Late last year, Showtime nixed rumors that it was planning to reanimate its polarizing hit drama Dexter for a ninth season of blood-spattery vigilante hijinks. So don’t get too excited—or too horrified—by the prospect of new episodes after watching Showtime’s just-released trailer, which introduces the show to viewers unfamiliar with Dexter Morgan’s circuitous journey from celebrated cop to lonesome lumberjack:
Showtime dropped the nostalgic Dexter montage to advertise the wares available on its Showtime Anytime streaming service, but also to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of Dexter’s premiere on October 1, 2006. To set the scene: President George W. Bush was well into his second term, gasoline prices had climbed up to around $2.50, and Google was preparing to acquire a scrappy video startup called YouTube. Original scripted programming was still undiscovered country for most cable networks save the premium channels, which were pushing the television medium in new and exciting directions.
Enter Dexter, which starred Michael C. Hall as a mild-mannered, Miami-based forensics detective who spends his free time stalking and killing murderers who managed to skirt justice. With its unusual premise—the natural endpoint for dark anti-hero dramas—Dexter once represented the cutting edge of television storytelling. Then, depending on whom you ask, the show was either consistently awesome or got progressively worse until its risible finale, widely considered to be the worst series closer in history.
That’s why it’ll be masochistic fun to watch Showtime’s upcoming Dexter marathon, which is slated for the show’s anniversary date and will consist of the top 10 episodes as selected by the public in a bracket-style competition on social media. Which episodes will make the cut? Awesome episodes from season one and kind of season two and pretty much no others? Or will they be more like the one where a kid falls off a treadmill in what might be the funniest child injury in the history of television? Ten hours is definitely too much time to spend finding out the answer, but can someone let us know?