New series, Dexter: New Blood, releases on Showtime this month
The friendly neighborhood serial killer, Dexter Morgan, is back with Showtime’s Dexter: New Blood.
The original show was based on the novel, Darkly Dreaming Dexter, by Jeff Lindsay, which ran for an impressive eight seasons. Those who watched Dexter during its original run know the series finale that aired back in 2013 left a sour taste in fans' mouths, myself included. The show ended things in a contrived and ambiguous way, which was likely for the sake of leaving room for a continuation of the show in the future.
When I first finished watching the series, the thought of this drove me nuts. There’s nothing I can’t stand more than a series that doesn’t know when to end. Even still, when I heard the announcement of a new series coming out almost a decade later, I was intrigued. I wanted to know if they could make up for the ending of the original series.
Well, the answer is, kind of. This new series sees Dexter Morgan alive and well after escaping the results of his murderous escapades in Miami. It picks up roughly around where the finale left off, with Dexter living in a snowy, secluded town known as Iron Lake, New York.
He’s lost the lumberjack motif from before, along with his old name. He is now known as Jim Lindsay, perhaps an allusion to the author of the source material. He works at a small-town gun store selling a variety of hunting equipment to those who wander through.
After the consequences of his righteous murder sprees from the original series, he attempts to live a quiet life by burying Dexter Morgan and his “dark passenger.” That is until his now 16-year-old son Harrison tracks him down after he vanished from his life as a young child. This is where the real hook of Dexter: New Blood is.
After Harrison was “born in blood” like his father, the question has remained if he also inherited his murderous tendencies. This appearance also comes in tandem with Dexter relapsing and killing in the name of justice once more.
Seeing him attempt to balance this lifestyle with the many questions his son has for him is genuinely intriguing. The show doesn’t break too much new ground from its predecessor, but it doesn’t have to. It introduces another cat-and-mouse story of Dexter tangling with another psychopath such as himself, and it’s just as engaging as it was before.
If I could describe this new series in one word, I’d say it’s cozy. Well, it’s about as cozy as a story about a compulsive murderer could be. It hits a lot of similar beats to the original, it has some fun callbacks and references, and it overall feels like slipping into an old pair of shoes.
Michael C. Hall does a great job portraying the titular character, and the new cast is decent too. The star of the show is easily the new antagonist played by Clancy Brown, who’s as evil as he is charismatic.
Even with the new cast, the show isn’t too much of a departure from the original series. What really keeps it interesting is getting those questions about Harrison answered and seeing that father/son dynamic thrown into the mix.
Without spoiling too much, I feel like I got the ending that I wanted from the original in the season finale. It’s not perfect, but it ends things with a sense of closure that I didn’t get before. It’s still unknown if New Blood will continue with another season, but I’d be perfectly happy if it didn’t.
If you’re a fan of Dexter, I'd say this series is worth looking into. If you’re not, then I’d highly recommend checking out the original series as well. It does an excellent job keeping you on the edge of your seat while exploring the recesses of Dexter Morgan’s mind.