TCA/Showtime's Sho-Stopper Panel: Dexter!


This afternoon at TCA, Showtime marched out their stars and showrunners for Weeds, Dexter, Brotherhood, and Californication.  If you’re a fan of Dexter, as I am, I think you’ll find the following discussion of what to expect in the upcoming season of Dexter especially interesting 

Here are some Dexter tidbits from the panel:

The Emmy-nominated Michael C. Hall, who plays Dexter, addressed the "code of Harry" - the strict rules taught to Dexter by his father, Harry.  For information about the "code of Harry," consult Showtime’s Dexterwiki

(fyi: according to the Showtime press release, Jimmy Smits joins the cast this season as "Miguel Prado, an ambitious, charismatic assistant district attorney who comes from one of Miami’s most politically powerful and beloved families. Dexter will join forces with Prado –- who’s risen in the ranks due to his aggressive stance against crime –- in the pursuit of a murderer who affects both of their lives directly.""

"Because of the [last season] discoveries Dexter made about his father, [Harry]" said Hall, "he’s in a place where he’s turned his back on [Harry] and yet still is utilizing the code, claiming it for his own, and thinking of himself, at least consciously, as his own man now.  And yet…there remains an unconscious desire for a connection.  And circumstances lead him into a relationship with Jimmy Smits’ character that satisfies that unconscious desire.  And he’s simultaneously attracted to and repulsed by the idea of a sort of intimacy with another person."

A reporter asked if the writers would explore "what happens if, when, Dexter makes a mistake and kills someone who is innocent."   Dexter showrunner Clyde Phillips confirmed that the writers were contemplating just such a scenario.

"I can’t tell you precisely what happens," said Phillips, ‘but we could consider it dropping a pebble on the side of a mountainside filled with snow and an avalanche comes from it. Something gets set into motion that can’t be pulled back. So yes, we’re considering it and we’re into it."

Addressing how the Smits character and Dexter might work together, Phillips had this to say:

"That’s another thing that gets set in motion that can’t be pulled back…Jimmy Smits, first of all, plays an assistant district attorney with great political ambition in Miami.  And Dexter and he formed a friendship and it is really the first adult friend that Dexter has had, and it’s new to him.  

And what Dexter strives for, or perhaps longs for — and again, we get into the whole thing of how dented is he really — is normalcy and whether that’s camouflaged, or whether it’s genuine, is something that we continue to explore.

But as that friendship progresses, Dexter becomes more and more open with the Jimmy Smits’ character and is able to talk — not through voiceover, but in reality, in our reality, for the first time and open up a little bit about who he is and that’s what we’re going to explore this year."

One reporter wanted to know how Michael C. Hall’s family reacted to the notion of him playing a serial killer.

"There was ‘As long as you’re not kissing a black man,’" quipped Hall dryly, alluding to his role on Six Feet Under as a gay man with an African-American partner. 

When the laughter died down - and, after all, this was a room full of television critics so they fully got the joke - Hall continued, "nothing. Nothing.  If I didn’t kiss a black man, I wouldn’t be a serial killer.  No.  But I mean, honestly, I think my family was relatively more comfortable with me simulating murder and vivisection than a nice healthy relationship with a black man…so they were somehow weirdly comfortable with it."