(CBS) – It’s been eight years since Dexter‘s series finale aired and now fans are just a few days away from diving back into the twisted world of Dexter Morgan. Dexter: New Blood premieres Sunday, November 7th at 9:00PM ET and picks up ten years after the events of 2013’s Dexter finale.
CBS‘ Matt Weiss spoke to series star Michael C. Hall about reprising his role as Dexter, the show’s new setting and what’s in store for Sunday night’s premiere.
MW- Hello Michael, good to see you today! Dexter: New Blood comes to SHOWTIME on Sunday, November 7th at 9PM ET. First off, welcome back and how’s it feel to be stepping into Dexter Morgan’s shoes again?
MCH- It feels good, but it was a trip, you know. I mean I’d spent about eight years playing a character, about eight years away from it, and to go back and imagine being him again with the cameras turned back on was unlike anything I’ve experienced or probably will experience again. It was a lot of fun.
MW- It’s a character that I imagine takes a little bit of work to get yourself into that headspace…
MCH- Yeah, what I was pleasantly surprised to discover was that he was still very much there, still very familiar. I don’t know if that’s a pleasant surprise or a scary surprise, but a surprise that ultimately I welcome. We’re doing it again and I didn’t feel like he was a stranger to me.
MW- Was this something that had been talked about behind the scenes for a while or was it just one day you got the call and it was time to go?
MCH- No, it was an ongoing conversation that would come up and go away. There were different proposals about what we might do. Due to the way the show ended we were aware of as this as a possibility almost right away. Honestly it wasn’t something I was interested in at all, at least for a time, and then it became something that I would consider.
It wasn’t until this particular story emerged that it felt worth doing and a lot of that had to do with the amount of time that’s passed. The story we’re telling is very dependent on Dexter’s son having grown into a young man, and we needed to wait for Harrison to literally grow up.
MW- Take me through the setting of New Blood and what people can expect to see from this series?
MCH- Yea, so Dexter lives in upstate New York in a very isolated place, in a small town, in a rural area. He works on knives and guns at a sporting goods store. He lives under an alias, Jim Lindsey, and he’s committed to a life of abstinence, he hasn’t killed since we last saw him.
I think he is only now coming into a place where he’s comfortable engaging with the world in a more significant way. He has a girlfriend along with his job, he has friendly relationships. Maybe not a lot of close friends but he’s making it in spite of the fact that he’s living under a false name. He’s making an earnest attempt to cobble together a normal life.
MW- And you mentioned that Harrison is a part of New Blood and we saw him towards the end of the trailer. Will there be other people who pop up from the original?
MCH- There will be some appearances of familiar faces. As you can imagine given that he’s sitting in a completely different place and under a different name he’s taken pains to disappear. He really distanced himself from his former self and all the vestiges of that life.
MW- You mentioned it was very important for Harrison to grow up to be part of the show, what role will we be seeing from him?
MCH- I mean he’s a kid but he’s on the cusp of becoming a young man and so he’s a much more of a rich and difficult person for Dexter to deal with. He has a lot of questions, he has a lot of resentment. He’s someone who’s going to demand to be reckoned with for Dexter.
Along with dealing with the reemergence of a teenage son who you abandoned and all the complications that go along with that there’s also the fact that Dexter is who he is. Dexter has these suspicions, slash, even hopes that Harrison is who he is. So all of those things will potentially come into play.
MW- You mentioned a big part of wanting to do this now was the amount of time that’s passed between the end of season eight and where we are now. What made you feel like this is the right time?
MCH- Well, I mean I think personally there was just a good amount of distance that I put between myself and the experience of having done it back then. I felt like the residue of that experience was gone and I could sort of re-investigate the character from a fresh place. Obviously Harrison growing up was big and it’s also just getting some fundamental pieces of the creative team back together.
Our team is full of people who really know what it was and are able to intuitively create a certain amount of connective tissue to what it used to be while creating something new. Also I think the show was very, very much beloved but people were also pretty dissatisfied by the way it ended. I think we had a desire to take responsibility for that and answer some questions that were hanging there.
MW- And the road to getting those answers begins on November 7th so what are you most excited about for people to see in this first episode?
MCH- Oh man, I think for them to see a character they’re very familiar with in an unfamiliar situation and environment. I think it’ll be fun for them to be in on the secret of who he really is in a way that no one in his world is. Not even just his former life as a serial killer but just his former life as Dexter Morgan.
I think it is hard for me to know what the experience of watching it is like for someone who’s not on the inside but I do think the audience will, in their way, feel like they’re on the inside. When they’re watching it now they know the truth.
MW- A ton of people looking forward to being in on the secret this time for sure. Michael, thank you so much for the time and all the best moving forward.
MCH- All right, thanks a lot. Thank you.
Dexter: New Blood comes to SHOWTIME this Sunday, November 7th. Check your local listings for more information.