Dexter: TV show vs. book series | Point of Review

A few months ago, I had just finished watching Parks and Rec for the third or fourth time on Netflix. When I can't find a new show to watch, I go back to an old favorite. And it's usually a comedy. I asked for suggestions from friends and one of them suggested Dexter.

  • Friday, May 6, 2016 2:13pm
  • Life

Books from the Dexter series by Jess Lindsay. Photo courtesy of Amazon Books.

A few months ago, I had just finished watching Parks and Rec for the third or fourth time on Netflix. When I can’t find a new show to watch, I go back to an old favorite. And it’s usually a comedy. I asked for suggestions from friends and one of them suggested Dexter.

I’m not a big fan of starting new shows because they usually start off slow and I get confused having to remember all of the characters, especially with a more serious show like Dexter. And, I have the attention span of a goldfish when I’m bored so I get distracted easily. But, I finally gave in. Mostly because my friend knew the show so well that he answered the hundreds of questions I had during every episode.

I almost gave up on the show after the first episode. My eyes were basically glazed over for the first few episodes. I was really close to giving up when a moment happened in Dexter that made my jaw drop. Since then, I haven’t been able to get enough of Dexter. The twists in the show are unbelievable. My jaw is dropping on the regular when watching the show.

After paying close attention and trying not get distracted while watching Dexter, I saw in the opening credits that the show is based on a book, Darkly Dreaming Dexter, by Jeff Lindsay. In total, there are eight books and eight season. I haven’t read all of the books but from the first one, I think each book belongs to a different season.

When it was my turn to pick a book to movie review, I thought it would be interesting to see how someone can turn a book into 13 or so 40 minute long episodes.

For those of you who don’t know what Dexter is about, it’s quite simple. Dexter works for the Miami Police Department as a blood splatter analysts. He helps capture bad guys during the day and kills them at night, so to speak. Dexter has a dark hobby of killing bad guys. Most of them were not sent to jail or were freed after a while from a technicality, even though he knows they were guilty. So he kills them, making the world a better place, essentially. Each season revolves around a serial killer the police department and Dexter are trying to find.

At first, it was strange how absolutely identical the show was to the book. The tiniest details were in both, which was impressive. There were a few minute details in the book that are different from the show. They were the kinds of details that wouldn’t make a difference if they were added to the show. Such as, in the show, Dexter keeps a slide with a drop of blood of every person he has killed and he keeps them hidden in his air conditioning vent. In the book, he keeps them hidden in a bookshelf. He does wear a mask in the book when he kills people but not in the show. Again, another detail that isn’t a big deal. His victims are dead so it doesn’t matter if they see his face or not.

I almost stopped reading the book since it was so similar to the show, I didn’t think I needed to keep reading. Until… I was in the last 50 pages or so and the whole situation involving the serial killer was almost completely different from the show. And, a main character dies at the end of the book that isn’t killed off in the show.

It seems like when a book is turned into an episode, a lot of details are missed. In the Dexter series, it seems like more details were added for the show, which makes sense.

I highly recommend watching the tv show if you haven’t, and also reading the book. I have always liked books better than their show or movie counterparts but in this instance, I like the show better. The book was still really intriguing. I plan on reading all eight of the books to see the differences. It’s like watching a whole new episode of Dexter!

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