“What’s Eating Dexter Morgan?” opens with a sight gag—tricking audiences to believe that something awful has happened to Dexter’s son, Harrison. Our protagonist hears his son calling and walks through their condo, finding red footprints leading to the bathroom. Rather than blood, young Harrison is sitting with a tummy ache, surrounded by Popsicle wrappers.
Deb, Dexter’s foul-mouthed sister, has been tinkering on the edge for the past three episodes. In some ways, she has completely fallen off the edge, but, luckily, her brother and ex-boyfriend were there to catch her. Since discovering the truth about her brother, she has been spiraling out of control and this week’s episode was no different.
Deb crashed her car into a parking meter while driving under the influence. The arresting officer went easy on her (not even tossing her in the drunk tank), and her ex-boyfriend Quinn came to her rescue once again. Ironically, she seems to use Quinn the way Dexter used her; after she admitted “feelings” for her non-blood-related brother.
Believing he could turn things around, Dexter took her out to eat and showed her a family man that her previous actions as a hero once saved. Essentially, without her being in the right place at the right time, the man would have been shot several seasons ago. Rather than changing her feelings of self-hatred, she got rip-roaring drunk and came into the office to confess about murdering LaGuerta. Quinn caught her and phoned Dexter, feeling she was drunk and making up a story.
The Brain Surgeon case slowed down when Miami Metro found their suspect dead at his cabin. The body was on the ground and resembled a suicide attempt from a shotgun blast. So far, only Dexter knows the truth as he originally found the body hanging from a meat hook. The shotgun blast was meant to cover up the evidence that the killer had removed part of the brain.
The real Brain Surgeon (most likely) sent Dr. Vogel a mysterious text along with “His & Her” pieces of the brain, signaling that he knows she is working with a male figure (Dexter). Dr. Vogel diagnosed these parts of the brain as bits from the occipital lobe, which is associated with vision—signaling that he or she is watching them.
While being watched, Dexter uses the doctor’s book and a list of former patients to try and find the killer before being discovered. In this week’s episode, Dexter finds Ron Galuzzo, a mall fitness guru who sells workout equipment. Posing as a customer, Dexter hops on a workout machine and Galuzzo begins to check his BMI. When Dexter breaks into the suspected killer’s house, he finds a finger in a crockpot, brain in the refrigerator and organs in the freezer, proving the man to be a cannibal.
During one of Dexter and Dr. Vogel’s talks, she questions his love for his sister, hammering in her belief that psychopaths “can’t love.” Eventually, she asks Dexter, “When your sister found out about who you were and what you were doing, why didn’t you kill her?” Dexter was appalled, but she continued: “All this talk about Deb and loving her is like you’re Michelangelo trying to play the banjo.”
Sometime during their conversation, Quinn called to tell Dexter that Deb was in an interrogation room confessing the murder of LaGuerta. Dexter and Dr. Vogel rushed over to stop her from putting both of the Morgans in jail. Dr. Vogel told Quinn that patients in Deb’s condition often feel a survivor’s guilt when losing someone in the line of duty. In a split second, Dexter stabbed Deb in the neck with a syringe and told Quinn she passed out from the alcohol.
Back at Deb’s, Dexter tossed her on the couch and handcuffed her while she was still asleep. Dr. Vogel stayed with her, planning to speak to her once she awoke. Meanwhile, Dexter finally stepped into his famous hunting clothes and we see the fitness cannibal lying on his killing table. Surrounded by plastic, Dexter closes the episode with the weight of his blade.