Even when one of those characters, such as LaGuerta, gets a viable storyline, it doesn’t quite seem to fit. After all these years, without even the slightest hint that she was still holding a torch for Doakes and in continued disbelief that he could’ve been the Bay Harbor Butcher, she suddenly has the urge to not only reopen the case but to also be even more persistent about it than Deb was about her efforts to keep Dexter from killing again earlier in the season?
She also transforms from one of the plebs Dexter can outsmart easier than a preschooler into a surprisingly formidable opponent, one that nearly catches him in her trap this week. I could almost hear the writers’ meeting in my head as I watched that sequence. “We only have one more episode left, guys. How are we going to up the tension enough to make it so people feel as if they have to come back for one last season? I know! We’ll give LaGuerta a brain for Christmas. It’s perfect. And we can use that as an excuse to bring Matthews back in and have him say some amusingly harsh things to her which will, oddly, make him instantly more likable than Hannah’s ever been. Come to think of it, why doesn’t Dexter just go gay for Matthews? They’d probably make a better couple. But, no, I don’t think television’s ready for that. We’ll just stick with what we have.”
Really, the writers at this point must be making it up as they go. In the same episode, we have Dexter conjuring up irrefutable evidence of Doakes’ guilt that fooled Matthews, and would’ve fooled LaGuerta if only her spidey senses would stop tingling long enough, to her coming within minutes of catching Dexter in the act of murder.
Basically, consistency no longer exists on Dexter as it’s abandoned on a weekly basis for the sole purpose of creating tension. Viewers aren’t even sure who Dexter is anymore, and I don’t mean that in a good way. For all the time we spend with Dexter and in his head, I feel like I know as little about him and how he ticks as everyone else on the show does, which is to say very little.
Going into your eighth and final season, that’s not a problem you want to have. However, it’s a problem it looks like we all are just going to have to cope with, because it doesn’t look like the writers of Dexter are in any hurry to fix a single, solitary thing. And they’re beginning to run out of time.