• Network: Showtime
  • Series Premiere Date: Oct 1, 2006
  • Season #: 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8
Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. When Season 3 kicks off spectacularly, there's a slight exhale in the first 59 minutes--then a twist. And not a small one, either. By the second episode, the writers give you roughly 40 minutes to digest that twist, then drop a real stunner. Which is--just to cut to the chase here--truly and incredibly exciting television.
  2. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    90
    Dexter is real, all right. Real good.
  3. Reviewed by: Ken Tucker
    83
    The results are exhilarating.
  4. A relationship with Julie, which has been percolating for some time, might be just a good cover for Dexter. But it feels more complicated than that, which at the very least reflects good writing and acting.
  5. 80
    The perversity of this connection cannot be overstated (Smits makes Miguel both charismatic and creepy, often in the same breath). Dexter sees it, though he also yearns for the friendship, the brotherhood, even.
  6. The nature-nurture question has always been central to the show: had his upbringing been different, would his genetic makeup still have led him onto the same path? Now the stakes have been raised compellingly in that debate.
  7. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    80
    With the larger narrative diminished, what remains are the smaller moments. There Hall's terrific performance--full of sly wit and contradictions--elevates the show
  8. 80
    Dexter enters season 3 on Sunday at 9 p.m. with an increasing--and pleasing--urge to make us like the curious man-child at its center.
  9. Reviewed by: Micah Towery
    75
    Should we actually trust his actions over what he says as a true indicator of who he really is? It does not seem that the writers of the show have discovered this apparent problem in their storytelling, but it certainly could be something worth exploring in the coming season.
  10. It's still a hugely entertaining show thanks to its charismatic lead actor and the tension that builds in its twisty-turny plots. But when a lead character is a murderous anti-hero, there's a fine line to walk between cheering a righteous vigilante and offering sympathy for the devil.
  11. Though there isn't anything appreciably wrong with the third season, it's hard to fight the feeling that maybe Dexter is a concept that has reached its expiration date.
  12. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    70
    I'm interested but not engrossed, though it offers the potential for a change-up in the Dexter storyline.
  13. 50
    What a disappointment to find that the third season of Dexter is all over the map and lacks the crackling tension the drama had supplied in previous years.
User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 452 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 41 out of 45
  2. Negative: 1 out of 45
  1. Jun 8, 2013
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. Dexter season 3, while being the least interesting season of the show thus far, still has some highlights (there is no such thing as a "bad" season of Dexter, but it does not quite stand up to seasons 1 and 2.)

    Starts out interesting enough-Dexter kills the wrong guy! Who happens to be the brother of the ADA. That's the good part. The bad part is this ADAS is played by Jimmy Smits-who I had trouble buying into all season long.

    The rest of the cast shined brightly in season 3-although Batista's romance with the vice-cop seemed forced, and vanished as soon as the season ended.

    But, the centerpiece of the season is Dexter's relationship with Miguel Prado. I did find it difficult to believe that Dex would be so quick to let him in to his dark world-and he indeed learned at the end that it was a very bad idea. The red-herring of the bachelor party kidnapping was perfectly done, as we knew the Skinner was on his trail. Speaking of that though-I had a VERY difficult time believing that Prado and the Skinner would be in cahoots. That may have been the low-point of the season crow-barred in just to keep the tension going throughout the 12 episodes.

    I did like the storyline about Deb and Anton. She did seem happy there for a short time. Quinn came across as a jerk, but not nearly the total a%$hole that Doakes was.

    All in all-the least amazing of all of Dexter's seasons I would say. It was hard to buy into Jimmy Smits as the "big bad" but still lots of good fun to be had. The show MORE than redeemed itself 10 x over with the following season.
    Full Review »
  2. Apr 8, 2011
    10
    This was my least favorite season, besides season 5, but it's still a 10! Another great plot, great acting, great twists and lots of tension. Loved every minute of it and the new characters they added. Full Review »
  3. May 12, 2014
    4
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. Don't get me wrong, Dexter is a great show, one of the best out there, but this season was virtually worthless. For starters, it recycles the same plot used in seasons 1 and 2: Dexter makes a friend but then oh wait that friend is too damgerous so he has to kill them. I didn't mind them doing it with lila in season 2 since it was less predictable and almost took a backseat to the whole bay harbor butcher dilemma, but here it is unacceptable. There are still some good things. I like the way the season introduces Quinn's character. Miguel Prado's actor does a nice job, but sadly there just really isn't much there with his charcater, whom the writers apparently decided to make extremely one-dimensional. Also they failed to smoothly weave the skinner subplot into the main storyline as it felt forced and led to a rather anticlimactic finale. The only reason for watching this season in all honesty is to understand Quinn better in the later seasons. That and i guess if you're just really bored. Full Review »