If his long-running series Six Feet Under blessed him with stardom, Dexter has made him a household name. Michael C Hall, who took weeks before giving a nod for the show, now sees no danger in making the sociopath sympathetic.
“It’s provocative. The show aspires to create a sense in people, who watch it, of being simultaneously attracted to and repulsed by this guy,” says Hall, who read interviews with serial killers to get into the skin of his character.
The Emmy and Golden Globe award winning show is famous for inducing empathy among viewers for the morbidly wicked character of Dexter Morgan, who is a serial killer on prowl to kill other killers. “I like the responsibility he’s taken for his darker impulses because he has an undeniable compulsion (to kill),” Hall says.
The 40-year-old actor feels Dexter stands out from other serial killers. “Dexter stands out because of his code and because of the fact that he kills killers, reprehensible people, criminals,” he says. So, can a sociopath be redeemed? “The general consensus is no but Dexter is unique. Not every sociopath or serial killer had a foster parent who recognised their child’s compulsion,” he says.
This parent-child relationship will also find its way in the show that airs in India on STAR World. “Subsequent seasons will explore the relationship with the father,” says Hall. Apart from the fame, the role also affects the actor’s personal life. “It’s a consuming job. But actors do struggle when they are working,” he says.