Jeff Lindsay, the writer of the Dexter novels, is bringing the serial killer and his dark passenger into the panels. If you're like me -- a fan of the show and haven't read a single novel -- then you need to know one key thing going into this: it's not based on the show. It's based on the novel.
This issue is pretty much everything you'd expect it to be. It's narrated by Dexter and does all of the basics to establish a new murder mystery in Miami. It's nothing out of the ordinary or shocking, but that isn't really a bad thing, either. It obviously strives to make you believe one key character is behind the killings and it would indeed make sense, but as of right now, we simply don't have all of the facts to point the finger just yet. Additionally, Lindsay does the bare basics establishing the supporting cast but ultimately (and understandably) shines the majority of the light on Dexter, a character who manages to deliver a constant flow of amusement through his thoughts.
One thing I really dug about this issue was the frequent inclusion of Dexter's dark passenger. It's lurking around him at all of the right moments, giving us a nice reminder that despite his somewhat relatable dialogue, we are indeed rooting for a man who always has murder on his mind.
There's literally no disclaimer to inform you this is based on the novel and not the show. So, upon seeing Dexter for the first time and he looks nothing like Michael C. Hall, it was pretty jarring. Even though they're going for the novel's continuity, I would have thought they'd make him resemble the face of Dexter the masses have come to know? Having him look different and providing no introduction/disclaimer about the continuity is a very odd choice seeing as not everyone researches titles online before purchasing them and there are countless fans of the show who haven't read the books. If they randomly spot the cover on a stand and pick it up, they're sure to be confused, especially since it does use characters who were in the show as well.
One particularly odd thing is I found Dexter to be far more likable than Rita. Who would have thought that? Also, is it just me or did Dexter technically call Rita overweight when saying the "alien ray" is contagious?
For me, the biggest benefit of throwing Dexter Morgan into the panels is the fun they can have with the visuals and that's more than transparent with the creative and pleasing use of his dark passenger. As I said above, the book doesn't really do anything to blow you away or surprise you, but it's by no means bad, either. It's a pretty simple and formulaic intro and if you're a fan of the character, it's worth at least checking out.