Dexter

Season 6 Episode 3

Smokey and the Bandit

13
Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Oct 16, 2011 on Showtime
SUBMIT REVIEW

Episode Fan Reviews (8)

8.3
out of 10
Average
335 votes
  • More questions than answers help to build a number of inevitable consequences as Dexter gets a glimpse of an unsavory old version of what he fears could be himself.

    8.5

    Season six, episode three opens with a "run-of-the-mill" murder of a prostitute, but Dexter sees more. While the other PD members see what they believe to be a typical case of a prostitute's homicide, Dexter knows more due his own history of being attuned to the signature of an old serial killer. The incisor of the prostitute looks to have been hastily and forceably removed, it brings up Dexter's teenage memories of a case that sparked his interest to the point he kept a news clipping related to a string of murders by the "Tooth Fairy Killer". He refers to an old scrapbook of macabre dealers of death for his youth and is further galvanized in his beliefs. What others dismissed, and could be a red herring, turns out to be a correct hunch. Dexter in in newly minted, more assured self, is right on trackand he wastes no timein findingthe octagenarian killer down with almostsuper power precision.


    Meanwhile, Deb is already sensing her new position is going to take her from what she loves and is good at, being a crack detective with her signature"devil may care" attitude, to a mine field of paperwork, political bugaboos, and frustration. LaGuerta is ever present, though she has been promoted elsewhere, seemingly just to cause discord and interfere in Deb's need to seize control over her department. Deb relates her fears and self-doubt to Dexter who, in turn, brings her back down to earth telling her she can always demote herself; albeit with humor injected as he tells her just don't bring him down with her...And, by the way: "How about a raise?". Classic Dexterisms!


    The serial killing duo of Olmos and Hanks continue to work, mostly behind the scenes as they're not yet "front and center". We're not yet given their manifesto, though we know it is full of some sort of religious cleansing. We see they are preparing a move and that it is now time according to Olmos, who we think is a kind of crazed and fallen religious scholar who has employed a lackey to help. These new killers are being given the slow roll out to good effect. Olmos is not in a rush because he has to have his assistant fully under his control as he has now, it would seem, got Hanks where his actions will be congruent with Olmos lead. Olmos is going to be the next formidable killer who Dexter will have no choice other than to confront. Though still slow and building, this confrontation is now about to burst wide open. The duo is even given a name at show's end, "The Doomsday Killer".


    Dexter plays his hunch on "The Tooth Fairly Killer" to almost perfection. He lines him up, gets the goods, on his prey, and amazingly almost gets played himself. Using his penchant for wrecking his vehicle he turns the table and with aplomb has the killer on "his table", or recliner in this case. Though the more in control and empowered Dexter gets his victim it isn't without the victim planting seeds of doubt as to what lies ahead in the grisly business as Dexter, like his victim, is also a father. A general uneasiness ensues and reminds us thatDexterconstantly strugglesdue to his dual role as a father and a empty serial killer.


    So, another quite good episode of Dexter closes and provides fodder for all kind of future perdicaments. In the final scenes we see a shaken Dexter, stripped of a bit of his newfound focus and power, as he drops his box of blood slides. Dexter, for the moment, looks fear filled which is something he hasn't shown at all in the previous few episodes. He mentions he doesn't know the order the slides should be returned to (one is broken which is an allusion to his current shaky state). The order has great importance apparently. Is this a metaphor for him losing his new focus and assuredness whereby he will face his downfall? The greatness of this episode is like a unavoidable accident in waiting, we know everything here are potential bigger issuesin Dexter's world. We are sure to stay tuned!




  • Dexter tracks down an old serial killer.

    7.5

    As far as overall quality goes, this was a pretty good episode of Dexter. But what bothered me was how easily Dexter took down The Tooth Fairy. In season 4, Dexter spent all season looking for Trinity and when he found him, it took him forever to finally dispatch of him. In this episode, we have an equally disturbing serial killer who was brought down within the confines of one episode. Of course, this guy had back problems and all that jazz, but still... either way, this was a pretty good episode of Dexter that had too little of Mos Def and not enough explanation of what in the world the characters of Travis and Geller (Hanks and Olmos) are doing.


    As I mentioned earlier, the episode focuses mainly on Dexter's attempts to track down an old serial killer named "The Tooth Fairy," a serial killer who disappeared years ago but somebody he followed and tracked when he was a teenager. Dexter becomes intrigued by the idea of killing him, but once he does find him, it becomes clear that The Tooth Fairy isn't as impressive as he once assumed. He's a drunken old man who curses like his sister Deb and he seems more interested in buying the latest smut magazine instead of killing people.


    While Dexter does this, we get a lotof focus on other characters, starting with Deb. Deb has been getting a lot of screen time this season, and while some may be frustrated with this since it takes away time from Dexter, I do enjoy Jennifer Carpenter getting scenes that aren't lame. On the other hand, Quinn is hooking up with chicks left and right, which makes for lame television in my eyes, Masuka is getting closer to Ryan, his assistant, and while I'm glad C.S Lee is finally getting stuff to do as well, I'm not sure he's a big enough character to warrant huge chunks of time to himself.


    But when Michael C. Hall is on screen, the show comes to life, regardless of how lame an episode may be. Here, he's at his best as he comes to realize that the Tooth Fairy may be a glimpse of his future: a lonely old man who has a son who hates him and nothing but beer and porn to fall back on and a box of mementos of people he's killed. The end scene where he drops the slides on the ground, breaking one of them and forgetting the order of them, was a big moment, even if it didn't seem that way.


    As for the Hanks and Olmos scenes, I felt like I wanted to see more, but as long as the payoff is good here, I don't mind waiting. Plus, Colin Hanks' character Travis seems pretty interesting and the more I see Olmos' character giving cryptic messages to Travis, the more I want to know about him. We're only three episodes in so the show has earned some patience from me, but come on... give us something to work with!


    For the most part, the episode played out well. As long as Michael C. Hall is on the show, the rest of the cast will seem a bit lackluster, but this was another solid episode of Season 6. Let's see more Mos Def next time though!

  • Dexter hunts the Tooth Fairy. And it's awesome.

    10

    This is now officially the funniest season of Dexter so far. Every episode had me laughing all the way through, which is a nice change of pace from last season's brood-o-thon.


    This week, Dexter tracks yet another victim (he's 3 for 3 right now, that's a first if memory serves), an old serial killer from the 80s whom he adored back in his teenage years. After tracking him down to a home for the elderly, he befriends the old fart to try and find evidence that he's the infamous Tooth Fairy. And cue the laughter; Ronny Cox is hilarious as Walter Kenny, a bitter, obnoxious old man who can't stop rambling and complaining.


    The Tooth Fairy's downfall from elusive serial killer to insufferable old man who's alienated everyone he's ever known is very scary to Dexter, who fears to share Walter's fate. Him dropping his precious blood slides to the floor at the end shows that fear in Dexter, and that may lead him to eventually abandon his trophy-collecting ways, a way to make sure he never ends up like the Tooth Fairy, spending days staring at teeth (or slides)... and Teen Ass, Nipple Parade and Spanked, of course. That would actually be an interesting turn of events.


    On the other fronts, Deb stumbles as the new lieutenant, but eventually puts her foot down and becomes herself again after trying and failing to emulate LaGuerta. That was a nice mini-arc for Deb, starting to learn the ropes. Her little threat speech to Mike after being scoffed at was legendary.


    Quinn, on the other hand, was as insufferable as ever. He's been the blandest, most boring character ever since season three, but he's just acting like a two year old now. I really hope the Deb-Quinn issue gets resolved really soon. It's LaGuerta and Batista from last year all over again.


    The villains' plot this time around was good, but then again, we don't yet know their motivations enough to judge. I trust the writers will come up with a clever twist. There's already rumors about Gellar being Travis' split personality, but I really hope that's not the case. It's really pretty obvious and cliché. Here's to hoping he gets more involved. That also applies to Travis, whom I just can't picture cutting someone's stomach open to fill him with baby snakes, or cut someone to pieces and glue them to mannequins. I know they want to stay away from the Trinity approch, aka showing us the killings in all their gory glory, to keep us from comparing the two villains, but we are doing that comparison anyway, and so far, Colin Hanks' performance pales in front of John Lithgow's.


    That said, those gripes don't take anything away from this great episode, and that's why it still gets a 10. But they better deliver the goods with the villains, because so far, Hanks gets a big fat zero as a Dexter bad guy.

  • Philosophical but predictable subplot, déjà vu impression but welcomed changes, messy editing, intriguing Travis but anecdotic religious arc (Spoiler free)

    7.0

    How do you want to be remembered ? What heritage will you leave to future generations ? These deep and philosophical questions were asked in this third episode when I thought the season would mostly focus on religious and spiritual topics. Such a systemic approach was definitely welcome because now most people should be able to relate to Dexter's quest to get ride of his Dark Passenger. Yes because even if Lumen hasn't been mentioned yet, how disrespectful, she showed him the way toward the light. Let's also not forget the benefic impact his love story with Rita had, even if it ended tragically. But her Lemon Tree keeps growing and last summer it gave us the juiciest fruits ever !

    So the legacy subplot was inspiring and should get your attention. However it was predictable from the very beginning so its outcome didn't surprise me. Viewers who have followed Dex since its first encounter with the Ice Truck Killer know better. Don't under estimate us writers ! To sum things up the twist I was expecting all along never happened. Otherwise it pointed out the complex relationship we have with old people. I still remember a short story from Night Shift, a Stephen King's collection. It's about a society where grandparents are killed by the new generation, their own children, to control demography. Sadly our reality isn't far from the fiction at times and this installment tried to express how aging can be tough for some individuals. And it became even more controversial when Dex had to look himself in the mirror !

    But in the end these few interesting elements weren't enough to hide the fact that the show is getting old. If you think about it things haven't drastically changed since the earlier seasons. Hopefully Deb got promoted and her new career as a lieutenant is double-edged. It was entertaining to see her slightly struggle and it should be moving in the upcoming episodes because yes Deb f***ing rocks and Jennifer Carpenter is Talent, even if she isn't voluptuous enough (Guest comment by Vince M.). A new recruit also has potential and its first encounter with our favorite lieutenant, damn I already miss her as detective, could have been over the top if such sexist situations were history. In the end it was chuckling and the scene was well acted on both sides, specially our tiny bratty – almost super deformed – Deborah Morgan.

    As for the religious arc its development was anecdotic compared to Dex's usual serial killing session. The editing has also never really been one of the series strongest quality but I found it more messy than usual. It just didn't fit properly with the other arcs and the cliffhanger was thrown into the mix in the worst fashion. In fact even Dex's side was awkward. Still I'm starting to find Travis Marshall interesting. His sister was introduced in the previous episode and here we learned why he was chosen by Professor Gellar. I also think Colin Hanks is probably not such a bad choice after all because he seems to be the actor for the job. What the writers have planned for him also intrigues me. Does he have a Dark Passenger of his own ? Will he ever realize that what they're doing is wrong ? Wait… we still don't really know what they're up to. I just hope they won't harm his lovely sister. No Gellar said she can't be saved so let's slice her life ! Please God protect her I have done very bad things so I should be the one to get punished. Sorry, I just missed the One Masuka Show this time even if he was featured for some seconds. However what his precious student did and revealed definitely came from nowhere and I can't thank her enough for that because references to past seasons can only appeal long time fans.


    Note : This review was first posted on Kritikenstein, my weblog.

  • OG Killa

    9.0

    The department looks into the case of a murdered prostitute with a chipped tooth with signs of it trying to be removed. This points Dexter in the direction of a serial killer called "The Tooth Fairy" who removed teeth from victims may be in Miami. While he looks into nearby retirees he gets call from Brother Sam to come pick up his car from the shop and gets himself invited to a baptism barbecue that Sunday and says he'll go along since he helped saved that kid last week. As always Brother Sam (Mos Def) proves to steal his scenes as usual. Travis tries to get his hit-over-the-head victim to confess his sins to God so that he is "cleansed" for his and Gellar's next stage to go forward and he has to go through quite a bit to get it out of him. This is bit of story is interesting but also way too vague for my tastes right now. Quinn is now off doing random women like he did before, Deb is adjusting to the pressure of Lieutenant and the venom from the suggestions of one Maria LaGuerta and gets friction with her over the choice for her homicide replacement. Dexter befriends the old man who he believes to be the tooth fairy and after many haphazard and seemingly hilarious encounters it turns out that he was onto Dexter being onto him from the start. Luckily Dexter manages to turn the tables and puts him down ensuring that the OG killa is down but that no one will know the monster that he was. This was well reflective of what Dexter's big existential crisis is right now of what is his legacy for Harrison? While it may seem rehash of Trinity it held new ground in that it revealed more of Dexter rather than just him wanting to now be what he is, instead he now knows that he is what he is but in the end won't let anyone else know. This episode was stand alone and by far superior to the past two episodes in that I was engaged throughout the entire hour of the program rather than questioning the goings on and Dexter's relevancy going into Season 6. It looks like Travis and Gellar have quite the message for the city of Miami next week as those haunted horsemen will be explained hopefully. I'm still wondering if Deb is really cut out for Lieutenant, if she always does the opposite of Laguerta she's bound to go wrong somewhere. Also the Mike guy from Chicago may have come off as a Dick but he's also on Lights Out which was cancelled too soon, so let's at least give him a chance. More stand alone episodes or serial killer mythos episodes as I like to call them are what make this show overall interesting when not focusing on the big bad of the season so more of that and some good ole individual kills to keep this party going will give Season 6 a bump in the right direction before Gellar and Travis end up on the table.

  • 603

    7.0

    Dexter is one of the best shows on television, but this episode was just okay from me. I wasn't crazy about the Dexter victim and corresponding chase this week, and I am not excited about how Deb now as a lieutenant is already something straight out of a CBS procedural. And Brother Sam was barely in this week's show.


    It was not bad at all, that's for sure, but the worst of the first three episodes this year.

  • Disappointing episode for what looks to be a brilliant season.

    7.0

    Disappointing episode for what looks to be a brilliant season. The introduction of a couple of new characters is definitely a positive thing (keep an eye on Ryan). Editing seems a bit sketchy in parts, and scenes cut off sooner than expected. Not witnessing Dexter over power his rivals, then in the next scene seeing them taped to the kill table is a bit annoying and leaves a lot to be desired.

  • Smokey and The Bandit

    10

    Smokey and The Bandit was a perfect and very entertaining episode of Dexter. I really enjoyed watching this episode because there was a lot of character and plot development, and I was in suspense waiting to see how things unfolded. There was action, drama, and intrigue as well and it was all brought together in a great way. The ending was interesting and I look forward to watching the next episode!!!!!!!!!


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