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Dexter Morgan is the main protagonist of the Dexter television series. Morgan is a serial killer who only kills people who themselves are murderers. He is portrayed by Michael C. Hall, who previously received critical acclaim for his role as David Fisher on HBO's Six Feet Under.
Dexter is apparently afflicted with schizoid personality disorder, which is the cause for most of the relational troubles and overall awkward and odd behaviour which he exhibits. He considers himself detached from humanity and often refers to "humans" as if he was a different creature. He finds children interesting more than the adults, and often targets killers who prey on children. He is also obsessed with routines and rituals. Moreover, he is very intelligent, observant and intuitive: being able to reconstitute any kind of crime scene, to manipulate evidences on the scenes of his murder to divert suspicions away from him, and to skillfully manipulate people. However, he tends to misinterpret elements in his investigations that can lead to disastrous mistakes.
Dexter has no interest in romance, despite being married to Rita (which, according to him, is a disguise). He witnessed his mother being killed with a chainsaw, with his brother, who also grew up to be a serial killer.
Dexter is a highly intelligent man and had mastered a wide array of skills to supplement his forensic expertise. He has been portrayed as an excellent manipulator, practiced liar, cold reader, burglar, assassin, hunter, hand-to-hand combatant, actor, forger and digital tracker, all necessary to maintain his double life and keep one step ahead of the very Department that he worked in. Throughout the show, Dexter also demonstrated circumstantial knowledge on various topics including history, anthropology, psychology, philosophy, architecture, sociology, economics, religious lore, literature, art, law, and criminology.
Dexter was born Dexter Moser on Feburary 1st 1971, only a couple years after Brian Moser by parents Laura Moser and Joseph Driscoll. He lived most of his infantile life with his elder brother at the address 1235 U Mangrove Drive in Miami, Florida, confirmed via 2 arrest records for his mother in 1969 and then in 1971 for drug possession. Dexter lived primarily at this address, however he did spend some of his time with his father, Joe Driscoll, at the address 5570 (unknown street) in Dade City, Florida. It's unknown the exact relationship between Joe and his other son Brian, but considering the turnout over 30 years later it would be suggested that it was strained.
Unfortunately Dexter's mother was a drug addict (likely entering the trade when her boyfriend at the time, Joe Driscoll, returned from the Vietnam War and started becoming an addict himself), this never affected her love for her boys but it put her at high risk with certain parties. She met Detective Harry Morgan and began acting as his informant in the Estrada cartel, trying to provide intel that would help bring down the drug kingpin.
On Wednesday October 3, 1973 Laura Moser, her 2 sons Dexter and Brian, as well as three other drug users were hurdled into the shipping container CBAN 348 9 by Estrada's henchmen: Santos Jimenez, Lipsey and Welsh. It is believed that just Santos wielded the chainsaw, as the other two are often seen likely standing there to prevent anyone from escaping.
The three unnamed victims were all slain by the chainsaw, leaving Laura Moser for last begging them not to do this in front of her baby. She screamed and cried as they revved the chainsaw, turning then to give a final smile to Dexter. She said to close his eyes, not to look and that she loved him before Santos finally cut into her, killing Laura in front of both of her sons with no remorse. Santos and his comrades fled the area while Dexter and Brian sat there, for two entire days sitting in blood that would forever change both boys. Brian, who was older, would always remember this experience, but Dexter was shut down emotionally. For the next 30 years he wouldn't know how to be human anymore. A happy childhood ended in tragedy, to create two boys who would grow up to be serial killers. Only one of them, however, was given the means to control and focus these urges thanks to the first man on scene, Harry Morgan. Detective Morgan opened the shipping container door, startled by the absolute carnage inside. He spotted the two children however and moved in to pick up the younger, Dexter. As Harry was picking up Dexter, he held on tightly to his brother's hand before it slipped from his grasp and both boys called out to one another. Harry looked Brian in the eyes and saw (what Brian later claimed in his adult years) "a fucked up kid", rather than taking him as well he left the container while Brian screamed "please don't leave me Dexter!".Bb
While Dexter was taken in at the age of 3, apparently he was never officially adopted until roughly the age of 7. His foster father Harry Morgan arrived one day while he was playing with his younger foster sister Debra Morgan to present him with a birth certificate that declared him a Morgan. Dexter looked at it with an expression of confusion, saying that he thought he was already a Morgan. Harry smiled and assured him that to them, Dexter was always a Morgan but now it's finally official.
First Signs Of A Killer
Dexter's murderous urges began taking shape when he was ten and it was Debra who saw it first, but didn't realize it. Dexter had taken apart each of Deb's dolls and tried to tell her mother and father. Dexter begged her not to and promised to put them back together. She however added that he had to play with her in order to keep the secret, which Dexter did. One day while on the family boat, Harry Morgan asks his son if he is different. Dexter doesn't know what that means at first, but learns soon that Harry found out about the neighbor's dog Buddy, who Dexter had buried along with several other small animals. Dexter tells his father that he was a "noisy little creep" who barked so much that it kept his ill mother Doris Morgan up all night. Harry looked at him and said there were a lot more bones there instead of just Buddy's, something that Dexter looks down at the boat's floor feeling ashamed. Harry then asks him if he ever wanted to kill something bigger than a dog, like a person and Dexter agrees that he has just no one in particular. When asked why he hasn't tried, Dexter says that he thought his father and mother wouldn't like it. Harry becomes a little teary eyed and hugs his son, likely at this point in time wanting to shield him from ever needing to kill someone. This would of course change later in his life as he witnessed the loss of so much life and the freedom of murderers. Dexter unfortunately misinterprets the full meaning of blending in and focuses more on "fitting in", even if that means becoming a bully to a poor boy named Simon. During a soccer game, Dexter as well as several other boys steal the shirt Simon is wearing and plays a game of "Keep Away" from him by tossing it between themselves while Simon attempts to grab it. Eventually when the shirt is in Dexter's possession, Harry grabs Dexter's arm and asks what's going on. He tosses the shirt back to Simon so they can continue their game and he asks Dexter what he was doing, Dexter replies by saying he was "fitting in". Harry sighs and says that he shouldn't be a bully, that it's wrong and that people like himself remember bullies...a first step to felony in his future. He then asks Dexter what he should do and he replies by saying "blend in", which means to be a team member not a bully, not a hero. He lets Dexter return to the game after this, smiling as he's proud that his son understood him this time.
When Dexter was 21, Harry fell ill of coronary artery disease and was confined to a hospital in which Harry spots a nurse, named Mary, who kills people by overdosing them on morphine, whereby Harry gives Dexter his "permission" to kill her which would turn out to be his first kill. Here he embedded several ritualistic qualities to his kills which he would come to do again and again, such as the strapping of the victim to some sort of long and flat object, and the covering of everything in sheets of plastic, but his trademark blood-slide collection would not begin here, only later would he start that particular ritual.
The Blood Slides
As many killers do, they tend to keep trophies of their kills. In Dexter's case, he kept a rosewood blood slide box, containing blood slides of every person he kills in his normal, ritualized manner. Not every person he killed had he collected a blood slide from them, this ritual first ever occurred when he killed his 8th victim, Alex Timmons.
As of 2012, Dexter has since fled his normal, blood splatter analysis/serial killer life in Miami, Fl and has relocated to Oregon to work as a Lumberjack. Somewhere, a series of tree logs can be seen being hoarded onto large trucks, with lumberjacks and other workers in the area. One of these lumberjacks is the focus, finishing up his work and he then returns to his cabin. As he closes the door behind him and sits down, he stares out the window, before facing forward. Behind his grown out beard and flannel jacket is that of the former Bay Harbor Butcher, who closes his eyes for a moment and then opens them, looking at the camera. It's Dexter Morgan, alive and undisclosed.
Dexter has committed many crimes, besides murder. All of them have something to do with his status as a serial killer. Some of the crimes are:
- Breaking and Entering/Trespassing: normally committed as part of his ritual.
- Stalking/Unlawful use of his Police database access: normally committed as part of his ritual.
- Arson - Burnt everything in his storage unit/Shipping container.
- Destruction of private property: breaks things that annoy him/cause problems with his kill ritual.
- Abduction/Unlawful Imprisonment/Detainment: normally committed on victims/threats to his disguise
- Assault and Battery: normally committed on to-be victims.
- Unlawful possession of tranquilizers and other 'knock-out' drugs: used for victims.
- Interfering with police investigations/Tampering with evidence: normally done to cover his/someone close to him's footsteps; uses aliases regularly.
- Burglary/Grand Theft Auto: occasionally steals possessions of victims; stole a car to catch a killer he was after.
- Numerous counts of moving/stationary traffic violations/Hit-and-Run accidents: normally committed when in pursuit of victims/people of interest.
Dexter has not been entirely based in just Miami, Florida. But has killed people as far away as Paris (boarding the same flight, stalking them to an apartment and killing them, thus making a return flight back to the States.) Or killing a farmer in the state of Nebraska. Dexter's victim's are neither entirely guilty, as at once point in his life he had killed an innocent man (the evidence all pointed towards him, convincing Dexter he was the murderer) and this destroyed Dexter on the inside, despite him having no feeling or emotions. Other instances are in self defense and were not planned, but rather spontaneous, some of these include like the before mentioned farmer in Nebraska, a random redneck in a restroom, sudden appearance of drug dealers at the wrong time and place or even putting down a pedophile for taking photos of Dexter's step children. Rare occurrences are mercy killing (shutting off life support, spiking a family friend's pie in hospital due to cancer at her request.) Since Dexter had been an active serial killer in the years 1992-2012 he had killed as many as 135+ people. (135 confirmed, but is believed to be as many as 150.)
- Dexter is quite similar to the Punisher and and Max Payne as Dexter is a vigilante and tragic character much like them.
- Dexter was top of his class in medical school before quitting and becoming a blood spatter analyst.
- Dexter is right-handed, as shown by how he holds pens, handles knives, holds syringes, and the wrist he wears his watch on. However, when he plays Golf, his stance and swing suggests that he is left-handed. There are two possible explanations for this: either his left hand just happens to be more dominant in this activity (it should be noted that there are many athletes in golf, baseball and hockey who swing left despite being right-handed in all other activities), or he is ambidextrous (although this is uncommon).
- Dexter's character was possibly inspired by real vigilante serial killer Manuel Pardo. Pardo was an ex-Miami police officer who in 1986 killed at least nine people. His victims were drug dealers. As trophies he had photos instead of blood slides. Pardo was executed in 2012 by a lethal injection.
- Dexter is an organ donor.
- Dexter’s blood type is AB negative.
- Overall, Dexter is a villain protagonist as opposed to traditionally 'good' ones. While he does have an anti-hero attitude on killing only criminals who are likely to kill again, it's not out of the goodness of his heart nor is it to make the world a better place. Dexter simply thinks that it's better as well as safer, according to the codes, to kill criminals than innocents to keep his urges in check.
- Dexter is similar to Light Yagami from Death Note as they're both villain protagonists that kill criminals.