Dexter Review: “Goodbye Miami” (Season 8, Episode 10)


Poor little Harrison. Half the time, he’s not even around, and I’m assuming he just runs circles around Dexter’s apartment since he’s never shown doing anything. But there have been a few times when the writers deem him worthy of becoming a sloppy plot device. Such as in Goodbye Miami, when it’s made clear that Dexter won’t reach a happy ending, but only because Dexter refuses to choose it.

Since we’ve made it to the final three episodes, fans have been hoping for some explosive twists to blow the plot wide open. While there were a few signs of trouble, there was only one twist, which came in the form of Vogel’s death. Despite how adamant she was about keeping her son off of Dexter’s table, her love didn’t do much to keep her neck intact. Whatever emotion this development was supposed to create didn’t quite work out simply because Vogel was a dead woman the second she accepted Daniel back into her life.

Even if it’s still hard to care about Daniel since we didn’t even know he existed until the previous episode, there was still a good scene or two to be had that centered on his relationship with his mother. When he takes her to his killing room, for example. Daniel begs Vogel to teach him like she taught Dexter, even if he’s already broken Harry’s code. It was a surprisingly effective moment, and it’s a bit of a shame we won’t ever get to see more of those.

Dexter is still unable to get anything done, and a lot of his decisions are starting to rip huge holes into whatever logic can still be found in the show. He knows that a Marshal is on the hunt for Hannah, and he knows that said Marshal is suspicious of his previous relationship with Hannah. Yet he still tells Angel that he’s heading to Argentina. His obsession with leaving and starting over with Hannah is overriding whatever killer instincts he had at the beginning of the series. In other words, he’s thinking with the wrong head.

I mentioned Harrison the Handy Plot Device in the intro, and his role this season is simply to cause trouble for Dexter. Having him cut his chin open on the treadmill was a poor excuse to expose Hannah, simply because the wound wasn’t so bad that she couldn’t have waited. It seems cold, but when you’re a fugitive on the run, it’s never a bad idea to put yourself first.

This little incident brought about the main problem with these final episodes: things are almost happening, but never coming to fruition. I know some surprises need to be saved for the finale, but let’s compare this to Breaking Bad one more time. Each episode packs tons of action (verbal and physical) that keeps the plot moving. These past few weeks have found Dexter circling the same drain with hardly any progress to account for. For example: Hannah and Harrison are ready to leave, but Dexter refuses to go without first killing Daniel and protecting Vogel. He’s known her for barely a few weeks and he’s already putting his future at risk to protect her. It’s sickly-sweet to see Vogel’s theories about Dexter having emotions come true, but it comes at too high of a price to make any sense.