He was a serial Killer who moved to Miami in 2008, after claiming lives during his travels from city to city (established in "Goodbye Miami"). Because he scooped out a piece of brain from each of his victims, he was dubbed "The Brain Surgeon."
He is the Main Antagonist of Season Eight and the final Main Antagonist of the television series.
Originally portrayed as a charming man dating a woman named Cassie Jollenston, he was later revealed to be a psychopath and serial killer who could mimic normal human emotions.
As a "perfect psychopath" (coined by Dexter Morgan himself), Saxon was devoid of empathy, remorse, and fear. His other traits included being very intelligent, manipulative, cunning, and ruthless.
Saxon was born to be a killer. At age fourteen, he drowned his younger brother and didn't feel an ounce of guilt. He was subsequently committed to a psychiatric hospital which used overly harsh treatment methods. To escape, he set a fire that killed seven of the children. Thus, he became a mass murderer, and later a serial killer.
He was sadistic toward his victims, torturing them both physically and psychologically. Saxon found the experience of killing to be cathartic and genuinely enjoyed it. Lacking a moral code, Saxon could murder anyone without a second thought, even his own family members. Dexter considered him a complete monster, and wondered how many people Saxon had actually killed, since he would frequently move to new cities.
Despite his death, Saxon completely destroyed Dexter's life and ended his reign as The Bay Harbor Butcher.
Under his cover personality, Saxon appeared to be a normal individual. He was usually seen with a smile, and kept up friendly gestures, while speaking in a polite and calm manner. He held a steady, responsible job and lived in a rented apartment.
In regards to his girlfriend, Cassie Jollenston, he treated her respectfully, and appeared to be a man in love. After her death, he took on a solemn personality, and expressed his sorrow. Spoken to, he referred to how happy they were together and their plans for the future. Assuredly, these emotions were false, simply to aid his alibi against being Cassie's killer.
Daniel Vogel and Richard Vogel Jr., his younger brother, were born to Dr. Richard Vogel and Evelyn Vogel. The family had a seemingly normal lifestyle. However, Daniel felt jealousy and resentment towards Richard Jr. At the age of fourteen, Daniel acted on this rage and killed his brother.
Evelyn found her younger son dead at the bottom of their swimming pool. Initially, she believed that the child had drowned, as he wasn't a strong swimmer. However, she and her husband realized that Daniel had killed Richard Jr. The parents covered up the murder as an accident, with Evelyn pursuing a career as a psychiatrist in an attempt to help her son. When Evelyn believed herself unsuccessful, she and her husband sent Daniel to a psychiatric hospital in England.
The hospital staff practiced harsh treatments, such as strapping youths to an examination table in order to force medication into their system. Three years passed at this psychiatric hospital, with Daniel growing more bitter, and wondering if his mother would ever come to pick him up.
When he was seventeen, a fire broke out at the facility. It was thought that a nurse went on break while leaving a door locked, which prevented the children from escaping the fire. Seven children perished and Daniel was believed to be one of them. His father, Richard, identified his son's body, although it was burned beyond recognition. In reality, Daniel had faked his death and caused the fire himself.
At some point, Daniel assumed the identity of a deceased boy by the name of Oliver Saxon who died 26 November 1989. The "new Saxon" lived his life traveling between at least a dozen cities in two continents (Europe and North America). Dexter suspected that he had killed others and then would move to another city to avoid being caught.
His earliest known United States residence was in Galveston, Texas, in 2003 for at least three years. He moved to Tallahassee, Florida, in 2006 and to Miami in 2008.
Saxon was officially employed as a building inspector on 15 August 2010 by Miami Prime Building Inspections.
In 2011, his mother, Dr. Evelyn Vogel, a neuro-psychiatrist, moved back to Miami (established in "A Beautiful Day"). A year later, Saxon began to anonymously leave excised brain-matter on her doorstep (wrapped in butcher's paper) to send her a message regarding empathy.
Evelyn informed Dexter Morgan of the possibility that the killer was one of her former patients. She finally discovered that the killer was her own son, Daniel Vogel (under the alias of Oliver Saxon).
Saxon's Birth Dates
- 22 December 1979 - per Saxon’s driver’s license
- 23 December 1968 - per police report from Cassie Jollenston's murder (“Make Your Own Kind of Music”)
- 17 November 1989 - per law enforcement database search by Dexter (a difference of 10 years to the real Saxon's age) (“Goodbye Miami”)
The Real Oliver Saxon
- Date of Birth: 17 November 1979
- Date of Death: 26 November 1989 (Age 10)
- Place of Death: Harrington Youth Facility, Oxfordshire, U.K.
- Home Address: 32 Eddingsley Road, Surrey, U.K.
Dexter Morgan is called to a scene where the corpse of a man was found lying near a body of water. Appearing to have been simply shot and dumped, the man is identified as Robert Bailey, a mechanic. Upon further examination, it's revealed that the skull had been sawed into and a portion of the brain scooped out.
Back at Miami Metro Homicide Department, Deputy Chief Thomas Matthews debriefs detectives involved in the case. He introduces a consultant named Dr. Evelyn Vogel, a neuropsychiatrist with whom Matthews had worked with before. She tells the team that the killer carefully extracted a specific portion of the brain - the anterior insular cortex. It's the part that processes empathy, and she finds it ironic that the very hallmark of a psychopath is that they have no empathy. She says it was either an experiment or a message, which wouldn't be the first time a killer has used a victim to communicate.
Details of the way Bailey died are revealed via the medical examiner's report; he was first shot and the surgical removal of the insular cortex was done after his death. The victim had been kept in captivity in an enclosed space for about five days since no contents were present in his stomach, and he was dehydrated. In her educated opinion, this was likely not the killer's first murder, as such a carefully thought out ritual suggests he has claimed lives before, and will likely strike again.
Evelyn Vogel informs Dexter about her knowledge (and involvement) in regards to his past. Knowing exactly who he is, she shows him a videotape of Harry's sessions with her. Ultimately, she steers the conversation towards a favor she needs. From a nearby cupboard she pulls out a jar containing brain matter (from Robert Bailey), and says that it was left on her door step. Her concern is that it may be a warning or a threat on her life by one of her former patients. Uncertain of who it is, she asks Dexter to aide her and he states that he doesn't take "requests".
Elsewhere, in a tiled room , a man named Leonard Welks is strapped to a chair with medical supplies stored in nearby cabinets The song "Make Your Own Kind of Music" by Mama Cass Elliot is playing in the background. Another man by the name of Lyle Sussman approaches Welks, who can't speak because duct tape covers his mouth. Sussman apologizes to the man and says he doesn't deserve this, but he doesn't have a choice. Sussman then puts a plastic bag over Welks's head and suffocates him.
The following day, Welks' body is found in a skate park. Dexter arrives and shifts the head, revealing the same separation of the skull with a piece of the brain scooped out. Observations of the corpse reveal strangulation, and the plastic bag used to kill Welks if found nearby by Dexter.
Dexter returns to the station and links a fingerprint on the bag to Lyle Sussman. Vogel does not recognize the man and says he was not one of her former patients which gives her some relief. Dexter investigates the empty house belonging to Sussman, finding that he's a very neat person, much like Dexter himself. He also learns that he's a big game hunter, due to a photo featuring the name of a lake, and he decides to further investigate Sussman.
When Dexter does arrives at Sussman's cabin, he finds a selection of knives and other hunting equipment, including an obscure metal chair that could be capable of keeping someone strapped down. Before Dexter can look further, he hears a thumping noise outside and heads out through the back door onto the patio...where he discovers Sussman hanging by a hook.
He returns to tell Vogel this news, and suggests that an accomplice killed him. Vogel states that it's highly unlikely and she's certain that the killer does everything alone. After a lengthy talk, Dexter departs. Not long after, Vogel fearfully calls Dexter to say that someone is in her house. Concerned for her life, she waits for Dexter to arrive, who searches the house and finds no one inside. However, a DVD was left on Vogel's desk. When played, it shows Sussman being forced to kill Welks, only to be brutally shot in the back of the head with a pistol. The true criminal is unseen except for his blue gloves.
When the police investigate Sussman's crime scene, Dexter realizes that the body had been relocated when he finds Sussman on the ground with a gigantic sniper-rifle wound in the back of his head. The police rule it a suicide, but Dexter knows the true killer re-staged the whole scene. Elsewhere, Vogel receives a mysterious text telling her to look outside. When she opens the door, she finds two more brain pieces inside tiny boxes, labeled "His" and "Hers." Since these parts are responsible for vision, Dexter states that the killer must now be aware of both of them.
Dexter now suspects A.J. Yates of being The Brain Surgeon, a former patient of Vogel who had seemed beyond her help. As Dexter spies on him, he notices that Yates has a marking on the back of his head in the exact place where the killer cuts open his victims. When Dexter asks Vogel about the scar, she explains that Yates had a lesion on his brain, and the hospital conducted surgery to remove it, leaving a permanent scar.
Thing become complicated concerning A.J. Yates, including his kidnapping of Vogel. However, she is rescued by Dexter and Debra before she is tortured and killed, and Dexter ends Yates life. Believing that The Brain Surgeon is dead, Dexter disposes of the body while bonding with Vogel and Debra on his boat.
With the apparent death of The Brain Surgeon (presumed by Dexter and Vogel to be A.J. Yates), Dexter focuses on training a protege killer by the name of Zach Hamilton. He also has lunch with his most recent neighbor, Cassie Jollenston, after her friend, Jamie Batista, insists on it. However, Dexter's awkward answers on their date and lack of conversational topics leaves Cassie available to go out with a new man.
For Jamie's birthday, Angel Batista throws a beach party at Papa's Cafe to celebrate. Dexter observes Cassie talking to an unknown man at the party and she seems taken with his charm. Jamie notices the two flirting with one another and tells Dexter that she doesn't know who the guy is, but if he wants a shot at Cassie, now is his chance.
A little later, Dexter moves closer to Cassie and starts another awkward conversation with her. Almost immediately, the unknown man walks up to them with beers in hand. Cassie introduces the two, with Dexter learning that the man's name is Oliver Saxon.
Saxon extends his hand to shake Dexter's with a generous smile. He tells Cassie how he wasn't sure which beer to grab, but decided to go with the one with the "Moose" on it, which humors her. Dexter looks for an out and says that he is going to check on his son, Harrison. He then walks away. leaving Cassie and Saxon to drink their beer and talk.
Saxon is seen alongside Cassie outside of her apartment (the two are about to go swimming) while Dexter is talking with his new disciple, Zach Hamilton, about patiently controlling his urges until the opportunity arises to kill an evil person. However, once Cassie is murdered the following night, Dexter suspects that it was Zach's doing (because of the similar bludgeoning to Norma Rivera, whom Zach had previously killed).
Dexter manages to track Zach down to the Keys, where the latter has apparently fled. Once he discovers that Zach has prepared a kill room inside of his motel (he replicated Dexter's style), Dexter believes that Zach is planning to kill another innocent person. Upon chastising Zach, he realizes that Zach was proactively hunting Shawn Decker, a former classmate of his, who had bragged about about killing a woman during sex. After learning of Zach's worthiness, Dexter is convinced that Zach was framed for Cassie's murder.
After returning to Miami, Dexter enters his apartment to find the corpse of Zach sitting in a chair with his brain cut open (proving that The Brain Surgeon is NOT A.J. Yates). The song "Make Your Own Kind of Music" is playing. Dexter and Vogel realize for the first time since Yates's demise, that "The Brain Surgeon" is still out there and still a critical threat.
Dexter resumes his hunt for The Brain Surgeon, intent on ending this cat-and-mouse game once and for all. He finds several hairs in Zach's studio, which he thinks Zach instinctively pulled from his assailant. He takes this hair to the police department to perform DNA tests on it.
Upon testing the hair, he realizes that Zach's killer is related to Dr. Evelyn Vogel. When he questions her, Dexter learns of Vogel's early life and the fact that she had two sons, Daniel and Richard (the latter Daniel had drowned in a swimming pool). After this, Vogel sent Daniel away to a psychiatric hospital in England. After three years, a large fire broke out (apparently due to a nurse's carelessness) that killed seven of the children inhabiting the facility. Daniel was apparently one of these, because his father identified a burned body as his son. Dexter, however, suspects that due to his intelligence and lack of empathy, Daniel started the fire himself, and later assumed the identity of the actual Oliver Saxon. Vogel gives Dexter a photograph of young Daniel, which Dexter takes to run facial tests. He inserts the picture into a computer and updates Daniel's age by 40 years. It then reveals him to look exactly like Oliver Saxon, whom Dexter recognizes instantly.
From DNA on a can in Saxon's trash, Dexter is able to him match him to Zach's killer. This confirms that Saxon is definitely Vogel's son. Vogel is appalled by this news, but refuses to allow Dexter to kill him (believing that her son deserves a second chance). Dexter pretends to agree with Vogel, but is determined to kill Saxon.
Concluding that Saxon is using spyware to monitor Vogel's computer activity, Dexter has write in her online journal that she is going to King's Bay Cafe the next morning. It's the place where she used to take her son years ago. Before she leaves for the cafe, Dexter spikes her tea with a sedative and she passes out. He then goes alone to King's Bay Cafe, intending to capture Saxon.
Dexter stays outside and watches through the window as Saxon repeatedly plays a certain song ("Make Your Own Kind of Music" by Mama Cass Elliot). Saxon grows annoyed when his mother does not show up. After he exits the cafe, Dexter follows him to his truck, readying himself with a tranquilizer. However, he discovers that his own tires have been deflated by Oliver, who was evidently aware of Dexter's presence, and is now seemingly on his way to Evelyn's house. Dexter manages to reach her house before she is harmed and he warns her of the threat that her son poses. Vogel is angered about being drugged earlier and orders Dexter to leave the matter to her. As Dexter departs, the scene pans and it's revealed that Saxon is hiding inside of Vogel's house. She reassures Saxon that she wasn't lying to him and the two sit down together in the kitchen.
Picking up after the previous episode, Saxon proceeds to accuse his mother of having imprisoned him in the mental facility. She responds that it was her only choice (because Daniel had killed his younger brother). Saxon continues to upbraid her, and expresses his jealousy of her attention to Dexter Morgan. Vogel strongly professes her desire to help her son, but the situation begins to escalate, and Saxon storms out of the house.
When Vogel returns home from a visit to the department, she finds Saxon nonchalantly waiting for her arrival. He opens his truck door for her to enter, and onvinces her that he will cause no harm. Vogel warily enters the vehicle, and the two drive off to the abandoned Rendell Psychiatric Hospital, where Saxon leads her into The Treatment Room -- the very room where he kills his victims.
He informs his mother of what he endured while living in the psychiatric facility in England. He describes how the doctors would strap him to an examination table (like his own kill table) and force him to take his medications. He explains that he chose this room because it reminds him of the room where he was "tortured." Saxon begs her to help him to freely exist as a murderer, like Dexter does. Vogel, feeling that her son is sincere, promises him that she will find a solution, so they share a hug for the first time in many decades.
After Dexter proves Saxon's guilt with a video tape of him killing Zach with a bone saw, he convinces Vogel that her son is unchangeable and he must be killed. Although disheartened, Vogel reluctantly agrees with the plan of meeting Saxon in an isolated area, where Dexter can sedate and capture him.
However, Vogel wants to say a final goodbye and she lets Saxon into her house instead. While drinking tea, Saxon notices her nervous behavior and questions her. He recognizes her fear and determines what she has planned. When Dexter arrives outside, Saxon calls him, saying that he wants to show him something. He turns on a light revealing Vogel in front of a window with a knife to her neck. Dexter orders him not to touch her, but Saxon mercilessly slits her throat, while Dexter looks on in horror. Dexter breaks open the door, only to find Vogel bleeding out on the floor. Dexter embraces her in deep sorrow as she takes her final breaths, while Saxon uses this time to flee.
Dexter quickly removes her DVDs and files on him, and washes his blood-covered hands to avoid himself becoming a suspect in her death. He then calls the police and pretends that Vogel called him to her house where he found her already dead.
The following day, Saxon goes to Miami Metro to clear his name of being a suspect in the murder of Cassie. He speaks with Quinn, providing excuses for every question that he is asked. Dexter soon arrives to perform a DNA cheek swab, and is stunned to see Saxon there. Saxon asks if the DNA test is really necessary, but he cooperates and then departs. Dexter, knowing that he can now tie Saxon to Vogel, gives Saxon a fake smile as he leaves.
To meet with Dexter face to face, Saxon contacts Sylvia Prado who has offered to sell Dexter's apartment. She calls Dexter, notifying him of an interested buyer. Dexter returns home, once again appalled to see Saxon, who politely asks if Dexter can personally show him around the apartment, and Sylvia instantly agrees. This gives the two men a chance to speak alone.
After Sylvia exits, Oliver proposes a truce, suggesting that he and Dexter should part ways and go on with their respective lives. Saxon warns Dexter that he has much more to lose than himself. He reinforces this by mentioning the members of Dexter's family, including his step-children, who currently live in Orlando. Dexter takes a moment to think about it and then pretends to agree to the truce. After Saxon leaves, Dexter goes to Deb's house to warn her and Hannah about Saxon's "veiled threat."
Dexter, never intending to go along with the truce, provides the police with evidence from the DNA swab which reveals that Saxon is Vogel's son. Also, Dexter locates Saxon's kill room inside an abandoned hospital. There, he finds a computer incriminating him in the murders of several people (as revealed by recordings he took of himself killing his victims). Dexter uploads the footage and anonymously sends it to the media, which makes Saxon a wanted man.
While at a gas station, Saxon notices the news about the manhunt for himself and immediately knows that Dexter is the one who is responsible. He is enraged and rushes over to Dexter's apartment to kill him (just as Dexter planned). He approaches an apparently sleeping Dexter, knife-in-hand, ready to strike. However, Debra suddenly approaches from behind with a gun to Saxon's head, and Dexter rises to inject him with a dose of M99.
After sedating Saxon, Dexter takes him to The Treatment Room and straps him to Saxon's own kill table. As Dexter prepares for his Kill Ritual, they discuss the appeal of Miami and the reasons Saxon wants to stay there, while Dexter desires to leave. During their conversation, Dexter realizes that he has more of a drive to be with Hannah than to kill Saxon. Saxon begins to think that he will live, until Dexter tells him that he will perish by an electric chair.
Dexter calls Debra so that she can arrest Saxon, which will make her a hero. Debra arrives as Dexter is leaving to start his new life with Hannah and his son, Harrison, as quickly as possible. Debra embraces Dexter goodbye, hoping that he does well in Argentina.
Unfortunately, Debra was secretly tailed to the hospital by Deputy Marshal Clayton because of her involvement with Hannah. Clayton enters The Treatment Room and finds Saxon gagged and strapped down. Saxon pretends to be an innocent victim and convinces Clayton to free him. Saxon then grabs one of Dexter's knives and stabs Clayton to death. Debra rushes back into the room, her gun drawn, but Saxon quickly grabs Clayton's pistol and shoots Debra in the gut. Debra fires back, maiming Saxon's arm, but he escapes.
Saxon steals a truck from a man after knocking him out, and drives around looking for a place where he can get his lacerated arm healed. He finds a veterinarian and forces him to stitch up his wound by holding him at gunpoint. He decides that he wants to kill Debra once and for all, and so goes to Miami Central Hospital where she is being treated. Being a wanted man, he creates a scene by cutting out the vet's tongue (whom he has held hostage) and letting him loose in the hospital. This allows him to move in without trouble as he searches for Debra.
Dexter senses his presence based on the event that just took place, picks up a fork to kill Saxon before he can further harm Debra. However, the police, led by Lieutenant Angel Batista, are prepared for Saxon's arrival and arrest him on the spot. After Saxon is interrogated by Batista and Detective Joey Quinn, Dexter pays him a visit and tells him that he blames himself for what happened to Debra. When Dexter states that he is going to kill him with a pen (just placed on the table). Saxon quickly picks up the pen and tries to kill Dexter instead. However, Dexter moves to his right, so that the pen only pierces his shoulder. Dexter then punches him in the face, yanks the pen out, and stabs Saxon in the left carotid artery, causing the latter to bleed to death very rapidly. The tape clearly shows that Dexter was defending himself (although, in reality, he intended for it to go down the way it did), and so is not charged for the crime.
- Richard Vogel Jr.
- Seven children in a psychiatric hospital
- Robert Bailey
- Leonard Welks - By proxy
- Lyle Sussman
- Cassie Jollenston
- Zach Hamilton
- Evelyn Vogel
- Max Clayton
- Unknown girlfriends - Mentioned to Dexter ("Monkey in a Box")
- Debra Morgan - Indirectly (Saxon shot her but she survived. After surgery, a blood clot caused a severe stroke. Dexter mercifully shut off her life-support.)
Earlier Miami Victims, per Saxon's Recordings
Saxon's earliest known kill in Miami was in January 2009, and he killed at least one more that year. He then killed three in 2010, three in 2011, and at least one in 2012 prior to the Brain Surgeon Case. These victims were apparently not thought to be linked to a serial killer at that time. ("Monkey in a Box")
These two names appear on Saxon's laptop files.
- J. Mitchell
- B. Rickers
- Dexter Morgan - Saxon attacked him in Dexter's apartment.
- Dr. Turner - Saxon cut out the veterinarian's tongue, leaving him in a severe condition.
- Evelyn Vogel
- Richard Vogel Jr.
- King's Bay Cafe
- Cassie Jollenston
- The Treatment Room
- Evelyn Vogel's House
- Oliver Saxon's Apartment
- Brain Surgeon Case
- Miami Central Hospital
- According to Thomas Matthews, his mother had moved back to Miami from England one year ago (in 2011). This means that, since Saxon had moved to Miami in 2008, he was there for three years prior to his mother's return. ("A Beautiful Day") The events of Season Eight occur in 2012.
- Saxon was the only Main Antagonist that was able to fully destroy Dexter's life, as well as ending his reign as The Bay Harbor Butcher. Arthur Mitchell did partially destroy Dexter's life by killing Rita, but Dexter was able to recover from her death.
- Arthur Mitchell, Travis Marshall, Isaak Sirko, and Oliver Saxon were the only Main Antagonists who were known to have killed their first victim when they were children (Out of these four, Isaak was the youngest when he killed his music teacher. Saxon killed seven children when he was seventeen years old).
- Oliver Saxon and Travis Marshall both killed one of their family members as their first known victims (Travis killed his parents and Oliver killed his younger brother). Also, both Saxon and Travis killed the only remaining member of their family later on in their lives (Travis killed his sister; Saxon killed his mother).
- Like George King, Saxon displayed a polite, respectful, and well-mannered attitude while in the public.
- Oliver Saxon is the only character in the series to be both a serial killer and a mass murderer.
- The murder of Oliver Saxon was the first one committed by Dexter to be witnessed by anyone in Miami Metro Homicide (other than Debra). Joey Quinn and Detective Batista watched the security footage, but were under the belief that this homicide was in self-defense).
- Saxon was the most personal adversary of Dexter, due to the fact that he was responsible for the deaths of both Evelyn Vogel and Debra Morgan. Arthur Mitchell also killed someone close to Dexter - Rita Morgan.
- Saxon was the only Main Antagonist to be killed by Dexter in a confrontation. Dexter did kill a few others in this manner before (such as George King, Stan Liddy, Andrew Briggs, etc.), but all of them were lesser antagonists.
- The Brain Surgeon is the fourth serial killer to not be immediately identified to the public, following the example of The Ice Truck Killer, The Skinner and The Phantom Arsonist. The Trinity Killer was identified, though remained nameless until halfway through his season.
- He is the Second Main Antagonist to play the cat/mouse game with Dexter (the first being The Ice Truck Killer).
- He is the only antagonist to immediately fake his death, doing so in Episode 3 by framing Lyle Sussman as The Brain Surgeon apparentely committing suicide, following the deaths of the other two men. This was to throw off the police; however, Dexter and Vogel knew he was still alive until they killed Yates, assuming he was TBS. This resolution ended when Zach Hamilton was found dead, left like the previous TBS victims.
- He is one of the most elusive and mysterious killers in the series.
- All but one of his victims who had their skulls sawed into were killed prior to the postmortem operation. Zach Hamilton was alive and conscious when his brain was sawed into; the act of doing so caused his death.
- Season Eight aired in 2013, but the events took place in 2012.
Similarities With Brian
- Oliver Saxon and Brian Moser's true identities were not revealed during their initial appearances.
- Both were highly intelligent individuals, and appeared to be charming, successful men.
- They toyed with the police, and played a cat and mouse game with Dexter.
- Both took the name of a deceased person as an alias (Brian became 'Rudy Cooper' and Daniel became 'Oliver Saxon').
- Both characters were institutionalized at youth. Brian was released at age 21, while Daniel escaped at age 17 by faking his own death and killing children in the process.
- The moment when Brian sat down with Dexter at the table in their mother's house was similar to the moment when Oliver sat down with his mother at her home.
- Both Brian and Oliver dumped their victims in public locations. However, Brian fully dismembered his victims, whereas Oliver only removed a piece of their brains.
- They both set up one of their victims to look like a killer. Brian framed Tony Tucci and Oliver framed Lyle Sussman (although in Tucci's case, Debra and Angel always believed him to be innocent).
- At one point, they were both thought to be someone else. The Ice Truck Killer was presumed to be Neil Perry and The Brain Surgeon was suspected to be A.J. Yates.
- They both tried to reconnect with a long lost relative. Brian attempted to establish a bond with his brother, Dexter, while Oliver left grisly messages for his mother, Evelyn Vogel.
- They both dated someone who was close to Dexter. Oliver dated his neighbor, Cassie Jollenston, and Brian dated Debra. They each decided to kill their 'romantic interest.' Oliver was successful, but Brian was not.
- Both killed a parent. Brian killed his presumed father and Oliver killed his mother.
- Like Brian (Dexter's bio brother), Oliver could vaguely be seen as a brother to Dexter, as he was Vogel's actual son and Dexter was considered to be her 'spiritual son.' Oliver even told Dexter, "Mother chose the wrong son...again," as he cut Vogel's throat.
- Each broke into Dexter's apartment to kill someone (Oliver tried to kill Dexter, and Brian tried to kill Debra). Both instances took place in the Dexter's bedroom.
- Both got strapped onto their own kill tables by Dexter, but Dexter chose to spare Oliver so that Debra could him turn him into the police department. This proved to be a big mistake, as Debra was shot in the gut by Oliver.
- Both Oliver and Brian used an abandoned hospital. Brian used one to hold Tucci captive (and amputate him), while Oliver used another for murdering people. However, Saxon owned the property that he utilized, while Brian did not. He simply used it as a place to trigger memories for Dexter.
- Both were killed because of trauma to their necks. Brian had his throat slashed, and Oliver's neck was stabbed with a pen.
- Both were killed because of Debra Morgan. Brian was killed in order to protect her, and Oliver was killed primarily as an act of revenge.
- Both of them were murdered by Dexter and left for Miami Metro authorities. Brian was set up to look as if he committed suicide using his own Modus Operandi. Oliver's murder was clearly seen on camera, but Dexter had waited for Oliver to stab him in the shoulder first so that he could make Oliver's death seem like self-defense.