Dexter Creator Says Original Series Finale Failed To Satisfy


This weekend is a big one for fans of the crime drama Dexter as the continuing story-arc they’ve been waiting for finally arrives. Dexter: New Blood premieres on Sunday and, since the season 8 finale aired in 2013; it’s been a long time coming.

Clyde Phillips, Dexter creator, has been waiting for it as well. As part of the series for the first four seasons, he understands why fans weren’t happy with the original ending for Dexter.

Phillips actually had a much different idea for the finale of Dexter at the time but recently spoke to ScreenRant about his relief that his vision never came to fruition. It would have been a very…nail in the coffin moment.

Well, my idea was, and it’s online so people can look it up — by the way, thank God, we didn’t do it because we wouldn’t be having this conversation now — is that, whatever the episode is, plays out, and then, suddenly, Dexter goes, “(GASPS!)” and we think, “Oh, shit, he’s waking up from a dream. You’re really doing that to us?” But really, what he’s doing, he’s waking up on the execution table and all of his victims in the witness area [are there]. We see [John] Lithgow, Jimmy Smits and Jamie Murray and all the weekly victims are witnessing his execution. And then, whatever brilliant voiceover that we would write would come up and then the show would end. And had we done that, we wouldn’t be making this fantastic show we’re making right now.

On the original series finale and where it fell short, Phillips said:

“I feel the same way Michael does and the way most people do. I think it failed to satisfy. It also, I think, broke a certain trust with the audience that we had built up in the early years. And I think it was a little coy and not successful. Let’s just be blunt. If you Google “The Top 10 Worst Series Finales Ever,” Dexter is going to be on every list. People were so disappointed. And so, we have, in a non-religious sense here, a chance for redemption. I think that’s one of the reasons, to go back to your original question, why people are so excited about this as well.”

Phillips also touched on why he believes people are so excited about the resurrection of the series, saying it’s a chance at redemption.

In the original finale, Dexter took up a new life as a lumberjack after burying his sister and faking his own death. It wasn’t the end fans wanted, nor the ending that they even would have tolerated had it made sense for his journey. People were disappointed; it wasn’t the correct final write-off for Dexter or for fans of the series.

Knowing that Phillips wasn’t just aware of the unhappiness viewers have with the finale but feeling it himself is a silver lining concerning what this next chapter for Dexter will hold.

Dexter: New Blood hits Showtime on Sunday, November 7.