Dexter looked into his past night and ended up possibly getting a glimpse of his future. It wouldn’t be the first time his target presented a mirror through which Dexter could examine his own life and where he might be headed. The episode was pretty standard, until the end, when we were presented with one of the series’ darkest moments to date.
What’s up with Ryan?
It’s fitting that the Ice Truck Killer’s name has resurfaced on Dexter, considering how things ended tonight. It was Ryan’s fixation of the Season 1 villain that brought Dexter’s brother’s alias back to relevancy, as Masuka presented his apprentice with the evidence box for the Ice Truck Killer’s case, which contained the fake hand with the painted nails. Ryan’s obvious obsession with the Ice Truck Killer seems like it could explain her flirtatiousness with Masuka, and possibly her whole reason for being there. Or maybe she really does like him. I’m not sure I buy that though, considering the way she blew off Quinn when he tried to flirt with her. My theory is that, like Dexter, Ryan has a thing for serial killers, or perhaps the Ice Truck Killer in particular, and her interest in forensic science is really just a ploy to get her sticky fingers on whatever murder-swag she can find. I don’t know that I’d go as far as to suggest that Ryan is a serial killer or an aspiring one, so much as she is a serial killer groupie. We’ll leave that theory pending until we have more to go on.
Moving on to the final moments of the episode, Gellar and Travis’ presentation of a part-man/part-mannequin body perched atop a horse was strangely reminiscent of the Ice Truck Killer’s preference of draining his victims of all of their blood and leaving their parts on display somewhere. But Travis and Gellar’s motive seems to go beyond showing off. With words like, “Much more at stake than one man’s suffering,” and “He has to be pure or we can’t proceed,” it’s evident their intentions extend further than simple blood-lust. It seems like the killings are meant to send a message and also serve some religious, ritualistic purpose.
The Tooth Fairy
The meat of the episode had Dexter tracking down Walter Kenney, a man he believed was responsible for a dead prostitute with a missing tooth. Once upon a time, Dexter kept a scrapbook for a serial killer called The Tooth Fairy. This was perhaps one of the ways Dexter’s father came to understand the depth of his son’s problems. While normal boys have Playboys under their beds, Dexter had a scrapbook with newspaper clippings about a man who killed prostitutes and yanked out their lateral incisor. (That particular tooth is probably always going to make me think of Ed Helms’ character in The Hangover.)
The Tooth Fairy was retired, but apparently, he got bored with his old trophies and decided to come out of retirement to make a new one. Dexter had a fairly easy time finding Walter Kenney, but confirming that he was the Tooth Fairy meant hanging out with the cranky man, listening to him complain, and buying him booze and porn before he got what he was looking for. He tailed him to a storage facility where he was hiding a box of old teeth. While Dexter sat in the man’s lawn chair in the storage unit and looked at his box of teeth, I thought of Storage Wars and wondered what Barry would’ve made of the box old teeth, as he thumbed through them with his black and white skeleton gloves.
Dexter nearly ended up becoming another one of the Tooth Fairy’s victims when Kenney figured out who Dexter was by snooping at his car registration and later “goggling” his name. Dexter managed to escape the gun to his head by crashing his car (again) and after that, Kenney was an easy kill.
The most interesting thing about Walter Kenney as a victim was that he’s another example of a serial killer, and one who managed to live to see old age. He tried to tell Dexter that Dexter would be just like him some day and maybe he’s partially right. Maybe Dexter will end up in adult diapers and living in some fancy Miami retirement home. It’s impossible to know what the future holds for him. But Dexter knows that’s not what he wants to become. Maybe he doesn’t see himself as being the killer he is decades from now. Maybe he believes at some point, he’ll have enough and his dark passenger will finally be satiated. Or maybe he was just too disappointed by who the Tooth Fairy really was to care what he had to say. Either way, he didn’t seem all that phased by Walter Kenney’s final words. And he wasn’t willing to give Walter his final wish of making sure his son knows what his father really was.
Instead of stabbing Walter, he suffocated him, which will allow the authorities to think he died of a heart attack. No one but Dexter will know who Walter really was.
Deb’s the boss.
Deb’s going to need some time to get adjusted to her new job. Tonight we saw her being bossed around by LaGuerta, who was pushing Deb to hire her pick for detective. Batista was kind enough to encourage Deb not to allow his ex-wife to control her. If she starts backing down every time LaGuerta makes a “suggestion,” it’ll never end. I’m thinking it was that, added to LaGuerta taking Quinn’s side on how to handle the snake-murder case that made Deb’s decision to go with her own choice for new detective. She hired Mike Anderson, a detective from Chicago, who may be a new face around Miami Metro Homicide.
Poor Mike thought Deb was a joke when he met her, clearly not expecting his new boss to be a woman. Thinking he was being hazed he sent her for coffee. He quickly apologized when she made him aware of his mistake and all seemed to be forgiven. I thought there might’ve been a bit of a connection between Deb and Mike, but who knows? Maybe I’m just trying to picture her with someone new now that Quinn’s back to old form, sleeping with as many women as he can in order to get over Deb. Something tells me that won’t last though. I think Quinn’s trying to resume his old life as though his relationship with Deb never existed, but there’s no going back.
Brother Sam, who’s proving to be very helpful given how often Dexter seems to be mangling his car this season, invited Dexter to Nick’s baptism. If Dexter’s looking to explore religion, Sam could be just the friend he needs.