’ve included it with this set, but I’d love for them to start adding some behind the scenes extras and commentaries to their TV sets. Hopefully, with season eight being the last, we may get a taste of that.