After 8 seasons, Dexter has finally come to a close. The series has definitely had its ups and downs, and Sunday’s series finale was polarizing at best (did he head up north to start a hipster grunge band or what?)
The series has had a long run, and regardless of what people may think of the series going out the way it did, Dexter still stands as a great show which gave us many moments that made us clutch our pearls. Here are 10 of the most shocking moments from the series (spoilers ahead!).
The Ice Truck Killer is… who?!
Dexter’s first season is totally one of the series’ best, perhaps because it stayed the most true to the novel the show is based on, Jeff Lindsay’s Darkly Dreaming Dexter. We were hooked from the first episode, after watching the meticulousness of Dexter’s first kill, but the rest of the season had one of the craziest serial killers of the series – the Ice Truck Killer – who mysteriously knew everything about Dexter. As the season drew to a close, we found out that the Ice Truck Killer was no other than Dexter’s biological brother(!) and their showdown that clarified Dexter’s traumatic past was both heartbreaking and terrifying.
Lila Tourney is a legit psycho
We all knew that Lila was shady as hell from the first time we saw her, but the full extent of Lila’s craziness didn’t come into play until the season went on. Basically, Lila + fire = OMGWTF. It was one thing to burn down her own artwork just because she was attention-deprived, but burning her place down with Dexter and Rita’s kids inside? Killing Sergeant Doakes by burning down the cabin? Lila was so unique in her craziness that Dexter made a special trip to Paris just to finish her off.
Sergeant Doakes has the worst luck in the world
Speaking of the ever-lovable Doakes, it was bad enough that he was the only one who knew there was something off about Dexter (even Dexter found it surprising that no one else got bad vibes from him). Nobody believed him, and things just got worse after Dexter framed him for being the Bay Harbor Butcher. Doakes finally caught up to him, but the always-prepared Dexter locked him up in a cage (literally). The most heart-breaking part about Doakes’ death was that he had managed to get out of his cage – twice. The first time, he was captured and taken back by drug dealers, and the second time he was too late, escaping just in time for the cabin to blow up. It really seemed like Doakes had a chance, but this arc was the first to show that good people don’t get good endings in Dexter.
Dexter, family man
The moment that Dexter found out that Rita was pregnant, he was probably just as surprised as the rest of the world. It was a shocking revelation, and one that left audiences wondering about what this would mean. How could Dexter be a father? Will his son be a sociopath as well? What was even more shocking was that though little Harrison was never around at the most convenient times (thanks Jamie, you’re the best babysitter in the world), when he was, Dexter surprisingly proved himself to be a very loving father.
Dex, Lumen, plastic sheets, and Deb
In one of the tensest scenes of the series, Dexter and Lumen finally kill Jordan Chase, one of the men who had tortured Lumen and numerous other women. At the worst moment ever, Debra walked in and we finally thought that this was the moment that she would find out about Dexter. Luckily for Dex and Lumen, though, they were hidden behind plastic sheets (how poetic) and Deb couldn’t see their faces. Deb knew that they were the killers and instead of arresting them, gave them a warning that the police were coming and left...and then we all finally breathed.
Deb’s down and Lundy’s dead
Mr. Trinity Killer sure didn’t do a good job raising his kids. Christine Hill, a journalist from the Miami Tribune, gets involved with Joey Quinn for the sole reason to squeeze classified case information out of him. It was shocking enough to see Deb and Frank Lundy get shot out of nowhere, but finding out that it was Christine who killed them because she was the Trinity Killer’s first daughter was jaw-droppingly surprising.
Hands-down the most shocking moment in the series was Dexter coming home to find Rita, longtime partner and mother of his child, dead in a bathtub filled with her blood. Rita was completely innocent and was murdered by the Trinity Killer in his one last attempt to get back at Dexter. Dexter’s shock is palpable and the entire scene of him finding Rita is one of the most heartbreaking moments in the whole series.
Deb finds out about Dexter
It took 6 seasons, but Deb finally found out what her brother really was. After going to the church which Travis Marshall used as his crazy-religious-stuff headquarters, Deb saw Dexter kill Travis, Bay Harbor Butcher style, right in front of her eyes. The 7th season showed Deb grappling with the fact that her brother was a serial killer, and Dexter’s admissions were both refreshing and terrifying to hear. Looking back now, Deb finding out about Dexter was really the beginning of the end for her, making the moment she found out all the more poignant.
Deb kills LaGuerta
Maria LaGuerta was no saint, but whatever she was, she wasn’t a cold-blooded murderer. Once again showing up at the most inopportune times for Dexter, Deb walked into Dex’s infamous shipping container to find him with a dead Estrada and a kidnapped LaGuerta. Deb pulled out her gun and frantically waved it between LaGuerta and Dexter, clearly not knowing what to do. LaGuerta eventually awoke from her Dex-induced drug haze and told Deb to shoot her brother, who told her “It’s ok. Do what you gotta do.” Deb finally turns to Dexter and we think that she’ll shoot him, but she chooses to take down LaGuerta instead.
Sunday’s series finale left a lot of questions unanswered and many heads scratching, but you have to admit – out of all the speculations about the finale, no one guessed that Dex would end up becoming a lumberjack. Still, though, it was surprising and heartwrenching to see what happened with Deb. After being shot by Saxon, Deb was taken to the hospital where her recovery seemed to be going well at first. All of a sudden, though, she got complications from surgery and suffered a stroke, which left her on life support and essentially a vegetable. Not wanting her to live her life that way, Dexter shut off Deb's life support and took her out on his boat, dropping her off in the middle of the ocean – his last victim. Deb was the heart and soul of the series, so watching her go was tough to see.