For Dexter's child in the books, see Lily Anne Morgan.
He is the biological son of Dexter and Rita Morgan, as well as the half-brother of both Cody Bennett and Astor Bennett. Harrison was born shortly after the wedding of his parents, coming into the world at The Miami Central Hospital. He is named after his grandfather, Harrison "Harry" Morgan.
Harrison is first introduced as a three-month-old baby that his father helps care of, alongside his job and "nightly activities." He experiences a regular lifestyle with his loving mother, Rita, and caring siblings, only to lose his mother to The Trinity Killer before he truly gets to know her.
Due to Rita's passing, Dexter hires a nanny to watch over his son so that he can both work and go out at late hours to track murderers. At first, Dexter hires a woman named Sonya, then moves on to a more permanent nanny with Jamie Batista, Angel's younger sister.
In his young years, Harrison has known two of Dexter's girlfriends, following his mother's death. First, he meets Lumen Pierce, and then Hannah McKay, with whom he develops a strong bond. The three of them attempt to move to Argentina together, only for Dexter not joining them (due to having to fake his death). Currently, Harrison is living an open-ended life under Hannah's care.
Harrison can be seen as a healthy child with a round face and light hair on top of his head. His eyes are a deep blue.
Harrison has changed drastically (even played by a different child) and shows a bright, smiling face with several teeth already in place. His hair has grown a little longer.
Since he is just a young child, his clothes include a onesie to little shorts and shirts and, of course, a diaper.
Since Harrison is only still a child, much of his personality consists of the typical behavior attributed to children - crying, sleeping, smiling, giggling, and fits of rage. Aside from these traits, he is just a baby whose presence is more important than his ability to demonstrate personality. However, during a therapy session, the therapist talks to Dexter about how Rita's death couldn't possibly have any negative effects to a child of his age...at which point Harrison pulls the head off a doll. This kind of surprises both of them, especially Dexter (since he was "born" in his mother's blood). Dexter quickly goes over to reattach the head and the therapist dismisses it as normal. Harrison seemingly gives a cold stare to Dexter (similar to the way his father looks at his targets), as he returns to his seat, perhaps not wanting him to mess with his "toy,"
As the season progresses, Harrison's behavior starts to worry Dexter. During a "Mommy and Me Class" with a bunch of other young children and their parents, Harrison uses his fingers to cut another boy on his cheek in exactly the same spot that Dexter slices his victims for the blood slides. Dexter notices that Harrison has wiped or licked clean the evidence of blood.
Relationship with Father
Dexter, having grown up with lessons from Harry Morgan on how he could secretly kill people, decided that he did not wish to pass that kind of life onto his own child. Therefore, Dexter hid his deadly activities and only showed Harrison his "human" side, along with letting him experience a mostly normal childhood.
Prior to Harrison's birth, Dexter gave little thought to children other than enjoying his friendship with Cody and Astor. As time passed, their happiness and welfare became very important to him. In return, Cody and Astor looked at Dexter as a father figure, following Paul Bennett's death. After mending his relationship with Rita, he learned about her pregnancy and his reactions were mixed. Originally hopeful that the baby wouldn't be born, he ultimately accepted that his child would come into the world and decided he wanted to be a father.
After his son was born, Dexter's "human side" became more than just a mask. Once a man who faked every emotion down to a simple smile, Dexter began to evolve into someone who could actually care about his family. He enjoyed time with his son, feeding him bottles, watching over him, and playing with him.
However, Dexter was a serial killer and he was unsure how to survive in the years to come with his new family. This led him to seek answers in Arthur Mitchell, another serial killer with a family. Because he let Arthur live, Dexter later found Rita murdered by Arthur, with Harrison sitting in her blood, crying his eyes out. Dexter immediately scooped up his son, the situation being similar to what he himself experienced as a child.
Following his wife's death, Dexter thought he would not be a suitable single parent and almost deserted his son. However, he resumed his responsibilities and did whatever it took to provide for and protect Harrison. To all appearances, Dexter was just a regular guy -- albeit one who led a secret life.
For a time, Dexter was concerned with whether or not Harrison would evolve like he did. In that sense, would the tragedy cause Harrison to kill? A few signs throughout Season Five that illustrated this include Harrison removing a doll's head, and saying the words, "die die." Dexter, however, proved himself a capable parent in handling his son. In some ways, his life became easier. Astor and Cody moved to Orlando to stay with their paternal grandparents, who were caring and loving as opposed to their son, Paul. Dexter also hired a nanny (Sonya) to watch over Harrison in times when he had to work or satisfy his Dark Passenger. Dexter was reassured when a counselor said that Harrison was far too young for the tragedy to affect him and he would grow up as a normal, undisturbed boy.
Dexter's spent Season Six playing father while also dealing with numerous victims. A new nanny replaced Sonya, whose disappearance was never explained. Harrison was then watched over by the younger sister of Angel Batista - Jamie Batista. Dexter focused on what values he wanted to pass on to Harrison. To provide structure to Harrison's life, he sought to learn about religion. When Harrison's appendix ruptured and his life was put on the line, Dexter felt vulnerable and a loss of control. While he waited and worried, a conversation with Brother Sam kept him occupied. In desperation, Dexter (an atheist) even asked God for assistance in his child's recovery. Thankfully, due to the surgeon's skill, Harrison recovered to enjoy life as a healthy and happy two year old.
In Season Eight, Harrison had aged somewhat and he played on a soccer team, took swimming lessons, and talked more often. However, he showed an ability to lie easily, which concerned Dexter.
After Dexter's sister's death, he felt guilty for failing to protect her from Oliver Saxon. In reflection, Dexter remembered the other people who were close to him but died for reasons related to his deadly activities. Endeavoring to protect the ones still living that he cared about, he thought it necessary to disappear. He abandoned Harrison to the care of Hannah, faked his death in a hurricane, and moved to an unknown location in the Pacific Northwest.
Near the start of Season Three, Rita Bennett informs Dexter that she is pregnant, which comes as somewhat of a shock to him He questions himself whether he is capable of being a father, and wonders if he will pass his darkness on to the child? Eventually, Dexter realizes that he does want his son, after he faces the possibility of death. He decides to be there for his son as he grows up.
Season Four introduces us to the baby, named Harrison Morgan (the name of Dexter's adoptive father, Harry Morgan). Dexter begins to struggle with being a serial killer, a husband, and a father all at the same time. In "Living the Dream," Dexter does his usual opening of "tonight's the night." Then the scene pans away to show Harrison in his car seat...having been driven around to calm him down. Harrison apparently causes sleep deprivation for Dexter, and a comical parody on the title sequence is shown the next morning.
Most of Dexter's interactions with Harrison are tender and he is seen as a regular guy caring for a little baby. When Dexter returns home after hunting killers, his behavior with Harrison provides a sense of humanity to Dexter's character.
Most of the time, Harrison is a background character, and has the least screen time of the three children. However, he has important scenes in "The Getaway." When Dexter returns home from killing Trinity, he finds Harrison sitting in a pool of blood crying loudly. His mother lies dead in a bathtub, having been murdered earlier by Trinity. Dexter is shocked, realizing that his son is now like him (due to his own mother, Laura Moser, being killed in front of him). Dexter closes Rita's eyes, and scoops up Harrison. He remains silent as he carries Harrison out, while flashbacks simulate both events.
Season Five picks up directly after the last episode of Season Four. Harrison is still in tears and Dexter's in shock. A cop rudely tries to take his son from him, but Dexter's sister, Debra Morgan, arrives and takes Harrison herself.
Following his wife's death, Dexter thinks he will not be a suitable single parent and almost abandons Harrison before Rita's funeral, but he returns and fulfills his parental responsibilities.
Dexter loses more than Rita, though, because Astor and Cody (his stepchildren) move to Orlando to live with their grandparents. Dexter is left alone to care for his son, with some help from Debra. They interview several nannies to watch over Harrison so that Dexter can work (and squeeze in time to kill a murderer or two). Eventually, they come across Sonya, a nanny that Harrison warms up to instantly. It's decided that she's "the one."
Early on, Dexter fears that Harrison will develop a dark passenger like he did. During a therapy session regarding young Harrison's mental state, the therapist reassures Dexter. She says that, due to Harrison's age, he won't be affected in any negative way from bring present at his mother's murder. At that moment, Harrison pulls the head off a doll.
One day, when Dexter returns home from hunting down Boyd Fowler, the nanny seems to have disappeared, taking Harrison. He assumes the worst until she shortly comes through the door with Harrison in good health, and saying she left a note of the fridge.
At one point, Sonya quits because Dexter lied to her, and she felt that he isn't a responsible parent. Of course, Dexter is persistent and persuades her to come back, as she cannot resist taking care of little Harrison. In the season finale, Harrison celebrates his 1st birthday with Dexter, family, and Sonya.
Dexter wants to pass on the right things to his son and considers sending him to a religious preschool (even though he is not religious). Dexter butchers the interview with the admissions director by stating that he believes in nothing. The next day, Dexter convinces the Sister to let Harrison attend the school by saying that he wants his son to have a normal childhood (which he didn't have).
Dexter sees Harrison through two life threatening situations -- one a medical issue. Upon arrival at Saint Peter's Medical Center, it is determined that Harrison has a ruptured appendix. He goes into surgery immediately and the operation is a success. Later, a crazed religious fanatic, Travis Marshall, kidnaps Harrison and threatens to use him as a sacrifice. Any doubt that Dexter can feel emotions is erased when it comes to Harrison. If there ever was a light in Dexter's darkness...it's Harrison.
According to Dexter, Harrison is now three-years-old, which he tells Hannah when she shows up at the beach. ("Argentina")
17 Year Old Harrison
In a flash forward sequence, Dexter envisions his future with Hannah McKay and continuing his ways as a serial killer. He sees himself growing older with gray hair and his son as an athletic young man with short blond hair. This Harrison appears to be in his Junior or Senior year at high school, with a license to drive and an interest in basketball. Due to his attire (a pair of gym shorts, light hoodie and shirt), he seems to be part of his high school's basketball team, and living a normal life. This is likely what Harrison would end up looking like, despite it only being a figment of Dexter's imagination.
At the start of Season Eight, Harrison has been aged a little bit. He now plays on a soccer team, takes swimming lessons, and talks a lot more. In the first episode, Dexter takes Harrison along in his search for Deb. and briefly loses him.
One night, Dexter wakes up to Harrison crying out, "Daddy." He follows a trail of red, only to find Harrison on the cold tile floor, having consumed an entire box of red popsicles because he "loved them." Dexter tends to his son's stomach ache and is not angry at him.
Harrison shows an ability of lying easily when he is accused by Jamie of stealing the TV remote. After Harrison denies taking it, the remote is found under his bed. When Dexter confronts Harrison about lying, Harrison remarks that Dexter lies, which causes Dexter to wonder how much his son really knows.
During the series finale, Harrison is abandoned by his father, entrusting Hannah to care for him. Since he doesn't want to endanger Harrison or affect his life, Dexter fakes a suicide at sea and moves away. He is seen living in the Pacific Northwest while working as a log truck driver. His last known place of residence is Dexter's Rented Room.
Debra's former boss Jacob Elway is the only person (apart from Hannah and Dexter) who knows that Harrison is with Hannah, as he saw them together on the bus. No one else knows Harrison's whereabouts, and it seems that he simply went missing. This leaves a loose end as to whether Astor, Cody, or Jamie will investigate Harrison's whereabouts, and whether Elway will seek out Hannah and Harrison.
Attempted to Kill Harrison
In the Novels
Instead of a son, Dexter has a daughter, Lily Anne Morgan.
- Harrison was born at The Miami Central Hospital
- He is the youngest character in the show.
- In "Scar Tissue," Dexter learns that Harrison has an imaginary pet elephant called "Dan."
- Bill Bennett
- Dexter's Apartment
- Dexter's Neighbor (10A)
- Harrison's Surgeon
- Jamie Batista
- Maura Bennett
- Our Lady of the Gulf Preschool
- Rita and Dexter's House
- Saint Peter's Medical Center
- Transcorp Building (rooftop)