The latest episode of Dexter, “Argentina”, starts with our favorite serial killer and his new lady having a nice breakfast together.  Of course, nothing is that simple with poor Dexter, and he still has a few things to deal with.  There’s Deborah’s request that he put a knife into his new girlfriend, an angry Isaak still trying to get even for the death of his friend and the imminent arrival of Dex’s son Harrison and the rest of Rita’s clan.

While Deb tries to push the issue of Dexter getting rid of Hannah and exacting his own form of justice, her brother is not keen on the idea, for obvious reasons.  He tries to convince her that performing that task for her is not a good thing, that she is compromising her ideals by calling on him.  And while he certainly has a point, his motives are not as altruistic as they seem.  Dexter wants Hannah to live because he’s doing the nasty with her and would rather not have to choose between one girl and the other.

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Unfortunately for Dex, his sister eventually figures out the reason that he doesn’t want to take Hannah down.  And when she does find out, it’s a complete meltdown.  Finally the story returns to the semi-incest story arc that has been up to now mostly ignored.  Deb admits that she’s in love with him, although recent developments make that admission even more complicated than it would otherwise have been.

As Dexter deals with his sister and his new main squeeze, he also has to deal with Isaak.  The angry Russian, newly released from the big house, takes a few pot shots at our hero.  Dexter returns the favor by trying to get Isaak on the table, but fails.  Finally, Dex goes in for one more chance to kill and what results is a nice conversation between the two rivals.  During their little talk, Isaak finally reveals exactly why he must have vengeance against Dexter.  Unfortunately for Isaak, this quest for revenge gets him in trouble with the Russian mob and he is now pretty much on his own.

In the background, LaGuerta is still looking into the potential continued existence of the Bay Harbor Butcher, tracking the trail to Dex’s boat at the marina.  Quinn digs his hole even deeper by helping out the Russian’s with “just one more thing”.  And Dexter has to deal with some family issues in the form of his visiting step-kids.

I have to say, Hannah is the most likable serial killer that has graced the series aside from ol’ Dex himself.  Even if what she does isn’t quite as altruistic as Dexter, she wears it well and is a perfect counterpart for him.  Isaak is equally interesting as a villain.  He isn’t the usual 2-dimensional killer that we tend to see in every other season of the show.  He has strong motivations and is likable in his own way, and we shall be as sorry as we are happy when he finally bites the bullet.  Hell, even LaGuerta is more interesting this time around, though it could be due to the fact that she generally gets about two minutes of screen time per episode and so never has the chance to become annoying.

Once again (and yeah, I know I’ve said it many times before), Jennifer Carpenter steals the show with her emotionally charged performance.  The final scene between her and Dexter requires her to do quite a bit, running the full gambit of emotions as she deals with Dex’s betrayal, her love for him and all the other shit that’s been piling up for the last seven episodes.  She pulls off a wonderful “break down” scene that 90 percent of actors could have never touched.  If she doesn’t get an Emmy nom this year I’ll be fkn pissed.

As we leave episode 8 of season 7, everyone’s life is in complete disarray.  Deb is disenchanted, Dex is juggling too many balls and compromising his code one bit at a time, Quinn is a slave to the Russians and Isaak is being hunted by his own people.  Only Masuka and Angel seem to be having a good time, and only cause they happen to be well away from anything that happens to deal with Dexter.  Four more episodes to go and I’m putting money down that someone important is going to die – and most likely one of those poor bastards on the sidelines.

Hope everyone enjoyed this week’s episode and make sure to get back next week for episode 9 and this friendly neighborhood NerdBastard review.

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