The Code. It’s what made Dexter watchable. The Code was the complex guide to our favorite serial killer’s mind. It humanized him because it made him a vigilante, not a cold-blooded killer. I fell in love with the series because even someone as evil as Dexter became relatable. Dexter forced the viewers to make a tough moral judgment call every single episode. Who really deserves to die? What qualifies as “deserving”?
The Code was always there to lend a helping hand and make the gruesome stabbing and dismemberment appeal to a wider audience. If you had any inclination toward the death penalty, this was probably the show for you. I’m sure that for many viewers The Code was cathartic; I know that it was for me. Not everyone has had the misfortune of seeing real evil life. I’m not special, but I’ve met bad people… bad people whom Dexter was able to fictionally kill. But now he’s just as bad as them, and I feel queasy.
Look, I’m done complaining about Hannah. I’ve accepted that the series is keeping her on for a little while. But now anyone is open for Dexter’s final kill because every red herring has been averted. Lewis, Isaak, and George are dead: there is no other evil left to finish the season off. Dexter’s first breaking of The Code could lead to anyone else: Quinn (for being a bad cop), Tom Matthews (for bringing LaGuerta’s investigation to Dexter’s attention), LaGuerta (for leading an investigation against Dexter), Deb (for any number of reasons despite the fact that he genuinely loves her), or Hannah (hopefully; for trying to kill Deb, as seen in the preview for episode 11). All of the aforementioned people, for one reason or another, are as worthy of Dexter’s slab as Hannah’s father (LaGuerta, Quinn, and Matthews for being dirty cops at different points in their career, Hannah for being a killer, and Deb for hiding the Bay Harbor Butcher from the police). Sure, Clint McKay was a terrible character; he was written for the audience to hate, written to be worthy of Dexter’s slab despite the fact that the viewers knew him for all of 45 minutes. But he wasn’t fit for the slab because he didn’t fit The Code.
I’m not necessarily disappointed in the series at this point as much as I am disappointed in the character. That being said, if Dexter spirals out of control one thing is certain: the next and final season of Dexter will likely follow: Deb and the rest of Miami PD (and likely the FBI) will be forced to hunt Dexter down… Now that seems like a fitting end to this lengthy series.