Dexter – The Fourth Season (2009/Showtime Blu-ray)
A- Sound: A- Extras: C Episodes: A
Wow! Simply put, wow. Dexter
is above and beyond the best series on television today. I have been a fan
from the beginning, each season increasing in intensity and continually peaking
my interest. The acclaimed and award
winning series has managed to capture the hearts and minds of millions with its
deeply engrossing plots that are flawless in their attention to detail, not to
mention their ability to persistently outdo themselves.
about the series Dexter is
intense. Every episode, every minute and
every word spoken has you on the edge of your seat. I have sung the series praises in the best,
but nothing prepared me for what Season
Four had in store.
who aren’t familiar with the series (and if you aren’t you should not be
picking it up at Season Four),
Dexter Morgan (Michael C. Hall) is a secretly a serial killer. Dexter is a ‘special’ serial killer that has
a set of rules he follows, choosing he victims based on certain criteria in
which he only murders other killers. I
will not delve too much into Dexter’s back story as I do not wish to ruin any
part of Seasons 1-3, but once again just know that you need to see the first
three seasons to appreciate the greatness that is Dexter.
Season 4 starts off where Season 3 left off with Dexter
continuing to live his secret life, but now has a baby on the way with wife
Rita. Dexter continues to struggle with
his the murderous monster that lives inside head, while attempting to be part
of a world feels no connection to. In
most instances, adding a baby to equation means that the series has ‘jumped the
shark,’ but in the case of Dexter it
only adds yet one more layer of complexity.
Dexter begins to question how fit he is to be a father; how can he
possibly handle being both a killer and a father? Will his son grow up to be just like
him? He fears the unknown and that his
‘monster’ hurting the ones he loves.
With a new family, Dexter quickly learns becomes new responsibilities;
having many sleep deprived nights, which in turn means his blood splatter
annalist by day and killer by night routine has to change.
of family comes to the forefront this season as Rita (Dexter’s wife), who in
the past was a façade to make him seem normal, demands more of her mysterious
husband, who can no longer come and go as he pleases. Even with Rita and her children being a
number one concern for Dexter, Deb continues to be central in Dex’s life as he
does everything in his power to protect her.
Deb is certainly a character that can test a viewer’s patience, but we
have seen her develop from season to season into the strong one she has always
tried to be. She has been in one doomed
relationship after the next, but Dexter has always been there to pick up the
enough dancing around the topic, what made Dexter:
Season Four so unbelievably good? Dexter
has met up with plenty of killers over the years, but it was the likes of a new
killer in Miami
known as The Trinity Killer that shattered Dexter’s world. John Lithgow, as Trinity, made Dexter: Season Four what it is, using
his amazing acting ability to personify Trinity like no other could. Every time John Lithgow steps on screen as
Trinity, a coldness arrives that is horrifying as he embodies creepiness. Trinity’s level of psychological derailment
and murderous rage are orchestrated like a gruesome opera as he cleverly and
artistically plans every move. Dexter
has never met an opponent like Trinity before and he certainly will not and
does not go easily onto Dexter’s table.
Season Four was amazingly intense and left me
guessing throughout; as I was never quite sure what was going to happen. Would
Dexter’s world come crumbling down? The
scenes in which Hall and Lithgow were together were simply amazing and unlike
and television and perhaps film I have ever seen before. Dexter has always been about the characters
and their development and Season Four goes
all out in demonstrating this. Michael
C. Hall and his supporting cast have always been brilliant, but having John
Lithgow on staff this season could not have been any better. I don’t know how Dexter plans on topping itself for the next season, but it
certainly has some big body bags to fill.
technical features on Dexter: Season
Four are as well done as ever. The
picture is presented in a 1080p High Definition that excellently balances both
the vibrant Miami
daytime backdrop with the darkest of nights as Dexter feeds his monster. The image is crisp, clean, clear and nearly
perfect only having tiny issues here and there.
The colors blast vibrantly onto the screen and the dark inky blacks
surround each frame to nicely capture each moment, with no light/dark issues to
mention. The detail of the picture this
season is astonishing as every freckle, scar and blood drip can be seen with
ease; so when characters hair is standing on end…you know it. Outside of the few issues here and there the picture
is demonstration quality, especially for a TV series. The sound is not quite as good as the
picture, but still awesome in its Dolby True HD 5.1 format. The bass booms like a heart beat, adding
intensity to dramatic sequences and when action hits the screen you are
suddenly surrounded with sound. The
dialogue projects through crisp and clear with ease, making every word spoken
into charismatically creepy poetry.
Overall, extras are excellent; only heightening an already extraordinary
extras are lacking this time around and are only available through Blu-Disc
Live. Sadly the extras on Blu-Disc Live
are only episodes of Californication and the Tudors. There is also interviews with the cast and crew
of Dexter (including John Lithgow), which are mildly interesting.
Dexter is without a doubt the best
show on television today and you would have to be insane not to watch it. In fact the series may be the best series
ever and dare I say it, better than most films out there. Dexter
is a fully engrossing experience that should not be missed. Trust me, I’m for serial.
- Michael P. Dougherty II