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'Dexter' recap: Accomplices

October 24, 2010 | 10:00 pm

Dexter_505_0256 This week’s “Dexter” had a very clever opening, as the screen was saturated with blood red, then yellow, then green -- like the show’s introduction, the possibly-ominous image pulled away to reveal something innocent: in this case, a parachute being raised and lowered over a group of infants at a Mommy and Me class.  Then things turn dark(ish) again quickly, as Dexter suspects Harrison of inflicting a little scratch on one of the other babies, of being like him. Together they “flee the scene of the crime.” 

This episode left me wondering how Lumen relates to Dexter. Often when a major character appears in the show, it somehow reflects some element of him, like how he originally was attracted to Arthur Mitchell for being able to pull off a “normal” life. In tonight’s episode Dexter tried, repeatedly, to convince Lumen not to kill the people she claims raped and abused her, to go home and start a normal life. When they meet at cafe, she tears up sugar packets and dumps the remains on the table. After she leaves, Dexter reaches over and tastes the sugar. Does that mean something?

Trying to beat her to her first victim, Dexter heads to Boyd’s house to see if he can find evidence of any accomplices, but he sees that someone’s already been there: it’s Lumen, of course, and when Dexter checks out her hotel room, thanks to her wall-o’-obsession, he sees she’s determined to track these men down. Harry warns Dexter that Lumen’s not stable, and that she’ll bring him down.

Still tracking the beheading murders, Deb follows a lead on a possible identifying tattoo on a suspect, so Masuka, who of course wears leopard-print briefs and has a huge back tattoo of a bare-breasted woman riding a dragon and wielding a sword, takes her to his tattoo artist, who identifies the design as an eye. More intriguing of course was the aggressive shine the parlor owner (played by Katherine Moennig of “The L Word”) took to Deb. I’ve sort of been waiting throughout the entirety of this series for Deb to explore her sapphic side but alas, apparently Moennig is only signed on for this one episode. 

Dex thinks he’s onto a lead of a potential accomplice of Boyd’s (I liked the visual joke of the police department’s records lady saying, “Ooh, that face!” when referring to a picture of Harrison while the camera’s on a photo of Robert Brunner.) Dexter fearlessly (or foolishly) heads under the bridge, where the sex offenders and pedophiles are exiled, to try to find his man, and poses as a rapist to get close to Brunner. Dex needles him and takes him back to Boyd’s to kill him, when Harry appears and begs Dexter not to do this, that he could be the wrong guy -- which it turns out he is, thanks to an identifying monitoring ankle bracelet. Dexter dumps Brunner off under the bridge, shaken by what he almost did.

Dexter heads home where he finds Deb with Quinn, who gutsily tries to kiss Dex’s sister in front of him. Neither Deb nor Dexter know why Quinn’s not at work right now, but Dexter doesn’t care: he hates Deb dating Quinn, and I loved the confused, repulsed look on his face when she tried to explain what they're up to. Dexter requests that Deb not bring Quinn around Harrison.

Next, Dexter has to chase Lumen down back under the bridge again, where she’s ready to shoot Brunner from afar: he stops her and tells her to quit while there’s still no blood on her hands. Lumen says she just wants to feel better, and Dexter finally convinces her to go home to Minnesota.

Angel’s a really great husband. First he’s jealous of the money Maria makes and then he’s convinced she’s cheating on him. He spies on her via her cellphone and busts in on what he thinks is an affair between her and Jim McCourt of Internal Affairs, but instead they’ve just wrapped up a sting on a dirty cop and Maria is merely buttoning up her shirt after being unbugged. Those two still have some stuff to figure out, obviously.

Fortunately, the whole Miami metro “family” gets to work together on a homicide scene Deb and Cira have found, which appears to be the early work of the beheader. I liked the slow circus music playing as Dexter warmly looked around as his co-workers worked on figuring out what happened to these two long-dead, rotting, maggoty people.

Dexter takes Lumen to the airport, but I think we all saw it coming that she wasn’t actually going to go home to Minnesota. There were some unintentionally funny moments though during the scene where Lumen’s patted down at security -- I know we were watching the character of a rape victim feeling unsafe and having an anxiety attack, but a few of the (many) closeup shots of Julia Stiles’ panicky face were a little strangely amusing. Maybe I’m just a bad person. 

Happy with her new lead, Deb calls Quinn, who’s cooling his heels at the bar. He buys the fellow next to him a drink, who just happens to be the cop busted by Maria (who just happens to be Peter Weller, aka “Robocop”!) They’re both dirty, they’re both creepy, they both have it out for Maria, so of course Quinn offers him money to track Dexter. “The ... kinda name is Dexter?” he asks, agreeing to the task. Quinn is becoming the most evil person on the show, and now he has an unofficial partner to help him carry out his dirty work. Dexter had better quit messing around with that parachute at Mommy and Me and watch his back.

-- Claire Zulkey

Photo: Michael C. Hall as Dexter and Julia Stiles as Lumen. Photo: Randy Tepper / Showtime