The Life & Times of an Auteur.

Commentary on Pop Culture, and maybe creating some of my own.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Those Kinds of Things

Note: The premiere episode of season six of "Dexter" has yet to air on Showtime, or any other network for that matter. However, the episode has been leaked onto the internet, and I couldn't wait. So be warned, there are SPOILERS! Thank you.

Season six of "Dexter" begins with a bang. As per previous seasons, we have our self-contained story within the episode, while a larger season arc begins to take shape.

Dexter attends his twentieth anniversary High School reunion to take down a jock who married a girl who was nice to Dexter, and murdered her three years ago. We get a lot of fun moments and scenes where Dexter finds that he's popular for the first time. He's better looking than he was twenty years ago, he has a cool job, and there is a lot of sympathy and pity thrown his way over Rita's murder. He even gets an unexpected blowjob from Tricia the prom queen. Maybe there's hope for me when I attend my twentieth reunion. ;)

While this is going on, our arc is set up when two men, one older and one younger kill a fruit vendor and replace his intestines with baby water snakes. When the body is discovered, powerful writing and great directing keeps this scene effective, as the CGI snakes did look pretty cheesy. The murder had a religious element to it, as the Greek signs for "Alpha" and "Omega" were stitched into the victim.

The overall theme of the season appears to be religion and faith. Dexter is trying to get Harrison enrolled into a Catholic school that Batista sent his daughter to, while asking questions about faith himself. He and Deb have a conversation, where Dexter reveals that he doesn't believe in God (Deb's response to that is causing some controversy on the internet, and I'll address that momentarily). Meanwhile our two villains are clearly religiously motivated.

While all this is happening, LaGuerta got promoted to Captain, and she and Batista divorced between seasons. Why? Apparently because that marriage wasn't getting LaGuerta ahead, so they decided to divorce while they're still friends. Batista is promoted to lieutenant. On the one hand, while I do think it's a little cheap to do this between seasons, I don't think it's uncharacteristic of LaGuerta, who has always been so career oriented that she is willing to step over and spit on anyone to get ahead. And she only got the promotion by blackmailing the Deputy-Chief to get it.

As for our two villains. One is an older man, and one appears to be about Dexter's age. Maybe a little younger. The older man is giving the orders, and the younger one is committing the murders, pulling snakes out of the swamp, etc. I suspect we're getting an evil version of Harry and Dexter here. The older man looks like he could be the guy's father. In fact, since we've so far seen the older man do nothing but issue orders, I'm even suspecting he's not alive and the younger man is having visions of him just like Dexter has visions of Harry giving him advice.

And now, Debra's quote:

"I'm no the most religious person in the world-- mom practically had to drag me to church-- but, seriously!? A set of rules to follow so you don't get in trouble? Sounds like something I might teach a puppy.... it just sounds kind of cold and empty. You can believe whatever you want to believe, or not believe whatever you want to believe, but it's not just about you anymore. You're a father. What about Harrison? You have to think about what you want him to believe".

A lot of people seem to think this is a big gigantic swipe against Atheism. Well, speaking as someone who borders between Atheism and Agnosticism that doesn't like religion 90% of the time, but I sort of agree with Deb's point. I really think it's the fact that he said he follows a set of rules so he doesn't get into trouble that Deb had a problem with, not that he's an Atheist. It does sound sort of cold, to do things just to protect yourself, compared to the whole "love thy neighbor" and so on that religion preaches. "Act this way so you don't get into trouble" isn't something I'd want to teach a kid. Kids need to learn to be genuinely decent people and so on, not to just act it so they "don't get into trouble."

She could've been a lot less obnoxious about it, but... she's Deb. I'm sure she just wants the best for Harrison and for him to be able to grow up as normally as possible.

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