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Author Topic: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!  (Read 7094 times)

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Offline StephenKing

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Ok so here goes, I know that the show Dexter is fiction. However the moral debate over a serial killer serial killer is too good to pass up in this forum. I'm very interested to hear thoughts on the matter from this group. For those of you who do not watch the show, and if you're on this site you need to be. The Character is Outlined as such, "At the age of seven, his father discerned that Dexter had sociopathic tendencies, as evidenced by Dexter's lack of empathy, disinterest in relating to other humans, and (most disturbingly) his secret habit of killing the neighbor's pets. Harry initially tried to manage Dexter's compulsions with regular hunting trips, but as he got older, Dexter expressed urges to kill humans. It is then that Harry began to instill in Dexter "The Code." Dexter structures his killing around "The Code of Harry", a body of ethics and procedures devised by his adoptive father Harry (who was a Miami cop) to make sure Dexter never gets caught and ensure that Dexter kills only other killers. Harry also trained Dexter in how to interact convincingly with other people despite being a psychopath, since the murder of his biological mother, Laura Moser, did in fact turn Dexter into a serial killer."

So here's the crux of it..... Is it right or wrong to be a serial killer who only kills other serial killers? What is the difference between that and capital punishment (moralistically not legally)? And do you think Dexter is a Hero or just another common criminal for his actions? Discuss amoungst yourselves....I'll enjoy this debate.
My reason for supporting the death penalty. My coworker, Quincey Allen, shot and killed my friend Jed Harr while shooting at my roommate/friend/expectant father, Brian Marquis, and then tried to burn down my house. Quincey then went on a killing spree because he wanted to be famous.

Offline Granny B

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #1 on: December 03, 2010, 09:53:39 AM »
We have discussed Dexter in several places on this forum.  Here is one of them.   But they are scattered throughout.
http://off2dr.com/smf/index.php?topic=10809.msg77108#msg77108

But wouldn't it be nice to have a vigilante serial killer who only killed other serial killers or multiple murderers?

As long he did not stray from that strict code of ethics to only kill them, truthfully, I would have no problem with it. 

I have watched the show from the beginning and have seen it evolve.  He is even learning to love and care for others now.  It is sometimes pretty horrifying to watch how far they go, and what they show on television.  But I look forward to each episode each week. And he is not gender biased on serial killers either.  He is an equal opportunity executioner of the serial killer variety.

I just wish he would take out Cathy Henderson for me. ;D
" Closure? Closure is a misused word in the English language.  There is no such thing as closure for the family of a murder victim.  There will never be any closure for the death of our loved ones until we are dead ourselves.  The families have a lifetime sentence of anguish and sadness." 
Susan Levy

Offline StephenKing

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2010, 10:15:13 AM »
Oh yes, I have often thought about Dexter taking out a few of my favorite killers. Especially the one who is a bleeding scar in my life, Quincy Allen. And yes while I agree that Dexter is learning things on the show. I disagree that he is learning love. You have to remmeber that he is a sociapath. He can not feel true emotion or love. Now he can be loyal, trustworthy, and superficially kind. And he also can be happy about his life being easier due to other people. And he can be attached to others....but not out of love.

So do you think there is a difference between Dexter and capital punishment? I have often sympathized with Dexter and other anti-heros such as Marvel's "the Punisher" who only take out other killers. I also would not have a problem with this kind of person. However, what happens if Dexter can't find a killer. If his "Dark passenger" as he calls it is calling and there is not a person worthy enough around to kill? Would this not worry you? Could you sleep at night knowing about a Dexter in real life? Not worrying about a turn off of his code?
My reason for supporting the death penalty. My coworker, Quincey Allen, shot and killed my friend Jed Harr while shooting at my roommate/friend/expectant father, Brian Marquis, and then tried to burn down my house. Quincey then went on a killing spree because he wanted to be famous.

Offline Granny B

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #3 on: December 03, 2010, 10:30:49 AM »


Well, actually he did a couple of times.  Remember in the first episode of this season that he left and did not show up to his wife's funeral till late?  He killed the guy at that bait shop when he stopped for gas.  Of course the guy was obnoxious and a real jerk, the kind you would like to be dropped overboard for shark bait to just shut him up, but he infuriated Dexeter and his "dark passenger" let loose on the guy.  Then Dexter showed up late for the funeral, cleaned and pressed.

There was one other time too.  He mistook a pornographic photographer for the serial killer then later learned he had killed the wrong person and he was regretful about for about 5 minutes. ;D  But I noticed the people who got in his way at the wrong time, were not someone you could be too sympathetic about when the writers had him kill the 2 who were not serial killers.

As to love,  I think he loved  his wife in his own way.  And as to her kids, there was the episode where the child sexual predator was after Astrid and he took care of that problem.  What was it he said, something like a mama bear protecting her cubs?  I think it was similar.  Who cares if a child sexual predator is put out of our misery?  My feelings anyway.

A lot of those guys slip through the court and jury system.  Having someone like Dexter to take them out would be better than millions of dollars spent on jury trials, appeals, appeals and more appeals for 30 years and then he dies in prison of old age.  Yeah, I like the idea of him being an execution in my fantasy life.  But in real life............................ehhh  not so sure.
" Closure? Closure is a misused word in the English language.  There is no such thing as closure for the family of a murder victim.  There will never be any closure for the death of our loved ones until we are dead ourselves.  The families have a lifetime sentence of anguish and sadness." 
Susan Levy

Offline JTiscool

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #4 on: December 03, 2010, 10:48:30 AM »
If someone can do what Dexter does legally then maybe the anti's will turn their attention and support him :P
My reason for supporting the death penalty? A murderer has less of a right to live than his victim and already presents a danger while incarcerated for life. They have nothing to lose when the most they can get is Life in prison without parole.

Offline ScoopD (aka: Pam)

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #5 on: December 03, 2010, 10:51:42 AM »
As much as I'd like to say he is because I too have found myself sympathizing with him, Dexter is not a hero, whichever way you can spin it he isn't. Dexter is a killer, he stalks and plans and does his deeds very methodically. And like you stated, what if he can't find a killer and his "dark passenger" urges take over. Will he remember Harry's code and will he be able to fend off the urges? I have seen every episode and so far Dexter has shown restraint but he's been sloppy and f'd up a few times (killed the wrong person) and like all humans Dexter is subject to error so I tend to believe he is in fact a danger to others and is no better than the killers he is killing. Look at his most recent episodes, he has put his child in danger because that guy Jordan Chase knows who and what he is. And now he also has an accomplice - double trouble.  I'm curious to see how future seasons play out...

On a personal note:  I'd like to see him visit Holman Prison in Alabama and be introduced to a certain inmate there.  >:(    ;D


If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace. -Thomas Paine

My reason for supporting capital punishment: My cousin 16 yr. old Amanda Greenwell was murdered in March of 2004 at the hands of serial killer Jeremy Bryan Jones.

Offline StephenKing

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2010, 07:17:38 AM »
"As to love,  I think he loved  his wife in his own way.  And as to her kids, there was the episode where the child sexual predator was after Astrid and he took care of that problem.  What was it he said, something like a mama bear protecting her cubs?  I think it was similar.  Who cares if a child sexual predator is put out of our misery?  My feelings anyway."

Yeah I think my favorite quote so far is when he takes down Saint Marguerite from above his son and says, "He doesn't need St. Marguerite when he has Father Dexter." bwahahahaha Nice word play on that one.....

And I agree with Scoop on this one. While Dexter is a wonderful fantasy and it's soooooo easy to get lulled into the story. Try to take a step back and actually feel the darkness there. If you knew what Dexter was in real life, how easily could you stand next to him? Could you allow such a person to roam free? Granted he targets the dregs of society but he is still a vicious and merciless killer who gets off on killing.......  8) It's a cool juxtaposition of morality. I would like to think I could easily walk away and let Dexter loose on the killers and the scum of society. But I'm not sure if I could......
My reason for supporting the death penalty. My coworker, Quincey Allen, shot and killed my friend Jed Harr while shooting at my roommate/friend/expectant father, Brian Marquis, and then tried to burn down my house. Quincey then went on a killing spree because he wanted to be famous.

Offline StephenKing

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2010, 07:26:00 AM »
"If someone can do what Dexter does legally then maybe the anti's will turn their attention and support him"

I agree....I think there are many current job titles where Dexter would excel.....

1. WARDEN ( :( )
2. Soldier
3. Judge
4. Parole Officer
5. Sheriff

How great would it be if Dexter were a Warden? lol

"Yeah Bob that's the third guy this week who didn't quite make it to the Green Mile.....seems he wrapped himself in Saran Wrap and stuck a knife in his own chest........damnedest thing........."
My reason for supporting the death penalty. My coworker, Quincey Allen, shot and killed my friend Jed Harr while shooting at my roommate/friend/expectant father, Brian Marquis, and then tried to burn down my house. Quincey then went on a killing spree because he wanted to be famous.

Offline Granny B

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2010, 07:31:31 AM »


Well, on the latest episode of Dexter, he killed the scumbag ex-cop who was trying to out him.  That makes 3 who were not serial killers he offed.  Not a good record for someone who is supposed to only take out the worst garbage.  Of course he was protecting himself and his new girlfriend serial killer in the making too.

Wow, I don't know if they are going to kill her off too or let them join in tandem.  The season ending episode will probably leave us hanging on that one too.
" Closure? Closure is a misused word in the English language.  There is no such thing as closure for the family of a murder victim.  There will never be any closure for the death of our loved ones until we are dead ourselves.  The families have a lifetime sentence of anguish and sadness." 
Susan Levy

Offline Granny B

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2010, 07:34:54 AM »
"If someone can do what Dexter does legally then maybe the anti's will turn their attention and support him"

I agree....I think there are many current job titles where Dexter would excel.....

1. WARDEN ( :( )
2. Soldier
3. Judge
4. Parole Officer
5. Sheriff

How great would it be if Dexter were a Warden? lol

"Yeah Bob that's the third guy this week who didn't quite make it to the Green Mile.....seems he wrapped himself in Saran Wrap and stuck a knife in his own chest........damnedest thing........."


 ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D
" Closure? Closure is a misused word in the English language.  There is no such thing as closure for the family of a murder victim.  There will never be any closure for the death of our loved ones until we are dead ourselves.  The families have a lifetime sentence of anguish and sadness." 
Susan Levy

Gregg Fisher

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2010, 08:07:30 AM »


Well, on the latest episode of Dexter, he killed the scumbag ex-cop who was trying to out him.  That makes 3 who were not serial killers he offed.  Not a good record for someone who is supposed to only take out the worst garbage.  Of course he was protecting himself and his new girlfriend serial killer in the making too.

Wow, I don't know if they are going to kill her off too or let them join in tandem.  The season ending episode will probably leave us hanging on that one too.


Liddy assaulted him with a stun gun, kidnapped him, and pulled a big ass knife on him when he tried to escape.  So, that killing was self defense. 

Gregg Fisher

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2010, 08:13:34 AM »
However, what happens if Dexter can't find a killer. If his "Dark passenger" as he calls it is calling and there is not a person worthy enough around to kill? Would this not worry you? Could you sleep at night knowing about a Dexter in real life? Not worrying about a turn off of his code?


Sure. He's gone long periods of not "taking out the trash."  Also, unfortunately, there is no shortage of killers around and there never will be. 

When a fictional character kills another fictional character - rightly or wrongly, I still sleep like a baby.  ;)

Offline Granny B

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2010, 08:31:56 AM »


Well, on the latest episode of Dexter, he killed the scumbag ex-cop who was trying to out him.  That makes 3 who were not serial killers he offed.  Not a good record for someone who is supposed to only take out the worst garbage.  Of course he was protecting himself and his new girlfriend serial killer in the making too.

Wow, I don't know if they are going to kill her off too or let them join in tandem.  The season ending episode will probably leave us hanging on that one too.


Liddy assaulted him with a stun gun, kidnapped him, and pulled a big ass knife on him when he tried to escape.  So, that killing was self defense.


True!  I did not want Liddy to get away with it anyway.  Watching Dexter would be over if he got caught, but he sure got close to caught again.  I guess that lends a lot of tension to the show, which is why we watch it.  Gotta see how Dexter gets away with it each time, and how close he can come to disaster without falling over the cliff each time.

But I do wish someone would wash Deb's mouth out with a bar of lye soap! ;D ;D ;D ;D
" Closure? Closure is a misused word in the English language.  There is no such thing as closure for the family of a murder victim.  There will never be any closure for the death of our loved ones until we are dead ourselves.  The families have a lifetime sentence of anguish and sadness." 
Susan Levy

Offline ScoopD (aka: Pam)

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2010, 09:10:24 AM »
F*ck What's ur F*cking problem with Deb? I mean shit f*ck, she's like f*ck, a woman with a f*cking d*ck and a set of f*cking balls to match. F*CK!

 ;)


If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace. -Thomas Paine

My reason for supporting capital punishment: My cousin 16 yr. old Amanda Greenwell was murdered in March of 2004 at the hands of serial killer Jeremy Bryan Jones.

Gregg Fisher

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Re: The debate over the morality of the Showtime original series DEXTER!
« Reply #14 on: December 07, 2010, 09:15:28 AM »
I have to laugh - I read some interview where she says she has to remind people that Deb is a character - and not her real life persona.  She doesn't really swear.  ;D

I sort of admire them as a couple. No scandals. No photographs of them drunk or high.  I saw her place listed online when she was selling it after they were married - modest and very small by Hollywood standards.