Dexter 5.05 “First Blood” Review

Is it possible to atone for one’s sins by preventing someone else from making the same mistakes? Dexter (Michael C. Hall) certainly seems to think so.

Lumen (Julia Stiles) is an opportunity for Dexter to take the first steps at trying to heal his own guilt of what he is, of what happened to Rita. He needs her to stop because he too, needs to stop. Yet because he feels incapable of his own self-control, he’s projecting that control onto Lumen. The irony is that he was ready to kill the wrong man in order to do it.

“If you don’t put it behind you, what you are feeling will only get worse.”

Dexter should know better than to think that a simple plane ticket to Minneapolis could make Lumen’s need for revenge and blood go away. He’s asking her to do the one thing he knows is impossible: to forget about it and move on. He’s trying to save a part of himself that died a long time ago. The series is constantly exploring if we have the ability to ever truly recover from horrific traumas. Perhaps its our own code we create to rationalize the damage and the pain. Perhaps sometimes love can win out. Or maybe the only way through is to give into the dark passenger and see where it leads us.

Masuka (C.S. Lee) is having one of his best seasons ever. “Sugar” is hitting on all cylinders and it seems like every moment he’s on screen is funnier than the last. Meanwhile Deb (Jennifer Carpenter) continues her trend of picking the worst possible sex partners in the history of television. It’s clear Quinn is just using her to get what he wants, which is Dexter (“Kind of warm for gloves, isn’t it?”). He’s going to love rubbing this relationship in Dexter’s face (“You need Quinn for that?” Haha). It seems there may be hope for Deb though by switching teams. That moment with the tattoo artist should be really interesting to watch.

Batista (David Zayas) and Maria (Lauren Velez) are back to their trite silliness. And just when I thought it might be going somewhere. The writers need to figure out what to do with these two…and fast. Every time they are on screen it disrupts the flow. It’s like the show is suddenly interrupted by a bad episode of Guiding Light.

I’m still thinking that Lumen’s family has something to do with what’s going on with her. Is it possible the “cult” murders are tied to the same group that tortured Lumen? I have a feeling the next episode or the one after we are going to be in for some major twist and game changer. So far this season has been solid, but as it goes on, it’s becoming hard not to compare it to Trinity. It needs a shot of adrenaline.

Grade: B

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