First off, I loved the monologue at the beginning when Dexter is contemplating the “survival of the fittest” concept at his barbecue. The writer’s did a fantastic job of expressing a point of view that would never occur to a “normal” person at a barbecue and yet, for Dexter, it made perfect sense.
Neighborhood watch/vandal story line: I didn’t mind it, but it didn’t feel right.. not for Dexter. I may be wrong, but it seems like a story line specifically for this episode. I don’t think we’ll see Dex running into any problems with the neighbor again and I doubt the neighborhood watch will effect him from here on out. A lot of shows have unconnected story lines, but Dexter isn’t one of them.. I guess that’s why it seemed off to me. Also, as I was discussing the episode with Brandon, he mentioned that he didn’t really need the twist of the vandal being the dad as opposed to the kid. I agree with that. I get that the kid was the obvious choice, but I was okay with that. It makes more sense than the dad. The only reason I could maybe see is that they may later set up some relationship with the son and Astor and didn’t want him to be a complete punk.. or maybe they just thought it was more clever for the dad to do it. Who knows. That said, I wasn’t bored with this storyline at all and I think it helps show Dexter’s overall feeling of being trapped (also intensified by Rita not letting Dex drive anywhere). Maybe that’s what the writers wanted to accomplish. Beside all that, we’re starting to see Rita question Dexter more. We saw it before with the “drug abuse” situation, but how will she react now that they’re married? My guess is that she may find out that he still has his apartment, assumes he’s cheating and leaves him. It’s the only way I can think of to get Dexter back to being a “lone wolf” and still keep the audience on his side. We shall see.
Side note: The scene where Dex is being chased by the neighborhood watch was absolutely wonderful. I love the moment when he stops to wonder how his life got to this point.. Brilliant!
The Trinity Killer: We finally see another of Trinity’s victims.. a middle aged mother of two. As if he wasn’t already creepy enough, now we see him convince his victim to jump to her death of her own free will (kinda). It seems to be the perfect crime. Sadly, that wasn’t the creepiest thing he did this episode.. Seeing him pour two drinks, offer one to no one, then tell his non-exsistant companion, “Drink up, you’re next.” takes the creepy cake in my book.
I love the way the writers are slowly revealing Trinity to us, giving us clues along the way. I dunno if the dates line up, but my guess is that Trinity’s sister killed herself in a bathtub and his mom committed suicide by jumping off that building. I’m assuming he blamed his dad for both of their deaths and bludgeoned him to death, which should be the next kill we see. The similar cases we’re seeing from 30 years ago may actually be Trinity’s relatives, not his victims. Finding that link out may lead to them finding the Trinity killer’s identity. Of course, this is all speculation.
Dexter’s inner struggle: Kudos to Michael C. Hall for his performance this week. He’s always fantastic but I thought he did particularly well this episode. If you watch his facial expressions as he’s trying to be “one of the guys” you can read his uncomfortableness, but while he’s talking to Lundy about being a “lone wolf” you can see that he’s truly happy and relieved to have a break from trying to fit in.
Speaking of the “lone wolf” thing, it was good to see a little a little Deb and Dexter bonding time again. Seems like we haven’t seen any of that in quite awhile.
I also thought Dexter’s interactions with Astor were great this episode, especially the talk he had with her near the end. Dex may not be good at being truly heartfelt, but I think that was as close as he could get. He meant what he said and it was nice to see Astor not be a brat for a split second.
The subplots: Turns out I don’t really think I care too much about the vacation murders. I mean, LaGuerta and Angel got shot at by the possible killer and I didn’t particularly care.. I’m not sure if that was due to their romance or because that storyline isn’t really holding my attention. Either way, I’m pretty eh on the whole thing.
More Deb/Anton/Lundy blah blah blah.. We get it. Anton is boring and Deb is looking to fulfill some psychological daddy issue deficiency with Lundy. Pick one and let’s all move on, shall we? I don’t even care which one she picks at this point.
The Quinn/Dexter interaction is still interesting to me. We left things on an awkward note, so I’m curious to see where they go from here with the two of them. However, the Quinn/reporter story doesn’t interest me at all. Obviously Quinn is telling her too much and that will end up getting him in trouble.. I don’t know why they’re drawing it out.
The Cliff Notes: I thought it was a solid episode.. possibly my favorite of the 3 so far this season. I read somewhere that the writers think that this may end up being the best season they’ve had. I don’t know that I agree with that.. I agree that the Trinity Killer may end up being the best “villain” they’ve had so far, but with the subplots being so mediocre, I don’t think it’ll rival season one. Your thoughts?