Dexter : Season 5

  • Network: Showtime
  • Series Premiere Date: Oct 1, 2006
Season #: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
User Score
7.1

Generally favorable reviews- based on 570 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 83 out of 570

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User Reviews

  1. Jul 14, 2012
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. After watching this season I feel like Dexter is becoming complete. When I thought they were out of ideas, they brought me the best season I could possibly imagine. This season is just amazing and keeps bringing you highlights.

    The first episode of the season picks up right where last season ended. It's an extremely sad episode, when Dexter comes home and finds Rita dead in the bathtub, the moment didnt feel very sad, because of Dexter's soulless reaction, but afterwards when you see how Dexter copes with the death of Rita it shows a new side of Dexter. It shows us that he is becoming more like a human as time goes by, we even got to see him cry for the first time, and the start of the season were just very sad.

    I think this season has a better plot then any earlier seasons of Dexter. Just so exiting how a gang of torturers, which also mostly is succsessfull buisness men in the social life has to at the same time protect themselves from Dexter & Lumen and the police. I cannot think of anything boring with this season, it has a great plot and a lot of cool new characters (which is gone now), it expresses new feelings, and filled with highlights. But I would appreciate a little more new environments ( the only negative). This is why Im gonna give this season a 9.5/10, and I say this is the best season of Dexter. The best episode in my opinion is episode 1. Best show ever & peace
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  2. Oct 31, 2010
    8
    The novelty might have worn off, but even the slightly repetitive Dexter S5 is still much better than 90% of other network and cable shows. The writing rings emotionally true and the cast is very comfortable in their roles. Most importantly, viewers are still made to understand and care about the characters, which is a rarity these days.
  3. Apr 2, 2013
    7
    Following the tragedy that occurred in last year’s finale season five's opening episodes see Dexter trying to comes to terms with his true feelings when, in the process of killing a known murderer, he is spotted by a young woman (Lumen) that has been imprisoned and beaten by the same man Dexter has just killed. It soon transpires that things are more complex than they at first seem andFollowing the tragedy that occurred in last year’s finale season five's opening episodes see Dexter trying to comes to terms with his true feelings when, in the process of killing a known murderer, he is spotted by a young woman (Lumen) that has been imprisoned and beaten by the same man Dexter has just killed. It soon transpires that things are more complex than they at first seem and that Dexter's victim was not working alone.

    Having failed to convince Lumen to leave the city he begins to realise that the he has a chance to help her and in some way make up for the tragedy he has experienced in his own life. As is usually the case in Dexter the way in which their relationship develops is brilliantly written and acted (Julia Stiles is superb as Lumen) and their attempt to track down everyone involved in the murders, and Lumens traumatic incident, makes for fascinating viewing.

    As has been the case for the last few seasons however it continues to get harder and harder to believe that Dexter's secrets would remain undiscovered. In the past this has been easy to ignore thanks to the overall quality of the show but during season five there were perhaps a few too many occasions where he came close to being caught in the act only to escape at the last minute. The creator’s insistence on having 'self-contained' seasons is also becoming a little jarring with some events from previous seasons being totally ignored for the convenience of the plot. For example how can Deborah fall for Quinn so quickly after it was his girlfriend that killed Lundy?

    Despite these quibbles Dexter remains one of the better dramas on TV, I just hope that season six can deal with some of the lingering plot threads and ensure that Dexter's actions don't continue to play out in a way that should surely get him caught.
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  4. Apr 16, 2012
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Season 5 has without question the slowest start of any of the seasons. It pretty much takes unti the very end of the 3rd episode before anything happens. That's when Julia Stiles character (Lumen) is introduced, and it picks up the pace fairly quickly from there. Stiles does a very good job in a role that must have been tough to play. The central story revolving around Dexter and Lumen is pretty good, but it's certainly a big step back from the Trinity Killer in Season 4. The side stories get a little more interesting than in the past seasons. The show seems to be giving more of a focus to Deb, which is nice. Even Quinn's character develops quite a bit in this season which is something I didn't expect. He had been the weakest link in the cast in my opinion, but his character is getting more interesting. At times this show does get a little to soap-operaish. Deb's relatioships are getting very old (this time she's sleeping with Quinn) and predictable. The marriage between LaGuerda and Batista is also, predictably, heading in a troubling direction. By Dexter's standards, Season 5 was a slight dissapointment. It's nowhere near as good as Seasons 1, 2, or 4 and falls more in line with Season 3. However, Dexter is still better than just about anything else on television, and I'll be very excited to finally get caught up in Season 6. Expand
  5. Jul 31, 2012
    10
    Episode 1 is one my favorite television episodes of all time, from any series, and that's the basis of my 10/10 rating. The rest of the season continues most of the same themes, but I was only intermittently enamored with the Julia Stiles sequence.
  6. Nov 9, 2012
    8
    The producers knew they couldn't best the marvelous 4th season of Dexter, but they could've done better than this. We are again left to watch only Dexter himself, but he's so good, that that's enough.
  7. Jun 15, 2013
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. After the end of season 4, we needed a breather, and time to absorb what had happened, this season struck the right tone by spending the first few episodes doing just that. Dexter's struggles to connect with his humanity were done quite well.

    Also, this season saw the "secondary" plotlines shine brighter-the Santa Muerte killings and LaGuerta's political posturing (after seeing this season, it is easier to understand the decision Debra made at the end of season 7). Those were fun to watch, especially during the sadness and loss that Dex himself was dealing with.

    I liked Lumen a lot, a tortured woman out for revenge becomes Dexter's partner in crime. And while the final three episodes were exciting, there is just no topping the Trinity killer. Jordan Chase was just a typical sneering bad guy in a suit hamming it up. I never really got his motivation, and could not quite buy into what was behind his "evil" like I did with the well-developed Trinity killer. I guess he just likes watching women being tortured-but why?

    That said, the scene when Debra made it to the camp just after Dex and Lumen dispatched with Jordan was very riveting, and I wonder if, somewhere in Deb's mind, she found out the truth about her brother then.

    All in all, while nothing can touch the efforts of the previous year, this was a solid season, with a far inferior bad guy, but the secondary plotlines, as well as Dexter's relationship with Lumen, were high points.
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  8. Oct 19, 2013
    7
    the fifth season of Dexter has not reached the foot of the amazing fourth season, but that does not mean she is a amazing season, it was a good season despite not having an ending as maddening as the fourth season.
  9. Mar 11, 2011
    10
    Dexter is an amazing show. He is definitely my favorite serial killer. This show is awesome. Michael C. Hall is perfect. I think the show has definitely brought it. We have seen Dexter go through so much. I don't know how anyone could say anything bad about this show. If you're not watching you need to.
  10. Dec 15, 2010
    1
    This season tries to be big and just ends up being silly. It becomes almost comical that no one connects Dexter to the Trinity killer from season 4. Major holes in the plot line, and all around bad acting make this season only watchable by those with a Dexter addiction. How can you take the show seriously when the main plot of the season revolves around blood that Dexter found in aThis season tries to be big and just ends up being silly. It becomes almost comical that no one connects Dexter to the Trinity killer from season 4. Major holes in the plot line, and all around bad acting make this season only watchable by those with a Dexter addiction. How can you take the show seriously when the main plot of the season revolves around blood that Dexter found in a rental truck that then leads him to a group of serial rapist/killers. This season was just a little too 'scooby doo' for it's own good. Expand
  11. Sep 28, 2010
    10
    After the brutally shocking end to last years Dexter, I waited patiently for over nine months to see the follow up. And the results aren't disappointing.
  12. Jan 4, 2011
    10
    I know a lot of shows... and I think at the moment this is the best one around. The makers really think trough their story and their characters. Its more than just entertaining.
  13. Sep 28, 2010
    10
    Wow amazing! i feel like i went 3 rounds with Muhammad Ali. . I really didn't think it was possible for this show to get any better. Why can't i time travel into the future i seriously can't wait for the next episode.
  14. Nov 2, 2010
    9
    So far this season shows great promise, it feels a lot like a mix of season 2 and season 3. I am very interested in Quinn and how he deals with Dexter and how that will end for him.
  15. Oct 19, 2010
    10
    This season has started very strong following season 4's shocking finale and Michael C Hall's performance as Dexter in the opening two episodes has been his most disturbing yet as his lack of feelings really became apparent in his mannerisms and how he spoke. A great start especially since difficult times are obviously ahead; this should be good.
  16. Nov 21, 2010
    4
    i should preface this by saying that i was once a HUGE fan of this show, and continue to be a huge fan of its first two seasons. season 3 was weak, season 4 sucked me in again long enough to watch season 5, and as far as i can tell this seems to be a repeat of season 3. this show has just gone so far to destroy any suspension of disbelief it once had. it's become trite, plodding, and thei should preface this by saying that i was once a HUGE fan of this show, and continue to be a huge fan of its first two seasons. season 3 was weak, season 4 sucked me in again long enough to watch season 5, and as far as i can tell this seems to be a repeat of season 3. this show has just gone so far to destroy any suspension of disbelief it once had. it's become trite, plodding, and the writers seem to have completely lost sense of their central character. too much focus on secondary characters, as if anyone cares about Battista and LaGuerta's marriage troubles. Not even strong supporting characters like Quinn or Peter Weller's character can save this season. This show has become way too "Dexter-lite" and needs a jolt of energy to reinvigorate it. I say make season six the final season and have it end with him facing some sort of penalty for the crimes he's committed. Watch with caution, this is truly mediocre television. Expand
  17. Mar 1, 2011
    10
    Great show and season. I very much enjoy the cast, storyline and the tension. The entire series definitely deserves 10/10, with the season's I had some doubt, but still I'll reward it with 10/10.
  18. Oct 3, 2010
    5
    This soap opera is continuing it's downward slide. Season's 1 and 2 were exciting but since then things have become boring, predictable and way too far fetched.

    The things that the Miami Metro Homicide know about Dexter already would certainly have landed him in jail after Rita's murder. I recommend Breaking Bad for those who want to watch a series that continues to improve every
    This soap opera is continuing it's downward slide. Season's 1 and 2 were exciting but since then things have become boring, predictable and way too far fetched.

    The things that the Miami Metro Homicide know about Dexter already would certainly have landed him in jail after Rita's murder.

    I recommend Breaking Bad for those who want to watch a series that continues to improve every season. Dexter's writers and producers take note...
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  19. Nov 12, 2010
    10
    Season 5 starts slow since it takes time for the main character (Dexter-Michael C.Hall) to digest the death of his wife.
    Dexter cannot take revenge for his wife that's what is eating him from the inside. After the introduction of new character Played by Julie Stiles the season takes the grip. You might still feel that we don't know Dexter well enough and he's willing to bend his Rules.
    Season 5 starts slow since it takes time for the main character (Dexter-Michael C.Hall) to digest the death of his wife.
    Dexter cannot take revenge for his wife that's what is eating him from the inside. After the introduction of new character Played by Julie Stiles the season takes the grip. You might still feel that we don't know Dexter well enough and he's willing to bend his Rules.
    Season 5 might end as explosive as the 4th season. So Stay Tuned Every Sunday :D
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  20. Oct 2, 2010
    10
    A incredible start for what will probably be another incredible season. I don't know how they manage to do this but every season is better than the one before. Amazing.
  21. Aug 3, 2011
    1
    This season is living roof that killing off Rita was a huge mistake.

    Judging by the interviews given by the writers that decision was made during shooting. Judging by the emotionally vacuous, often implausible and humour-free fifth season it's clear that prioritisng shock value over overall plot narrative was a mistake. Rita forced Dexter to confront his dark passenger, allowing viewers
    This season is living roof that killing off Rita was a huge mistake.

    Judging by the interviews given by the writers that decision was made during shooting. Judging by the emotionally vacuous, often implausible and humour-free fifth season it's clear that prioritisng shock value over overall plot narrative was a mistake.

    Rita forced Dexter to confront his dark passenger, allowing viewers to imagine the redemptive/revelatory moment that made for far more gritty emotional tension. In this season Hall's previously good acting can't hide poor writing and poor direction. The narrative is clunky, the silence on last seasons loose ends (eg Trinity visiting a slack mouthed Dexter at work infront of a full office, no one remembering trinity's face as they all witnessed his man hunt hours later), weak anf boring subplots, and also Debs character acts beyond the realms of belief to name a few things...

    Dexter's dealings with Cody and Astor are just too painful to watch - and in general it's all tragedy. Without the whimsical humour that gave seasons 1 and 2 an edge, and made Dexter's character compelling; and without reliance on the code that raised so many moral dilemmas - I really wouldn't waste your time
    Watching this. So disappointed with the Rita killing now.
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  22. Oct 11, 2010
    10
    Season 3 of Dexter I thought was weak but the Trinity storyline in Season 4 well and truly made up for it short comings. Though still an excellent show I fear season 5 might be breaking away from the Dexter we love whos main aim is to kill the bad guys while it concentrates on him being a Dad and juggling routines (though nothing routine about serial killings). On the flip side theSeason 3 of Dexter I thought was weak but the Trinity storyline in Season 4 well and truly made up for it short comings. Though still an excellent show I fear season 5 might be breaking away from the Dexter we love whos main aim is to kill the bad guys while it concentrates on him being a Dad and juggling routines (though nothing routine about serial killings). On the flip side the synopsis for this season and the new cast/charters being mentioned should hopefully make this a good one if they pull it off. Expand
  23. Nov 7, 2011
    1
    This season is too predictable and it's awful. Me being an huge fan had to force feed my eyeballs on this terrible season. Save yourself the time and don't bother watching it!
  24. Dec 19, 2011
    5
    Lumen ruined this show. I'm glad it redeemed itself after such a predominantly garbage season. Lumen ruined the season, if not with anything else, but with the constant whiny faces she makes. It somewhat makes me sick.
  25. Oct 10, 2010
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Dexter is still an awesome show but he really needs to get back to hunting down the bad guys and quit dwelling on his own mistakes so much. He used to be confident in what he did but now he questions everything he does. I don't really want to see Dexter on a "Road to Recovery" I want to see him do what drew me to the series in the first place. Dealing with his Dark Passenger in the only way he knows how to.

    Rita is gone and the kids have gone to live with the Grandparents. Fine. Now lets deal with what needs to be dealt with. Bad guys. If there is one thing about Serial Killers it's that it can't be cured so Dexter is going to be this way the rest of his life. Let's see some episodes dealing with that. I understand that it's his fault that Rita is dead for not killing trinity earlier, but that's over and done with. She was his weak link anyway. It was her whining that Dexter go to rehab and got the whole "Lila" fiasco started. So Doakes got dead from all that. I want to see how he gets out of the mess he created when they discover that he was a visitor at Trinity's house several times including Thanksgiving.

    And for goodness sakes get rid of Quinn. He is a poor replacement for Doakes as a Detective who is "Suspicious" of Dexter. At least Doakes wasn't crooked.

    Still, Dexter delivers every week and I wouldn't miss an episode for anything.
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  26. Oct 20, 2010
    9
    I'm cautiously optimistic that, after three episodes, the show hasn't jumped the shark. It must be difficult for the writers to keep the show interesting, because the character who was so strange and compelling in the first season is now so familiar. There's not as much of a reason to wonder what's going on in his head.
  27. Aug 20, 2011
    7
    The fifth season of Dexter is a mixed bag. On one hand you have plenty of very solid and outstanding performances by the regular cast as well as Julia Stiles and Peter Weller as well as a nice revenge story, and on the other you have a plot that in many ways only goes about 3/4 way to fully resolving anything. I very much enjoyed viewing it and was sucked in as much as any other season ofThe fifth season of Dexter is a mixed bag. On one hand you have plenty of very solid and outstanding performances by the regular cast as well as Julia Stiles and Peter Weller as well as a nice revenge story, and on the other you have a plot that in many ways only goes about 3/4 way to fully resolving anything. I very much enjoyed viewing it and was sucked in as much as any other season of Dexter but in hindsight there are just so many plot points that just get kind of dropped after another thing comes up. By the last episode everything ties up so nicely but in part as a result of so much stuff being purposefully unresolved a couple episodes back. Additionally Julia Stiles character reminds me too much of what was going on in season 3 for me to not comment on and the office romances are starting to remind me of a soap-opera.
    That all being said the revenge angle this season is a bit of a change of pace and the show has plenty of great memorable moments. However, overall the show is losing impact and while I enjoyed watching this season if they don't change the formula Showtime will have accomplished the uneasy task of making a boring show about serial killers.
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  28. Feb 1, 2016
    10
    Dexter being forced to move on ends up being my favorite character progression ever for the show. Julia Styles shines (can't remember the last thing I saw her in, so it was a welcomed reminder that she's still around). There's a lot that happens that's somewhat unique to the show in season 5. Not sure why it's not rated as highly as earlier seasons, because it shares some of the thingsDexter being forced to move on ends up being my favorite character progression ever for the show. Julia Styles shines (can't remember the last thing I saw her in, so it was a welcomed reminder that she's still around). There's a lot that happens that's somewhat unique to the show in season 5. Not sure why it's not rated as highly as earlier seasons, because it shares some of the things that made season 3 great. I found it even better, but that's just my personal opinion. The final moments of this season were great - to be that close to being found out... Expand
  29. Oct 1, 2011
    9
    Killing off Rita was a fantastic move as she was just such a limiting character on our main Characters development. It really gave scope for Dexter to discover his own emotions and realize that he does feel. This realization is what enables him to develop a new relationship where he doesn't hold back the darkest parts of himself. He loses the code in emotional moments and we see our serialKilling off Rita was a fantastic move as she was just such a limiting character on our main Characters development. It really gave scope for Dexter to discover his own emotions and realize that he does feel. This realization is what enables him to develop a new relationship where he doesn't hold back the darkest parts of himself. He loses the code in emotional moments and we see our serial killer make mistakes, re-find himself and re-find his code. Brilliant season. Julia Stiles was wonderful as Lumen and I hope to see her return in future seasons. I am slightly concerned with the size 0 or size 00 sister who is looking unhealthy skinny. So much so, I cringed in her near nude scenes. YUK! Collapse
  30. Jan 8, 2016
    7
    Following the shocking events of last season the show gets off to an awkward start this time around. One of the most enjoyable aspects of the show was watching Dexter struggle with his emotions. Here though this new mopey Dexter and his struggles are just plain uninteresting. The early episodes of this season and the consequences of the events from season 4 play out in way that just feelsFollowing the shocking events of last season the show gets off to an awkward start this time around. One of the most enjoyable aspects of the show was watching Dexter struggle with his emotions. Here though this new mopey Dexter and his struggles are just plain uninteresting. The early episodes of this season and the consequences of the events from season 4 play out in way that just feels muddled and confused.

    Yet, while the first episodes lack focus and are kind of a bore, the season doesn't stay lost forever. With a new person entering Dexter's life (played wonderfully by Julia Stiles) he is once again set on a path that makes the best use of his dark skills. The chemistry between Stiles and Hall is incredible. Once they truly get involved together the show takes off in exciting ways.

    The case itself hits some predictable notes. Wouldn't you know it, Dexter's targets this season are once again on the list of his coworkers as well. Watching him deal with his colleagues catching on to him is still nonetheless entertaining despite the familiarity. The cat and mouse between Dexter and his targets is as always tense and enjoyable to watch.

    One aspect that disappointed me about this season's villain is how he isn't fully explored. We learn how his path started, but we never know why. One of the great things about season 4 is that every part of "Trinity's" origin was fully explored. He was almost as fleshed out as our hero himself. This season is a little lacking in that department.

    One big surprise this season is the lack of Dexter's interactions with his deceased father. Is Dexter perhaps too preoccupied with his current predicaments to truly allow his subconscious to come to life? Or are his visions of Harry actually something entirely different? It makes for some interesting questions about just what is really going on in Dexter's head in that department.

    Season 5 stumbles early on and in a few areas never fully recovers. The writers don't seem to know just how to handle the fallout from the previous one's conclusion. It makes for the weakest and most disappointing season so far. That being said when it's firing on all cylinders the show is still an excellent source of entertainment. There are some truly exciting things going on here as well as some boring ones. Even with it's flaws it's not time to write the show off just yet. Especially with the promise that it might get back on track with season 6.

    My total score for this season is a 7.9/10
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Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 11 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 11
  2. Negative: 0 out of 11
  1. People Weekly
    Reviewed by: Tom Gliatto
    Dec 14, 2010
    75
    The acting is what keeps the show addictive--particularly good is Julia Stiles. [29 Nov 2010, p.44]
  2. 80
    It takes a while for this season to build up some steam--by the third episode, though, we're back in full murderous swing, with some gasp-inducing twist--and things stall whenever the focus shifts to subplots involving Dexter's police co-workers. But whenever Dexter is center stage, Dexter remains one of TV's most gripping dark entertainments.
  3. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    90
    Dexter will be hard-pressed to match the big twists that punctuated last season, but the latest campaign is off to an impressive--and impressively unpredictable--start.