Dexter: Season 3 DVD | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
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Dexter: Season 3 DVD


Aug 27, 2009 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Showtime's water-cooler thriller Dexter is essentially The Shield at its core, with a rogue police officer working against his own department to cover up his criminal involvement with cases of interest—in Dexter, though, that rogue cop has the added twist of being a serial killer, albeit one guided by a rigid moral code. It's an entertaining setup with ample opportunity for cat-and-mouse intrigue, and like The ShieldDexter understands the power of a dynamo guest star to spice up the show before the formula wears thin.

The show's typically brisk third season introduces Jimmy Smits as a mercurial assistant district attorney, whose vitriol for criminals that escape the law jibes nicely with Dexter's own vigilante brand of justice. The two form an easy friendship as Dexter ambivalently prepares to wed his girlfriend, Rita, and his Miami police department investigates a shadow-like new serial killer who skins his victims alive.

Playing a troubled livewire with just the right balance of charisma and darkness, Smits delivers the kind of shouted, red-faced screeds usually reserved for Forest Whitaker, all clenched fists and bulging neck veins. His friendship with Dexter, though, is surprisingly touching, and the season is at its best when the title character lets down his guard and enjoys the type of authentic male bonding he's never allowed himself. Meanwhile the stock characters in Dexter's police department, always one of the show's weak links, are finally fleshed out with interesting insecurities of their own. Like Dexter, they're all searching for a genuine human connection. Unlike Dexter, though, their efforts don't leave behind a trail of bodies. (

Author rating: 8/10

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Average reader rating: 9/10


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