Mania Grade: C-
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- Episode: Goodbye Miami (Season 8, Episode 10)
- Starring: Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter, Desmond Harrington
- Written By: James Manos Jr. (developer), Jeff Lindsay (novel)
- Directed By: Steve Shill
- Network: Showtime
- Studio: Showtime Networks
Dexter: Goodbye Miami Review
Flagship show limping toward the finale
By Jarrett Kruse
September 10, 2013
I was impressed with last week's episode and went so far as giving it an overall “A-” grade. What a difference a week makes as the disaster that is DEXTER's final season returns to form with an episode that has Showtime's flagship show limping toward the finale. I genuinely wanted this week's installment to hold its ground after picking up some intensity and intrigue in episode 9. It fails miserably short and does not nail the making of a blood-slide worthy fourth quarter for the series. I was beyond bummed by the time the credits were rolling at the programs ineptitude to even remotely grab its faithful audience. As much as the production may have wanted it, in the end it just does not know what to do with itself painting itself into a very boring corner.
There is not so much a narrative here as much a race to the inevitable finish and the grand showdown of Dexter versus The Brain Surgeon. When last we saw Dr. Vogel, she seemed to have patched things up with her psychopathic son Daniel aka Oliver. It is confusing as to what exactly has transpired with Vogel and her estranged son. While it is admirable to see Vogel's enthusiasm to try and mend fences with her son, there is no connection despite the doc's best efforts. Vogel teeters back and forth trying to figure out what to do with her troubled son confiding in Dexter on her dilemma. Ironically all that Daniel/Oliver wants is exactly the maternal service that Vogel has provided Dexter this season. It is sad to see and it ends with a clumsy murder of the doctor by her angry son. Dexter watches but is too late and naturally Daniel gets away with ease. While the scenes with Daniel and his mother before she is offed are taut with good enough tension. However the psychopathic son just does not come off as being that formidable. Actress Charlotte Rampling definitely did not get the send off I expected and I was genuinely looking forward to her being a major part of the last two episodes. Bummer.
Dexter's plan is to whisk Hannah and little Harrison off to Argentina (See last season) where they can start a new life. However with U.S. Marshal's on the tail of Hannah, the ground is shrinking beneath her feet. Dexter has gone from being drugged by Hannah to doting on her every movement. He wants to close out what he has wrought and leave with Hannah and Harrison to start a new life in Argentina. Dexter's tunnel vision gets old real fast as the sister story lines struggle for screen time. Even the subplot with little Harrison hurting himself on Aunt Deb's treadmill feels like a cry for help. Especially when one of the nurses recognizes Hannah's mug from the TV broadcasts. All just a little too easy for me.
Now with barely anything left in the tank, Dexter is sputtering to its swan song with barely any momentum. I so wanted this to be the episode that would usher in a solid final quarter. With two episodes left, there will have to be some major fireworks for Dexter to finish in a respectable manner. There is not much left that we have collectively not seen over the years on the program and although this episode was a total miss, maybe the final two episodes will bring some sickening spatter ending the series on a bloody note. Or it could completely miss the runway for good, circling the airport until it runs out of gas.