Dexter Finale Wrap-up: The Ratings, An Alternate Ending, and a Final Goodbye to Fans


Dexter s8 ep11--Dexter and Debra saying goodbyeThat’s it, that’s a wrap: Dexter the loveable serial killer will no longer grace our television screens. After eight seasons we finally know Dexter’s fate. Here’s a wrap-up of a few things that have come out of the finale.

First of all, despite receiving some negative reviews, the final episode was the most watched of any original programing on Showtime ever. The show had 2.8 million viewers, even going up against the Emmys. This has been Dexter’s most watched season yet, and it topped it all off with the final episode.

Speaking of those negative reviews, if Dexter’s final fate wasn’t your cup of tea, former showrunner Clyde Phillips revealed his original ending for the series to E!Online:

I haven’t shared this with anyone… And I can tell you that this is what I personally would have done should I have stayed with the show. I chose not to stay with the show, and so everybody did what they did, and I had no problem with that…and I think they did a good job with the final episode. But here is what I personally would have pitched.

In the very last scene of the series…Dexter wakes up. And everybody is going to think, ‘Oh, it was a dream.’ And then the camera pulls back and back and back and then we realize, ‘No, it’s not a dream.’ Dexter’s opening his eyes and he’s on the execution table at the Florida Penitentiary. They’re just starting to administer the drugs and he looks out through the window to the observation gallery.

And in the gallery are all the people that Dexter killed—including the Trinity Killer and the Ice Truck Killer (his brother Rudy), LaGuerta who he was responsible killing, Doakes who he’s arguably responsible for, Rita, who he’s arguably responsible for, Lila. All the big deaths, and also whoever the weekly episodic kills were. They are all there.

That’s what I envisioned for the ending of Dexter. That everything we’ve seen over the past eight seasons has happened in the several seconds from the time they start Dexter’s execution to the time they finish the execution and he dies. Literally, his life flashed before his eyes as he was about to die. I think it would have been a great, epic, very satisfying conclusion.

For some fans, that was probably closer to how they had envisioned the ending. Many viewers had expected Dexter to get caught and face the consequences. But in the surprise ending of the finale, Dexter survived. Which ending would you have preferred? Sound off in the comments!

Finally, Showtime has uploaded a special goodbye to fans from the cast of the show on YouTube. It’s a sweet, emotional tribute to how fans have stuck by the show over the years and how much the cast and crew appreciate them. You can watch it below: