'Dexter' Season 7, Episode 1 - 'Are You... ?' Recap

'Dexter'  Season 7, Episode 1 - 'Are You... ?' Recap Season six of "Dexter" ended with one hell of a cliffhanger, so it's been a very long wait for this seventh season to start. If you forgot, here's a reminder: Dexter nabbed Travis Marshall and killed him in the church, but unfortunately did so right as Deb was walking in to tell Dexter about her feelings for him.

Interestingly, the premiere started a bit later than that, giving us a time jump to Dexter apparently making a run for it to Miami International Airport and buying a ticket to Budapest. We later learn that it was just some misdirection, and Dexter is there to make his kill for the week. What is this, "How I Met Your Mother?"

But, back at the church: Deb is so shocked by the sight of her brother stabbing Travis in the chest that she buys every bit of Dexter's story, at least for now. He says that Travis attacked him, and he snapped and decided to kill him, and when Deb tries to call Miami Metro, Dexter stops her and explains that even if he gets off on temporary insanity, he'll lose his job and probably Harrison, too.

So Deb goes along with it all, helping Dexter to set fire to the church and make it look like Travis stabbed himself with a sword as ritual suicide. That works well enough for the rest of Miami Metro, but it doesn't quite do it for Deb: she keeps asking Dexter questions about why he had a roll of knives, why he was prepared with plastic wrap, why he had changed clothes and had a rubber apron with him. Dexter explains it all away (the knives were Travis', the plastic was in the church, he always brings clothes because his job is so messy), but there's one thing Dexter can't explain: his slides.

You see, Deb doesn't stop there. She pulls out the Ice Truck Killer file and starts matching things up, seeing similarities between that scene and Dexter's, and starts to remember bits and pieces from when she was unconscious. Add to that the info she gets from Jamie about Dexter "working late" all the time, and Deb takes it upon herself to search Dexter's apartment.

So when he comes home from this week's kill, he finds himself staring down Deb with his slides, his knives, and the Ice Truck Killer hand on the table in front of her. "Did you kill all these people?" she asks. "I did," he replies. "Are you a serial killer?" she presses. "Yes," says Dexter, with an exhalation of breath that makes the "S" sound somewhere between sinister and a sigh of relief.

That's a fantastic moment from Michael C. Hall, the kind that we haven't seen much of in recent seasons and the kind that makes him deserving of his consistent Emmy nominations. It's tremendously subtle, but you can see every thought going through his head when he says those words. When he finally reveals this dark secret to Deb, there's a mix of fear and relief in him, battling for control, but all you see are his eyes widening almost imperceptibly.

That's the meat of this episode, watching Dexter try to fend off Deb, who is way too good a detective to just let this go. The rest of the episode goes about the same way most "Dexter" episodes do: there's a kill, there's some crap we don't care about with Batista and Quinn, and there's some setup of a potential Big Bad as Louis continues his meddling (this time, he cancelled Dexter's credit card. Huh?).

Notably, we said goodbye to Mike this week, as he met his untimely end at the hands of an Eastern European gangster (guest star Enver Gjokaj), who ended up being Dexter's kill. The plausability of Dexter actually pulling that kill off in the middle of an airport with security and cameras everywhere was tough to swallow, but I suppose once you get past the security line there's less surveillance. You would think they would have a camera on the baggage room or something, though. Convenient that there happened to be a very large snowboard bag in there, too.

Chances are good that Deb will come to terms with who Dexter is, especially if she hears that Harry endorsed all of this (despite what Harry said in the flashback about the dog). But Laguerta found herself Dexter's blood slide in the church, just like the ones that Masuka says Doakes used as the Bay Harbor Butcher. Clearly Laguerta still doesn't believe for one second that Doakes was a killer, so she might be on Dexter's tail this season as well.

Who will get to Dexter first? Louis, Laguerta or Deb? Will one of them have to die?

 
 
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