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July 23, 2014

'Dexter' Explores Atonement in New Season - TCA Report

by Joel Keller, posted Jul 29th 2010 6:27PM

If you haven't seen the fourth season of 'Dexter', STOP READING NOW.

I'm serious. Fans of the show have been so touchy about the possibility that they might have the shocking ending of the fourth season spoiled for them, even months after it aired, that I'm putting the warning up now to make sure no one accidentally reads something that'll make them so red hot with rage that the wax in their ears will melt.

During the panel for 'Dexter' at the TCAs this morning, Michael C. Hall, along with the stars and producers, all were in agreement that the theme for this season was atonement. And Dexter, obviously, has a lot to atone for.

Remember, if you haven't heeded my warning before, STOP READING NOW if you haven't seen season 4. Your day will be better if you do.

Unlike in previous seasons, season 5 will pick up directly after season 4 ended, with Dexter dealing with the violent death of his wife Rita, how he'll manage to bring up Rita's kids as well as the baby they had together, and his colleagues on the Miami PD investigating him for Rita's murder. All this is on top of that nagging little serial killing habit he's been dealing with his entire life.

Because of this, the writers and producers are taking a break from having a yearly adversary for Dexter to square off with, especially after last year's great performance from John Lithgow.

"(Dexter) is going through different stages of his grief," said executive producer Sara Colleton. "In Dexter, it's unarticulated; he doesn't know what he's feeling. the through line is, this year, Dexter's atonement, and different people help him along the way in different capacities. And that's why we have a very interesting array of new actors.

Guest stars who will play those roles include Peter Weller, who plays a cop that, according to writer/producer Chip Johannssen, was "an ex cop a cocaine cowboy-era guy who gets into some trouble with a corruption thing and ends up causing a problem with Dexter." Other guests will be Julia Stiles, Jonny Lee Miller, Shawn Hatosy and Katherine Moennig, playing roles that the producers wouldn't elaborate on, even when pressed by the gathered reporting masses.

Michael C. Hall, who was thankful that the show's shooting schedule didn't get interrupted by his cancer diagnosis and treatment, interprets how Dexter is going to deal with these emotions like this: "I think Dexter relishes opportunities to reveal himself covertly that are true on some levels but not true in others."

More tidbits:

-- Johannssen said that Julie Benz will be back playing Rita in some form. "You'll be seeing her being more than dead in the bathtub to be sure."

-- James Remar had a good take on how he thinks of playing Dexter's dad Harry, who taught Dex everything he knows -- and occupies a large space inside his head: "It seems to me and has seemed from the beginning that the one thing that differentiates Dexter from a serial killer you want dead is that Dexter kills bad guys and he was taught to do that by his dad, so he has a code that he adheres to. And the fundamentals of Dexter's plague of his existence are the - is the code. I feel that a relationship between a father and a son can deepen as the son gets older and experiences more crap, so to speak."

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