Dexter: Season 4 Finale Review & Discussion

Published 5 years ago by , Updated September 26th, 2010 at 10:52 am,

dexter review discussion Dexter: Season 4 Finale Review & Discussion

[Update: Be Sure To Check out our Dexter Season 5 Premiere Review!]

As the fourth season of Dexter comes to a close, fans are going into the finale knowing two things; (A) Something crazy is going to happen and (B) We have no idea what that crazy thing is. I have a feeling that neither our preview of the finale nor our spoiler post will prepare fans for what’s to come.

Sure, by now all of you probably know the twist involving Deb and her revelation about her adopted brother’s connection to not only Harry’s past, but also her own. Still, the fact that we know that going into the 52-minute finale has me believing that Deb’s revelation is just the tip of the iceberg – or in this case, ice pick.

We’ve got Dexter facing off against Trinity, Deb snooping around Harry’s past, Quinn dealing with the suicide of his girlfriend (who might still be alive) and Trinity’s daughter, Christine. There’s also Trinity’s family, Rita and the kids, Masuka and don’t forget about Batista and Laguerta’s nuptials from last week’s episode.


dexter trinity Dexter: Season 4 Finale Review & Discussion

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from the season finale of Dexter, it’s to expect nothing. I should have known that a show which has been able to continuously reinvent itself would leave nothing on the table and that’s exactly what happen with this season finale.

So much happened within the first 20 minutes that my mind was unable to absorb it all. I literally had to watch the episode twice as I was riding such a wave of intensity that lasted until the last five minutes of the show. As I finally calmed down, that feeling didn’t last long as the seasons big reveal had, unbeknownst to me, not yet happened… but we’ll get to that later.

There’s no way any show other than Dexter could have pulled off the entire “bad day” chain of events and make it believable. Dexter Morgan is always so in control of his emotions with his methodical way of living – which is great for building tension – but in this instance it was a pleasant surprise to see his character having to quickly deal with things that just didn’t go his way.

dexter police Dexter: Season 4 Finale Review & Discussion

I’m not going to lie, this was a near perfect episode. I have no doubt that we’ll see many Emmy awards because of this season and particularly this episode. Still, there were some things that I’d like to nit-pick: I wasn’t really feeling Deb’s whole reveal to Dexter. I’m not sure if she wanted to tell him because she was being a kind sister or because she was angry, but something about it felt a little “wrong place, wrong time.”

There’s also the whole “we’re taking the case from you” with the FBI walking in. Sure, it’s probably realistic on some level, but it felt more like an easy way to tie up loose ends, and free up the team for whatever or whoever is the “big bad” next season. Also, what happened to the whole Batista and Laguerta storyline? There was a quick mention of their marriage, but that’s it.

Let’s move on to Trinity. For the entire season he has been an extremely menacing individual. On par with any bad guy you could think of and while I so enjoyed Dexter revealing himself as the one to have taken his oil cap, I felt the actual killing was a bit odd and unfulfilling. I’m not sure what it was, maybe it was the banter between the two or Trinity’s odd mannerisms about wanting the train to be on, but something just wasn’t playing right to me. Also, Dexter using the claw hammer as a murder weapon was literally frightening. The moment he flipped the hammer around and swung made me wonder if had “crossed over.”

Dexter hammer Dexter: Season 4 Finale Review & Discussion

Now, it’s time to talk about the last 3 minutes of the show. I think “wow” would be my response. I know that’s what I would have said if my jaw wasn’t open so wide. I know that fans have been against Rita for a while and have wanted her killed, but I believe Rita adds the humanity that Dexter needs not only as a person, but as a show. Without her, he would just go along with his crazy rules talking to his dead father in the back seat (quite talkative he was this episode). I just don’t know what to think. Oh, it was a twist – a big one—and I’ll take all the blame for screwing up the spoiler and misinterpreting what executive producer, Clive Phillips, had said, I just don’t know how I feel about it – not until I see what they do with it next season.

Still, throughout the entire episode I was so enthralled and stressed out that you would have thought it was my life or at least real life, not just a scripted drama. Although, I would say those words could also be used to describe Dexter… “not just a scripted drama.” With a 12-episode season, Dexter has to consistently deliver such a strong story that viewers will not stray during the long breaks between seasons.

…and deliver, it has.

dexter baby Dexter: Season 4 Finale Review & Discussion

Enough of me, what did you think of the episode? Enjoy the “twist” at the end? Hate me for screwing up one of the spoilers? Since Showtime has already ordered a fifth season, what do you see in store for Dexter? What could they do to top this?

UPDATE: Still have questions about the twist ending? Now there are answers (including confirmation of a misstep by the showrunners): Go HERE.

Update Source: Entertainment Weekly

TAGS: Dexter
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  1. A Cyborg!
    Too bad it isnt true .

  2. isnt true???

  3. WOW! That was insane. Can’t wait until next season!

  4. RIIIITAAA!!! Noooooo!

  5. I’m still in shock after watching the finale lol! I cried, and it felt like I lost a best friend, I hope rita comes back as like a ghost or something, it was CRAZYyyyyyy! I’m like speechless, seriously.

  6. Dude, leslie, thats good writing, i dont know what kind of a crap shows you’re watching but when shows make you feel that way, upset and frustrated, thats GOOD writing.

  7. I am glad Dexter got Trinity. I can’t believe the end though. I thought he was having a dream. There will be nothing holding him back now. I wonder if he will raise his children , or give them up for their protection.

  8. Ooh, It is definitely real. They had an interview after the episode. (Dexter and Trinity). It was definitely good writing. They have been leading up to Dexter not being able to keep his family and do what he does. It makes sense that she would die or he would leave her. Her dying is just a more dramatic ending. Plus it is his own beginning. Him being alone was inevitable.

  9. Everything about season 4 leads up to him being charged with Rita’s murder and eventually being found out for who he is.

    Rita’s murder is clearly a Trinity killing, Dexter won’t be able to explain why Trinity targeted his wife. Trinity’s family will recognize Dexter as Kyle Butler, and the police will connect him with the actual Kyle Butler who was killed by Trinity. Suspicion will fall on Dexter in the murder of Rita because of: Rita’s brief infidelity, marriage counseling, Quinn’s assumption that Dexter was cheating on Rita at the club that one night, the fact that the kids were gone.
    Lot’s of stuff points back to Dexter.

  10. Despite season 4’s flaws (and there were some big ones–even in the finale), for me, this ending more than made up for them. I was absolutely stunned; then I was disturbed and sad and–I’m a little embarrassed to say–even a little heartbroken. I still can’t decide what disturbed me more, Harrison’s loss of innocence or [SPOILER] Rita’s death–or the *way* she died. Wow. Whenever a mere TV show involving completely fictitious characters can move and affect me the way this episode did, there’s no way I could ever say it was badly written. Season 4 end, for my money, with the best episode of the entire series.

  11. Good ending, but a little like “twist ending for twist ending’s sake”, done just for shock value.
    Also, I’m wondering about a couple of things:
    -How did Trinity find Rita’s house? Earlier scene showed Dexter’s apt in the listings.
    -How will Dexter explain this to the police? Random murder or tied to Trinity? If so, how will Dexter explain his connection to Trinity? Will he have to?
    And now what?
    Dexter as single dad? Abandon the kids? Adoption? His sister raises them?
    Have the writers painted themselves into a corner?
    Personaly, I don’t think she had to die; could have written a better cliffhanger…

  12. Adam: see, you and I are thinking alike! This ending leaves Dexter much too exposed. But maybe that was the point: gives the writers some big plot points to resolve next year….

  13. Soooo sad about Rita!!! It was a great twist though and I didnt see it coming! I will miss her and her beautiful hair :)

  14. I think I’m going to have to side with the “poorly written” side of the argument, but only when it comes to this episode ( I don’t think this show has ever really disappointed me until now ). I was never very fond of Rita, but the ending of the episode felt to me like going out on a loss. I agree that if a show can affect it’s audiences’ emotions, the way this episode surely did for many viewers, then the writers had to have done well when it comes to creating the characters and overall plot till this point. Unfortunately, I think they may have gone the wrong way ending the season in this manner if only because of the negative tone many viewers will be left with until next season.

  15. All I can say is wow. After Season 3 lacked the impact of season 1 and 2, season 4 raised the bar once again. There will be so much for Dexter to deal with next season and the writers pretty much guaranteed high ratings for at least the season premier next year. After watching the interview, I don’t think Dexter will really be targeted by the police department. Maybe Quinn turns into the next Dokes, that I can see. Dexter will be wild and carelees. His rage will get the best of him. All in all, Dexter will be self destructive. For all those who have been down on the fact Dexter has been killing less and less as the seasons go on, I have a feeling he is going to kill A LOT of people in the next season.

  16. How can Christine be still alive???

  17. Seriously? What a disappointing ending. I was just beginning to like her; she was annoying in the earlier espisodes. I’d have to side with the ‘poorly written’ argument too. How on earth can you be a serial killer-killer and a single dad? WTF were there writers thinking?

  18. i wish i had 2 more hands so i could give this ending 4 thumbs up, the scene after he kills trinity when he’s in his boat left me thinking that that was it and dex was just gonna sail off into the sunset with rita like all the other seasons and there was no big twist like the previews claimed i was almost mad for a second but i was not prepared in any way for what was next and i am still stunned. Previous seasons have ended happy and with closure and thats what i liked about this show, but i think dexter needed an ending like this. they’ve never left us hanging like this before and it leaves so many questions for next season like everyone has stated in previous posts, and i think this was the best possible ending for this season. All i can say is WOW and the writers have quite a challenge on their hands for next season. CANT WAIT!

  19. He will be a suspect ,
    But he is a great liar.
    It will be interesting to how he continues his double life while being investigated .

  20. I think that for those of you who think that this was poorly written, are mistaken. If Dexter was going to continue past the 5th season, I would agree. But from what I hear *rumors* it has only been picked up for one more season, and besides, it just seems natural for the show to end soon. I really think that season 5 will be about Dexter being under suspicion for Rita’s death, charged with murder, eventually found out for who he is, and eventually put into prison. I see the end scene of Dexter season 5 being a cliche prison cell door being closed as Dexter sits in his orange jumpsuit. Which I’m actually ok with.

  21. I think they will make this a dream in season five, anyone follow? He saw her off in the cab that day, right?

  22. Oh my GOD!!!!
    I actually liked Rita, and I’m really sad she’s gone…And also, like the rest of the world, am wondering how the writers are going to set up next season, because this is either going to be a genius move, or turn out to be a huge mistake.
    Another thing, I definitely do agree that he has been getting away with WAY too many things lately, and this is was a for sure shock… Can’t wait for season 5!

  23. For all those saying I was just starting to like Rita and now she’s gone is exactly how the show wants you to feel. The writers want you to experience what Dexter experiences and yes he found her annoying 99% of the time until the last few episodes when he really seemed to start to like her.

    Now that Dexter made an emotional connection he will need learn how to cope with a tragedy that deeply affects him which is where real human and character growth come from. He is reset as a person will he fallow the same path as he did when he was a child or will he learn from it and change his course in live. Which was reflected in the mood dialogue and actions of the entire season.

  24. I think Deb should have been the one to take the fall as the ending. Trinity was at her appartment, and it would still have great shock value. The ending was great, ironic, and shocking, but i can’t see them moving on from this. Rita was too essential in my opinion. Deb is a great character but with Lundy being killed, her dating the ice truck killer, her life was pretty wrecked. Her dying would have affected everyone on the show but they really wouldnt need to cover up on Deb every episode. With Rita’s death, someone has to have the kids, Dexter will have too much on his plate.

  25. Chase

    Don’t you see Deb and Dexter life are mirroring one another therefore Dexter could learn from her.

  26. Oh and another thought: just noticed the post that Christine Hill might be alive…and HOW it that, exactly?

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