‘Dexter’ Exec Producer Chip Johannessen Reveals Season 5 Surprises

Wednesday, September 1 by

It seems like everything’s changed for Dexter this year. SPOILER ALERT!!! for people waiting to watch Season Four on DVD, but he’s lost his wife and his executive producers in one fell swoop. Chip Johannessen takes over for departing Clyde Phillips and Melissa Rosenberg, but continues their story from the death of Rita.

Over the summer, Johannessen told the Television Critics Association that new guest stars are coming in who will end up helpin Dexter deal with grief. We’ve got Peter Weller (Robocop), Julia Stiles, Jonny Lee Miller and Shawn Hatosy. Could they each represent one of the five stages of grief?

More after the jump…

“He talks about that a little in episode two actually but that’s not the way we have it laid out,” Johannessen told a smaller group of reporters after the TCA press conference. “In terms of this business of bringing guest casting and how we have to deal with practical questions like oh, people will see that’s going to be a bad person a million miles away or they’re going to see that that’s going to be a good person. I can say we have some of each in our ensemble in season five and they’re not necessarily playing the roles that you think they are.”

Damn, I thought I was onto something, but surprise is good. Johannessen comes from "24" so he knows how to deal with a tragic hero who battles with the personal emotional tolls of his murderous actions.

“It’s what we call the Jack Bauer problem. Because of the nature of the life that I lead, people around me are inclined to come to bad ends. We do talk about that a little. It’s a little bit of what catches up with Dexter at the end of season four. Just by virtue of his activities and in a way his hubris in Four, that he could’v taken Trinity out at all these different times but he didn’t because he wanted to do it his way. He’s created this horrible situation for the people around him who he comes to understand he loves and cares about.”

Meanwhile, Quinn (Desmond Harrington) now has more information to connect Dexter to his killings. Unlike Doakes chasing Dexter on a hunch, Quinn could really spell trouble. But Johannessen doesn’t want viewers to hate Quinn either.

“Doakes was lovable in his own way, right, but Quinn has a lot more entanglements with this police department. To me this is all about the personal relationships. It’s not a cop show. It’s not a procedural show. As he gets into this, it’s going to get very complicated for him, so I don’t think they are going to. The actor of course is wondering, ‘Does this mean I’m going to die? Am I going to die? Am I going to die?’” As we’ve learned, no one on the show is safe. Not even Robocop.

"Dexter" returns September 26 on Showtime.

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