Michael C. Hall Breaks Silence on Maligned Dexter Finale: ‘Our Writers May Have Been Gassed’

Dexter Series FinaleMichael C. Hall is finally opening up about Dexter’s universally-panned series finale, and he feels your pain.

RELATED | Showtime Boss: No Dexter Spin-Off Without Michael C. Hall

The Showtime hit wrapped its eight-year run last September by killing of Dex’s sis Deb and sending Hall’s vigilante character into fake death-imposed exile in the middle of nowhere.

RELATED | Dexter Series Finale Post Mortem: EP Reveals Why Dexter Had to Live, and Deb Had to Die

“Liked it? I don’t think I even watched it,” Hall confessed to The Daily Beast of the show’s endgame. “I thought it was narratively satisfying — but it was not so savoury.

“I think the show had lost a certain amount of torque,” he added. “Just inherently because of how long we’d done it, because of the storytelling capital we’d spent, because our writers may have been gassed… Maybe some people wanted a more satisfying-maybe they wanted a happy ending for him, either a happy ending or a more definitive sense of closure.”

Thoughts? What did you think of the Dexter finale?

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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216 Comments
  1. volswagn says:

    Dexter is that rare show that solely because of the way it ended, I cannot even recommend the first solid four seasons, which I previously thought was some of the best television ever. The last few episodes, and the very last one in particular, it was like the characters totally forgot who they were. How would Dexter honor his sister’s death? Oh yeah, dump her in the ocean so she can wash up bloated and eaten by fishes on some beach. And given how much he supposedly loved his son, he abandons him? And why does he think Hannah is going to take care of the kid? And then there is the matter of Deb’s death itself. What a disgraceful way to write her out. And how easy was it for Dexter to get her out of the hospital. No alarms, and conveniently by the door near his boat. Scott Buck failed miserably and thumbed his nose at people who had spent years with these characters. So much for that investment. If you want to end your series with some shock value, that’s fine. But do it honestly. There was no honesty in the finale. None at all. You want to see a writer respect his viewers and the characters in his show? Take a looj at how Vince Gilligan ended Breaking Bad. Or take a look at the last episode of Six Feet Under. You owe your audience honesty from the characters they have spent so much time with. The Dexter finale blew up the whole series on its way out. Totally disgraceful.

  2. ceddy says:

    Should have ended like this…
    Walked into the Polive Precinct and waited till everyone saw him and he says
    “I am the Bay Harbor Butcher.”
    End scene.

  3. IsaBella says:

    I actually hated the end. The writers could have come up with better. I loved the show!
    All good things have to come to an end

  4. gin says:

    I thought it was fine. Left door open for a say 2 hour movie for Dexter to come back & remove another killer that he missed that needs Dexter justice for one of his former fellow Co worker

  5. I felt bad for both deb and dexter to be separated like that but I was very pleased that Dexter wasn’t killed off as it leaves a possible movie on the cards

  6. Larry Bumpus says:

    My Wife and I became Dexter fans early in the first season. By season 6 we were having trouble with some of the story lines but not enough to put us off. The final season for us saw a return to the type of shows that we had enjoyed so much early on. The final episode however disappointed in that there was no definitive closure. In my mind either Dexter died sailing off into the storm or he suddenly reappeared with his family at the end. Living out his life in some self imposed exile was a dud.

  7. Rand K says:

    Watch every episode of Dexter but the last one. You’ll be more satisfied that way.

  8. Larry says:

    The ending should have been Dexter gets killed in a horribly bloody encounter and Deb finds his body with Harrison sitting nearby in a pool of blood. Deb become Harrison’s guardian and the final scene would be her wondering if Harrison will grow up with the same tendencies as Dexter and realizing she may have spend her life figuring out how to keep history from repeating itself

  9. joe says:

    I liked the finale. I thought he’d commit suicide by driving into the storm, which would have been a fitting ending. He was a murderer after all. However, him sitting by himself in a lonely backbreaking, cold bleak logging camp while the people he loves carry on without him is a far more fitting punishment.

  10. max says:

    At first I didn’t like the ending but allot of it makes sense, Dexter had to cut himself off from everything because in the end his old life and who he is would always be, hed always end up killing someone. so to ease the burden on the last people he love he left. And of course Deb dying randomly sucks but that kind of situation does suck, it happens all the time. It makes sense with dexters whole secret hate for himself kind of thing, i’m pretty sure its where his semi concous comes from. He also feels that need towards them because he couldn’t save his mother and doesn’t want that to happen to anyone else. He kills those like him because he hates what he is and from having some human emotion from the interactions he had getting used to people in his life he would only get the “high”: of the kill from killing someone that deserves it, especially when killing anyone else puts him and thus those around him in danger, breaking his principle but also breaking his fathers code. I think the last season was just like closure for dexter after killing lequarta, realizing hes not unique at all hes just another killer.

  11. Junaidf says:

    I think it was a perfect ending. YES I know I am definitely in the minority but think about it. At the end of it all he was a killer, a serial killer. The correct justice for him would be the worst punishment ever and that is exactly what he got…….. live alone for the rest of his life, away from all those he ever loved, his father, Deb, his sister and yes Hannah…… Can you think of a more terrible life than that. He was alone in his head always….. and now he will spend the rest of his natural life alone too. That is what that last shot of the finale said to me. I loved it.

  12. Mario David Ramos Sr. says:

    Wrap it up Dexter movie or movies he gets caught or almost. Politicians

  13. Done away with, and the show brought back…….. we want more Dexter!! Maybe a movie!!

  14. karin says:

    Hated the ending! As bad as the Soprano’s ending, totally unsatisfying!He should have ended up killing in South America and he would never have given up his son.

  15. Joseph Alfred says:

    If Dexter was going to live, a better finale would fast-forward to Dexter’s son on his 18th birthday. He’s in his first kill room with a victim on the table. Dexter walks in with his girlfriend and each take one of his son’s hands as they kill the man together.

  16. Joseph Alfred says:

    If Dexter was going to live, a better finale would fast-forward to Dexter’s son on his 18th birthday. He’s in his first kill room with a victim on the table. Dexter walks in with Hannah and each take one of his son’s hands as they kill the man together.

  17. I agree with most of the comments here about the crappy handling of Debra, and the Hanna hard on they had in the final season. BUT, I’ll take the lumberjack thing over The Sopranos finale any day.

  18. Citizin says:

    I liked the ending. People typically want a cookie cutter happy ending. I enjoy the writers not doing a typical Hollywood type ending. Dexter won’t affect his son and risk him turning into what he did. He is now free to continue with the code with even less risk of investigative police forces discovering him for what he is. His sister is free from the burden of keeping his secret safe. Perfect and poetic. Great writing to me!

  19. Jessica says:

    I was honestly disappointed with the ending. I feel like they should have done so much more with it. Personally I feel like they took the easy way out.

  20. pumpkin says:

    Loved it!

  21. Tammy Jo Pipe says:

    It sucked, he should of ended up with his boy and would about the 2 step kids.

  22. Brad says:

    I felt very let down by the ending, all the years and hard work of building all the characters up to end with nothing. May as well just had some nuclear fall out and everyone is gone. There was only two endings for, 1. He is revelled as the bay harbour butcher and gets killed or goes in to hiding or 2. Everything he spent the whole eighth series planning worked out and the three of them get a happy life and nobody finds out his secret! Plus why kill off Deb after she found out what he was and was all ok with it.
    Kinda felt like the last few pages of the script got lost and they made it up on camera, I’m suck a massive dexter fan but that ending have tainted the whole show for me! Which is so sad!!
    I was even thinking through the last two episodes that maybe it was going to be left very open and then closed with a movie/film or something, but by the end everything had been so messed up that it just left me thinking what’s the point. A real let down by what had been a fantastic writing team!!!!

  23. Colt says:

    It’s like going on a 10 mile hike up rough terrain to find this beautiful waterfall, and when you get there, the waterfall is all dried up, and not even a swimming hole to swim in. Yep that sums it up!

  24. Once a fan says:

    How I think it should have gone:

    – Deb cannot handle the truth, and eventually puts a bullet in her own head.

    – Dexter, distraught, gets sloppy, and sends himself into exile, leaving behind something that leads to the other’s discovery of who he is, as a SEASON finale.

    – Everybody else realizes Dexter is a serial killer, and the final season is hunting him down, and he is either captured or killed in the end.

  25. john says:

    We (me and my family) were disappointed, not only with the finale but also, with the entire season. The writers came up with a story line that was so convoluted and needlessly complex that they had to do contortions to get themselves out of it. The show started off as a Master Piece in Season 1 and while the rest of the series was pretty damn good with periods of brilliance (season 2 and season 4), the last season was a let down and the finale lame!

  26. Zeeshan says:

    This resembles somewhat how The Shield did in end scene! I think there’s more to Dexter’s narrative outcome scenarios.

  27. Zeeshan says:

    Remember that similar ending of Vic Mackey’s glare into their past?

  28. I think that it was just a means to an end. I wasn’t happy or sad (other than that the series was ending) Maybe the writers just didn’t have anything else to give. Yes, it could have been better but, where could all of these characters go to a future that could be done in less than an hour? It does leave you with thoughts of some possible revival, spin off or something but we have all seen that and they most usually just fall on their faces. Maybe letting Dexter and company just RIP is the kindest thing that could be done.

  29. Rebecca Villarreal says:

    Yes, I was a diehard “Dexter” fan, and no I was not happy with the finale. Debra’s death was acceptable, but not her finale resting place. Many people loved her, and Dexter stole their goodbyes.
    He saddled his independent, childless lover with Harrison which was wrong on so many levels. I’m not seeing her a the nurtu
    ring type. And, finally, his least scene of being alone, staring into space like a brainless, spineless vapid nobody was insulting

  30. paul brown says:

    I thought killing Deb off sucked. Dexter living was good but it would have been nice to keep him with his son.

  31. Richard says:

    First off: The ending…..VERY, VERY, VERY, DISSSSSSSSAPPOINTING!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Although Deb’s character was never one of my favorite characters, (As a counter point to Dexter she “fu–ed things up” and could do very little right, where as Dexter could do very little wrong, almost projecting her as a dumb blonde!), her death moved me and I agree with that part, BUT having Dexter showing up as a lumber jack just didn’t cut it and seemed like too easy of a way out for the writers. (Was this their way of suggesting they might have Dexter reappear in a new show down the road?) Regardless, it was not a tragic enough ending for this anti-hero!
    Second some uncanny flaws that I believe the writers really screwed up on; 1) Given Hannah’s WANTED status and Dexters brains, as well as his and Deb’s experience with law enforcement, I absolute CAN NOT understand why Hannah did not attempt to wear any significant type of disguise, especially when she was out in public! (And sorry, but simple sun glasses do NOT cut it!) 2) Again, given Dexter’s experience at public enemy extermination and all that went into that, it befuddles me as to why he never got a place where he could create his own safe room, just like some of his prey had done. I realize that by not doing so it afforded some of his adversaries to discover things about him in his apartment, which allowed for more intrigue, BUT Dexter should not have made himself, and his family, vulnerable to future dangers in this way. It just didn’t make sense or fit into the context of Dexter’s character and his attributes.

  32. Skyebeka says:

    For a moment it looked like Dexter was gonna pass the torch to the kid he was training how to kill the correct way and to only kill bad people using the code. I think that would’ve made for a satisfying ending. Dexter could have taught the kid everything he knew. The kid could have tracked down and killed the serial killer son of the doctor. That scene could’ve marked the passing of the torch. Then Dexter, free from his urge to kill, could leave the country with Hannah his son to live as a family.

  33. aka says:

    I hate Hannah in Dexter.

  34. Geoff says:

    My two most favourite series ever were Dexter and Breaking Bad which both finished closely together. Whilst the writers of BB did a fantastic job in their finale, the writers of Dexter deserved to be nominated for lethal injection for such a lack lustre, pathetic ending.

  35. P. Roman says:

    Loved, loved, loved the show. Have all the series on DVD. BUT, I loathed, loathed, loathed the finale!!!!

  36. Roxie Dakota says:

    I was very disappointed in the ending. It was bad, nothing to do w/ how the main character really survived. It was a blah ending….not good at all.

  37. jenny says:

    I want a new series of Dexter….PLEASE I loved that show more than anything on tv.

  38. mcfinn says:

    The most effective and eeriest final scene would have shown the psychopaths Dexter and Hannah walking away down a busy South American city street with Dexter’s little son between them, holding their hands and jumping and swinging like innocent children do.

  39. Lori says:

    After much talk with other Dexter fans, it really was the only way to endit

  40. PJ/SJ says:

    I liked it…at first I thought he would die…GLAD THAT DIDN’T HAPPEN! Then I thought.mmmm…his son has his traits and now being raised by the blonde serial killer…Hey…the possibilities are good…for another showing about Dexter…The Little One! (smile)

  41. I really wish they could have ended the show with Dexter turning himself in, or getting arrested by Deb, either of those two would have been fine with me. What we did get… just didn’t work, not even remotely.

  42. jon says:

    The ending has been universally panned and deservedly so. Why take Deb out of the hospital, to dump her in the sea? How, after driving his boat into the heart of a hurricane, did Dexter survive but the boat was smashed to splinters? Why would he leave his child with a known murderess in a foreign country? What happens when she gets tired of towing him around? How did he get a job as a truck driver, when he’s been a forensic tech his entire adult life? He has no experience or skills in this area; he just walked off the street and they hired him? Nonsense.

  43. Mikko says:

    My only wish was that Dexter doesn’t die, so in that way the ending satisfied me.

  44. Drew says:

    Well if Hall didn’t care for the ending, then maybe he should have used his influence more to change it. The show flat out sucked the last season, and was well on its way the second to last season. The finale was absolutely just phoned in, no imagination what so ever. The whole abandonment of everything that made Dexter Dexter sucked. It should have ended at 6 or 7 seasons.

  45. Kitty Renner says:

    Lol. Some take tv shows a little too seriously.

    Was the ending great, no, but to dissect and analyze, then even blame Hall is beyond the pale.

  46. Linda bradley says:

    Bring dexter back we all miss him it was the best show ever still a dexter fan

  47. Debbie should have never found out what Dexter was doing. Once she knew, he went from killing for the “greater good” to deranged serial killer. He was the type of character that couldn’t die, so the writers killed the person who knew who he was.

  48. Heather says:

    What I found most amusing is that after re-watching the series, in the end of season 4 Dexter is asking Trinity how he should stop all the madness and go on with life. Dexter asks “What do I do? Fake my death and get away from here?” And Trinity replies along the lines of “No, that’s stupid and won’t solve anything”.

    Maybe the writers should have brushed up on past seasons, too.

  49. Brit says:

    Sorry I have to disagree with all these comments I love the show I’m relieved that they didn’t go with topical happy ending, it makes since that deb would go against all her beliefs she was in love…. They weren’t related so nothing wrong with that… I love the fact that I wasn’t able to easily guess how the show would end… And to say that this is the worst show ever, wouldn’t you agree that, that’s a little over the top I mean they did last 8 seasons!

  50. Brittany says:

    Love the show