Caution: This blog post contains spoilers
Another season of Dexter is done and while it was significantly better than last year's "End of Days" ridiculousness, I can't help but feel unfulfilled. This entire season, as well as last night's season finale, gave us way too much to think about -- there was just so much happening here. Honestly, WTF?! Why so much?!
With next season being the last, I realize that our favorite serial killer with a conscience would probably be found out, and it was refreshing to see that someone in Miami Metro finally put two and two together and figured out that The Bay Harbour Butcher was right under their noses the entire time. But why the rush? Why did the entire LaGuerta/Dexter story have to play out within three episodes? And why would LaGuerta go to the storage locker on her own? Yes, I get it that since it looked like she was trying to frame Dexter she probably felt like she couldn't call it in, but I have a hard time believing that she would have gone there without at least making sure someone knew where she was heading. Especially since she assumed that Dexter killed Doakes.
My main complaint of this season is how the Isaak Sirko and the entire Koshka Brotherhood storyline played out. Sirko, played expertly by Ray Stevenson, was the perfect foil for Dexter, and having them work together to protect Sirko from the Koshka Brotherhood when they turned on him was a great twist. But it seemed that just when we were really getting to like the dynamic between Dexter and Isaak, he was killed him off. At least we thought we would have the whole stripper/Quinn/George storyline to look forward to until Joey kills off George and the entire storyline is over (at least for now). Why?! We had a great opportunity for both Dexter and Quinn with the mob story and both were over before they even had a chance to have real legs.
Then the writers introduced us to the arsonist, which is still a storyline I can't quite figure out except that maybe the purpose was for Dexter to have his whole "I choose to kill instead of I need to kill" epiphany. Yes, I get that was an important realization for Dexter to come to but I think that it could have been achieved without delving into a new storyline.
Amid everything we have the Hannah McKay storyline, which I actually really enjoyed. I liked that we were left wondering if Hannah actually poisoned Debra or if Debra poisoned herself to frame her brother's murdering lover. After the pairing of Dexter and Lumen and then the revelation that Debra was in love with her brother I thought that we would never really be able to enjoy a seemingly normal Dexter relationship again. But that's exactly what he had with Hannah, if you consider the fact that they were able to discuss the people that they murdered, and the fact that Dexter would constantly wonder if he was going to be poisoned every time she cooked him something normal. And it made perfect sense that Dexter would eventually turn Hannah in and I hope that we get to see more of her next season.
Needless to say that while I liked this season more than last I found that the writers tried to jam too many plot lines into too few episodes and as a result they sacrificed some great stories. Am I sad that LaGuerta is gone? Not at all, but I think that storyline would have been best saved for next season where it could have played out over the course of the season and where it could have made more sense. After all, I have a hard time believing that Dexter would have been so careless that LaGuerta would have woken up before he had a chance to kill her and that he would have even given Deb the opportunity to put herself in the position where she would have to choose between Dexter and her Captain.
So now we enter next season with a dead LaGuerta, Deb in a state of inner turmoil over the fact that she's not only an accomplice to murder but a cold blooded murderer herself, and we have the writers foreshadowing an inevitable love story between Debra and Dexter because they can only really trust each other. Ew. All in all I liked this season of Dexter but thought that the writers just threw too much at us. I know they're trying to set up next season for the series finale, but they did it at the expense of some solid storytelling. It will definitely be interesting to see how this can possibly play out over the course of the entire next season.