This time it’s John Lithgow.
Dexter is now married with children, including one of his own, and must juggle serial killing with family responsibilities. The two don’t exactly fit well together and some of Dexter’s card house begins to tumble when his wife, Rita, learns that he has kept his flat (like Superman’s Fortress of Solitude, but more suburban) and his sister Deborah learns who Dexter’s mother was and, therefore, whose brother (and Deborah’s former fiancé) he was.
In this series, Dexter is on the trail of the Trinity killer who had been killing people all over the country for thirty years. Actually, he kills four people at a time, but Trinity sounded like a much cooler nickname. Since Trinity is played by John Lithgow, the audience is not left to assume that the serial killer of the series is Deborah’s boyfriend. Dexter thinks that he sees an older version of himself in Trinity from whom he can learn how to cope with a family on top of his night job. But in the end, Trinity turns out to be deeply unhinged and prone to wild mood swings.
Dexter does try to eliminate him, but keeps being thwarted in his attempts. In fact, when he finally gets his man, the audience is left to fill in the details of how Dexter managed to track down Trinity’s Mustang, which was being repainted, and get in the boot and remain undetected. Oh well, you knew Dexter would get his man, although I suspected there might be a sting. Wasn’t sure whether Deborah, the reporter, or some other major character was for the chop (budget cuts are a bitch), but it turned out to be Rita (don’t worry; I see Julie Benz got a job with Desperate Housewives).
I was divided between Quinn’s girlfriend being another of Trinity’s victims and being connected to him somehow. She turned out to be another daughter, although it was never explained why he had been as restrictive with her as he had with his other daughter, a detail which got overlooked. She had seen her father on the job when she was five, but instead of it turning her into a serial killer, she took steps to protect him.
On this point, the programme seems to indulge in crude psychology assuming that any child who sees some exceptionally traumatic and gory event is going to turn into a monster themselves. That was the supposition with both Dexter and his brother, Brian, who saw their mother get murdered. If there’s a fifth series of Dexter, it may be the assumption that will now be made about Dexter’s son, Harrison, who was sitting in a pool of his mother’s blood when Dexter found him.
I really need to rewatch the whole of Dexter from the very start to see how it’s evolved (or hasn’t) since the first series. I think I saw the first two back-to-back, followed by the third some time later. At least I think that’s what happened. It usually does.
[02.08.14. Four years later, and I’ve yet to see the final series (one more or two?) of Dexter, but from what I’d read about them on line, the programme had long passed its best-before date.]