Ken Tucker
October 03, 2008 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Dexter

type
TV Show
Current Status
On Hiatus
seasons
8
performer
Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter, Keith Carradine, Erik King, Jamie Murray
broadcaster
Showtime Networks Inc.
genre
Drama

We gave it a B+

You can feel the crackling creative current running through the new, third season ? of Dexter. Having abandoned all plotlines from Jeff Lindsay’s source novels and dispatched the tediously glowering Sergeant Doakes at the end of last season, the ? producers and murderous Miami police blood-spatter reader Dexter (a twinkly-eyed Michael C. Hall) slither into fresh territory. The results are exhilarating: In the premiere, our serial killer kills accidentally for the first time, which throws him into a moral tizzy. Meanwhile, his sister Debra (the enthusiastically profane Jennifer Carpenter) has temporarily forsworn booze and is bent on a promotion, which only increases her intensity. Add the pregnancy of Dex’s girlfriend (the glowing Julie Benz), and Jimmy Smits’ guest run as a sly relative of the deceased, and things are set up nicely for a season ?of Dexter at loose ends, pushed to extremes he never thought he’d reach. B+

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