Dexter (season 5)

Dexter (season 5)

DVD cover
Country of origin United States
No. of episodes 12
Original network Showtime
Original release September 26 (2010-09-26) – December 12, 2010 (2010-12-12)

The fifth season of Dexter premiered on September 26, 2010,[1] and consisted of 12 episodes.[2] The season focuses on how Dexter comes to terms with the aftermath of the Season 4 finale, stopping a group of serial rapists and avoiding a corrupt cop who learns his deadly secret.


As the police arrive at Dexter's house, he is obviously in shock and, either because he feels guilty that his relationship with the Trinity Killer, Arthur Mitchell, caused Rita's death or because he is answering a question ("Sir, did you say that you called this in?") asked by one of the police officers, admits "it was me". Quinn is already suspicious about the circumstances surrounding Rita's death, considering it did not follow Trinity's modus operandi. He is also suspicious of Dexter's unemotional manner after the incident. Astor takes Rita's death particularly hard, and blames Dexter for it. Unable to reconcile, Astor decides that she wants to live with her grandparents in Orlando, Florida, and she and Cody leave Miami.

Miami Metro begins investigating a severed head left in a Venezuelan neighborhood, and also find several related cases. The suspect is quickly nicknamed the Santa Muerte Killer. The FBI, unable to find Arthur Mitchell, follows its only other lead, Kyle Butler (Dexter's alias when interacting with the Mitchell family). Quinn recognizes the similarities between sketches of Kyle Butler and Dexter. Dexter finds a Department of Sanitation worker, Boyd Fowler, who is responsible for the deaths of several women. Dexter hires a nanny named Sonya to care for Harrison. Dexter eventually kills Fowler, but the crime is witnessed by Fowler's next victim Lumen Pierce (played by Julia Stiles), whom he has in captivity.

Dexter tries to care for Lumen, but she is understandably suspicious of his motives, asking Dexter if he is going to "sell her". Quinn tracks down the Mitchells, who are now in witness protection. He approaches Jonah Mitchell at a small convenience store and shows him a picture of Dexter, asking if it is Kyle Butler, but an undercover FBI agent interrupts before Jonah can answer. Quinn is suspended without pay by LaGuerta for disobeying her orders. She continues to defend Dexter. Quinn seeks the help of a disgraced fellow officer to investigate Dexter. With Dexter's help, Deb closes in on the Santa Muerte killer. Debra lets him escape during a hostage standoff in order to save the hostage's life.

Lumen tells Dexter that she was attacked by a group of men, not merely Fowler on his own. Lumen asks Dexter to help her seek revenge on these men, but he initially refuses. After Lumen continues on her own and mistakenly targets the wrong suspect, Dexter teaches her the importance of knowing a person is guilty. Dexter accompanies Lumen to the airport and believes she has left Miami. Instead, Lumen remains behind, hunts down and shoots one of her attackers, and out of desperation asks Dexter to help her clean up the crime scene. Dexter reluctantly agrees, and they finish moments before homicide police locate the crime scene. Lumen later reveals to Dexter that killing one of her attackers brought her a sense of peace. She tearfully recognizes that it will not last and that she will have to find (and kill) the others to experience that peace again. Dexter recognizes this as being her own Dark Passenger. He decides to help her, partly to atone for his earlier inability to save Rita.

Meanwhile, the subplots throughout the season focus on the relationships of LaGuerta and Angel, who have made their marriage public but are having marital issues, and of Quinn and Debra who become romantically involved. When Angel gets involved in a bar fight which gets him in trouble with the Internal Affairs Department (IAD), LaGuerta saves him by helping IAD set up a sting on another cop who is under suspicion, Stan Liddy (Peter Weller). Liddy develops a friendship with Quinn, their common bond being they were both "betrayed" by LaGuerta, and Quinn pays Liddy to investigate Dexter. Debra remains unaware that Quinn suspects her brother is Kyle Butler.

Dexter and Lumen hunt the other people responsible for torturing her, including Jordan Chase (Jonny Lee Miller) and people associated with him. As Quinn's relationship with Deb deepens, he tries to stop Liddy's investigation, but by this point Liddy has taken pictures of Dexter and Lumen on Dexter's boat disposing of large plastic bags and video of them practicing for a kill, and is determined to continue. Having lost his job and convinced Dexter is a criminal, Liddy captures Dexter and calls Quinn to tell him to come to his location. A struggle ensues and Dexter kills Liddy and destroys Liddy's surveillance footage. Dexter learns Lumen has been kidnapped by Jordan Chase and is forced to leave the crime scene to try to find her. Quinn, having responded to a call from Liddy, finds Liddy's van locked and apparently empty; a drop of Liddy's blood falls on his shoe, unnoticed. Dexter returns home to collect his tools to attack Jordan. He is surprised to see Astor and Cody who want to have their baby brother Harrison's first birthday party in Miami and stay with him the coming summer.

Before Dexter can confront Jordan, he is called away to Liddy's crime scene, where the police suspect Quinn's involvement in Liddy's death. Quinn initially complies but later refuses to answer questions. Later, Dexter learns of Jordan's (and Lumen's) whereabouts. The two briefly struggle. Dexter overpowers Jordan, and then allows Lumen to kill Jordan. After the kill, Deb discovers the two of them, though they are behind translucent plastic and she is not able to see their identities. Understanding that one of the two figures must be an escaped victim, Deb sympathizes and retreats so they can escape. After Jordan's death, Lumen no longer feels the need to kill and tearfully admits she needs to move on, leaving Dexter distraught.

Quinn talks with Dexter at Harrison's birthday party, where Quinn thanks Dexter for exonerating him, as Dexter has faked a blood test to clear Quinn. Quinn and Deb appear to reconcile, as do Maria and Angel. Blowing out Harrison's birthday candle, Dexter wonders if there is hope for him — to have a genuine relationship, to be human — but he doubts it.


Main cast

Special Guest Stars

Special Appearance


Fourth season executive producers John Goldwyn, Sara Colleton, Scott Buck and Michael C. Hall all remained in their roles for the fifth season. Past executive producer and show runner Clyde Phillips remained part of the crew as a consultant for the fifth season. Following the conclusion of 24, Manny Coto and Chip Johannessen joined the crew as executive producers. Johannessen served as the show runner for the fifth season. Jim Leonard also joined the crew as a consulting producer.

Fourth season supervising producers Timothy Schlattmann and Wendy West were promoted to co-executive producers for the fifth season. Fourth season producer Lauren Gussis was promoted to supervising producer. Robert Lloyd Lewis returned as the on set producer. Co-producers Gary Law and Chad Tomasoski also retained their roles. Fourth season story editor Scott Reynolds was promoted to executive story editor for the fifth .


No. in
No. in
Title Directed by Written by Original air date U.S. viewers
491"My Bad"Steve ShillChip JohannessenSeptember 26, 2010 (2010-09-26)1.77[3]
In the aftermath of last season's finale, Rita's death has left Dexter feeling responsible and guilty for not being there to save her from the Trinity Killer. Unable to deal with the trauma, Dexter makes a drastic decision that will affect everyone around him. Quinn stirs up trouble at the station when he notes that Rita's murder, which is being pinned on the Trinity Killer, doesn't fit his normal murder profile. Things get even more heated when Quinn suggests to LaGuerta that they look at Rita's husband: Dexter Morgan. Meanwhile, Quinn offers Debra support, causing her to see Quinn in a new light.
502"Hello, Bandit"John DahlScott BuckOctober 3, 2010 (2010-10-03)1.70[4]
In his new role as single father, an anxious Dexter tries to get his family's routine back on track, to begin the process of moving on from Rita's death. Dexter attempts to focus all his attention on the kids while curbing his dark urges. But when evidence of foul play falls into his lap, Dexter makes a horrific discovery, setting him on the trail of his next victim, Boyd Fowler. Debra, trying to be the good sister, shares her apartment with Dexter and the kids only to find there's no room for her. Also, Miami Metro has their work cut out when a grisly decapitation murder scene is found in a Venezuelan neighborhood.
513"Practically Perfect"Ernest DickersonManny CotoOctober 10, 2010 (2010-10-10)1.86[5]
Dexter finds himself in a strange new world when he attempts to hire a nanny for Harrison so he can have time to continue to stalk and kill Boyd Fowler. Meanwhile, Debra, who takes the lead on a bizarre double homicide, is displeased when Batista suggests bringing in an annoying rookie officer who has her own theories on the case. Things heat up for Dexter when Quinn notices strange similarities between Trinity Killer associate 'Kyle Butler' and Dexter Morgan.
524"Beauty and the Beast"Milan CheylovJim LeonardOctober 17, 2010 (2010-10-17)1.79[6]
Dexter finds himself in a strange situation when, instead of taking a life, he has to save one when he must decide what to do with the frightened young woman, identified as Lumen Pierce (Julia Stiles) who witnessed him killing Boyd. Meanwhile, Debra has a scary confrontation with a key suspect in the Santa Muerte murder cases. Quinn continues following up on the strange similarities between 'Kyle Butler' and Dexter Morgan.
535"First Blood"Romeo TironeTim SchlattmannOctober 24, 2010 (2010-10-24)1.94[7]
When Dexter is saddled with an unwanted conspirator, he is forced to make some hard decisions about her fate when Lumen wants in on his killing routine to find the men who abducted and raped her. Meanwhile, Dexter wonders if Rita's death has awakened a darkness inside baby Harrison. Due to Quinn's recent suspension, Debra works the Santa Muerte case alone, leaving Quinn time to enlist an old friend, Stan Liddy (Peter Weller) to look into Dexter.
546"Everything is Illumenated"Steve ShillWendy WestOctober 31, 2010 (2010-10-31)1.63[8]
Striving to bring some normalcy back into his shattered life, Dexter figures the answer lies in finding a new serial killer to bring down, but his quest gets thrown off course when his troubled new acquaintance, Lumen, requires his help to find one of her attackers. Meanwhile, Batista uncovers a revealing new lead in the Santa Muerte homicides, and Quinn gets a tip about Dexter from Liddy, but is not sure he can trust his source.
557"Circle Us"John DahlScott BuckNovember 7, 2010 (2010-11-07)1.90[9]
By aiding Lumen who has shot one of her attackers in an old warehouse, Dexter puts himself on a collision course with Debra and the homicide division, and things get worse when he's brought in to work a horrific crime scene. Meanwhile, Debra's investigation into the Santa Muerte killings leads her into a deadly confrontation with the killers. Also, Quinn begins to question Liddy in his investigation of Dexter.
568"Take It!"Romeo TironeManny Coto & Wendy WestNovember 14, 2010 (2010-11-14)1.94[10]
Dexter and Lumen take the opportunity to track a vicious murderer while attending a self-help seminar from Jordan Chase (Jonny Lee Miller). Meanwhile, the fallout from the aborted sting in the Santa Muerte homicides puts Debra in hot water and places Batista in a difficult situation as LaGuerta tries to shift the blame away from herself and onto Debra. Things tense up between Quinn and Liddy as Liddy begins to grow more obsessive and greedy.
579"Teenage Wasteland"Ernest DickersonLauren GussisNovember 21, 2010 (2010-11-21)2.11[11]
Dexter and Lumen are on the hunt for a new victim but get sidetracked by the arrival of a surprise visitor. Meanwhile, as a result of fallout from the Santa Muerte case, Debra gets reassigned to the file room, where she is still able to dig up new evidence in the Barrel Girls investigation.
5810"In the Beginning"Keith GordonScott ReynoldsNovember 28, 2010 (2010-11-28)2.54[12]
Just as Dexter discovers a possible ally in the pursuit of Lumen's former captors, he and Lumen are forced to step down as Homicide uncovers some key evidence linked to one of their prior victims. Debra, who's been reassigned to the Barrel Girls murders, positively identifies two more suspects in the case.
5911"Hop a Freighter"John DahlStory by: Karen Campbell
Teleplay by: Scott Buck & Tim Schlattman
December 5, 2010 (2010-12-05)2.26[13]
Dexter and Lumen's plans are momentarily thwarted when Dexter is forced to do damage control after he concedes that someone, outside of Miami Metro, has taken an interest in them. Debra's speculation on the missing Barrel Girls suspects begins to take shape. Quinn finds himself more involved in a homicide than he'd like to be.
6012"The Big One"Steve ShillChip Johannessen & Manny CotoDecember 12, 2010 (2010-12-12)2.48[14]
In the season finale, Dexter's situation grows desperate when he discovers that Lumen's been set up. Despite knowing he's being baited into a trap, Dexter risks everything to save Lumen from the murderous Jordan Chase. In the Barrel Girls case, Debra lets her personal feelings lead her instincts once she concludes that vigilantes are more than just a theory. Debra closes in on Jordan after receiving a tip about his whereabouts.


  1. "Dexter Season 5 Premiere". December 13, 2009. Retrieved July 20, 2010.
  3. Gorman, Bill (September 28, 2010). "Sunday Cable Ratings: Boardwalk Empire Falls; Rubicon Stays Low + Glades, Mad Men, Kardashians, Dexter & Lots More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved November 5, 2010.
  4. Seidman, Robert (October 5, 2010). "Sunday Cable Ratings: Boardwalk Empire Mostly Stable; Rubicon Still Tiny; Mad Men, Kardashians, Dexter & Lots More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved November 5, 2010.
  5. Gorman, Bill (October 12, 2010). "Sunday Cable Ratings: Boardwalk Empire Plunges; Rubicon Up; Mad Men, Kardashians, MLB Playoffs & More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved November 5, 2010.
  6. Seidman, Robert (October 19, 2010). "Sunday Cable Ratings: Kardarshians Lead; Mad Men Finale Up; Rubicon Finale Down; Boardwalk Empire, Sonny with a Chance & Much More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved November 5, 2010.
  7. Seidman, Robert (October 26, 2010). "Sunday Cable Ratings: Kardashians Finale Way Up;Boardwalk Empire, Dexter, Swamp People & Much More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved November 5, 2010.
  8. Seidman, Robert (November 2, 2010). "Sunday Cable Ratings: The Walking Dead Kills; Boardwalk Empire Steady; + Swamp People, Dexter, Ghost Hunters Live & Much More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved November 3, 2010.
  9. Gorman, Bill (November 9, 2010). "Sunday Cable Ratings: The Walking Dead Lives!; Boardwalk Empire Up; + Real Housewives, Hannah Montana, Kendra & Much More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved November 10, 2010.
  10. Seidman, Robert (November 16, 2010). "Sunday Cable Ratings: The Walking Dead, Sarah Palin (again, still); Boardwalk Empire Drops; Real Housewives, Sonny With a Chance, Kendra & Much More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved November 17, 2010.
  11. Seidman, Robert (November 23, 2010). "Sunday Cable Ratings: Sarah Palin's Alaska Falls; The Walking Dead (again, still); Boardwalk Empire Drops; Real Housewives, Sonny With a Chance, Kendra & Much More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved November 24, 2010.
  12. Gorman, Bill (November 30, 2010). "Sunday Cable Ratings: Boardwalk Empire Dips; Soul Train Awards, Real Housewives, Dexter, Top Gear & More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved December 1, 2010.
  13. Gorman, Bill (December 7, 2010). "Sunday Cable Ratings: The Walking Dead, Boardwalk Empire Finales Rise; Sarah Palin's Alaska, Dexter, The Hasslehoffs & More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved December 8, 2010.
  14. Seidman, Robert (December 14, 2010). "Sunday Cable Ratings: Sarah Palin's Alaska Up With Kate; Dexter Finale, Top Gear, Kendra Steady + Real Housewives & Much More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved December 15, 2010.
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