I do not watch much broadcast television instead I either purchase season sets on DVD or ‘find’, ahem, episodes of television shows online. This has made digital terrestrial television completely redundant for me, there is no way that I would go back to having a ??30 plus monthly Sky subscription, and has introduced to me to some excellent television series. An example of this would be The Shield. I had the first season of this on DVD for well over a year and it took three viewings of the first episode before I could ‘get in’ to the series. After watching all five seasons I can honestly say that this is one of my favorite shows of all time, great acting, great storylines and very addictive.

More recently I heard about a new series broadcast in America on the Showtime channel about a forensic scientist who moonlights as a serial killer. This show is called Dexter. It stars Michael C Hall, who played David on another excellent series Six Feet Under, as Dexter Morgan, a sociopath in a similar mold to Patrick Bateman from Brett Easton Ellis’ novel American Psycho and is based on the novels of Jeff Lindsay. Dexter is not just another series added to the growing American television obsession with forensic medicine but a darkly comic pastiche of this fascination. It also benefits from being broadcast on Showtime, a subscription channel similar to HBO that allows for swearing and violence on television.

Rather than adopt the serial killer every week approach that Criminal Minds do with varying degrees of success it follows the Ice Truck killer, a serial murderer terrorising Miami dismembering prostitutes and Dexter’s involvement, both personal and professional, in the case. But by night Dexter is also a serial killer who seeks out law breakers to fulfill his blood lust. We are shown in flashbacks that this code was instructed to him by his late stepfather, a Miami policeman, who harnesses Dexter’s killing ways for good. There also other ongoing threads involving Dexter’s sister, girlfriend and various characters from the Miami police department. But the big question is whether it is any good? Yes it is, very good in fact and highly original in its own particular way. It comes highly recommended. The only problem is that, to my knowledge, it has not been broadcast in the UK but if you look hard enough online you might be able to find it.

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