[Warning: This story contains major spoilers from Sunday's season finale of Dexter. Read at your own risk.]
Dexter's Season 7 finale couldn't have been more aptly titled. That's because it wasn't Dexter (Michael C. Hall) who made the most surprising move in this season's closing hour, it was Deb (Jennifer Carpenter), who definitely started off the new year on a bad note. But we'll get to that. First, let's take a look at what events landed Dexter in that fateful shipping container that has surely changed Deb's life forever.
The finale naturally opened with Dexter visiting his love Hannah (Yvonne Strahovski) in prison to find out if she plans to turn him in, but she insists she would never do that. As much as he loves her and wishes he could've found a different way to protect Deb, they both know they never could trust each other. But Hannah's story isn't over yet. After making Deb feel guilty for turning a blind eye when it comes to Dexter, Hannah ingests something that her camp friend slips her, causing convulsions that land her in the hospital where she later escapes. With her newfound freedom, she leaves flowers as a parting gift on Dexter's doorstep before presumably skipping town. Does this mean she's gone for good or is Deb still in her crosshairs?
But Hannah is really the least of Dexter's worries in the season finale. LaGuerta (Lauren Velez) puts Dexter under arrest for the murder of Hector Estrada, unable to even look him in the eye while reading his Miranda rights. Everyone in the precinct is shocked beyond belief, but little do they know, Dexter has set up everything to look like LaGuerta is trying to frame him — and since she was involved in Estrada's release from prison, no one will trust her judgment now and she can't go after Dexter anymore.
In turn, she decides to go after Deb, uncovering the gas station surveillance tapes that prove Deb filled up a gas can near the church were Travis (Colin Hanks) died, which could prove that Deb had a hand in helping Dexter cover up this murder. LaGuerta has even obtained a warrant for the GPS on Dexter and Deb's phones, which will then prove the Morgan siblings were both at the church during the fire.
Of course, Dexter can't let this happen, so he decides to break the code (i.e. target the innocent LaGuerta) and use the very much alive Estrada as bait, tracking the ex-con down and returning to that fateful shipping container. Before LaGuerta arrives, Dexter finally gets his vengeance on Estrada, the man who ordered the hit on his mother, stabbing him in the chest. But before he's able to frame LaGuerta, who arrives promptly as orchestrated, to make it look like she and Estrada killed each other in a gun fight, Deb ruins all the fun! She arrives just as a half-drugged LaGuerta comes to, and the captain begs her to do the right thing and shoot Dexter. But Deb —choosing her brother, as Dexter previously chose her over Hannah — shockingly decides to shoot LaGuerta instead, immediately regretting her actions and crying over the lifeless body of her former frenemy. Dexter and Deb then ring in the new year at Angel's (David Zayas) party, but they're still in a daze after the night's events. "Is this a new beginning or the beginning of the end?" Dexter ponders in voiceover. We're wondering the same thing.
What did you think of Dexter's season finale? Were you surprised by LaGuerta's death? Hit the comments with your thoughts below and be sure to check back Monday morning for our postmortem with showrunner Scott Buck to get scoop on next season.