SHOWRUNNER SPOTLIGHT: EP’s Scott Buck and Manny Coto Dish on DEXTER Season Seven

dexter season seven

Season finales don’t get much jaw-droppier than the one in which DEXTER’s Debra, already struggling to deal with the fact she’s in love with her brother, found out that said bro is a serial killer! We chatted with the show’s executive producers, Scott Buck and Manny Coto, to get the scoop on what happens next!

So it’s not a dream or a nightmare or some other game that you’re playing with the audience… Debra really knows the truth, right?
SCOTT BUCK: It’s a story we were always going to do, but we couldn’t do it until a certain amount of time had passed.
MANNY COTO: Since Season one, the show set up the premise whereby sooner or later, a moment like this was going to arrive. We resolved in [this season] that we weren’t going to shy away from what we set up at the end of last season. We’re going full-bore, and Deb’s going to find out everything about him.

Was there a lot of debate in the writers room about how Deb would react?
COTO: There’s a lot of debate, because there are a lot of different ways she could react. She could turn him in, and Dexter could become Hannibal Lecter behind bars. Or he could go on the run. There’s many different ways that this can play out, and we finally arrived at a reaction that we believe is consistent with Deb’s character in the way we’ve set her up so that it will work out for the last two seasons in the most interesting way.
BUCK: It’s moving forward in a very realistic manner. We’re not leaving any stone unturned. As much as the viewer has been waiting for these stories, we’ve been waiting to write them. We’re so excited, and we’re just covering all the bases. Deb is a very real person, and we’re playing it as, “What if one of our own brothers was a serial killer?” What would you do in that situation?

How did Michael C. Hall (Dexter) and Jennifer Carpenter (Debra) react to these huge developments?
COTO: I think they’ve been very happy with everything they’ve been doing. They’re really excited to be playing a different dynamic this season, because for the last few seasons, it’s always been Dexter hiding his secret from her. This season is a brand-new place where the show has never gone before. Debra knows exactly who Dexter is and has to learn how to deal with it in some way. It’s a new dynamic, which actors always love, and there are some serious high points and shocks that take you through the season.

What can you tell us about cast newbies Yvonne Strahovski (CHUCK) and Ray Stevenson (ROME)?
BUCK: Yvonne plays Hannah McKay, who at the age of 15 was sort of an unwilling participant on a cross-country killing spree. Now, 15 years later, she falls into Dexter’s life and things start to unfold. She’s not quite who he imagined when we first meet her. She’s a much more complicated person, and she just might be the right person for Dexter in a lot of ways…. or she could be exactly the wrong person. Ray is playing a Ukrainian international businessman, also known as a gangster, named Isaac Circo. He is enormously wealthy, used to getting his way, and very, very powerful. He sort of comes into Dexter’s life because Dexter kills the wrong person, and that then attracts Isaac’s attention.
COTO: Isaac’s introduction creates a situation which puts more pressure on Dexter, who is already under pressure because of Deb knowing his secret. Now he has to deal with this guy who basically is someone who he’s never had to deal with before. Somebody who is really powerful and hell-bent on finding out a) where Dexter is and b) who he is. So it’s kind of a season where Dexter is being hunted from all corners.

With it now official that there are only two seasons left, have you mapped out where things are going and how the series will end?
COTO: We have a good idea of where we’re going. In the writers room, there’s a lot more argument to be had, and things might change. But we have a pretty good idea of where we’re going.

Any chance our favorite serial killer will get a happy ending?
BUCK: I don’t think he deserves to die, but if you have to play this real, there can’t necessarily be a happily ever after for Dexter.
COTO: I can imagine it ending happily, but I can’t tell you whether it will. There are a lot of different directions where the story could go, but [how it will all end], I can’t even speculate!

DEXTER Season Seven premieres on Sunday September 30th at 9PM on Showtime (TMN in Canada)

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