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'Dexter': No rest for the wicked/weary

October 4, 2009 | 10:00 pm

Dexter_402_1614My problem last season with the storylines not directly related to Dexter was that they seemed to have no point other than to fill time. I have a good feeling, though, about this season, because it seems like even the items that aren't registering on Dexter Morgan's (Michael C. Hall) radar are going to affect him down the line.  And what's already suspenseful is that it seems clear that thanks to his over-tired, over-harried family man self, he won't be on his toes to react to them early. 

Speaking of over-tired, the episode opened with Dexter trapped in his car, and then strapped to a gurney (much like his victims) after crashing his car on the way back from a murder.  Dexter's two main obstacles were put in place early in the episode: He lost the body of Benny Gomez, his latest victim, and because of a concussion he decided to ignore, he wasn't in his right mind. Oh, and he had to work too.  We've all been there, right? Solving a murder with a concussion with body parts lost somewhere? I hope not. 

In the meantime, Frank Lundy (Keith Carradine) wanted Dexter to help him catch the Trinity Killer, which Dexter wanted nothing to do with at the moment (I loved the disgusted way his smile melted off his face when he turned away from Lundy), but of course this will eventually catch up with him as A) the Trinity Killer is in many ways a doppelganger of Dex himself and B) the Trinity Killer is scary as heck.  All throughout the episode we watched Arthur Mitchell  (John Lithgow) as he tracked his next victim. Nothing happened but knowing that he's going to strike, that there's no particular reason (that we know of) that he kills the way he does, that he's so John Lithgow-ey about it made it terrifying. I love it! 

Adding to the panic of finding Benny Gomez, Dexter was called to the scene of the "vacation murder," where he happened to find Quinn (Desmond Harrington) pocketing the cash of the murder victim.  Quinn's always been a bit of a question mark in the series, but it seems like he finally has crossed paths with Dexter. As Quinn kissed Dexter's butt throughout the rest of the episode to try to reassure himself that Dexter wasn't going to tattle, Dexter snapped at him and requested that they each just live their lives (where was this attitude last season with Miguel Prado?).

In the meantime, Angel (David Zayas) and Maria (Lauren Vélez) discovered the problems with an office romance (Maria especially should have seen this coming), but I was so into this episode that I just chose to believe that perhaps somehow their affair will affect Dexter somehow, like maybe they'll be too busy opening and closing the office blinds to see Dexter kill Quinn. Same goes with Lundy and Dexter's sister, Deb (Jennifer Carpenter), who seems to be devoted to her current boyfriend for now. But when Lundy's not 100% focused, he's not focused on murders, which of course includes the Trinity Killer but Dexter as well.

Finally, thanks to a series of visual hints left by his ghost-father Harry (James Remar), Dexter found Benny and disposed of him properly but realized what might be his most biggest problem -- living in the past (i.e. cleaning up any mistakes he may be making) versus the present (his work and family) and then also the future (the Trinity Killer). Of course the big payoff of the season will be Dexter coming face to face with the Trinity Killer, but as new parents say, the rest will be just little surprises along the way.

-- Claire Zulkey

John Lithgow as Arthur Mitchell (a.k.a. the Trinity Killer). Photo credit: Showtime