Monday, April 04, 2011

What is the appeal of Dexter?

I watched the final episode of Dexter last night. It is a show I've been following - I follow a few: Mad Men, Breaking Bad. When I first had kids I was a big fan of Six Feet Under and Queer as Folk - it was good to have some adult themes to think about whilst pushing the kids on the swing at the park and doing the washing up. I only watch these series as they air on free to air tv - I'm not into viewing box sets - I don't have a block of time in which to do that. Perhaps I like to have something to look forward to on a weekly basis. Anyway, I've been a bit excited about Dexter.

What is it about the show that makes me toss and turn at night after watching, (aside from the early morning garbage truck?) and gives me so much to think about?

I suggest the narrative voice over is part of the appeal. Dexter is trying to fit into society. He is trying to do what is expected of him, even though he doesn't instinctively know. He needs to fit in so he doesn't draw attention to himself and arouse suspicion (he's a serial killer, but he only kills baddies). I think we are all like that, just not to the same extent. I'm sure all of us at some time have had people crying in front of us, or being angry, or doing things where we aren't sure if we should get involved or how we should react. Perhaps we often try to be kind, or helpful, or sociable, or attentive, when really we may not care. But the more that you do that, the more you learn to care. The series is kind of about learning to be caring.

The show is clever, well written, fast paced, and sometimes funny.

And it is a damn good argument for counselling. If every character who had experienced trauma had seen a counsellor, there would be no story!

If you watch Dexter, why do you like it?


Greta Koenigin said...

I better give it another try. Friends and relatives of mine love it, but after seeing one episode, I started to wonder who in the grocery store was a murderer. And I kept picturing John Lithgow, lying in wait in my house, every time I came home at night. The single episode didn't captivate me enough to justify my enduring the horror aspect. But maybe I'll give it another chance. xo, Greta

Motherhugger said...

I'm hoping that John Lithgow's next big role is a light and happy one!