Dexter: The Sixth Season (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 4 Old 08-09-2012, 10:58 AM - Thread Starter
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The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109941&d=1210373637

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

Studio and Year: Paramount - 2011
MPAA Rating: NR
Feature running time: 618 Minutes
Genre: TV Drama/Thriller

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 1.78:1
Resolution: 1080p/24

Audio Format(s): English Dolby TrueHD 5.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish/English Dolby Stereo
Subtitles: English, English SDH
Starring: Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter, C.S. Lee, Lauren Velez, David Zayas, Desmond Harrington, James Remar, Colin Hanks, Edward James Olmos, Mos Def, Aimee Garcia, Josh Cook, Billy Brown
Directed by: Various
Music by: Daniel Licht
Written by: Various
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: August 14, 2012

"He’s got a way with murder…"

Film Synopsis:

The explosively popular DEXTER™ is back with a vengeance for a sixth season of startling suspense and unexpected twists. It's been a year since last season's shocking and heartbreaking conclusion, and mild mannered criminologist-cum-grisly serial killer Dexter Morgan has come to terms with who he is. But his existence is shattered when he crosses paths with an enemy unlike any he's faced before. A delusional religious zealot with unflinching convictions, this new adversary soon draws Dexter into a dangerous game that could well end in disaster.

My Take:

For those who may not be familiar with Dexter it is a crime drama about Dexter Morgan, a man who leads a double life as an incredibly likeable forensics expert for the Miami Police Department and as an emotionless vigilante serial killer. Taught by his foster father to harness his lust for blood and killing, Dexter lives by his own strict moral code - he only kills murderers who can't otherwise be brought to justice. Dexter is a killer who grapples with fitting into society while, at the same time, he struggles with his inability to feel emotion. The irony of Dexter's life is that he works closely as a blood splatter analyst with the very people who hunt his kind - the homicide departments.

Dexter is a dark and oddly entertaining program filled with interesting archetypes and characters. Fortunately for the innocent Dexter has channeled his penchant for blood into ridding Miami of the criminal element that have fallen through the cracks or who have failed to receive proper justice through the system. His work for the Miami’s Homicide Division puts him in close contact with those who would normally be on the hunt for him which allows him to keep them safely at arms length. While this plays a crucial role in the shows plot what I find just as interesting are the cases that he routinely gets involved in as a forensic analyst for the Miami PD and his struggles to try to appear “normal” in his daily interaction with the people in his life. He is a complex individual who has no illusions about who he is or what he is capable of. The series is based upon the novel “Darkly dreaming Dexter” by Jeff Lindsay.

I wasn’t crazy about Dexter season five and hoped that season six would prove more rewarding, and it did. This season as with every other revolves around a primary storyline involving a serial killer/criminal element and subplots associated with Dexter’s personal life and/or those closest to him. The primary story/investigation follows Dexter’s Homicide squad as they pursue the Doomsday Killer (they refer to him as DDK). DDK turns out to be a religious fanatic/sociopath that is murderously acting out events depicted in the Holy Bible’s Book of Revelation under the belief that God has chosen him to witness the end of days. Dexter focuses his attentions on getting DDK on to his table before his co-workers find him. In the meantime he keeps busy satisfying his “dark passenger” with lesser deserving victims, one of whom turns out to be Brother Sam, a former criminal who claims to have found religion and while still running his auto body repair shop, gives other ex-cons a chance at rehabilitation. Little does Dexter know that meeting Brother Sam will lead to events that cause him to question the system of beliefs that fuel his “dark passenger”.

There is plenty of drama at the office. Deb faces a new set of challenges while struggling with misunderstood emotional feelings that culminate in one of the series biggest (and unusual) revelations yet. Quinn’s broken heart gets in the way of work and his new partnership. Mazuka’s two interns turn out to be more than he can handle, LaGuerta plays the self serving political shell game and Battista must once again bite the bullet both personally and professionally.

Dexter continues to fly under the radar in his secret pursuits while struggling to balance that between work and raising Harrison. As DDK’s activities escalate Dexter discovers his identity and that of his associate, a meek, easily manipulated young man who will prove vital to making season six one of the best yet. I really enjoyed season six. There is plenty of rewarding interest to be found in the interplay among the principle characters as well as the integration of some new faces that play pivotal roles in the proceedings.

There was a lot going on this season and I thought it was well executed in general. I think the changes to LaGuerta were a bit much but their impact was minimal. I like the new faces in Anderson, Jamie and Louis and look forward to seeing what season seven brings for them. Edward James Olmos and Colin Hanks complimented their respective characters and their involvement aided in creating credible elements that added depth to the season. The major twist I didn’t see coming but the cliff hanging ending wasn’t tough to foresee. I am not crazy about the developments for Deb but much of that remains to be played out. Not to be missed Season six continues to push the envelope by engaging the audience each week as the show builds to the superlative climax in the final episode.

All 12 one hour Season Four episodes are spread out over three BD-50 Blu-ray Discs. Once again I am surprised at the lack of bonus content that accompanies this set. There are no bonus supplements available unless you access to BD-Live. Those without BD-Live enabled players or access to the internet, are out of luck. As with past Dexter Blu-ray releases I had issues getting the set to load on my Panasonic and Oppo players (not a lockup just a black screen) until I disabled BD-Live access (clearing the persistent storage had no effect) . I was able to get it to load on my Playstation 3 with BD-Live access enabled though. The BD-Live content doesn’t offer fans or newcomers to the series anything worthy of note which is disappointing. Regardless, Dexter: Season Six on Blu-ray still shines brilliantly.

Parental Guide:

The show contains graphic violence, thematic material, sexual content and language.

AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**

Audio: 90

(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

Video: 92

(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109948&d=1210373692

Dexter: Season Six comes to Blu-ray Disc from Paramount featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 24 Mbps and lossless Dolby TrueHD 5.1 channel audio that has an average bitrate of 3.5 Mbps.

I have reviewed seasons 1 through four of Dexter (missed getting season five) on Blu-ray Disc and it has consistently looked and sounded great in high definition and this presentation is no different. Images are three dimensional, exquisitely detailed, and at times seem to visually transcend the boundaries of the camera’s lens to provide the looking through a window perspective. Colors are visually stimulating with rich, vivid highlights and natural rendering that looks superb. Fleshtones are delineated with enriching complexional structure and lifelike depiction. Contrast is strong without being distractingly overstated and blacks are dynamic, with deep, gradational quality and revealing detail in low lighting and shadowy backgrounds. This is a pristine and reference quality presentation that looks impressive and is sure to please regardless of the size of your display.

The Dolby TrueHD multi-channel soundtrack is presented similarly to previous Blu-ray releases and offers excellent lossless sound quality. Dynamics are robust without being ostentatious. Dialogue is rendered with clear intonation and deep room penetration which elevates the quality of Dexter’s running monologue through the center channel speaker. The front soundstage is nicely diffused with excellent separation and clearly articulated detail. The soundtrack doesn’t contain lots of discrete surround activity but there are moments that make great use of the platform via head turning off camera cues and involving spatial dimension/ambience through the rear channels. Bass response wasn’t room shaking however it appropriately supported the source elements and provided a tight, punchy low end.

Bonus Features:

  • The following bonus material which consists of select cast member interviews and sample episodes of other Showtime Network series is only accessible through the discs BD-Live portal.


  • Michael C. Hall

  • David Zayas

  • Jennifer Carpenter

  • Laura Velez

  • Desmond Harrington

  • Colin Hanks

  • C.S. Lee

  • Samples of Showtime Network series as indicated:

  • House of lies – Episodes 1&2

  • Californication – Episodes 1&2 season five

  • The Borgias – Episodes 1&2 season two

Final Thoughts:

Dexter: Season Six continues in the successful vein of the show’s previous seasons and makes for a dark, compelling and interesting crime drama that features Michael C. Hall in a role that is far and away his best. The show features well drawn characters, stimulating writing and apt direction. Season six is terrific and features an engaging storyline, newly integrated characters and strong performances from the ensemble cast. Its technical presentation on Blu-ray Disc from Paramount is top notch as it looks and sounds excellent. The bonus content doesn’t offer fans much in the way of interesting features and consists only of some brief cast interviews and samples of other Showtime Network programming. Add to that the fact that access to the bonus features is only available through BD-Live (which leaves those without BD-Live functionality out in the cold) and this is very disappointing. Depending on how important supplements are to you this may be worthy of note. I hardly find it to be a deal breaker because this is simply one of the best shows on cable TV. Fans of the series can look forward to owning it on Blu-ray disc. If you have not seen it I would highly recommend that you check it out.


Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews

Reference Review System:

JVC DLA-RS55 3D Ready 1080p High Definition Front Projector
Stewart Filmscreen - Studiotek 130 G3 100” 16x9 Screen
Onkyo PR-SC5508 THX Ultra 2 Audio/Video Processor
Sherbourn Technologies - 7/200 Seven Channel Amplifier
Oppo BDP-93 Universal Disc/3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Panasonic DMP-BDT310 3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Sony Playstation 3 Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
System Controller: Apple iPad/iRule Pro HD Universal Remote Control
Canton "Ergo" Series speakers
Axiom Audio QS8 Quadpolar speakers
SV Sound PB-13 Ultra (Rosenut finish)
APC AV S15BLK Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Furman SPR-20i Stable Power Regulator
Wireworld, Better Cables (Silver Serpent) - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
Cool Components - CP-CP102 cooling package

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post #2 of 4 Old 08-09-2012, 01:42 PM
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Thanks for the review, Ralph... I'm glad to hear the audio and video are of high quality! cool.gif

Having been a Dexter fan from the very beginning, I definitely plan to own all seasons on blu-ray as they come out and I can find some really good deals on them.

Thanks again...

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post #3 of 4 Old 08-11-2012, 01:21 PM
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I used to LOVE was my favorite show. But after the Trinity storyline, the show kind of lost its way (and the show runner!). Season 5 was okay, certainly not bad. But the last season was just horrible. The writing was incredibly heavy handed, just constantly hitting us over the head with the religious symbolism, it got old after 2 eps. Not to mention the show has been repeating the same formula for 5 years now, even the best shows can burn you out by doing that. But the worst part of the season was this year's "big bad". Colin Hanks just didn't work for me at all...
SPOILERS: Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
I'm not one to try to guess plot twists, but Edward James Olmos being dead the whole time was painfully obvious nearly from the start. It made the whole season very frustrating that they just kept dragging out that fact.

I did enjoy the final scene of the season though, so I might tune in next season to see if they can work off of that. Plus with Yvonne Strzechowski joining the cast, we have win right there!
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post #4 of 4 Old 08-11-2012, 05:16 PM
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Co-sign on this, season 6 was not only horrible but may have been one of the worst seasons in cable history. I'm pretty surprised Ralph enjoyed it. It had many more moments of unintentional comedy (that Dexter painting LOL) and creepy plot developments with Deb (and not the good creepy) than actual drama. There was enough plot holes to drive a 18 wheeler thru and Colin Hanks, oh brother. There was several instances where I thought he was gonna put on a fake mustache just so he can twirl it and laugh maniacally. He was so in over his head as the villain. And that had to have been the worst twist in recent memory, me and and everyone else I know already had it figured out by the 3rd episode, the writers have lost all imagination.

The show has taken a complete nose dive after season 4 so basically I now watch just for its unintentional comedic value because the writers have been mailing it in for a couple of years now anyways. Certain things that happened in season 6 give it hope for the remaining 2 seasons but I'm pretty sure they'll screw that up too especially if they insist on continuing with Debs new found inner feelings. Yuck.
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