In most seasons of “Dexter,” the first nine episodes are exercises in frustration, nine hours or so that you simply endure. Some are better than others, while some are downright painstaking. But you endure them for those final three episodes, when the slowly developing plot strands finally begin to come together. Those final three episodes never disappoint (except perhaps the Jimmy Smits season), and they are the reason we all return for another season and endure those first nine episodes again. The payoff is worth it.
In last night’s tenth episode of the fifth season, we’ve finally gotten to the portion of the season where — with the pieces all laid out — they’re finally coming together. The LaGuerta and Batista side plot has been remaindered; Deb’s back on the force; there was no sight of Officer Manzon; nothing about the Santa Muerta killer; Harrison has been shipped off to his grandmother’s with Astor and Cody (and the Nanny is out of the picture for now), and we were left to contend with only the main plotline: Dexter and Lumen’s pursuit of Jordan Chase and the other men that raped her (and 12 other women).
There’s something seriously insidious going on, too. The creepiest moment of the episode came when Jordan Chase talked with Emily, his first victim. Only she doesn’t realize she’s a victim. She’s totally into Jordan Chase, and is afraid that she’ll be replaced by Lumen. Replaced as what? A real-life human rape doll? What the fuck? Apparently, she made Jordan what he is today, which is a skeevy fucking sociopath who sells self-help books. We also know that he didn’t rape Emily; he only beckoned his buddies to do so. Moreover, he didn’t want Emily to touch him, so he’s one of those people, too. Like Howie Mandel. Only more psycho-killer-y. Apparently Emily doesn’t have to worry about being replaced because “she’s a very special person” to Jordan. And when Jordan told her that, my entire body shuddered. Jonny Lee Miller hasn’t been this good since he played the part of Angelina Jolie’s husband.
I’m beginning to think, too, that there’s also something evil lurking underneath Lumen’s naive revenge killing exterior. There’s probably a reason that Jordan Chase chose her, and Boyd Fowler hinted at it before he had a knife plunged into his chest. Is it possible that these women came to Jordan? Is he some sort of Rasputin by proxy? Rasputin used to tell women that they had to sleep with him to get their evil out. Is Jordan suggesting to these women that the gang-rapes are a way to get their evil out, too? Is it one of those things where, if you survive, you’re cured? Before Lumen knifed Alex Tildon, she did say that he made her do things that she’d never considered before. Was that Jordan Chase’s point? By killing Tildon, is Lumen self-actualized? Is this blood-thirsty version of David Fincher’s The Game? In the end, will everyone from Lumen’s past arrive and throw her a birthday party?
I don’t know, but I’m certain that Lumen is not as she appears. When Dexter intimated, at the end of the episode after he and Lumen hooked up (so not sexy at that point), that she doesn’t see him as a monster, my first thought was that she sees him exactly as that. And that she’s a monster, too. Two peas and pod and all that mad man stuff. The idea of Dexter with Lumen has a way of weirdly making me sympathize with him less. He doesn’t seem to be killing to satiate a need; he’s doing it for her. There’s something about that that makes it harder to stomach.
You can’t contend, however, that it wasn’t a gripping episode, and I dig that Jordan Chase remains a step ahead of Dexter, for the moment. He had Deb and Quinn arrive at Alex’s house just as they were about to kill Tilden, only apparently, they moved the kill room. Where? I have no idea. If it were in a hidden room in the house, then Deb wouldn’t have found the footprint, but why make a big fuss about finding a soundproof room seemingly in the house, hidden-away? Theories? Am I just missing something here?
Jordan Chase is turning into a worthy successor to the Trinity Killer. And his motive for the rapes may even be more sinister. Trinity had ritualistic motive — he killed out of some psychological need. It’s not exactly clear yet what Chase’s motives are yet, but they surely come from a very fucked up place. I’m stoked to find out what that fucked up place is. And to find out, moreover, what Stan Liddy is going to do with the information he’s collected on Dexter and Lumen so far.