Michael C. Hall reprises role for ‘Dexter: New Blood’

Rick's Reviews

Michael C. Hall returns to the role of Dexter for a new Showtime series. (Photo courtesy of Showtime)

(KGET) — It looks like you can take the serial killer out of Miami but you can’t take the serial killing out of “Dexter.” All of the bloody slayings by the blood splatter expert who committed as many killings as he investigated in the Showtime series that ran from 2006-2013 appeared to come to an end after eight seasons.

The idea of bringing Dexter Morgan out of retirement has been discussed at various times since the finale. That talk has resulted in “Dexter: New Blood” scheduled to launch at 9 p.m. Nov. 7 on Showtime. Michael C. Hall returns to the role of America’s favorite serial killer as the story picks up 10 years later.

Dexter, who went missing in the eye of Hurricane Laura, has ended up living under an assumed name in the fictional small town of Iron Lake, NY. He’s managed to put his killing ways behind him but events in the close-knit community have drawn Dexter back to his dark ways.

Hall says, “There have been different instances in which we considered the possibility of revisiting the show and different contexts in which those instances happened. This is more or less where he was living from the time this incarnation came to be. He’s not in the same place he was when we left him.

“He’s in geographically quite a different place and certainly has come a long way just in terms of the time that’s passed.  But locating himself within a context that is pretty much empathetical to everything that defined it from the Miami standpoint was something that felt right.”

From the day the show ended until production started on “Dexter: New Blood,” the ideas about where the character should go have been discussed and debated. Bringing the character back gives the team a chance to use some of the ideas – that range from the mundane to the massive – that never got used in the first production.

Hall’s confident this is the right time to revisit the character because enough years have passed to set up a variety of story possibilities.

Executive producer Clyde Phillips points out having Dexter live in a community of less than 3,000 people rather than the massive city in Florida gives him less possible victims. At the same time, everyone in the small town is a potential target for Dexter.

Cast and crew are taking a big gamble bringing the show back. The original production was one of the most acclaimed series on television earning multiple Emmy nominations for best television drama series as well as a Peabody Award in 2008. It was twice named one of AFI’s top 10 television series.

Making new episodes was a chance everyone was willing to make because of the reaction to the final episode.

Hall explains, “The show did not end in a way that was definitive for people or gave anybody a sense of closure.  We didn’t hear from Dexter.  He didn’t say anything to us when the show ended, and I think it left audiences, if nothing else, a sense of suspended animation.

“I think a lot of what was mystifying or dissatisfying to people is a lot of what creates the appetite that we’re hopefully satisfying now.”

Hall is not the only cast member returning as Jennifer Carpenter reprises her role as Dexter’s sister Deb – but in a very different way. Carpenter – whose character died in the series finale – describes her character as being a “link or echo” of Dexter’s life.

Carpenter was willing to come back to the role of Deb because she would be able to both provoke and love Dexter.

Other cast members include Jack Alcott playing Dexter’s teenage son Harrison who mysteriously returns to Dexter’s life after 10 years apart. The arrival of Harrison was crucial to the heart of “Dexter: New Blood.”

Phillips says, “When we sat down and figured out what we were going to do, the theme of the season quickly became fathers and sons.  And you can’t do a show about Dexter without bringing back his son.

“Dexter had left his son when he was 5 years old, and the son has always thought he was dead. Then found out he was alive, and has a great resentment.  And Dexter has a lot of work to do to win his son back and prove that he’s a good father.”

Producers won’t say if the title is referring to Harrison or just that Dexter is back to his old ways. They will say that it is a way to make sure that these new episodes are not seen as a ninth season of “Dexter” but as its own show.

There are 10 one-hour episodes in the season of “Dexter: New Blood.” The cast also includes Julia Jones, Alano Miller, Johnny Sequoyah and Clancy Brown.

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