A Brief Open Letter to Showtime About the Final Season of "Dexter"
Dear Showtime —
I understand that this is an unusual request, but it would really mean the world to me if you did everyone who has stuck with “Dexter” for seven and a half seasons one small favor:
Skip to the end.
Look: I understand that there are still four more episodes remaining until the finale airs, and I realize that you’re going to want to capitalize on the fact that “Dexter” is the network’s highest rated show, but I’m begging you: Don’t bother. Just air the finale this Sunday, and let’s be done with it. Let’s wash our hands of “Dexter,” and move on with our lives. It’s been a really unpleasant season, and though that can be said for most of the last several seasons of the serial-killer drama, this one is particularly brutal. It’s like a novel that has a really compelling, very strong opening that fuels you through the first half of the book before you realize that what you’re reading is complete crap, and though you stick with it for another 100 pages, you finally throw your hands in the air, say f*ck it, and skip to the last chapter just so you can finally find out what happens.
It’s like that, only it takes EIGHT YEARS to read the novel. I don’t want to watch your show anymore. It’s become such a chore. Everything is telegraphed, and obvious, and three-quarters of every episode is spelled out in the “Next on” segment. The writers, the cast, everyone is just going through the motions at this point: No one has any enthusiasm for what they’re doing, they’re just doing it so they can get to the end. I, too, just want to get to the end. I don’t care about Dr. Vogel, or Dexter’s new protege, or the season-long big-bad arc that was seemingly aborted anti-climactically two episodes ago, or even Hannah McKay, who is played by the lovely Yvonne Strahovski, and who has been given a terrible, contrived storyline.
There is no cohesion to this season. It’s as though no one had an idea good enough to sustain 12 episodes, so the storylines feel like spare parts cobbled together to fill space until the finale airs. How many people that “finally understand me” does Dexter have to meet over the course of eight seasons? The Masuka storyline with his daughter feels like just another one of those random subplots that go nowhere that the writers give to the side characters every season. Does anyone really care whether Quinn and Jamie get together, or if Quinn gets a promotion? What function does Batista even serve anymore? Why does Masuka exist in the first place? He does the same job as Dexter, and they always work the same crime scenes. Also, how many goddamn unsolved serial killer cases can Miami possibly have? Has Dexter ever help to arrest anyone and just put them in prison? Has anyone ever looked at his f*cking conviction rates? They’re deplorable! Why doesn’t the fact that every major murderer in Miami disappears before they can be arrested ever raise any red falgs? How did a woman on the lam for murder marry a highly visible billionaire without anyone saying, “Oh, hey! Isn’t that the woman wanted for murder?” No one on this show seems to care about the details.
It’s really been one terrible season after another since the Trinity Killer, and the only reason why anyone is still watching is to see what happens in the end. You, Showtime, could do us all a huge favor and just tell us now. Just air the goddamn finale. I don’t care what happens in the next four episodes, and with the way things are going in this series, the events of the next four episodes will probably only be tenuously connected to the events of the finale anyway. If you air the finale this Sunday, I promise not to cancel my subscription (after all, “Homeland” returns this month, plus I’m excited to see what you guys have done with Lizzy Caplan and Michael Sheen in “Masters of Sex.”) In fact, I will be more likely to stick with Showtime now that Dexter is finally over.
This Sunday at 9 p.m., just have Michael C. Hall and Jennifer Carpenter tape a brief message before the episode saying, “We’re really sorry. This final season of “Dexter” has not really been up to par and we apologize for trying your patience. To make up for the lousy season, Showtime has agreed to put you out of your misery and air the final episode of “Dexter” tonight. In addition, you will get three free months of Starz.”
Remember when Debra just shot a guy earlier in the season, and that case just kind of disappeared? Why don’t you do disappear the next four episodes? Is that really too much to ask?
A Longtime Viewer