location: The Arcade
What is it supposed to be on the show?
A. An arcade,
and an adjacent parking garage.
Q. Where is it supposed to be on the show?
A. In Miami.
Q. When did we see it on the show?
A. Twice, late in the 4th Season.
We first saw it in Episode 10, "Lost Boys", when Dexter followed Arthur Mitchell (the Trinity Killer) there.
Trinity sees a family arrive, and takes the time to memorize the family names from the decals on the back of their SUV.
Then he uses the info to con a young boy into going with him, telling him that he's a cop.
By the time the kid figures out he's lying, it's too late. He chloroforms him and puts him in the van.
has been looking for Trinity, sees him kidnapping the boy, and tries to
Dexter realizes that Lundy was wrong in naming him "Trinity" because he supposedly killed three people in each of his killing cycles. In fact, he killed four people. The cycle began with a child.
(The same pier
parking building was been used for a later scene in the same episode, when
Trinity meets with his daughter, Christine in a garage.)
We see the same arcade and parking garage a second time, in Episode 11 ("Hello, Dexter Morgan"), after Dexter gets a call from Arthur and hears the sounds of the arcade in the background.
Assuming that Arthur is about to steal another child, Dexter hurries to the arcade.
in fact, Arthur has deliberately lured him there. And when Dexter finally
leaves, Arthur follows him to his place of work (the police station) and
learns his true identity.
Q. What is it actually in real life?
A. An arcade and an adjacent parking garage.
Q. Where can I find it in real life?
A. This is the Fun Factory Arcade at the Redondo Beach Pier.
The Pier can be found at the far west end of Torrance Boulevard (in Redondo Beach, CA, of course).
Torrance Blvd ends in a loop that passes the pier, and as you enter that loop, you will see two entrances to the pier's parking garage on your right (north) side. One entrance leads to the roof of the parking structure while the other (lower) entrance leads to an enclosed parking level at boardwalk level.
This is where they filmed the parking lot scenes, on the lower level of this pier garage.
The arcade itself is a bit trickier to find. Most of the pier is a horseshoe-shaped structure out over the water. But the arcade isn't on the pier itself. Instead, it's located on the boardwalk section, tucked away behind (north of) the parking garage, on the northeast side of the pier complex. The arcade's official address is 123 S. International Boardwalk.
From inside the parking garage, just head for the north exit (opposite where you came in), and once you step outside (past that fish mural on the side of a stairway), just look to your left (west) and you'll see the arcade at ground level, in a bright blue storefront.
[ Warning: this
parking garage charges an hourly fee. And to complicate matters,
they want you to pay it via special ATM-like machines placed around the
parking garage, rather than at the exit. You insert your parking
ticket (which another machine gives you when you enter the garage) and
it tells you how much money to deposit. You then use the ticket to exit
the garage. ]
[ The Redondo Pier was a frequent filming location for another hit TV show: "The O.C." If you're familiar with that popular show, then you should know that two popular OC hangouts, the Pier Diner and the Bait Shop were both located here. ]
I shot the photos of the pier (below) in December 2009.
Q. How the heck did you figure out where it was?
A. You see that girl just to the right of Dexter, in the screencap below?
No, she's not a stalker. That's "Dexter" fan Kerry Weiss, who managed to land a job as an extra in episode 10, "Lost Boys". (If you know who to look for, you can spot her several times in the arcade scenes.)
Kerry, a Long Beach resident, has tipped us to several filming locations over the years, (including, in this season, the first Trinity crime scene and Dexter's accident scene). She let me know all about the Redondo arcade filming, and even sent me the photos (below) that she shot during breaks in filming at the pier.
The first photo below shows Trinity's van, parked in the Redondo Pier garage.
Dexter screenshots from the show and all related characters & elements
are trademarks of and © Showtime.
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