Dexter Filming Locations: Dexter's High School Reunion

DEXTER Filming Locations - hundreds of actual places where the TV show Dexter was filmed.

The location: Dexter's High School Reunion.

Q. What is it supposed to be on the show?

    A. Shepard High School.

Q. Where is it supposed to be on the show?

    A. Somewhere in Miami.

Q. When did we see it on the show?

    A. In Episode 1, of Season 6, "Those Kinds of Things".

    Dexter is stalking an old classmate (Joe Walker) whom he believes murdered his wife, Janet.

    So Dexter attends his high school reunion, knowing that Bob, the former captain of the football team, will show up there.

    At the reunion, Dexter's surprised that quite a few of his fellow classmates remember him, and he winds up being forced into a few uncomfortable situations (including dancing to MC Hammer's "Can't Touch This".)

    Along the way, one woman, Tricia (who used to copy from his tests), seduces him in a classroom.

    Dexter needs to get a blood sample from the possible killer (Bob) to make sure he's got the right man.  At first, he tries getting the blood my using a sharpened ring while shaking hands with the suspect.  That doesn't work.

    So he joins in a flag football game, hoping the guy will bleed during the contest.  But he isn't.  Ultimately, he resorts to simply elbowing Bob in the nose "by accident", then collecting the blood sample on a handkerchief.

    Now convinced that his suspect is indeed the killer, Dexter soon has him on his table, in a kill-room built under the school's bleachers. 

    During the kill, he spots a tattoo of Jesus on Bob's torso, and asks how he reconciles his murderous ways with Jesus's teachings.  The answer (which suggests that he can kill with impunity, and Jesus will automatically forgive him) doesn't satisfy Dexter, who bashes him in the head with a hammer, before stabbing him in the chest.

Q. What is it actually in real life?

    A. A real high school.  But not in Miami.

Q. Where can I find it in real life?

A. This is actually Woodrow Wilson High School, at 4400 E 10th Street, in Long Beach, CA.

The view of the school's exterior seen in Dexter's flashback (when he remembers Janet) was shot at the southeast corner of 10th St. & Ximeno Ave, with the camera looking southeast, the same view seen in my photo below.

    They filmed here at night, after the students were gone home for the weekend.

    They not only used the school's exterior, but also its hallways, classrooms, and the football field (for those flag football scenes).  They used the same field for the scene of Bob entering Dexter's kill-room under the bleachers.  (To be specific, it was the east end of the north bleachers.)

    Despite all the "Panthers" banners in these scenes (and the Panther mascot head worn by Dexter during the kill scene), the actual team at Wilson High is called the Bruins.  You'll find the school's website here.

Q. How the heck did you figure out where it was?

    A.  In previous seasons, I've usually had to hunt down the locations after viewing the episodes, using clues from the various scenes.  By the 6th season, though, I'd developed a small group of fans, spies & tipsters who kept an eye out for Dexter filming in their neighborhoods, and would let me know in advance when something was about to film there.

    Between those reports, my own personal reconnaissance around town, and a few new resources I discovered, by the time the first episode aired, I already knew most (but not all) of the filming locations, and only needed to watch the episodes and match up the scenes with the correct locations.

    This group of helpful fans includes Kerry, Rick, Ellen, Susan, Jason, Elaine, Joel, Julie, Geoff, Jeff, and others. My thanks to all of them.

    This tip came from Rick, who let me know they'd be shooting there. So, I drove past on several occasions, expecting to find the crew there.  But no luck.  (Later, Susan later emailed me a photo of a no-parking sign outside of the school, but that turned out to be a false alarm.)

    Eventually, they sneaked in for a night time shoot, over the weekend of June 4th - so I missed them.  But I found their leftover no-parking signs afterward, indicating they had been there from 6 PM Friday to 2 AM Saturday.  Later, of course, when the episode aired, it was a simple matter of recognizing the school.

    I did want to make sure, though, that the kill-room scene was shot at the same school.  So I checked the bleachers area via Bing's aerial photos, and found a perfect match on the east end of the north bleachers.

    (After the episode aired, Julie also emailed me to let me know she recognized the school.)

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