The fan-favorite character Dexter Morgan in the series Dexter was inspired by a real-life murderer. The acclaimed Showtime series follows a charismatic serial killer who works as a blood splatter analyst for Miami Metro Police. The intriguing premise was first featured in a novel titled Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay, published in 2004. Two years later, Showtime made the narrative into a 12-episode season in 2006. The show went on to produce 96 episodes over eight seasons, as well as one spinoff series titled Dexter: New Blood.


Despite Dexter being inspired by a real-life murderer, it is still considered a completely original narrative and a work of fiction. The story of Dexter Morgan (Michael C. Hall) appears too far-fetched to be based on reality, but surprisingly this is not the case. Dexter seemingly has it all in the series, given a loving family, loyal coworkers, and a happy life in a sunny, tropical environment by creator James Manos Jr. While the real-life Dexter Morgan experienced a much less comfortable life than the fictional character, both murderous vigilantes share unique ethical stances that enabled them to use their dark passengers for revenge and societal benefit.

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Dexter Morgan Was Inspired By Pedro Rodrigues Filho

Michael C. Hall as Dexter in the original series

Pedro Rodrigues Filho is the real-life vigilante killer who acted as the inspiration behind the fictional character Dexter Morgan. Pedro was born in Brazil and lived there his entire life. Often regarded as the “South American Punisher” and the “Brazilian Dexter,” Pedro was an infamous serial killer who murdered dozens of criminals and gang members beginning when he was between the ages of 14 and 19. Pedro and Dexter share a similar theme by only murdering those who have committed heinous crimes.

Pedro and Dexter experienced dark urges as young adults and began acting on them in various ways. Both also experienced losing their significant other and retaliated by killing those responsible. In the series, Dexter loses Rita, who is murdered by the Trinity Killer Arthur Mitchell right before their honeymoon. Dexter eventually is able to track down and kill the Trinity Killer after the damage had already been done. Pedro similarly murdered an entire gang after his pregnant girlfriend was killed, leading him down a viciously dark and murderous road.

Pedro Rodrigues Filho’s Crimes Explained

Dexter Season 6

Pedro’s killing spree occurred during his adolescence and began when he was 14 after shooting the mayor of a Brazilian city. He went on the run and got involved in a gang where he was forced to kill other members of rival gangs. After gang members killed his pregnant girlfriend, Pedro took it upon himself to hunt members of the rival gang to murder them all. He also killed his own father as revenge for murdering his mother. Pedro admitted to having murdered over 100 people, including roughly 40 people in prison.

Pedro was arrested on 71 counts of murder and served 30 years in prison between 1973 and 2003 (via Latin Post). Pedro later served another prison sentence from 2011 to 2018 on charges of riot and deprivation of liberty, for which he was released on good behavior. Pedro became a famous YouTuber and TikTok star after his second prison sentence. He developed a following on his TikTok page called “Pedrinho EX Matador,” which had over 400,000 followers and 3.4 million likes. In another surprising twist, Pedro was shot and killed in March 2023 in a drive-by shooting. No suspects have been identified in his murder case.

How Dexter Is Different From Pedro Rodrigues Filho

Michael C Hall as Dexter Morgan in Dexter New Blood

Dexter’s code only allows him to kill people who are murderers or serial killers, alluding to Hammurabi’s Code and the ancient precept “lex talionis,” which is commonly associated with the “eye for an eye” principle of retribution. Pedro’s theme of murders found him killing fellow murderers but also expanded to include drug dealers, rapists, and gang members. Dexter is different from Pedro in that he never got caught by police, never served a prison sentence, and never became a YouTuber. Dexter also didn’t commit his first murder until he was 20, whereas many of Pedro’s murders occurred before he reached that age.

Pedro also never worked for the police department like Dexter and had no expertise as a blood splatter analyst. Those were details added to Dexter Morgan’s character to make him more compelling. Dexter, of course, is also not from Brazil as Pedro was, having been born and raised in Florida. Despite all the differences between Pedro Rodrigues Filho and the fictional Dexter Morgan, there were enough sinister similarities between their dark natures to inspire the riveting narrative that became the TV series, Dexter.

Source: Latin Post


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