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Recently, my almost Kindergartener was on a mission with her friend, sharing an electronic tablet that played Katy Perry videos on YouTube. The song “Wide Awake” is catchy. I heard it over and over, while the girls peered over the screen, in awe, examining what would happen next in the video’s mysterious and captivating scenes within a fairy-tale plot. A role model was born.

There’s clearly no shortage of available role models for young people today, from singers and musicians to actors and athletes. I like that my children enjoy popular culture because I’m a bit of a pop culture junkie myself. Hey, what mom doesn’t like to leaf through the latest issue of People while in the grocery check-out line or doctor’s office waiting room? Maybe knowing the names of all the boys in One Direction will help keep me young, relevant and accessible to my girls as they navigate the dreaded “tween” years in the future. We even saw Taylor Swift’s sell-out concert last weekend, and we love watching teen-inspired Disney movies with well-known celebs Selena Gomez, Bridgit Mendler and Demi Lovato.Photo: www.kgkl.net

So fast forward on the same day as the girls’ YouTube viewing marathon, July 12th, as I watched footage from a speech given to the United Nations by Malala Yousafzai, the 16-year-old Pakistani girl who was shot in the head by the Taliban last year and miraculously survived. Her perceived crime of seeking educational equality for girls made her a Taliban target. I’m sure most adults know her story, but this is when it dawned on me that my kids likely never heard of Malala. Shouldn’t she be a role model, one who my children can be inspired by?

My older daughter was nearby, so I called her over to watch the broadcast, and I briefly explained Malala’s story. This brave girl has been on a mission to fight the Taliban’s tyranny over young girls’ trying to attain any sort of education, sometimes referred to as gender apartheid. My daughter was shocked that girls in some places of the world are simply not allowed to have an education, a privilege the females in our household, including myself, have taken for granted.

In no way do I want to diminish our American culture’s love of things trendy and cool, but I also want to make sure my children have a broader world perspective and understanding of what truly effects change and impacts people. I’ll quote from Malala’s speech because it was incredibly moving and inspirational to me, especially as someone raising two little girls.

“They thought the bullets would silence us, but they failed. And then, out of that silence came thousands of voices. The terrorists thought that they would change our aims and stop our ambitions but nothing changed in my life except this: Weakness, fear and hopelessness died. Strength, power and courage was born.” (Malala Yosafzai, in a July 12 speech to the Youth Assembly at the U.N. in New York.)

When girls her age are often consumed with the right outfit to choose for their ‘sweet 16,’ Malala Yousafzai celebrated her 16th birthday addressing the world about the plight of children who’ve raised their voices for equal rights, emphasizing that education is the only solution.

I often write about my perspective as a mother of two girls, but finding significant roles models isn’t just a challenge for young girls who are often focused on ephemeral things like clothing, jewelry or hairstyles. Boys too, are in awe of professional athletes. Many of whom are, sadly, in trouble with the law or clouded in scandal from unfaithful relationships, doping or even murder convictions such as former Patriot Aaron Hernandez. Fifty plus years ago, little boys could still be inspired by Charles Lindbergh, Martin Luther King Jr., and Army General Douglas MacArthur.

As parents, we should remind our children ever so often that heroes aren’t always the ones performing on a larger-than-life stage that pumps confetti or on a football field. Teach them history, read to them about the great innovations of our century and point out social injustices. They may just learn to look deeper into the world for meaningful ways to make a difference. Being a great singer or athlete are fine aspirations, but don’t let them forget about the trailblazers of our past and present who move forward bravely to help others succeed or simply to enjoy lives filled with equality that are free from suffering.

Julia Sherwin is a freelance writer and mother of three who lives in Chester County. She is a former college journalism instructor who enjoys running, biking, swimming, traveling and cooking.

 Email her at jsherwin73@gmail.com  or follow her other parenting articles at juliasherwin.wordpress.com.

Photo: www.kgkl.net 

After last week’s previews, this “This Little Piggy” looked as if it would be an awesome episode.  And it definitely didn’t disappoint!


The fifth episode of Dexter’s final season began with Dexter and Deb, fine after the accident, facing Dr. Vogel in a family therapy session.  Deb seems apologetic for her actions, but Dexter is definitely mad.  Dr. Vogel tries to reason with Dexter and explain why Deb tried to kill them both—that it was her way of recovering from the bad place she was in and moving forward.  It seems the tables are turned and now Dexter is the one who doesn’t care or want to be around his sibling.Photo/Video credit: Randy Tepper/Showtime


Dexter heads to the office where Masuka lets his co-workers know that he has just found out that he’s a father.  They’re obviously surprised and Quinn voices his opinion that family showing up out of the blue usually just want something.  They move on and eventually begin discussing the case of the dead woman—Norma Rivera--discovered last week.  Matthews speaks to Quinn about the case and asks that he look only to solve the murder, not smear the name of a friend—Mr. Hamilton--who may or may not be involved in the case.


Batista still hasn’t made a decision as to who will be promoted, although he is approached by Detective Miller in hopes to sway his decision.  Hamilton is visited and admits to having an affair with Rivera and also sleeping with her before her death. Dexter is suspicious of the man, especially after seeing the way he treats his son.  Hamilton’s son strikes up a conversation with Dexter and asks about the murder scene.  He also tells Dexter that his father didn’t commit the crime and that the force should be looking elsewhere for a suspect.


Yates breaks into Dr. Vogel’s home and threatens to kill her.  While this is happening, Deb tries to contact her.  When she doesn’t get her on the phone, Deb goes to Dr. Vogel’s home and finds the mess. Dexter and his co-workers visit a crime scene in which bodies are found with broken toes and buried under rose bushes.  Each corpse is found wearing a left shoe and with their IDs buried with them.  Deb shows up and lets Dexter know that Vogel has been taken.  He knows it’s Yates, and Deb offers to help him find Vogel.  They seem to make up, at least for now, and begin to work together.


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Meanwhile, Yates has Vogel and questions her about Dexter.  He is unhappy that Dexter was in his house and wants to know who he is. They talk about his brain surgery. Vogel tries to tell him that she did what was best for him, yet it doesn’t make Yates any less angry.


Quinn and Miller talk to a street vendor and find that Hamilton’s son was seen during the time that the murder took place.  She also lets him know that they should both remain friends regardless of who is chosen for the promotion.


Masuka meets with his daughter and they talk about their lives to get to know each other a little better.  Between her questions and her massive lunch order, it seems like maybe Quinn was right and she has shown up just to get to her new father’s money.


Dexter is still looking for Yates and is hoping that Batista can tell him something about his bank trail.  They find that he’s used the same ATM twice recently and may know the area where he’s hiding.


Quinn goes to Matthews with his findings about Hamilton’s son, but he’s told that what he has found doesn’t mean anything and that he needs to keep looking for something that they can use to find the killer.


Deb is back at work and while she’s speaking with her boss, Masuka shows up to visit her.  But he isn’t there to hang out- he’s there to hire her to do a background check on his daughter.  He wants to know if she has shown up for something or really just wants to get to know her biological father.


Dexter returns home to find Jamie, Quinn, and Jamie’s friend Cassie in his apartment.  He has forgotten that he agreed to have dinner with them and wants to reschedule, but Jamie won’t let him out of their plans.  He has a hard time focusing on the night, especially when Deb calls him with some info. He makes an excuse to leave and Cassie is very understanding.  She even goes so far as to make an excuse to leave so Dexter isn’t the one breaking the date.  Dexter is finally able to leave and begins his hunt for Yates and Vogel.


Speaking of Vogel, she continues to try and reason with Yates. It looks as if it’s working and he even gives a clue as to why he takes women’s shoes. But, he threatens to cut off one of her toes.  She tries a different tactic and speaks to him as his mother once did—she even smacks him around!  Oddly enough, it works, and her feet remain intact.  Yates leaves the room long enough for Vogel to get to a phone and dial Dexter.  Deb calls her boss to help trace the number and the two listen to Vogel and Yates while they wait for him to call back with the address.  When he does, they race over to save Vogel, all the while still listening to the Vogel trying to reason with Yates.


Just when it seems as if it’s working, Yates notices that the phone is turned on and that Dexter has been listening all along.  When Dexter and Deb finally arrive, they think that the house is empty.  But, they find Vogel in an upstairs closet and notice that Yates is hiding under the bed.  


Dexter kills him and things may finally be over. Dexter then takes his boat out and dumps Yates’ body in the water as he usually does with his victims. But, instead of going alone, he brings Deb and Vogel with them because he wants to be with family.  


Could everything be good again?



Valerie Schirmer is a freelance writer/editor who has written about a wide variety of topics for newspapers, magazines, and websites. She currently resides in South Jersey with her husband, daughter, and a crazy dachshund.


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Photo/Video credit: Randy Tepper/Showtime


“Scar Tissue”  begins with Deb having a flashback about killing the event in the shipping container that changed her life.  But, instead of killing LaGuerta, she sees herself killing Dexter.   


The reason for the flashback?  A talk with Dr. Vogel who is trying to talk to her about what is really going on and how everyone can move on.


Dexter and his squad visit a crime scene and while he checks out the body, Batista lets Quinn know that he aced his test.  Dexter is asked about Deb, but he still doesn’t know much about her since they are in limited contact.Photo/Video credit: Randy Tepper/Showtime


Dexter speaks with Vogel, who informs him that Deb may never be a part of his life again.  He is obviously upset and Vogel steers the conversation to the Brain Surgeon and possible new suspects.


He does have a new subject—Yates—and goes to check him out to see if he could be the man that they are looking for.  He sees a scar on the back of his head, wonders how he got it and if one of Vogel’s methods may have put it there.


Vogel continues to help Deb heal and won’t allow her to continue using drugs or alcohol.  To help her cope, she shows Deb a video of their father speaking to her about Dexter and his concerns. She tried to explain that Deb and her father both want to protect and save Dexter and that they aren’t bad for doing so.  While this is happening, Dexter visits to ask about Yates and his scar. She tells him that Yates had a lesion and it had to be removed in order to help him.  


The conversation once again moves to Deb and how Dexter needs her in his life again. Vogel tells him that he wants her back, only to make himself feel better and could let go if he comes to realize that her validation isn’t needed to make him feel OK.


Dexter visits Yates’ home and finds a lot of womens shoes in his closet.  But what he doesn’t know is that Yates is watching him and is coming to get him. He calls Vogel to ask about the shoes. Yates hears her voice, and instead of taking Dexter down, returns to the sanctum in his home and watches him leave- all the while with a woman chained behind him!


Quinn and Jamie are in a bar and they overhear some officers speaking ill of Deb. Quinn confronts them and asks them to stop talking about her.  A fight ensues when they don’t and Batista breaks it up.  Jamie isn’t too happy about Quinn once again defending Deb, but they go home and make up and all is well.


Dexter meets one of Jamie’s friends and she seems to take a liking to him.  When Jamie tells him, he doesn’t seem too interested.


Deb and Vogel visit the shipping container where La Guerta was killed and the Dr. shuts them in so they can figure out why the night’s events went down as they did.  She tells Deb that if the night happened again that she’d always choose to save Dexter and that it is ok.  She can either choose to dwell on what happened or move forward.

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Matthews lets Batista know that another officer scored slightly hirer than Quinn during the testing and that he must decide to promote her or Quinn.  He is unhappy about the decision and realizes that maybe Quinn isn’t the right choice because of the bar fight.  If Quinn can help solve their current case, then maybe he’ll be the one.


Masuka thinks that a woman interested in him is coming to visit for a date, but instead she is seeking her biological father—who actually might be Masuka because he had once been a sperm donor.


Deb is back at work, even though she is supposed to be taking some time off.  Her boss offers to help with what she’s working on and seems happy that she is back.  They order some food and discuss family.


Dexter visits Yates’ house again and finds that the man has gone in a hurry.  Or has he?  Dexter finds that he has a secret space in the walls and investigates.  He finds his monitor system and knows he was being watched during his first visit.  He finds a woman stabbed and stuffed in a tool cart.  He brings her to a hospital and returns to the house with Vogel.  They look through his computer and find her patient files—notes on Dexter that aren’t too positive.  He feels that he is a lab rat that she’s experimenting on and is very unhappy with the Dr., whom he vows to cut her out of his life once the Brain Surgeon is found.


Deb searches Dr. Vogel’s office for more videos and watches one of her father describing a kill that he walked in on.  She sees that his father had a hard time with The Code that he and Vogel came up with and she thinks that if he had a hard time accepting it, then why should she.

Dexter summons Yates on the pretense that Yates’ father is in the hospital.  When he confronts him, Yates is willing to kill his father to risk his own life. When he returns to the office, Batista gives Dexter clothes to examine—those that were on the woman he found in Yates’ house.


Deb goes to the station to visit Dexter and on her way encounters Quinn.  She apologizes for her previous behavior and also tells him that she wants him to make things work with Jamie and be happy.  When she and Dexter finally do see each other, she tells him that they should talk.  They go for a ride and the two seem to bond over their mutual dislike for Vogel and her methods.  She tells him about the video she found and saw, and then asks if their father had killed himself and if it was because of him.  Just when you think they are going to make up, Deb grabs the wheel and aims the car over a hill and into water. A good Samaritan saves Deb, who then seemingly regrets what she did and dives in to save Dexter.  


But, did she manage to get to him in time?  According to the previews for next week’s show she did, but it looks as if the event changes Dexer—possibly for the worst.


 Valerie Schirmer is a freelance writer/editor who has written about a wide variety of topics for newspapers, magazines, and websites. She currently resides in South Jersey with her husband, daughter, and a crazy dachshund.

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Photo/Video credit: Randy Tepper/Showtime


“What’s Eating Dexter Morgan?” starts with Dexter getting a little shock from his son, who wakes him up in the middle of the night.  He thinks something has happened to him, but finds that he’s just a little sick from eating too many popsicles in the middle of the night.  He finds it easy to help his son feel better, which makes him realize just how hard it will be to fix his sister.Photo/Video credit: Showtime


Speaking of Deb, she is found by a cop drunk in her car.  When she is realizes that she’s in trouble for damaging property, instead of calling her brother she calls Quinn, who rushes to her aid.


Dexter is called to the scene of a crime—Sussman’s cabin. He finds him dead on the floor inside, but since he had been there previously he knows that is not where the body had originally been.  The cops think that they have found the Brain Surgeon, but Dexter knows that Sussman isn’t their guy.  Quinn isn’t on the scene because he’s still helping Deb clean up her drunken mess and trying to figure out what is wrong with her and if he can help.


Dr. Vogel receives a text telling her to look outside.  On her porch she finds two boxes marked His and Hers- each containing a piece of a brain.  She contacts Dexter and they think the message is meant to tell her that the Brain Surgeon knows that she’s working with Dexter and that he’s watching them. Quinn finally shows up at the cabin and lets Dexter know about Deb and her DUI problems.  He also gets in trouble for showing up late.


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Deb is back at work and his boss knows that she’s hungover.  Her boss is understanding and even gives her a special drink to help her feel better.  While the two are talking Dexter shows up to let his sister know that Quinn talked to him.  He wants to help, but she once again tries to push him away.  Dexter won’t back off and gets Deb to agree to meet him for dinner. Dexter heads back to the office and learns that his colleagues have ruled Sussman’s death as a homicide and have closed the Brain Surgeon case.  


Meanwhile, Deb and his boss are on a case, trying to learn if a client’s husband is cheating.  He asks about who dropped her off that morning and seems a little too interested in her personal life. Dexter checks out the person he feels might actually be the Brain Surgeon, Ron Galuzzo.  Galuzzo works at the mall selling gym equipment, so Dexter pretends to be interested in what he has to sell in order to question him and feel him out.  He meets with Vogel to let her know what he did and somehow the conversation moves to Deb.  She wants to know why Dexter didn’t kill Deb after she found out about what he is and what he does.  She suggests that he didn’t because he’s selfish, yet also wants him to “revel” in what he is because she finds him to be the “perfect” psychopath.


Batista helps Quinn work towards his promotion and gets frustrating when he doesn’t do as well as he wants him to.  Jaime tells his brother to back off because Quinn is tired from being called out on a case in the middle of the night, yet learns that it wasn’t a case, but that he left to help Deb. Dexter and Deb meet for dinner.  He points out a man in the restaurant and reminds Deb that he was someone she once saved and makes the case that she once did a lot of good and could be good again if she tried.


Dexter continues to watch Galuzzo and visits the man’s home to do a little recon.  He finds something cooking in a crock-pot and finds a finger in it.  After a little more investigation he finds more human body parts in the fridge and realizes that Galuzzo is a killer, but may not be the Brain Surgeon because he seems to enjoy eating the remains and probably wouldn’t want to waste any by sending parts to Vogel.


Deb drinks way too much, gets insanely drunk, and heads to the police station to make a confession.  She speaks to Quinn and tells him that she killed La Guerta.  Rather than let her get in trouble he takes her to an interview room and disables the listening devices so that he can get the full story.  She tells him everything about the night it all happened, but he doesn’t believe her and tries to explain to her how it was Estrada who actually did the deed.  He tells her that Dexter walked them through the whole scene and she goes crazy, so he asks her to write down everything she remembers from that night.


Quinn calls Dexter and tells him to hurry to the station because Deb is there to confess.  He rushes there with Vogel, who he was with when he got the call, and asks the Dr. to help him deal with his sister.  Vogel goes in to speak with Deb, but Deb goes crazy. To calm her down enough to take her home, Dexter injects her with something that knocks her out and he and Vogel take her home.  Vogel tells Dexter that she can help Deb and sends him on his way so that she can work her magic.  But, before he leaves, he handcuffs Deb to the couch so that she doesn’t hurt anyone when she comes to. After leaving, he sets his sites on Galuzzo and makes him his next victim.


As good as the episode was, it was a little disappointing that it ended earlier than usual.  But, to sort of make up for it, we were treated to a little Q&A with the actors and writer about what happened in the episode.

 Valerie Schirmer is a freelance writer/editor who has written about a wide variety of topics for newspapers, magazines, and websites. She currently resides in South Jersey with her husband, daughter, and a crazy dachshund.

Register NOW with Philly2Philly!    And don't forget to "like" Philly2Philly on our Facebook page!

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Photo/Video credit: Showtime


A lot has been going on for the Los Angeles Lakers following the aftermath of the Dwight Howard decision. The team signed Chris Kaman, formerly of the Dallas Mavericks. Many perceive Kaman as a consolation prize for losing Howard. Photo: Bleacherreport.com

 Personally, I think he might fit better than Howard. Kaman doesn't need the ball in his hands to be productive. He is a workhorse who gets the ball when it comes to him or off of offensive boards, doing the dirty work. Also, unlike Howard, Kaman has a pretty solid mid-range game. So yeah unlike Howard, Kaman can hit some free throws. Another reason Kaman is a better fit is because he handles himself in a first-class manner and doesn’t vow for media attention.


In other L.A. news, longtime California gangster rapper and actor Ice Cube vented over at his concert for his displeasure for Howard's departure at his concert. Cube went as far as to say “f*ck Dwight Howard” and also saying “Dwight Coward.”


It is going to be a circus when the Houston Rockets visit the Lakers.


Malik Charlton is a self-described  "Weird dude with no special talent, just a lot of goals and crazy ambitions!" Malik is a 2013 graduate from Community College of Philadelphia, a poet and sports writer who also writes for the blog "The Sports Leek!" at the website ru-crazy.com. You can find him on Instagram  and on Twitter @weirdo_leek



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Unlike last week’s season premiere of Dexter, “Every Silver Lining” started right away—as all episodes should!!  After the usual recap of the week before, the episode dove right into where last week’s let off.


Dexter and Dr. Vogel watched a video of his late father explaining how he had taken Dexter to a crime scene as a child and realized that he might have a dark side. Apparently, his father had once sought Dr. Vogel’s help and the two worked together to make Dexter the man (and killer), that he is today.  She is the one who gave Harry the idea of The Code!Photo credit: Showtime


Dr. Vogel feels that she has saved Dexter’s life by putting him on a better path than one a psychopath would normally take. She now wants his help in finding the serial killer that has now become The Brain Surgeon.  She feels the killer is a former patient who now wants to kill her, and hopes that Dexter can dispose of him before that can happen.


Deb speaks with her boss about the botched Briggs job.  He seems angry, yet amused by her way of handling things and is also mildly surprised that she may still be able to recover the stolen jewelry. 


Another Brain Surgeon victim is found with an open skull and a piece of his brain removed. Dr. Vogel shows up at the scene to inform that she received missing brain matter, as she also had when the first victim was murdered.  Dexter decides that he will help her, although he still has questions as to how and why she and his father worked together to help him.  He also doesn’t fully trust her yet.


Deb and her boss head to Briggs’ home in search of the goods and discover that he has a storage unit where the jewelry might be. She heads out to check it out on her own and we learn that El Sapo is still watching every move she makes.



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Two partial prints are found in the Brain Surgeon case and Dexter discovers who the killer may be.  He heads to the man’s home to check things out, finds that he has a hunting cabin where the murders may be occurring, and also almost gets caught by his colleagues (who are also good at matching prints!)


Deb finds the storage unit and the jewels- and also some trouble when El Sapo shows up.  He takes the jewelry, roughs her up a bit, and leaves her behind in the unit. El Sapo is later found murdered.  Did she do it?  Dexter wonders if it was his sister and pockets some evidence that might point to her.  He visits Deb to see how she is and if she did it, and finds that she’s in rough shape after her storage unit scuffle.  She’s not only in pain and messed up from her current choices, but is also struggling with her feelings for Dexter.


Dexter heads to Sussman’s cabin and finds a lot of creepy stuff that makes it seem as if he’s the killer.  But, considering he finds the man hanging dead from a hook, he can’t possibly be the Brain Surgeon.  Dexter now wonders if he was working with someone and who the real killer could be.


Batista knows that Quinn is dating Jamie and seems ok with it- although he wants Quinn to get advance himself in his career.  But all may not be great for Quinn and Jamie because she thinks he is hung up on Deb and she’s mad that Batista is meddling.


Dexter runs the evidence that he found at the El Sapo scene and discovers that it’s Deb’s blood.  While this is happening, she shows up at the station to answer some questions that Quinn has about the Briggs/El Sapo case.  She gives him some basic info, but seems to start to lose it while looking at evidence photos.  Luckily, Dexter steps in to save her before she says or does something that could incriminate herself for the murder.  He once again helps her by swapping evidence from the El Sapo crime scene.


Dr. Vogel calls Dexter for help after she returns home and finds her door open. He checks the house, but doesn’t find anyone there.  But they do find a DVD that was left behind and it shows that Sussman was coerced into the latest Brain Surgeon killing and there is indeed a killer out there who still needs to be found.


Valerie Schirmer is a freelance writer/editor who has written about a wide variety of topics for newspapers, magazines, and websites. She currently resides in South Jersey with her husband, daughter, and a crazy dachshund.

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Photo/Video credit: Showtime

Happy 4th of July everyone!4th of july fireworks philly


If you’re looking for fireworks on the fourth, 6ABC has a designated list of where you can catch them in the local area.


Check out all the listings HERE! 



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Season 8 of Dexter premiered Sunday, June 30th , and I’m sure many fans of the show tuned with in a mix of excitement and sadness.  Excitement because it started months earlier than usual.  Sadness because it is the beginning of the end.Photo: epguides.com


It seemed that Showtime wanted to mess with viewers just a little bit.  They took five minutes to show some key moments from previous seasons and some clips of those who have starred on the show.  And then just when you thought it would finally start, it took another six minutes to recap season 7.


When the episode titled “A Beautiful Day” FINALLY started at 9:11, we learned that it was six months after the events that occurred in the season 7 finale.  


Dexter and a much older Harrison are living a seemingly normal life and all seems good. 


For now…


Batista has come back and is now in LaGuerta’s role as lieutenant, and Deb has pretty much gone off the deep end.  She regrets killing LaGuerta so decides to pretty much disconnect herself from her old life- leaving the force to become a private investigator and also jumping into a reckless life of drugs, alcohol, and shady characters. Deb has barely kept in touch with anyone, especially Dexter, whom she hasn’t seen or talked to in weeks. Worried, Dexter finds her, sees what she’s become, and tries to bring her back—all to no avail.


Of course, there is a new murder to investigate.  The victim is shot, his head is cut open, and a piece of his brain has been removed.  An expert, Dr. Evelyn Vogel, is brought in to help with the investigation and speculates that the killer may actually be a serial killer who will continue with his gruesome kills.


But, it seems like Dr. Vogel might have an ulterior motive for offering her help.  Could she possibly know something about Dexter and the fact that he is actually the Bay Harbor Butcher?


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Dexter learns that Deb may be in trouble after Quinn tells him that she had called asking for help.  So he goes looking for her, with Harrison in tow, finds her at a seedy motel, and tries to warn her about El Sapo.  Instead, he ends up killing the dirtbag Briggs that she’s been holed up with and pushes her even farther away.  He also almost loses Harrison!


Deb ends up possibly on El Sapo’s radar, even though she thought she’d be safe, which cannot be good for her down the road.

The show ends with us learning that Vogel does, indeed, have an ulterior motive and that she does know about Dexter.  What could this end up meaning?? We’ll just have to check out the rest of the season to see.  And if the previews for the season are any indicator, it’s going to a good one!!


Valerie Schirmer is a freelance writer/editor who has written about a wide variety of topics for newspapers, magazines, and websites. She currently resides in South Jersey with her husband, daughter, and a crazy dachshund.

Register NOW with Philly2Philly!    And don't forget to "like" Philly2Philly on our Facebook page!

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When I first heard about last night’s Philadelphia 76ers draft, I was upset. Trading away a potential star and franchise player in Jrue Holiday to the New Orleans Pelicans for a one-dimensional player (Michael Carter-Williams) and a poor man's Anthony Davis (Nerlens Noel). Photo: USA TODAY Sports


The Sixers love getting big men when they’re washed up or coming off injuries (Elton Brand, Chris Webber and last years headache Andrew Bynum). Noel, who by the way is coming off a serious injury to his leg, couldn't reach the stardom of a player of Holiday's caliber even before his injury, but nonetheless is probably the potential good side of last night's draft.


In addition to grabbing the Pelicans’ sixth pick, the Sixers still had the 11th pick and selected Syracuse's  Carter-Williams, who is supposed to be Holiday's replacement. Carter-Williams is a good player, but isn’t close to Holiday's caliber. He’s mainly a pass first point guard who at the NBA level will not be able to break his man down or create to the level of that Holiday can.


But this is where it gets better. The 2014 NBA Draft will be a star-studded draft. Many say it will be close to the level of the 2003 draft, which featured LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony. The 2014 draft will most likely feature Andrew Wiggins (whom many compare to James), Jabari Parker, the Harrison Twins, Julius Randle, and even Philly's own Rasheed Jordan.


So with the Pelicans and the Sixers most likely not making the playoffs next year, we stand a good chance of having two shots at the first overall pick of next year’s draft lottery. But even if the Sixers don't get the first or second pick, they will most likely leave the draft having selected two really good players.


So yes Sixers fans, next year will be a waste, too. But the future looks as high as Nerlens Noel’s vertical leap.


Malik Charlton is a self-described  "Weird dude with no special talent, just a lot of goals and crazy ambitions!" Malik is a 2013 graduate from Community College of Philadelphia, a poet and sports writer who also writes for the blog "The Sports Leek!" at the website ru-crazy.com. You can find him on Instagram  and on Twitter @weirdo_leek.  



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Photo: USA TODAY Sports

Sunday, June 30th marks the beginning of the end…for Dexter, that is.  


Surely you know all about the popular Showtime series. That is, unless you don’t have the cable channel, haven’t checked your Facebook news feed on a Monday morning during the fall season in the last few years, or have been living under a rock.


The series follows the story of Dexter Morgan, a blood spatter expert/father/serial killer of serial killers.  It’s the kind of show that actually makes you root for the “bad guy” and hope that he never gets caught.Dexter Photo: Randy Tepper: Showtime


The last seven seasons have been full of twists and turns, amazing surprises, and an ever-changing storyline that has kept viewers hooked.  We’ve seen him murder his own long-lost, biological brother (the Ice Truck Killer), pretend to be someone he’s not to get into a serial killer’s inner circle, fall in love, lose that said love at the hands of a brutal murderer, become a father, go to and from work each day and try to cover up the fact that the guy they are looking for is actually him, and so much more.


If you’re gearing up for Season 8, which also happens to be the show’s final season, yet have missed some or all of Season 7, then you might want to read on.


So much went on during the season that it would take forever to get through it all, but here are some of the highlights:


Season 6 ended with Deb seeing Dexter kill Travis Marshall, so fans couldn’t wait for 7 to start to see her reaction.  Well, considering she was looking for Dexter to tell him she’s in love with him (her adopted brother!!) the sight definitely killed her buzz.  


Now that she knew his secret, she pulled away from him while trying to wrap her head around the revelation.  She also went to his apartment and found all of his paraphernalia, which made her decide that it would be her mission to keep him out of trouble and stop his dark extra-curricular activities.


Dexter spent a lot of the season trying to break free of Deb’s tight grasp, managing to start and keep up his relationship with Hanna McKay and also continue his, um, work.

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Speaking of Hanna—she tried to eliminate Deb, which didn’t work and just pissed off Dexter.  


He didn’t kill her, but she ended up in jail after it came to light that she had been a willing participant in murders that occurred years ago.


In the first episode, LaGuerta stumbled across quite a surprise at the Travis Marshall crime scene—a blood slide that made her think that the Bay Harbor Butcher was actually still out there and at work.  She spent the season trying to prove that the Butcher is still out there and may actually be Dexter.  


And what did all her efforts get her?  Killed—by Deb!!  A season finale shocker that no one saw coming!!


Quinn got himself in with the wrong crowd, Batista left the force to run his own restaurant, Masuka was still trying to get a date, and Dexter continued to speak to his dead father.


Season 8 will definitely be awesome. We’ll get to see how the relationship between Dexter and Deb pans out, if Hanna manages to come back and take care of her loose ends, if a new killer must be taken out, and so much more.  


But, the biggest question that will hopefully be answered is if Dexter will get caught or will manage to allude the law for good.


Don’t forget to tune in this Sunday at 9pm.    





Valerie Schirmer is a freelance writer/editor who has written about a wide variety of topics for newspapers, magazines, and websites. She currently resides in South Jersey with her husband, daughter, and a crazy dachshund.


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Dexter Photo: Randy Tepper: Showtime

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