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Monday, December 12, 2011

Michael C. Hall On Season Six & The Beginning Of The End

New interview with Michael C. Hall via huffingtonpost.com: The end is near for "Dexter" -- not just for Season Six, which has its finale on Sunday, December 18, but also for the series itself, now that Showtime has announced plans to wrap things up two years from now. That gives Michael C. Hall -- who has earned five straight Emmy nominations for his portrayal of the titular serial killer -- an opportunity to help decide how his character's last moments on screen will play out. Like most people who find success with a single, long-running role, Hall is now associated with Dexter to a degree that can't be altogether comfortable.

But while there are obvious differences -- Hall is not, in fact, a troubled forensics analyst who moonlights as a vigilante, doling out justice in fatal portions -- there are a few real similarities, too. Like Dexter, Hall is unusually intelligent and thoughtful, likes to keep to himself, and knows his way around an embalming table (he played an undertaker on HBO's "Six Feet Under"). The Huffington Post spoke to the Golden Globe winner about this season's religious theme, his feelings about his alter-ego and his thoughts on how the show should end. Read the interview by clicking the link below...



Why was this season finally the time to make religion such a central theme?
I think each season has had its thematic element. Initially, Dexter was, 'What happened to me?' and then, 'Who am I?' and I think [religion represents] a fundamental step in the stages of development. Given what's happening in the world, I like that we show a broad spectrum of what religion can be, with Brother Sam [a born-again minister played by Mos Def] being an example of someone who has used religious belief to facilitate a rehabilitation and has come into a place of love instead of hate. Whereas on the other side of the spectrum, we have these Doomsday Killers [played by Colin Hanks and Edward James Olmos] who are using scripture as a basis for their heinous acts. That seems timely. And I think that for Dexter, the god of his world has been the code, and if there's any executor of God's vengeance in that sense, it's been him. To open himself to the idea of a broader sense of what God might be, I think is interesting and compelling.

The audience recently learned that Gellar [Olmos] has been dead all along. Was that twist planned from the beginning, or did it come up as the writing went on?
There are certainly story lines over the course of the season that weren't quite anticipated, or morphed. But in that case, we knew all along that he was a figment of Travis' imagination.

So if we watch all the episodes again, frame by frame, will we see hints at it?
There are a couple of things I can think of. There is the time they're in the diner together and the waitress never acknowledges Gellar. There's a time that they're out at that nightclub and he's sitting there, basically 30 years older than anyone else in the place, with his picture on a newspaper, on a newspaper stand right across. So there are little things here and there -- the fact that you basically don't see him interact with anyone else -- that on a second viewing you'd probably pick up on.

There seems to be a Season Eight end-game, and I've read that the show will begin to build toward an ending over the next two years. How do you write a multi-season ending like that?
I think we're at a point where we can start telling the story with at least a general sense of an end in sight. I'm sure as we move towards it, things will change, but we can start having a more concrete conversation about how things would go down.

How closely do you feel you are attached to the character in the public eye?
As far as the public eye goes, I suppose that goes with the territory. People, when they come up to me on the street, if there's a question I get more than any other, it's 'Are you Dexter?' And I go, "Oh man, you're sending me into a metaphysical quandary. Am I Dexter? No! He's just words on a page, and I'm an actor." But I don't know -- I'm thankful that that's the question, because you want to tell a story that compels people to lean forward and pay attention. But I never get confused or feel like I'm losing my mind or think I'm him and have a thought and say, "Oh no, that's a Dexter thought." At the same time, I think only when the show is really put to bed will I begin to appreciate the degree to which I've been living with it the whole time.

Do you think Dexter has to die at the end of the series?
It seems like a reasonable thing to think, that things won't end well for the character. But there are no rules. I don't think there's anything we're obliged to say. As far as a general ending for the show, that doesn't seem out of the question.

You don't even have to wrap it up with a nice bow -- you could just have him do a kill and then suddenly it ends.
I don't know if it's possible to conclude something that people have been spending this much time with in a way that is satisfying to everyone, and if that's your focus, it's going to be hard. You're going to be in trouble.

It'd be fun to annoy people.
Yeah, maybe he'll walk out and get hit by a bus. Beep! The End.

How protective do you feel of the character, if you're given a line or an action that you don't think Dexter would do?
I think I just operate from the sense of, 'Can I believe this to be true?' From the get-go with this character, it's sometimes a challenge to wrap your mind around how something could be true for him. How could this guy get married? But if I can't find my way to a sense of it being true, sometimes that results in a conversation about, 'We can get here, but maybe there's a different way to do it,' or maybe there's a different focus motivating Dexter to make this choice. So yeah, I feel like that's a huge part of my job at this point.

Do you ever feel protective in the sense of, "Wow, the public won't like it if he does this or that"?
I try not to be in any way occupied with that. I leave it to other people. And I am interested in the idea of pushing the envelope in terms of the audience's willingness to accept certain behavior, but from the beginning there's a consideration. Dexter has played fast and loose with the rules of the code. There was a time he actually killed someone who he discovered later wasn't actually a killer, even though he was a reprehensible person, but he has kept doing in people who were doing in people. All bets would be off if that weren't the case. There have been times where I've thought, 'Why can't he just fly off the handle and go on a killing spree?' And he did that at the top of Season Five. Rita died and the next thing you knew, he was killing a guy who looked at him funny. We've done that; if that was the first episode of the show, I don't think people would have been on board, but they were willing to sort of say, 'Well, you know, poor guy.'

You don't usually sympathize with a murderer.
I think people can argue as to whether or not it's the right thing. That's part of the fun of it. But I think the character is presented in a way where audiences relish being given the opportunity with him. We all have our dark side, we all have our secrets we keep. We all have something that we're managing, even if it's not as formidable as what Dexter manages.

25 comments:

  1. there's also a recent interview with Michael C Hall on AOL, where he adress the deb/dex thing :

    http://www.aoltv.com/2011/12/11/dexter-recap-talk-to-the-hand-michael-c-hall-interview/

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  2. To see Dexter die, somehow or another, it would give me closure and I'd be somewhat satisfied. I kind of think it would be interesting if he either got caught, or turned himself in. It would be highly amusing to see him in prison and hear his thoughts and see everyone's reaction. Hopefully Harrison would be to young to understand or Dexter would make sure he had better care before hand. I don't know. I mean the entire show is built upon the suspense of Dexter getting caught, and the point is basically getting away with it. I sure don't want to see him walk off into the sunset and drop it so abruptly.

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  3. I think Dexter dying might be a bit pointless, unless it's a massive sacrifice to save Deb and Harrison.

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  4. I think it would be great if he did get captured and somehow put in the prison environment where he could continue his hobby with the blessing of certain law enforcement, also, he would be a great hit-man or something like that. He could disappear and start again in a situation like that, only Deb would have to die first, 'cause she'll never let it go, no matter what happens.

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  5. Dexter should not die ...or get caught .

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  6. If we're in for 2 more seasons like this current one, I don't care what happens to him. Dex and Deb can run off to Alabama, have kids, and live happily ever after for all I care.

    Just get this crap off my TV and ship Michael back to Broadway where he belongs.

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  7. ^^^

    How about you get your crap off my internet and go back to your parent's basement where you belong troll.

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  8. The dark humor of the show was a big part of its initial appeal. I'm still not convinced that killing off Rita wasn't a big mistake because it was so tragic -- although his telling the kids about it deadpan with a Mickey Mouse hat was pitch perfect. I wouldn't want it to end with his death, unless he died heroically and that was how he'll be remembered and you everyone including Deb eulogizing him as he and ghost Harry, look on and comment. Actually, that could work...

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  9. I'd be willing to bet money that the anonymous person talking shit on this season up there will have his or her ass planted watching the season finale next week just to come back here and complain about it. Blows my mind. Seriously, do that many people continuously watch a show that do nothing but complain about? Anyone?

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  10. oh and another thing to anonymous 4:43 ...if you want it off your T.V. ...no one is stopping you from changing the channel

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  11. Would be interesting seeing as Deb is so close to Dexter. Another great twist would be if Dex died, Deb would carry on the code and her dark passenger would be Dexter like Harry is to Dexter. There are so many ways this could end. Heck they could even end it with saying all the other seasons are a "what would happen" basis and end with Harry telling all the seasons to a teenage Dexter, making him shy away from killing. While the last is very unlikely it would definitely be interesting indeed

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  12. Dex can't die or get caught.

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  13. As a longtime viewer and lover of all (well, i geuss most) things Dexter, this season has been so utterly miserable and disappointing. Like it or not, I challenge someone - ANYONE - to make a compelling case that this season is up to par with the previous 5 in terms of writing, execution, building suspense, plot.... It's just not a good shower anymore. And it pains me to say that

    They need to fire the showrunner and bring in a pro to finish the series. Ideally theyd bring back the guy from 1-4.

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  14. To Anon at 6:50

    It's not season 1 to 4 anymore, it's season 6. The show and the character has evolved. Take the train or get off at the station and go back and just watch season 1 to 4 over and over.

    Myself, I love where the train is going.

    Deb and Dex being the most compelling love story on TV, how did that happen? That's both sick & twisted, funny as hell, dramatic, and heartwarming. And really, that's the show in a nutshell. I love it.

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  15. @Anon 8:06 I couldn't agree more. Don't like it? Then don't watch it. Simple as that.

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  16. This has been a really good season with the exception of the Nebraska/Trinity filler episode. The Gellar twist wasn't much of a surprise. It was confusing why he would be with Travis in the market after his picture was released and no one even noticed he was there. Also he always knew where Travis was at all times like he had him lo jacked.

    Anyways it would be interesting to see how they would lead up to Dexter getting caught without being just like season 2. I always thought if he did get caught there would be the moral dilemma if the jury would find him guilty because of his victim profile.

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  17. I think the best ending if he HAD to die would be for him to end up "on the table" of another serial killer with the same motives as Dexter!

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  18. If Dexter was actually caught and found guilty for all of his murders, he would get the death penalty. Honestly, he would deserve it. He killed an innocent person, among all of the guilty ones. The potential for making that mistake is the number one argument against capital punishment. So that is what will happen, and I ruined it. (Spoiler)

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  19. I think the Nebraska/Trinity filler episode was more than that, it will lead to a trinity killer copy cat who will be the son. As for the ending i would like for dexter to be found out, this would lead to his dark passenger killing anyone as he wouldn't be able to get the infomation from the police anymore. As for this season, it started slow but was worth the slow start for the ending, just hope the last two seasons will be more fast paced, most likely outcome is the Louis will be next seasons killer and at the end of season 7 the truth is found out, with an amazing season 8

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  20. From the Dexter Boards:

    n the past few seasons of Dexter, the show has including several "scenes" or story lines from the last few novels.

    #1 Deb's press conference this season, and Dexter prepping her for it was very close to "Dexter is Delicious"

    #2 Deb becoming a hero and being on Youtube, and then Dexter becoming a hero as well, are both ticks from the recent novel "Double Dexter"

    #3 In Double Dexter... the bad guy is a computer engineer who see's Dexter committing a murder. He actually installs a virus on Dexter's computer so that he can track all of Dexter's activities so he is ALWAYS one step ahead of Dexter. After this he begins to kill people, except he is more of a rank amateur, and he is always trying to set Dexter up to take the fall. Deb gets in big trouble as well, and they have a cop on them trying to set them up, and in the end Dexter and Deb have to work together to clear their name - Deb suggests that Dexter plant some special evidence in a police officers house. That officer hates Deb, and he hates Dexter (he also befriends Doakes, but that's another story) - that officer next season could very well be Quinn who has a reason to hate Deb and Dexter, and could easily be played and used against Deb and Dexter by a bad guy because he is such a screw up.

    Louise is a computer engineer just like the villain from DD. I am wondering if this is the setup for next years plot, or else a variation on it.

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  21. I would honestly like to see Dexter become discovered mid to end of season 7, and then carry on into 8. Like 7 starts out happily, he's doing well, things going great, and then during episode 8 or 9, someone finds out, and then he tries to take them out, but it's too late. Then he becomes discovered, and the hunt begins. Season 7 could very well end with his sister letting him go, and Dexter getting on a plane or a boat to a foreign country, in which case he tries to start fresh, but then his habit gets in the way, and people in the US are still searching for him. Plus it would give Hall a chance to play the side of Dexter that everyone has wanted to see more of. We'd see him go from stable, and solid, to completely psychotic and murderous. I could almost see him running around venezuela or brazil, hell even Mexico, slashing away at people, and trying to not only fix his life, but keep his urges in check as well.

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  22. I don't know where the show is taking me anymore. But I bought the ticket and am down for the ride to dexism! Keep up the good work Michael! Your an inspiration to other stage actors! Thank you!

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  23. All I have to say is this is one fantastic series. I wish it didn't have to end in 2 more seasons. I just hope they end it right, unlike some HBO series that just gets the plug pulled on it after viewers get interested in it (Carnivale, DeadWood, John from Cinncinati etc). I will say though that Season 6 is my least favorite out of them all. My favorite is Season 4 with John Lithgow....it will be very hard to top that one as well as the ending. There are several things that I don't like about this season... like Deborahs promotion, Quinn's odd behavior and marriage proposal, and the toying with Deborah and DExter love thing......it just seems like the characters act odd this season.

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  24. If you notice how major of a role the voices of Dexter and Deb have. Close your eyes and listen to cool Dexter or Deb quivering voice, both are truley creative acts. You can't say the same for Laguearta. In my mind Laqguerta front end and lips are most appealing.

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  25. What the??? Not sure what you're trying to say? I can think of about 2 or 3 endings that viewer's might like but all I hope is that no matter how it ends Dexter kills off LaGuerta first just because she's such a slimy, lying, backstabbing, selfish, evil B!tch. She doesn't deserve to live. ]:-{ GO DEXTER!!!

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