'Dexter' Sets Ratings Record for Showtime With Series Finale

The last episode of the crime drama series is the most-watched episode ever in the network's history.
"Dexter" wrapped up the serial killer's story arc with a bang. The series finale aired on Sunday, September 22 drew 2.8 million viewers at its premiere telecast, outperforming the show's season 7 finale which attracted 2.75 million viewers.

When repeat airings are counted, the farewell episode posted a total of 3.3 million viewers. It's up from the 3.2 million which tuned in to the season 8 premiere in June. The last episode of the drama series, thus, becomes the most-watched original episode ever in Showtime's history.

Despite the big number of audience, some were not pleased with the outcome of the conclusion. Showrunner Scott Buck has defended it, telling Entertainment Weekly, "It seemed like the ending that was most justified. In season 1, you saw this guy who was so compartmentalized. The last couple seasons have been about breaking down those walls by having his son and his relationship with Hannah and having Deb discover who he is. Still he was able to justify what he did."

He further explained, "We felt it took the death of the one person he cared most about to really look at himself. [His fate] wasn't something that happened to him but his decision. He had to bear the burden of deciding his own fate."

Meanwhile, former showrunner Clyde Phillips recently shared his own take on the show's end. "I haven't shared this with anyone," he told E! News. Saying that the writers "did a good job with the final episode," he began sharing, "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."

He continued, "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."

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