Clyde Phillips And Cast Members Talk Dexter: New Blood + More Info About Kurt's Son Matt Caldwell

"I always hoped that something would come together that felt worth doing. And it did."


Clyde Phillips, Scott Reynolds, Michael C. Hall and other cast members discuss Dexter's return for Entertainment Weekly which visited the set of Dexter: New Blood few months ago. Dexter Morgan's peaceful and quiet life in Iron Lake gets disrupted when he meets an... "aforementioned local punk". 

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NOTE: The following article was taken from Entertainment Weekly but we kept the best bits from it. 

"With all that baggage, you might be looking at Dexter: New Blood, the 10-episode "special event series" premiering Nov. 7 on Showtime, with a cocked brow of skepticism. But hear Hall out: Imagine Dexter didn't go to Oregon (the original intended destination), and that he's no longer felling trees. Instead, he's spent the past eight years living in the fictional upstate New York town of Iron Lake and going by the name Jim Lindsay (a nod to Jeff Lindsay, the author of the Dexter book series). He works as a sales associate at Fred's Fish & Game, dates the local chief of police, and lives a quiet and peaceful existence. That peace is disrupted when he encounters Matt (Steve Robertson), the annoyingly entitled son of a local mover and shaker. Suddenly, Dexter's long-dormant drive to kill emerge from psychic hibernation. "We're turning the cameras back on and finding out where he is, what he's up to, and what kind of life he's managed to carve out for himself," promises Hall. "Pun intended."

The start of Dexter's woes can be traced back to the conclusion of season 4, when showrunner Clyde Phillips, the architect behind the drama's successful launch and massively popular Trinity Killer, left to spend more time with his family. "I was living in California and my family was living in the East," recalls Phillips, who veered from the Lindsay novels after season 1. "I was working my ass off to pay for the lifestyle I wasn't living."

Phillips doesn't bother to hide his satisfaction in knowing the series wasn't the same without him. "It was schadenfreude," he declares, sitting in his Devens production office filled with posters of his old projects, including Parker Lewis Can't Lose. "The show was untethered, and the character was untethered. I wasn't in the room, and many factors go into it between executive producers and the network. But as an audience member with a vested interest, the show lost its way."

When it came time to say goodbye, nobody in the writers' room believed that Dexter should pay the ultimate price for his sins. "At that point, we weren't necessarily thinking about a relaunch," remembers Scott Reynolds, who'd been on Dexter since season 1 and has returned as an EP on New Blood. "We were just like, 'You don't kill Batman.'" But while everyone agrees that the last few minutes of the finale were anticlimactic (Reynolds is bummed that they dropped a plan to have chain saws buzzing in the background as a callback to the way Dexter's mom was murdered), no one feels a need to apologize for the cold and implausible way Hall disposed of his sister.

"I thought, 'He vandalized her and disfigured her entire being, but we are talking about a show about a serial killer who is deranged and prone to hurt others,'" reasons Carpenter, who is reprising her role as Deb in New Blood (more on that posthumous return later). "Everybody wants to look at him like he's someone who feels things like a real man. But he's sick." Adds Hall: "I thought it was incredibly disturbing. We're watching someone who's lost his bearings. That didn't feel dishonest."

Neither did Showtime, which went through two sets of scripts in six years from former and non-Dexter writers before deciding that Phillips should be the one to bring the signature drama back. "Part of it had to do with Michael just feeling it was the right time," says Phillips. "I flew to New York, went to see Michael, put my recorder down, and pitched him between five and 10 pages of what the season would feel like. We talked about a couple of things, and then by the end of that conversation, he said, 'I love it. I'm in.'"

"I don't know if you read the line at the bottom of the release, but one of you is going to die tonight!" Hall cracks between takes with a few costars, including Clancy Brown. He's Kurt Caldwell, the beloved unofficial mayor of Dexter's adopted hometown — and dad of the aforementioned local punk Matt. 

"We will get an explanation of why he does what he does, which is kind of interesting," teases Phillips. "It's an explanation where you go, 'Okay....' It's not a reason. It's never a good reason. I wish we had James Remar to come and explain it."

Speaking of crazy off-roading, Phillips also rang up his old friend Lithgow to reprise his role, albeit only as an apparition. "Clyde was a genius at electrifying Dexter watchers back then, and in about 40 seconds he described how he intended to do it again. I couldn't say yes fast enough," recalls Lithgow, "I've spent my career taking turns making people laugh, cry, and scream out in horror. Trinity took care of that last effort. Scariest thing I ever did. I wish I had a nickel for every time some stranger has said, 'Season 4, oh my God!'"

And while Dexter's long-lost beloved Hannah won't show up in Iron Lake, we will meet his teenage son, Harrison, and see someone else from Dexter's past. Does this sentimental reunion with old friends and family suggest that Dexter will finally meet his maker? Hall won't spoil how this second outing ends, but his optimism about New Blood suggests that Dexter's days of hiding in the woods are over.

"It took what will, in the end, have been almost a decade to have enough space to create storytelling opportunities that didn't exist until now for it to feel right," says Hall. "I had always hoped that something would come together that felt worth doing. And it did."

Source: EW

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