Watching Dexter take every single on of his victims from season 1 to 7 is just flat out creepy. It make you wonder just how he wasn’t seen as the biggest monster of all by his fans and why his actions were justified no matter if he was doing a public service by executing the worst that society had to offer. It’s scary to think that blood splatter expert might be able to perform such cold-blooded acts without suffering any ill effects to his psyche, but then you can kind of imagine that Dexter wasn’t the model of mental stability before he began his personal crusade against those that were in the wrong to start with. Perhaps a few of us would take the time to admit that we’d like to see justice meted out like this, but knowing that the law would punish us in a way most severe keeps a lot of people from ever speaking out about these kind of fantasies. Instead we get to watch them with shows like Dexter, that allow us to explore the darker side of our natures without ever having to admit what we might do without anything such as law keeping us bound and on the side of what we believe is right.
Some of us might like to imagine that Dexter is this strange anti-hero that does the dirty work that the law won’t. He certainly saves the taxpayer the trouble of housing, feeding, and caring for those that might only ever be locked away and given an attempt at rehabilitation. Without the need to worry about anything other than a burial or a cremation such individuals would swiftly become little more than a memory in the collective consciousness of the world, largely forgotten by many and remembered only by others as a footnote in a life that is obviously fleeting.
I know a lot of people would stand on the side of Dexter and claim that he’s done more good than the legal system of the real world would ever do, but they’d be no more right than those that would want to rehabilitate him and grant him room and board at the expense of the taxpayers. In truth it’s hard to know how to feel about Dexter. The whole line of “He only kills the bad guys,” is kind of old and faded at this point and in all honesty he takes out who he wants to, otherwise he’d be on a nationwide quest to seek out and hunt down every last offender he could find. Being selective about who he goes after is not quite as impressive enough to be called an anti-hero, though once again, he is doing what he can to keep dangerous people from being a threat to anyone else.
But we do have laws for a reason, and while it’s not satisfying to see people get off without a punishment after committing a crime, it does keep us from widespread anarchy. There are many other ways to punish those that have done wrong. But it might be that even Dexter wouldn’t be down to support them.