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'Dexter' to air on CBS starting Feb. 17

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Dexter_l In a significant move designed to further strike-proof its schedule, CBS will begin airing repeats of Showtime’s cult hit fave Dexter on Feb. 17. The show just wrapped its second season on the CBS-owned premium cable network. The Eye says it will edit the first season of the series — a graphic drama starring Michael C. Hall (pictured, far left, with C.S. Lee) as a forensics expert who moonlights as a serial killer — for broadcast at 10 p.m. Sundays. By opting to air 12 episodes of Dexter, CBS will become the first broadcast network to program an entire season of a premium cable series.

There has been speculation for some time that CBS would call up one of Showtime’s buzzworthy shows to help fill the void on its schedule while the strike looms large. Dexter, with its roots in the crime world, made the most sense for the network home to the CSI franchise, Cold Case, NUMB3RS and Criminal Minds. On the other hand, Weeds, though an award-winning critical fave, could be difficult for the Eye to air because some viewers have suggested that the drama about a suburban drug dealing mom promotes marijuana use.