Episode 9: Helter Skelter
I just bought some new pens. They’re okay, I guess, just plain old ball-points, but there’s always something about writing with a new pen or pencil. Maybe it’s just me.
Sorry this recap took so long to get here. A lot of things happen in this episode that I could have done without. The end of the season is in sight, and I’m at a loss as to what the writers are thinking. We’ve got some dirty dealings and some people bleeding out all over the place in this installment. I’m gonna treat this recap like an adhesive bandage and just rip it off before I think about it too much.
Dexter takes Hannah out on his boat, and she’s very excited about it. Actually, replace “excited” with “shit yourself scared” and there you have it. She also looks like she’s about ready to fall off the back of the boat at any moment.
|I'm sure she's fine back there. Not like she has a fear of water or anything.|
As to why she’s not sitting up with Dexter is beyond me. We find out that Hannah has hydrophobia (hence my annoyance with her sitting precariously close to falling in said water), and they talk about her childhood trauma. Apparently her dad was a real asshole. I drifted off (no pun intended) for the rest.
Meanwhile, Isaak has just found out he’s on his own; the Russian (or Ukrainian or whatever) mob has cut ties and is sending a pair of hitmen after him. The only one who remains faithful is his bodyguard Yerg (and that’s how I choose to spell it). Issak knows the hitmen—a Russian sniper with a stereotypical accent and an American who likes to get “personal.” Issak tries to reason with /buy off the sniper but it’s a no-go. They are coming for him.
No sooner than Dex gets home, he’s got a knock on the door. It’s Issak, and he needs Dex’s help. This is an interesting if not somewhat predictable turn of events. But Dex isn’t interested, he’d rather let the hitmen do their job. Issak even goes so far as to offer Dex’s life as payment for his assistance. But Dex is feeling overly confident, and even that offer doesn’t pique his interest. Issak seems disappointed, but leaves it at that.
At work, Dex and the Miami Metro crew investigate a car fire, with a crispy critter inside. We’re introduced to a smarmy arson investigator, who dismisses Dexter’s mention of a strange burn pattern in the back seat of the car. It seems to be a case of self-immolation...for now (pretend I’m making shifty eye movements here).
|Angel's just stoked to be in a scene this episode.|
Dexter pulls Deb aside and tries to talk to her about last week’s love confession. She’d rather repress it all, but Dex won’t let it go. After he makes a super-terrible analogy about M&Ms (great writing, guys), he actually says something that makes sense: Dexter and Deb are the constant in each others’ lives. They’ve been through it all together, so it’s perfectly natural for Deb to have feelings for her own brother, because she’s a woman (okay, maybe I’m reading into things, but come on). And in a moment of douchebaggery, Dexter stops everything to answer a text from Hannah. It wasn’t even a time sensitive text, it was something like “Hope to see you tonight,” Dex answers it like he’s never used a phone before, poking at the letters like a neanderthal. Deb walks off in a huff.
|Deb, girl, you look like how we all feel.|
Later that evening at Dex’s place, he’s treated to a surprise (but not really) visitor: Issak! And he’s making tea in the most domineering way possible.
|I wish I had Issak's nipple confidence.|
Dex was expecting Hannah, but Issak informs him his lady-friend is safe and sound with his man Yerg. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out he’s using Hannah as a bargaining chip. Dexter tries intimidation, but Issak isn’t phased. Then Dex tries the old “you’ve got the wrong guy” routine, to which I LOL’d in a very sarcastic manner. Issak whips out his smart-camera-phone-thingy and lets Dex talk to Hannah briefly. Seems she’s all chained up in a random house with Yerg, who seems to have found his creepy switch and flipped it on. And nary an aconite flower to be found...
Dex eventually agrees to help Issak, and he gets info on the sniper and the American (I don’t know what else to call him. His only defining characteristic is that he’s black and he likes to get “up close and personal,” and I’m not touching either of those.) Issak asks Dex how many people he’s killed, to which Dexter replies “a whole bunch” or something. I guess the point is that he doesn’t keep track like, for example, the Russian sniper. Issak is also intrigued that Dexter shows no revelry in his kills; if it’s not pleasure he gets from it, then what?
Dex swings by Deb’s to get the surveillance taken off of Issak. She’s not exactly surprised Dex is working with Issak, and that Hannah figures into things, because why not? In an odd scene, Deb reminisces to Dex about how once things were fine and now she blinks and everything is terrible. Oh, and she’ll take the surveillance off of Issak, just don’t expect her to be happy about it. I’ve since stopped trying to figure out what Deb talks about anymore.
Sigh, LaGuerta talks to former police chief Tom Somethingorother, and they’re both assholes to each other. And then Tom makes her a deal: he’ll help her with the Bay Harbor Butcher case if she’ll help him get reinstated. Guess what she chooses? (It’s also sad I can sum up her scenes in a few sentences. Sad, or amazing?)
Meanwhile, Dex is on the hunt for the sniper. He tracks him to an outdoor gun range where he’s testing out his new gun. Now, I was assuming Dex would follow his old MO and drug him, take him to another location, and do the whole wrapped-in-plastic thing. Imagine my surprise when Dex stabs him in broad daylight (the gun range has those convenient dividers) and timed the stabbing to coincide with a loud gunshot. And he just leaves the body there. Huh. You know that was kind of awesome.
Afterwards, Deb and Dex have a clandestine meeting—for work, not sex, you pervs—and she tells him she’s been doing her own investigation on Yerg. Again Dex tries to complain about Deb doing anything remotely helpful. Deb is more concerned Issak will just kill Hannah after Dex helps him. And even if he doesn’t, what does the future hold for Dex and Hannah? Can two serial killers in love ride off into the sunset together? (I’m guessing no.)
Ugh, in “Why the fuck isn’t Quinn dead yet?” news, George is all pissed that Quinn is ignoring his calls, so he pulls Nadja off her stripper pole and fucks her (Off camera, mind you. No one wants to see that.) as is his right as a strip club manager. Later, Quinn finds out about it and beats the shit out of George.
|FIGHT FIGHT TITS TITS TITS FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT|
If I didn’t hate both of these characters, this might have been somehow exciting. Moving on.
In one of the lamest pieces of work on this show, Dex plays phone shenanigans with Hannah. See, Issak has a nifty phone where you can take pictures—in this case, Dex snaps a shot of the house Hannah’s being held in—and email the pics without having it show up in the phone’s memory. Or save the pic in the camera roll. Cause that’s how emails and camera phones work, right? I’d go into this more, but I need to save my rage for the end of the episode.
|OMG Dex I totes need to tweet this #idiotswithcameraphones|
Dex goes over the photo at work, and ghost dad pops in to—you guessed it—give more advice that Dex will never ever take. Ghost dad says Dex is too human for Hannah. Dex is like “Nuh-uh, Hannah is, like, totally different than all the other girls I’ve banged. Especially Rita.” You know what, I officially don’t care about any of this.
|You know what? Neither do I, and I'm his ghost father.|
Something something Dex finds a clue that will lead him to where Hannah is being held.
Another day, another crime scene. And will you look at that? It’s another case of self-immolation...or is it? Dex also notices the American hitman watching him from the crowd. This crime scene is in the elevator of a parking garage. Dexter notices that same funny burn pattern on the inside of the elevator’s doors, and the shape look peculiarly like a person. The victim also scrawled the name “Bobby” on the door. Oh, and can we all safely assume the culprit is the arson investigator? Or is he merely a poorly-used red herring? The way this season has been going, it’s probably the former. Dex then leads the other hitman to Issak’s trap. They drive to the pier, where Dex wanders around with the hitman close behind.
Issak gets the drop on him. He and Dex dump the body and their weapons in the ocean.
As Dex cleans up, Issak conveniently wanders off alone so that douchebag George can show up out of nowhere and shoot Issak in the gut. Yes, you read that right.
More on that in a second, but first let’s see how Hannah’s doing. Oh, plotting Yerg’s death? How unlike her to be plotting someone’s demise! She bats her eyelashes and convinces Yerg to let her cook for the two of them. She essentially breaks open a can of pepper spray on Yerg’s fried green tomatoes. He chokes, she smashes a blender over his head, he stabs her in the gut (a lot of that going around), she bashes his skull in with a lamp before passing out. Call me a practical Polly, but when one needs to dispatch of a captor with a bevy of sharp implements all around, I'm going for a knife, or a cleaver, or at the very least a meat tenderizer.
Deb follows up Dex’s lead on the house (Did I forget to mention that? Oh well.) and finds Hannah bleeding out on the floor. And as we all assume she’s going to let Hannah die, she gets her phone out and calls for an ambulance. Deb, not calling would have made things so much easier.
Even though Dex could just drive Issak to the hospital or take the bullet out himself, Issak somehow convinces him to take him on a boat ride. Where Issak bleeds to death. And here we have it, folks, the “Wise gay man dies a pathetic death just so the idiotic main character can get up the nerve to tell his girlfriend he wants to go steady.” Give me a break. What a completely unceremonious way to end that storyline. I was hoping at the very least Dex would get Issak on his table; at least that would have been a fitting end for one of the more intriguing villains this show has seen in a while.
Oh, and to rub some salt in that wound, Hannah doesn’t have the decency to die. Nope, she’s fine. Deb got to her in time. Hannah asks Deb why didn’t she let her die and to tell the truth I don’t remember why. All I recall is that she didn’t do it for Dexter.
Then Dexter shows up and pours his heart out to Hannah. For me, this was very uncharacteristic of Dex and I didn’t care for it. Awww, he was scared that Hannah might die. Isn’t that cute?
|And he cuddle with her on her stab wound! Love hurts, am I right?|
So, what is going on this season? I figured we’d see Issak through to season’s end, but now we have three more episodes to go. It feels like they had no idea how to end Issak’s story, and now we’re stuck with this arson caper. How is there more story to tell this season? If they had killed Quinn this episode they could have wrapped for the season. It just seems sloppy. What else could possibly happen in these three final episodes? Let’s speculate!
Hannah tries to kill Deb, and Dexter has to kill Hannah because of it, and then he and Deb fuck on Hannah’s bloody corpse...you know, I’d applaud them if they did. Because I just don’t give a shit.
|Farewell, Issak. I'll miss you.|
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