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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

 

Dexter - The Final Season - aka Season 8 [Blu-ray]

 

(Developed for Television by James Manos, Jr, 2006-2013)

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Showtime

Video: Paramount

 

Disc:

Region: 'A'-locked (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)

NOTE: The UK Blu-ray version appears to be region FREE!

Episode Runtime: 56:00 X 12

Disc One Size: 37,751,053,663 bytes

Single Disc Features Size: 35,222,218,752 bytes

Video Bitrate: 18.30 Mbps

Chapters: 7 X 12 episodes

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: November 12th, 2013

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 1.78:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

Dolby TrueHD Audio English 1433 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1433 kbps / 16-bit (AC3 Embedded: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 640 kbps)
Dolby Digital Audio Spanish 256 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 256 kbps

 

Subtitles:

English, English (SDH), none

 

Extras:

Disc 1

• Ray Donovan Episode 1 (57:17)

Disc 2

• Ray Donovan Episode 2 (52:30)

Disc 3

• From Cop to Killer Featurette (3:15)

• Dexter - The End Begins (3:07)

• Dexter with Scott Buck - Executive Producer Episode 801 (2:07)

• Dexter Episode 802 - directed by Michael C. Hall (2:17)

• Dexter Episode 803 - Scene 30 (1:37)

Dexter with Scott Buck - Executive Producer Episode 804 (2:17)

 

Bitrate (disc 1):

 

 

Description: All 12 episodes from the eighth and final season of the American crime drama about a Miami police forensics expert who kills those he believes have escaped justice. Dexter (Michael C. Hall) was orphaned at the age of three after the murder of his mother, an incident which implanted in him a fierce desire to punish those who commit criminal acts. While avoiding suspicion with a genial and helpful professional facade by day, when off-duty Dexter remorselessly hunts down those he believes have escaped the justice of the law and takes his vengeance. The episodes are: 'A Beautiful Day', 'Every Silver Lining...', 'What's Eating Dexter Morgan?', 'Scar Tissue', 'This Little Piggy', 'A Little Reflection', 'Dress Code', 'Are We There Yet?', 'Make Your Own Kind of Music', 'Goodbye Miami', 'Monkey in a Box' and 'Remember the Monsters?'.

 

 

Everyone’s favourite serial killer is back for the finale in Season 8 of the wickedly good drama, Dexter. Golden GlobeŽ winner Michael C. Hall returns as the Miami forensics expert with blood on his hands--only now…

 

 

Season Eight descriptions from IMDb HERE:

Season Eight, Episode 1
A Beautiful Day
S8, Ep1
Jun. 30, 2013
It's now 6 months since Captain LaGuerta's death. Dexter is still working as a blood spatter expert but Deb has quit the force and is now working as a private investigator. She's also been avoiding Dexter as much as possible. Angel Batista is now the squad's Lieutenant and Tom Matthews is a Deputy Chief. Dexter is worried about Deb in general but even more so after he hears she hasn't been in touch with her new boss for two weeks. Metro homicide has a new case after a body is found on the beach. The man's skull has been sliced open and a small part of his brain ...

Every Silver Lining...
S8, Ep2
Jul. 7, 2013
Dr. Vogel shows Dexter some video she shot when his father Harry visited her for help in treating him. Dexter was only 10 years old when Harry first visited her and she takes more than just a little of the credit for what Dexter calls Harry's code: that he would only kill bad people. Vogel says she did it because she cared for him. Having saved his life, she now wants to call in a favor: she thinks the man who recently slide open someones brain and left the body on the beach is one of her former patients. She wants Dexter to do what she and Harry taught her to do. ...

What's Eating Dexter Morgan?
S8, Ep3
Jul. 14, 2013
Deb is going through a particularly bad patch and there is nothing Dexter can seemingly do about it. A cop finds her behind the wheel her car, drunk. She had the good sense to pull over but ran over a parking meter in the process. She contacts Quinn who manages to get her out without being charged. Dexter blames himself but Vogel says he shouldn't take on her problems. She also wonders why Dexter didn't kill her when she found him out. Drunk again, Deb goes to the station and tells Quinn she killed LaGuerta. Meanwhile, Dexter and the police check out Lyle Sussman's ...

Scar Tissue
S8, Ep4
Jul. 21, 2013
The next potential killer on Vogel's list is A.J. Yates, who was institutionalized at 15. Vogel tried to channel his hostilities much as she did with Dexter but was unable to do so. When Dexter sees a huge scar on his head, he learns from Vogel that Yates had surgery to remove a brain lesion. He breaks into Yates' house and finds something interesting in the closet. Dexter isn't alone in the house however and it looks he may be their man. He also finds something that affects his relationship with Vogel. Dexter meets a neighbor, Cassie, from the next door apartment. ...

This Little Piggy
S8, Ep5
Jul. 28, 2013
Dr. Vogel tells Dexter that Deb was traumatized when she tried to kill him. Now that she's hit rock bottom, things will improve. Dexter isn't too happy with either Vogel or Deb and concentrates on finding serial killer A.J. Yates. Deb and Dexter have another problem when Yates kidnaps Vogel and they set out to rescue her. At the station, the police continue investigating the death of Norma Rivera. She had sex not long before dying and they assume that whoever that was is also the man who killed her. They have a suspect, her former employer Ed Hamilton, who admits to ...

A Little Reflection
S8, Ep6
Aug. 4, 2013
Dexter is convinced that Zack Hamilton killed Norma Rivera but has no proof and takes to following him whenever he can. He's more than a bit surprised to follow him to Dr. Vogel's office. She admits that Zach is a new patient but refuses to talk about his case. Batista is under pressure from Deputy Chief Tom Matthews to make a decision on who to promote to sergeant. When Quinn learns he didn't get the job, he redoubles his effort to solve the Rivera murder. With Dexter tagging along, it becomes obvious - to Dexter at least - that Zack is stalking his next victim, ...

Dress Code
S8, Ep7
Aug. 11, 2013
After being drugged by Hannah McKay, Dexter wakes up in an industrial area outside of town. He knows that Hannah is responsible and she's surprisingly easy to find, which makes Dexter more than just a bit suspicious. It turns out she's living on a luxury yacht with her husband Jacob. She's changed her name to Maggie and says she's quite happy. Her husband doesn't appreciate the fact that she's met with Dexter forcing her to take action and for Dexter to help her out. Meanwhile, Dexter has agreed to teach Zach Hamilton the code - to Dr. Vogel's delight - but he is ...

Are We There Yet?
S8, Ep8
Aug. 18, 2013
Dexter is certain that Zach Hamilton killed his next door neighbor Cassie, who is found bludgeoned to death in her apartment. The scene suggests that the crime was impulsive rather than planned, as was the case with the death of Norma Rivera. Dexter finds Zach's blood under her fingernails but can't report it for obvious reasons. Zach is in the Keys - he's used his credit card - and Dexter and Hannah set off to find him. What he finds there impresses Dexter but also suggests that Zach isn't the killer. Meanwhile, Dexter is also helping Hannah acquire a new identity ...

Make Your Own Kind of Music
S8, Ep9
Aug. 25, 2013
Dexter has decided to make a new life for himself with Hannah and Harrison but not before he takes care of the Brain Surgeon. In searching Zach Hamilton's photo studio he finds a clump of hair and blood hidden under a table. When Dexter runs the sample against the DNA database he finds a familial match - to Dr. Evelyn Vogel. Somewhat incredulous at his revelation, Vogel explains that she once had two sons, the eldest of which killed the other. He was placed in a mental institution but died in fire. Dexter believes he must have survived and soon has him identified. Deb...

Goodbye Miami
S8, Ep10
Sep. 8, 2013
Having made the decision that he and Harrison will move to Argentina with Hannah, Dexter has a lot to do. He tells Deb about his plan but that doesn't go over very well. He also tells Dr, Vogel that her son, Saxon, is dangerous and she is in need of protection. She insists that he back off and let her deal with him in her own way but Dexter has no intention of leaving Miami while Saxon is alive. Saxon has problems however and he takes his mother to his killing room explaining that it's identical to the treatment room at the mental hospital she put him in. He wants his...

Monkey in a Box
S8, Ep11
Sep. 15, 2013
Still coming to terms with Dr. Vogel's death, Dexter wants to eliminate Oliver Saxon before he, Harrison and Hannah head off to South America. He also has a lot of personal items to tie up including selling his condo. Saxon shows up as a prospective buyer and offers Dexter a deal: they stop going after each other and go their own way. Dexter is non-committal and, having located his kill room, sets a trap for him. Meanwhile, U.S. Deputy Marshall Clayton is following Deb, certain that she will lead him to Hannah. Dexter is continuing to reevaluate his priorities and his...

Remember the Monsters?
S8, Ep12
Sep. 22, 2013
Dexter has to act quickly when Hannah tells him Elway is staking out the airport. He finds a way to get him out of the way but it also leads to the entire airport being closed. With a hurricane bearing down on Miami, few options are open to them. Dexter races to the hospital when he learns that Deb has been shot. She seems to be recovering and he decides to send Hannah and Harrison to Jacksonville where they could catch a flight. A return trip to the hospital leads to Saxon's arrest but also bad news about Deb. Realizing that he has, directly or indirectly, been ...


Image :    NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
 

We've previously covered Season One, Two, Three, Four, Six and Seven on Blu-ray and this image looks totally in-line with the strong visual quality. The 1.78:1 HD shot episodes look strong with the occasional weaknesses of that format - some noise in darker sequences and it handles outdoor light somewhat poorer than straight film with occasional flaring. Overall it supports the series in 1080P with excellent detail in close-ups and bright impressive colors with Floridian flora. All three discs are dual-layered and with 4 episodes on each of the 3 Blu-rays. There are no manipulations at all and it is, predictably, spotlessly clean. This looks exactly as it was shot and ready for broadcast in 2013; essentially it can be considered flawless as a direct representation.

 

CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Audio has another notch down in robust-ness from the previous Seasons on Blu-ray. A Dolby TrueHD 5.1 at a supportive 1433 kbps. It has some mild, and subtle, range. I'm always impressed with Daniel Licht original score that can really light up a scene or bring it down to a more human, and sympathetic, level. I think it is one of the best for a TV show that I've heard. There are optional DUBs and English + English (SDH) subtitles and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked - like the previous packages.

 

Extras :

So this last season Blu-ray gives us some supplements - Discs 1 +2 , respectively, have two, hour long, episodes of Ray Donovan with Liev Schreiber. It is described as; Ray Donovan, a professional "fixer" for the rich and famous in LA, can make anyone's problems disappear except those created by his own family. The two episodes are decent TV and encourage more investigation into this new series. Disc 3 has more extras relating to the show. There are 6 short featurettes with interviews of the principles of production and some of the cast. Not a lot of detail but at least it is something.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
No question that the show gravitas was dwindling - and the writing has dropped a notch from Season 1 thru 5 of Dexter. The finale could have been moved up a season but here we are and those desperate to see the outcome have this Blu-ray package which gives a great presentation. Nice to see some extras and two Ray Donovan episodes. It still offers value for almost a dozen hours of unique TV - those who've been following the series will get some closure. For devout and curious fans.

Gary Tooze

November 2nd, 2013


 

About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 3500 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.

Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction. So be it, but film will always be my first love and I list my favorites on the old YMdb site now accessible HERE.  

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60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
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Gary W. Tooze

 

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