Astor goes through the typical phases of many prepubescent / adolescent girls. She starts out as a young girl who enjoys wearing princess clothes and playing with her brother, Cody. She is not as boisterous and naive as him, though. A point comes when Astor starts pushing back against rules. She likes Dexter and wants him in her life up until her mother's gruesome murder when she blames him for everything that has gone wrong.
After she moves to Orlando to live with her grandparents, Astor adopts a confused teenager attitude, while acting out in use of alcohol, lying, and sneaking out. Her feelings toward Dexter improve during a dire situation regarding her friend, Olivia, when he shows his support and resolves the problem. After this, Astor begins to accept Dexter and views him as a father figure once more.
Little is known of Astor's life outside the house. .
When the pilot airs, Dexter and Rita have been dating for six months. He has a natural aptitude with children and Astor and Cody enjoy his visits. When their father, Paul, is released from prison Astor doesn’t want him back because she remembers witnessing him beat her mother. In fact, she was the one who called the police, causing Paul to be arrested. Debra Morgan was the responding officer and she subsequently persuaded Dexter to ask Rita out on a date.
Paul stays in a motel and spends as much time as he can with Astor and Cody, while claiming to have changed. Astor forces her father to promise that he will not hit her mother again, and he seemingly means it. Astor then enjoys a good relationship with both Paul and Dexter, oblivious to the tension between the two men. At the end of the first season, Paul is back in prison (due to being setup by Dexter). Rita tells Paul that he can either disclose to Astor and Cody the truth about himself or never see them again. Paul agrees but begins to have suspicions about Dexter.
Rita’s mother, Gail Brandon, arrives to stay with them and she forces the children to follow a strict regimen. Gail thoroughly disapproves of Dexter and his influence on Rita. Dexter and Rita later break up over Lila West, and both Astor and Cody try to remain in contact with him. Dexter’s caring behavior around Astor and Cody convinces Rita to rekindle their relationship. Later, Astor and Cody are almost killed when Lila kidnaps them, takes them to her apartment, and tries to burn them alive. Dexter manages to rescue them, and then takes his revenge on Lila.
Astor brings out a protective streak in Dexter, in that he kills a pedophile who is targeting her, even though the man doesn’t meet The Code. Dexter now seems to consider Astor and Cody his family, and he refers to them as his "cubs.” He states that nobody hurts his children. Later, Astor is the maid of honor at Dexter and Rita's wedding.
Astor shows the tell-tale signs of adolescence and starts acting out. She is rude, constantly angry, argumentative, disobedient, and begins to flirt with an older boy. She and Dexter have a truce after he promises to stop treating her like a child, and admits that he is sometimes simply "dumb." Her attitude somewhat improves following this. When Dexter tries to become more involved with Astor's life, she resists, becoming hostile. At one point, she asks, "Why do you hate me?" when he suggests after school activities. (This, however, is Dexter’s attempt to keep the children busy in order for him to have more free time.)
After the death of her mother at the hands of The Trinity Killer, Astor is devastated. She blames Dexter, openly accusing him of not protecting her mother and appearing to not care about her death. She lashes out at him for raising false hope that they could be a normal family. In “Hello Bandit,” Astor and her brother move to Orlando to live with their grandparents, at her insistence.
In “Teenage Wasteland,” Astor and her friend, Olivia, arrive in Miami and break into Rita and Dexter's House. To their surprise, they find Lumen Pierce residing there. Astor and her friend are drunk and Dexter allows them to stay overnight, wanting to patch things up with his stepdaughter. Astor is initially uncooperative, but Olivia’s domestic abuse issues are brought to light. After Dexter learns that Olivia’s mother's boyfriend, Barry Kurt, has been abusive, he takes matters into his own hands. He beats Barry to a pulp and forces him to leave Olivia’s mother. Astor is grateful for his support, having thought that he would not help. When Dexter drives her back to Orlando, Astor invites him into their grandparents' house. Later, Astor, Cody, and their grandparents arrive in Miami for Harrison’s birthday party. She asks Dexter if she can spend the summer with him, and he agrees.
She does not appear in this season.
Astor appears again in the episode “Argentina.” She and Cody return to Miami from Orlando, where they reside with their grandparents, to stay the week with Dexter and Debra. Astor appears older and more mature until Cody reveals that she smokes marijuana and even has a bag of weed stashed inside her purse. This incident happens in public and Debra immediately conceals the pot. Then she and Dexter attempt to reason with Astor, to little avail.
During her time spent back in Miami, Astor shares a moment with Dexter on the beach where they discuss how much has changed since her mother's death. Astor asks about Lumen and Dexter simply explains that she moved on. Before Astor returns to Orlando, she and Debra sit together outside on Debra's back patio, passing a joint back and forth.
She does not appear in this season. Series ends.
In the novels
- Main article: Astor Bennett (Novels/Comics)
Astor is shown to be a budding sociopath, like her brother Cody, because of being abused by her father. She is the talkative one of the pair, while Cody is mostly silent. While Cody has a prominent Dark Passenger, Astor's is passive. She likes to watch, while Cody acts, for the most part. Her uncle Brian has shown her some more exciting stuff that Dexter has so far refused to do.
- Rita Morgan
- Paul Bennett
- Cody Bennett
- Maura Bennett
- Bill Bennett
- Gail Brandon
- Rita Bennett's House
- Rita and Dexter's House
- Hobie Beach
- Barry Kurt
- Jesse Brightman