[Be Sure to read our Season 4 Finale Review & Discussion Post First!!!]

Wow, I knew last night’s season finale of Dexter was controversial, but I didn’t know it was going to be this controversial. The comments in the review & discussion have been going crazy since the show ended. Hopefully, with executive producer Clyde Phillips stepping in, it will help answer some fan questions regarding what may or may not have happened.

While talking with Entertainment Weekly‘s Michael Ausiello, Phillips lays it all out.


Is Rita really dead?

Is Trinity really dead?
Yes. Cut up and drifting in the Gulf Stream.

Did Trinity kill Rita?
Yes he did. That’s partly what he meant when he said: “It’s already over.”

Well, there you have it. Straight and to the point. While I may have screwed up some of the spoilers and myth debunking, most of them were correct and the “it’s not a dream” aspect was one of them. Still, I know Dexter fans, and a few yes or no answers aren’t going to be enough to keep the masses quite. So, here’s some insight behind the finale and decision of Rita’s fate.

When was the decision made to kill off Rita?
I would say we made the decision pretty late in the season. We didn’t quite know what we were going to do [in the finale].

Why Rita?
The story evolved and it kind of became inevitable. We knew that we had to do more than kill Trinity. It’s a little bit of a corner that we paint ourselves into. Last year we tried to avoid that and actually I think we didn’t do as well as we could have. We killed off Jimmy Smits’ character [in the 11th episode] of 12 episodes and then we had to figure out what we were going to do in the 12th episode. This season, we knew that we were going to take Trinity out in the 12th episode and we think that the audience knew that, too. We had to raise the bar to as high as possible and then figure out what to do next year.

Might she return as a ghost like Dex’s dad?
The answer, at the moment, is no. However, had you asked me two years ago if Lundy was coming back I would’ve said no. We didn’t know he was coming back until this year. It just seemed expedient to the story — to Dexter’s story and to Deb’s story.

Will next season be about Dexter juggling serial killing and single fatherhood?
He is a single father. But, beyond that, we don’t know. We don’t know if there’s going to be what we call “a Big Bad,” like Jimmy Smits and John Lithgow, or if it’s going to be more individual, stand-alone stories.

I understand you wrote two endings to throw people off. What was the other ending?
While Dexter was packing to leave, he saw on the television that a child murderer had just escaped from prison. Either escaped or fallen thru the cracks. So he’s thinking, “Do I join Rita on vacation or do I…” and then he looks towards the camera and he has this big decision.

I don’t know whether the bigger shock is that Rita’s dead or that people were actually thrown off by the “other ending.” I would have been disappointed if that was the ending of an episode of CSI: Miami with Horatio Caine pulling off his sunglasses and The Who “YEAAHH!!” playing in the background, let alone Dexter.

Have these notes from Phillips answered all your questions or do you have more? If so, let’s hear them because I was more or less content with the episode, but you, the fans, have stirred up all these questions in my head… and I don’t like questions in my head.

Source: The Ausiello Files