New Blood is about Dexter.
New Blood was more than a return to our favorite serial killer. We realized that this was not a cash-in, but a success when the credits rolled. This was the end the show deserved.
I was curious as to why Kurt Caldwell died in the last episode of the season. The villain is usually saved for the final episode.
Kurt wasn't the season's main villain. He was definitely Dexter's, but Dexter himself was the Big Bad this time around. He has always been. We like Walter White, even though we know that he is hurting people and needs to be stopped.
We were a little disappointed when New Blood appeared to take the easy route, and we hoped that Harrison would not follow in his father's footsteps. Harrison nearly killed the kid he thought was his enemy. There was a bone-breaking incident during the wrestling match.
Dexter believed that Harrison had his own way of guiding these actions, and that the only way to save his son from a quick trip to the slammer was to teach him how to kill by way of The Code.
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We wondered if Dexter was right as we watched them take down Kurt Caldwell. Is Harrison destined to take over the family business?
As Dexter butchered Kurt's lifeless body, blood flowed across the plastic tarp toward Harrison and he was repulsed by it. He had to leave to get fresh air.
Harrison is drawn to the idea of killing bad guys. He isn't drawn to the act of killing. He doesn't like blood. Killing is not a turn-on. He is okay with saving innocents, but not like Dexter.
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As he tells Harrison that they will have to move from Iron Lake, it becomes obvious to us. Harrison wants to stay in a community where he feels accepted. He has friends and a girlfriend and it is a new start.
Dexter wants to leave. Maybe to Los Angeles. He tells Harrison that they can't do what they do. The business of serial killing is better in a city.
Dexter is no longer focused on staying clean or protecting his son. Thanks to Matt and Kurt Caldwell, ten years of muder-sobriety has been flushed down the drain. Harrison just wants to live a normal life now that he can't think about the next kill. Harrison tells him that he is not his caretakers and we realize how much this is a story of addiction and neglect. The sins of the father.
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When Dexter is arrested in her own home the next evening, he will stop his plans. She asks him questions at the station and he gives her a run-around trying to poke holes in her theories.
He blames Kurt, but he isn't prepared for her accusations. He assumed everyone had forgotten about the Bay Harbor Butcher case, but he didn't know she made a connection between the ketamine in his victims in Iron Lake. He thinks the case is closed.
He was completely surprised when she told him that she was in touch with Angel Batista and that he was on his way to Iron Lake. His time table is greatly accelerated by this. There is no final confrontation between Angel and Dexter, which is a missed opportunity.
I think it is fun to bring his character back to the show and he plays a pivotal role, but isn't it just a tiny bit contrived? When she is dating Dexter Morgan, the chances of her running into him seem slim. It is not that big of a deal. There was a small contrivance in the show.
Dexter is compelled to play his trump card. He told her to go to Kurt's cabin and find the hatch. It is odd that she goes there alone, even though she knows Kurt is still alive.
Dexter is locked up, but that doesn't stop him. He got him in a chokehold after trying to lure him to the cell. Dexter killed Logan when he went for a gun instead of the keys, saying something to the effect of "Look what you made me do."
He told Harrison where the white deer was killed. It's interesting because we know that Harrison was there when Dexter killed Matt. Dexter was keeping a very big, very dark secret. He never betrayed it.
Harrison is waiting for Dexter to show up. Dexter wants to go as soon as possible, but Harrison is worried. Who is that person? Wait a second, did you just call me from his phone? Did you kill coach?
"Never get caught, right?" Harrison is angry.
Dexter said it was the only way. He wouldn't comply.
Harrison realized just what a monster his father is after this. Would my mom still be alive if it wasn't for you? He asked Aunt Debra.
Look at what you have done. We see the innocent dead left in Dexter's wake when Harrison shouts at his father. Dexter has always been willing to kill to get away with murder, even if the people he kills don't deserve it.
Finally, an event. Dexter is held accountable for his actions. He doesn't get away. He was brought down in the end by his girlfriend and son, two people who could have easily died because of him. Dexter was going to kill Angela before he showed up.
Harrison lives by the code. He kills to save other people. We would lie to ourselves if we told ourselves that Dexter was a hero.
I would like to live in Salt.
The song that plays as Harrison drives out of Iron Lake is by The National. I have to say something for two reasons. The acoustic version of the above video was performed in the Austin, Texas, office of the Gibson showroom. I wouldn't give anything to be there.
The National is my favorite band, so hearing a song of theirs at the end of the show was powerful for me.
It is a perfect song to play at that time. Harrison sees the letter from his dad in the passenger seat of the truck, and as he drives we hear Dexter telling his stepmom to keep his survival a secret. One of Dexter's only true acts of love is letting him die so that Harrison can live.
He had to reckon with his abandonment of his son all season, and as the song plays we hear its chorus: "I should live in salt for leaving you behind." One imagines that the line is about a break up and regret, but also about a regret.
Harrison finally understands that he wasn't abandoned because his father was ashamed of him or didn't love him, but because he was trying to protect him from Dexter's "Dark Passenger"
It is moving. The show has always deserved a better ending.
New Blood exceeded my expectations. Silly plot twists and contrived confrontations are what it left behind. The idea that Dexter was a hero was removed. I think this season of Dexter was the best out of them all, in many ways, but also more profound and emotionally poignant.
It toyed with the idea of bringing back the character of Jiminy Cricket, played by Dexter's very own Deborra Morgan.
As Dexter is bleeding in the snow, he is kneeling beside his wife, holding her hand. She pulls her hands away. Dexter died.
And Harrison is still alive.
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