Oct 08 2013
I read something really irritating yesterday, a brief quote from Dexter producer John Goldwyn when he was asked about the end of the show (spoilers ahead):
“How about that finale? They won’t let us kill him. Showtime was very clear about that. When we told them the arc for the last season, they just said, ‘Just to be clear, he’s going to live.’ There were a lot of endings discussed because it was a very interesting problem to solve, to bring it to a close. People have a relationship with Dexter, even if it doesn’t have the size and the ferocity of the fan base for Breaking Bad. But it has a very core loyal following.”
Yes, you read that correctly. Showtime told the writers they weren’t allowed to kill Dexter. Now, either this is the world’s biggest dick move, stomping all over creative freedom because they assume people would be pissed if Dexter died (hint: they were pissed anyway), or something else is going on here.
I don’t really understand why they would simply ban Dexter from being killed at the end of the show if their reasoning was that it would upset fans. Surely they aren’t dense enough where they don’t understand that people have hated many developments of the show for years now, and killing Dexter would be the least offensive thing they’ve done in the series as of late.
Rather, the only explanation that makes sense to me is that Showtime isn’t done with Dexter. Not yet. What other possible reason would they have to forbid his demise in the grand finale of his show?
To me, this situation is eerily reminiscent of the end of 24. A perfect ending to that series would have been Kiefer Sutherland’s Jack Bauer finally making the ultimate sacrifice for his loved ones/country, something he’s almost done many times before but has been pulled back from the brink. But now, in the grand finale, he surely could die, right?
No, and he simply escaped into the ether as a fugitive. With a few weeks, it was announced that a 24 movie was in the works. Years later, that movie is actually happening. Fox didn’t kill Jack Bauer because even after eight seasons, they still had further plans for him.
I have a hunch that Showtime has similar plans for Dexter, and yes, that could mean a possible movie.
Think about it. Dexter ended without Dexter dying, and almost more importantly, without anyone figuring out Dexter’s secret. Yes, Deb died, but the rest of the cast is intact from Miami Metro to Hannah and Harrison. Dexter is living a solitary life as a lumberjack up north, but you know what that reminds me of? All those superhero movies where Wolverine or Clark Kent grow a beard and take on some mundane blue collar job before being thrust back into saving/killing people as a new threat emerges to the world/their loved ones. Dexter’s ending reads like the beginning of a movie, not the end of a series.
And really, there are any number of ways they could bring Dexter back at this point. All of them wouldn’t be that great because of how terrible the last season was, but it’s still possible. A new killer could always emerge and convince Dexter he has to go back to being Dexter. Yes, it would be tough to explain away to his friends and family that he faked his own death, but I’m sure they could come up with something.
And honestly, given how excruciatingly bad the finale was and how poorly it was received by fans, I wouldn’t put it past Showtime or the cast themselves to want a do over in the form of a movie. Granted, if last-four-season showrunner Scott Buck was still in charge of things, the movie would probably still suck and not help matters. But if they managed to put someone competent in charge? It might not be the worst thing ever to try and at least partially redeem what used to be one of the best shows on TV. Hell, I’ll write the movie for them. Lord knows I’d do a better job of it than anyone they’ve had working the last three years.
Granted, I’m pulling almost all of this out of my ass based on one comment, but honestly, I think I’m right. Showtime wouldn’t tell the writers not to kill Dexter just to shit on their creative freedom for no reason. Like Fox with Jack Bauer, I think they may have plans for Dexter to rise again. If so, it could end up being another disaster, but maybe, just maybe, it would help save the tarnished image of our favorite anti-hero.
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