Dissecting Dexter: Season 5, episode 7 "Circle Us"

In "Circle Us," Lumen recounts more information about her abduction to Dexter, telling him about "watch guy" and "suit guy," men she identifies by quirks she noticed during her time held with them. The audience doesn't have to wait long to meet Suit Guy; a scene parallel to the action at Casa Dexter/Rita shows what we assume is Suit Guy in a dark swampy location dispatching some men to clean up Boyd Fowler's preserved dead girls. The escape vehicle Suit Guy is driving is involved in a head-on collision, and the body barrels are soon strewn across the road for all to see. Miami Metro gets word and arrives at the scene, along with Dexter and tag-along Lumen. (Silly move on her part, and potentially dangerous for Dexter, as Quinn's sneaky cop buddy reveals in this episode that Dexter has been stashing a pretty, young blond woman at his old house.) [image-1]

Dexter's police buddies lift prints and hair from the car, as well as a neatly folded suit jacket and something to link the car to Boyd Fowler's "Take It Now" guy, Jordan Chase. They bring him and security head Cole in to talk about the case, and it's clear from the moment the two step out of the elevator that they are rotten. Dexter cleverly manages to snap a photo of Cole and shows it to Lumen, who quickly identifies him as Suit guy. She doesn't, however, recognize Chase, though Dexter immediately notices the guy's watch, and seems to suspect he might be Watch Guy. Dun dun duuun! Mr. "Take It Now" Chase plays the innocent dummy in front of the cops, but it soon becomes apparent he's just as evil as Suit Guy, if not more so.

With Miami Metro now on the case of a killer who stuffs girls into barrels, it's once again up to Dexter to derail their leads so he can catch the bad guy and kill him (and/or share his kill with Lumen?). This was by far one of Dexter's most far-fetched efforts to distract the police: Dexter breaks into Boyd's house to grab Boyd's wallet, which he happened to hide in Boyd's drawer, I'm assuming in case something like this ever happened. Dexter then plants the wallet in the crashed car, and despite the fact that Boyd's hair and fingerprints are nowhere else in the car, a found wallet apparently seals the deal for Masuka and the gang, who jump on the lead just as Dexter wants them to. Okay okay, I'll let it slide, but they're lucky this was otherwise such a fantastic episode.

The police consult with Jordan Chase and security man Cole about Boyd's wallet, and Cole admits (lies) that Boyd was one of Jordan's stalkers, and therefore probably stole their truck to transport a bunch of dead girls. Once they leave the station, their chat in the car indicates they both indeed know Boyd, and are glad the incident has been pinned on him. But Jordan thinks Cole is responsible for this, which he of course isn't, and they're both left to wonder who else would want to pin the blame on Boyd. I'm really into both of these guys, and especially love how their rotten mischievousness seeps through their perfect exteriors.

On top of all this, the Santa Muerte case is back in action, thanks to a young woman who's offered to help lure the evil brothers into Club Mayan. LaGuerta takes a heady lead on this effort, which seems doomed to blow up in her face. It does. Deb's cop partner on the case approaches one of the brothers (under LaGuerta's direction), and he feels that she has a gun stuffed up her dress. Mayhem ensues, and the nice young lady who's helping the police is shot dead, as is one of the brothers (thanks to Deb). I hope the show skips over Deb's inevitable feelings of anxiety and/or regret, and Maria's feelings of failure, and gets right back into more Santa Muerte action.

Built around strong Lumen/Dexter scenes, this episode continued Dexter's upward trend that I hope will last through the finale. Lumen's creepy, horror-movie like flaskbacks at Boyd's house were great, as was her saving Dexter after he breaks into Cole's house and gets caught. Most disturbing was the revelation that Boyd Fowler and these "Take It Now" hooligans were all high school buddies that have probably been doing this kind of thing since they were teens. Shudder. See you back here next week for the aptly titled "Take It."

You know who I don't miss?


The poor, deceased thing. Dexter has unloaded such a complicated and character-heavy plot this season that it's hard to dwell too much on Dexter's past if you want to get on board with where he is now. And where he is now is far more exciting than a lot of his family issues last season turned out to be. I did have a "Where the hell are Astor and Cody?" moment on Sunday night, but overall their presence (or lack thereof) wasn't doing as much good for the show as Lumen and her storyline are in season 5.

The first surprise of the night is that Lumen is living in Dexter and Rita's old house. Okay, maybe "surprising" isn't the word. Maybe I mean "weird." I did love how Dexter acknowledges its weirdness within minutes of the episode's start. The two of them are rather endearing together; connected in this odd, unique way that is always surprising to watch because there's really no other example of it on television (at least not that I know of). And the supporting characters are becoming more and more interesting. So far, the show hasn't gone wrong with shots of adorable baby Harrison or wacky lines delivered by Quinn.

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