Dexter season 5 episode 11 review: Hop A Freighter

The penultimate Dexter rides the big wave of catastrophe that will surely end in wipe-out. But for who?

Dexter: Hop A Freighter

This review contains spoilers.

5.11 Hop A Freighter

I wouldn’t characterise this show as a ‘cop drama’, but there was some detective work to be done by Dexter, in finding out who has been observing him and Lumen.

This was the key narrative thread that connected events in Hop A Freighter, which brought many plot lines to an end and moved the story into a whole new phase for next week’s season end.

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Having reviewed this show for some time, I’ve noticed the model on which the concept is entirely built. At its core, it’s a delicate balance between what characters know, and more pointedly, what they don’t know. The dance of secrets is the joy here, and what a truckload of secrets this season has carried.

What and who Dexter really is has been a secret that’s been close to being revealed since the outset, but now Lumen is inside the line, and by the time this story is done she might not be the only one. Joey’s suspicions have brought Liddy into play, and he’s the character that I’ve possibly got the least appreciation for.

I couldn’t really follow how he was going to use the surveillance he gathered on Dexter, and in this story he admits as much. But his logic that he can get a confession out of Dexter to plug that hole seemed equally bonkers to me. Surely, he wasn’t going to record the ‘interview’, and he isn’t even a cop any longer!

But it’s not just these things that he seems to miscalculate. He’s entirely underestimated Dexter, which in this show, is a precursor to the mortician’s slab. This could rebound not on Dexter, but on Quinn, as it’s his signature that signed out all the equipment in the van.

What I accepted much more readily was the transformation of Jordan Chase, who had previously been so controlled I suspected he had a Persian cat and plan for world domination. The way he became unhinged and killed Emily revealed his true persona, stripped of the presentation, and uncontrollably angry. My only confusion is understanding the significance of the blood locket, as clearly Chase didn’t care that much for Emily at all.

But as the story got into the final third, and both Dexter and Lumen got themselves into simultaneous jeopardy, the tension cranked in a way that few TV shows can manage.

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The scene where Quinn turns up at the van where Dexter has just killed Liddy was superbly handled, down to the drop of blood that lands unnoticed on Joey’s shoe. Tension to die for, and Lumen’s capture by Jordan Chase was a no less edgy experience.

Finding the body of Emily, and the blood left by Lumen, Dexter’s dark passenger exchanges places with the driver. It’s time to buckle up, with the certainty that it’s pedal to the metal for the final sprint to the finish. Phew. What a show.

Season 6 has been confirmed in the past week, so whatever happens in the season finale there will be a continuation. But which characters won’t be making a return? I’ve no idea, but I wouldn’t give a wooden nickel for Jordan Chase being around given Dexter’s current demeanour.

Read our review of episode 10, In The Beginning, here.

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