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Critic Grade: B+
October 29, 2012  /   No Comments

‘Dexter’ Review: Swim Deep

Things between Isaak and Dexter become more personal, Hannah finally gets some spotlight, and Debra is dragged into Dexter’s web of lies more than ever.

At the beginning of the season, Isaak Sirko appeared to be nothing more than a pathetic caricature of a brutal Russian monster.  In Swim Deep, however, Isaak and Dexter really start to clash, and lsaak is actually becoming interesting.  We learned in last week’s episode that Isaak and Viktor weren’t just good mobster buddies, but also lovers.  There is a lot more at stake here than we knew of originally, and the combination of Isaak’s brutal tactics and the fact that Dexter is even a little scared of him, has really given promise to the Ukranian mob story.  This is a definite improvement from the Doomsday Killer of last season.  Not to mention, even poor Debra is dragged along for the ride, which definitely adds to the confusion and intrigue.

When Dexter arrived home and barely escaped being killed by Isaak, I couldn’t help but think, “why would this super efficient mob boss open the shutters like that and forget close them?”  Oh, and Dexter has a very good fake voice.  They speak to each other on the phone in close proximity in public, and Dexter starts to get a little nervous and upset when Issak starts talking about how he will go after all of his friends, even Debra.  Dexter realizes that Isaak is more dangerous than he initially thought, and Dexter and Debra stay in a dingy motel together.

It was inevitable that Dexter would have to explain his reasonings for them temporarily relocating, and Debra is absolutely furious that Dexter hid Viktor’s fingerprints from her and the police so that he could kill Viktor himself.  She wants to arrest Viktor, but Debra stops when Dexter points out the painful truth – they are now in this together, and Viktor talking too much could be detrimental to them.

Dexter thought he was being clever with luring Isaak into that bar, but it backfired when Isaak just killed everyone in there instead.  The two have a heated argument while Isaak is in prison, and behind all of that macho talk was basically a game of who can get to who first.

LaGuerta and her potentially unhealthy interest in the Bay Harbor Butcher case popped up this week again as I expected, and Debra panics when she realizes it could lead LaGuerta to Dexter.  Against Dexter’s wishes for Debra to leave it alone, Debra splits up the work with LaGuerta, making sure to talk to the victim’s family of those who Dexter killed.  Easily the most tense scene of the show was when Debra looked through the photos and immediately spotted Dexter.  Debra is becoming more and more involved with Dexter’s murders, becoming more of an accomplice now more than ever.

Quinn and Nadia is one of the more boring story lines of the seasons, and I still think it’s inevitable that Nadia will be killed.  Isaak has his henchman reach out to Quinn with a bag of money, since that’s how they used to settle things and all.  Quinn’s response?  “Fuck.”

Batista finally had more than one line this episode, but it was a rather sad side story.  Using his astute detective skills, he correctly realizes that the bartender was not a genuine suicide, but a cover-up.  After telling everyone and then reaching out to Debra, she aggressively tells him to back off the case.  A look of fury and sadness comes across Batista’s face, and Debra looks more sad about it than he does.

Hannah also had a longer appearance than usual, and Dexter realizes that she was more than just a poor girl dragged along for the killing spree, but an active participant feels nostalgia of the killings when she touches Randall’s “trophies.”  Hannah even oddly approached Dexter about the look he gave her, and Dexter basically gets his point across that “he knows the truth.”  He even keeps this information from Debra after he promises not to anymore.

This was a tense, well-paced episode.  We were able to see quite a bit of many different characters, and no one scene in particular dragged on.  Isaak and Hannah are becoming more interesting, Debra and Dexter’s relationship is becoming more complex, and LaGuerta still shows no signs of leaving the Bay Harbor Butcher case alone.

One of the most interesting glimpses into next week’s episode is Dexter not being physically attracted to Hannah in the way I initially thought, but is physically attracted to killing her, hence why he did that bit of information from Debra.  Also, things between Quinn and Nadia heat up, who doesn’t seem to happy about Quinn’s previous shady dealings.  This is definitely one of Dexter’s stronger seasons, with each episode building more momentum.

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