He offers the homicide team constructive insight with his own perverse style and assists the department with crucial information in cases. He has also unknowingly assisted Dexter Morgan on a few crime scenes, such as when he described a complex sexual motif with two bodies, who were actually killed by Dexter.
Vince is a man of Japanese descent. He tends to have two main facial expressions - a serious face with a thoughtful frown and drawn-together eyebrows, or a perverted wide grin which is usually accompanied by a hilarious laugh. He is clean-shaven and bald although, at first, he sported a shaved hair cut. Based on a comment by Dexter in the first episode, it is suggested that Masuka chooses to shave his head rather than let his hair grow to a longer length.
He is of medium height, and often wears glasses. His build is slightly muscular. Hidden beneath his shirt, he has a tattoo of an unfinished naked dragon woman that runs down from the middle of his back. A small portion can be seen just above his waistline on the front of his body, beneath his stomach, indicating that the tattoo goes further down.
His typical attire consists of button-up shirts, either patterned or plain. On one occasion, he wore a full suit and tie in an attempt to be serious and distance himself from his co-workers. However, he soon reverted to his comical ways in pure Masuka-style after he spoke his mind to his colleagues about his feelings of perceived mistreatment by them.
From Darkly Dreaming Dexter:
- Dexter Morgan: "Sitting on an overturned plastic milk carton on the far end of the Dumpster, poking through a handful of waste matter, was Vince Masuoka. He was half Japanese and liked to joke that he got the short half. He called it a joke, anyway."
- Dexter Morgan: "There was something just slightly off in Vince's bright, Asian smile. Like he had learned to smile from a picture book. Even when he made the required dirty put-down jokes with the cops, nobody got mad at him. Nobody laughed, either, but that didn't stop him. He kept making all the correct ritual gestures, but he always seemed to be faking. That's why I liked him, I think. Another guy pretending to be human, just like me."
Masuka can be seen as the comic relief of the show. His role in the overall plot is to typically add perverse jokes and to lighten serious situations. He usually makes some sort of humorous comment regarding the way victims are found.
While sometimes characters are revolted by his comments, they are generally welcomed as proved during a situation in Season Three. When Masuka felt insulted due to his belief that no one respected him, he temporarily changes his personality with his co-workers unable to deal with the somber and professional Masuka.
Masuka often makes remarks that are sexual in nature, commenting on fetishes, porn, hookers, and other topics related to sex. His extensive knowledge of sexual fetishes prove useful during the Ice Truck Killer case.
He often hits on Debra Morgan with remarks that can be construed as sexual harassment, although this may be because she is the only female officer who is not his direct superior. For her part, Debra is the only person who seems willing to trade insults with Masuka, and both are shown to occasionally enjoy the banter.
Vince is a very competent forensics specialist and turns up leads that help the unit. Although the detectives appreciate his abilities, they are often annoyed at his comments. Doakes has warned Masuka "not to test me" and Lundy even stopped consulting him because he was tired of the dirty jokes. For his part, Vince takes pride in his abilities, and is overjoyed when his skills are recognized, such as when he was published in a journal or when he was named Lead Forensic Investigator (or "LFI" as he put it) of the Bay Harbor Butcher case. While Masuka has fairly thick skin, he becomes extremely hurt if the other members of the unit insult him or disregard his work.
Although Masuka is of Japanese descent, he often makes comments suggesting that he feels a connection to all Asians. He remarks that Dexter is throwing off his "chi," hates Albert Chung for making Asians look bad, invites Ryan to eat pho with him, and erects shrines that are not of Japanese origin. When questioned on these actions he indicates that he doesn't know or care about the differences between the religions and ethnicities of Asia.
Vince Masuka is first shown at the Seven Seas Motel Crime Scene alongside Detective Angel Batista, examining a corpse situated in the motel's pool. As Dexter Morgan arrives and walks towards the two, Masuka rushes forward with a grin on his face expressing how Dexter's sister is "looking hot" in her undercover outfit for Miami Metro Vice. He then questions why Dexter is at the crime scene since his expertise is in blood spatter and there is not a single drop of blood (inside, outside, or around the victim). They discuss the victim and Masuka mentions that Lieutenant Laguerta is searching for a witness to the crime. Masuka displays his first use of his iconic laugh.
After the Refrigerated Truck is located, Masuka is briefly shown during its dismantling. He seems to make a discovery of blood on a napkin and walks over to Dexter to ask for a second opinion. Dexter simply smiles and says, "It's chocolate. It's on your shirt too." Masuka looks down to see the spot on his shirt and disappointingly states that it was a new shirt. Later, Masuka uses a beaker filled with hot water to slowly melt the block of ice, thus avoiding damage to the fingertips inside, while making small talk with the homicide team.
Dexter is giving his opinion on a picture of a corpse when Masuka trails off topic to talk about a new "Hottie McGotAss" and Angel Batista refers to her as a "butter face." Dexter inquires about the term, and Batista says that it's a woman with a hot body -- but her face. Masuka then states how great it'd be to pull a "Bronco" and Dexter again appears clueless. Angel explains that it is when a man has a girl in a doggy-style position, he screams another girl's name while grabbing her hips. She will then try to force him off by bucking violently in response. Masuka imitates the motion, while Deb walks up and immediately recognizes it as the Bronco. She informs them that another body has been found from the Ice Truck Killer (the killer who left the previous body parts at the Seven Seas Motel).
At the Miami Blades Ice Hockey Stadium, Masuka and Batista are standing at one of the goal as Dexter walks up. Masuka picks up one of the body parts and states that again there is no blood in the victim. After Debra arrives, Masuka reveals that the victim is missing fingertips. He moves the hair out of the victim's eyes and Deb recognizes her as Sherry Taylor, a prostitute nicknamed "Cherry." She says they worked worked together on the same corner while she was undercover in Vice. 
Absent during the hunt for Ice Truck Killer Suspect Tony Tucci, Masuka returns after Dexter Morgan finds Tucci strapped to a bed used as a game for him by the real killer. Dexter reports an anonymous tip to Debra which leads cops to the location.
The following day, Masuka arrives to run a forensic sweep of the Angel of Mercy Hospital.
Before Dexter arrives, Masuka examines the "bed" where Tucci had been kept. There are blood pools in the sheets (from the amputations made on his body). He asks Dexter if he's taken the shots they need of the blood on the sheets, before wrapping up the blanket in a bundle and sticking it in an evidence bag. He then aids Dexter in moving the mattress to the floor, which results in a rat skittering out. Masuka expresses fear, noting a paranoia of potential diseases including "rat-bite fever." Sergeant James Doakes tells him to knock it off about the rats and they continue their investigation.
Much to Dexter's dismay, Masuka finds a needle mark on Valerie Castillo, one of Dexter's victims.
Masuka finds the sheer amount of blood in the Marina View Hotel room to be amazing, while it causes Dexter to have a panic attack.
The one time Masuka does not crack a joke is when they are all at the crime scene where Angel has been stabbed.
Masuka is promoted to LFI, Lead Forensic Investigator, of the Bay Harbor Butcher case, something he constantly brings up. Masuka makes a big break in the 'Butcher' case. Inside of the bags of body parts, he finds rocks which have algae growing on them. This leads to tests which narrow down the three marinas to the one where the killer keeps his boat. Although he made this find, Lundy finds his personality annoying and chooses to work with Dexter more often.
Masuka has an article published in a prominent forensics magazine. He exudes confidence and starts handing out copies to everyone at the station, not even paying attention to the fact that almost no one is reading them. He is offended when he finds his article in Detective Joey Quinn's trash can with gum stuck to it.
When he is invited to make a speech relating to his article, Masuka tries to give tickets to everyone at the office but, save for Dexter, they are turned them down with half baked excuses. He makes a further effort to entice people to take the tickets by offering with them a complimentary doughnut. However, people appear more interested by the prospect of eating his doughnuts than supporting him by attending his key note address at a forensics conference. Even Dexter, initially showing feigned interest and taking a ticket, ultimately does not turn up. Masuka feels greatly insulted by the fact that not a single person from his precinct showed up to his speech. When he reaches out to Joey Quinn to find out why he is disrespected, he is met with an attack on his personality, with Quinn saying that Masuka is "the vilest person that he'd ever met."
After Quinn comments that Masuka's constant crude jokes are the reason he is unpopular among his colleagues, he attempts to 'reform' his character. He is later seen wearing an uncharacteristic suit and tie instead of his usual Hawaiian shirts, and disregards several opportunities to comment on unintentional innuendos made but others. Debra becomes concerned at Masuka's seeming loss of sense of humor and it's at this moment that Masuka reveals how hurt he is that people don't seem to like him, declaring, "The only time you people even acknowledge me is when you want something... You guys just don't get it. You hurt my feelings." This reveals a more emotionally sensitive side to the character who, up until that point, was comparatively two-dimensional. After a subtle vote of confidence from Debra Morgan and Angel Batista aids his wounded self-esteem, he returns to his usual self with the line, "Science is one cold-hearted bitch with a 14-inch-strap-on," to which a pleased Debra Morgan responds, "And he's back." This small display of appreciation from Masuka's colleagues suggests that, although he is often an irritation to people surrounding him, most of his colleagues are fond of him.
Masuka is placed in an awkward position when he accidentally witnesses Rita and Elliott, the neighbor, kissing on Thanksgiving. Masuka tells Dexter of the kiss, but by the time Dexter had time to listen, he had already been told by Rita.
Masuka is on-scene at Rita's house after she was murdered. He tells everyone that he had pictured her naked many times, but never like this...going on to describe her cause of death to Quinn and the rest. Vince later expresses concern about his knowledge regarding Elliott and Rita's little mini-fling to Joey Quinn, which assists Quinn in pursuing his theory about Dexter. Masuka wishes he never told Dexter about it (even though Dexter already knew). He is one of many to later attend Rita's funeral, standing quiet while others express their feelings.
As the season goes on, Masuka is forced into Dexter's job as Blood Spatter Pattern Analyst and absolutely hates it. He's not a fan of blood in the first place...especially when he's forced into the lab to test weapons on dummies. Every crime scene he arrives on is doubled up with commentary of how he wishes he could be somewhere else (but cruder, in Masuka style)...even having a piece of brain matter fall on his shoulder that aggravates him. Later, he is given a prime role in actually securing Dexter's safety after a screw up with Lance Robinson and Dan Mendell, calling the experience "Autoerotic Mummification" and thus closes the case on both Mendell and Robinson.
Vince continues to have an active role with comical commentary while everyone else focuses on the drama.
Masuka hires an intern. When the possible candidates come station to check the position out, one of them stands out the most. This one candidate is a good-looking female, is the one that everyone thinks will get the internship. When Masuka chooses a different person, everyone is quite surprised. The first intern wasn't able to handle a gruesome crime scene, though, so the good-looking blonde gets the job. Masuka, being the pervert he is, inspects her all day long. After a while, he finally asks her out and to his surprise, she says yes. It seems as if she is the perfect intern, but after Masuka finds out that she stole the prosthetic hand, he fires her and Intern number three is hired. (However, Masuka later fires him as well after realizing that he too was messing with evidence.
(Flashback) When Dexter arrives to work with his daily routine of providing Sadie's Donuts to his fellow colleagues at Miami Metro Homicide, Masuka picks up a long doughnut (while making a perverted comment). Before he walks off, Masuka points out that Sergeant James Doakes is in a bad mood because the LT dumped him, and now the Prostitute Killer has gone missing.
He discovers he has a daughter named Niki Walters when she comes to visit him at Miami Metro Homicide. She is attractive which makes people think of Masuka more positively. To Masuka's disappointment, she often drinks and smokes pot. He tries to get her to stop, being the new "father" he is.
Masuka is at the party celebrating Dexter's contribution to Miami Homicide before he secretly leaves for Argentina with Hannah McKay. He is also seen at the hospital when Debra Morgan is seriously shot by Oliver Saxon.
Vince Masuka is primarily the comical relief in the series, as such many of his quotes relate to his sexually perverse nature and typically involve hitting on a woman. Additionally, he often quotes his race (though covers all Asians) in his jokes.
- Ehehehehehe - Vince's trademark laugh, usually followed by a perverted remark.
- Saw your sister. Damn, looking hot! - Vince
Yeah she should, it's hot as hell out here. - Dexter, this is both Vince's first appearance in the story and his first hint at his attraction to Debra Morgan.
- Watching ice melt, this is fun - Deb
Stand a little closer Morgan and I'll melt your heart - Vince
I think he's got a crush on you Dex - Angel
Huh? - Dexter
Yo! I was talking to Morgan the Sister. Vince Masuka only swings one way - Vince
Yeah, from vine to vine - Deb
- Your victim was smothered. That's not opinion. That's science and science is one cold-hearted bitch with a 14-inch strap-on. - Proving Ramon Prado wrong about a new killing.
- Masuka's first appearance immediately shows him as perverse as well as reveals his attraction to Debra Morgan. He also makes his usual grin when Batista refers to the victim at the scene as previously having a nice ass.
- C.S. Lee was not added to the main cast during the first season and instead appeared during the ending credits as a guest star. In addition, he did not appear in "Let's Give the Boy a Hand."
- Masuka is one of few main characters that Dexter has fantasized killing, however this instance was only due to the pressure and stress brought on by his sister Debra (after discovering he was a serial killer) and Masuka was simply irritating him at the time. He did not act on the impulse and quickly dismissed it, as he had fantasized killing a postal worker earlier that day.
- Vince watches Project Runway.
- C.S. Lee, who portrays Masuka is, in fact, of South Korean descent.
- Asian culture mix ups are joked about by Masuka on the show on numerous occasions, the first being in "Return to Sender," when Masuka tells Dexter he is messing up his "chi." Dexter says "You're not Chinese" to which Masuka replies, "I'm not?"
- C.S. Lee has guest-starred on the USA television series MONK along with several background actors in the DEXTER series, such as the actors for Michael Soderquist and Detective Hill.
- ↑ Chapter 2, Pages 26 and 27 from Darkly Dreaming Dexter (mass produced compact version) by Jeff Lindsay
- ↑ Chapter 2, Page 27 from Darkly Dreaming Dexter (massproduced compact version) by Jeff Lindsay
- ↑ Episode 101: Dexter, at Seven Seas Motel crime scene.
- ↑ "LaGuerta's looking for a witness. Working on the motel porter back there, God help him. Hehehehehe",Episode 101: Dexter
- ↑ Episode 102: Crocodile, just after the truck is discovered by Deb and the fingertips are located
- ↑ Episode 103: Popping Cherry
- ↑ Episode 104: Let's Give the Boy a Hand, C.S Lee does not appear
- ↑ Episode 712: Surprise, Motherfucker!, during flashback
- ↑ Episode 101: Dexter, upon entering the pool where the first Ice Truck Killer victim is found
- ↑ Episode 102: Crocodile, melting ice around fingertips left by ITK
- ↑ Episode 101: Dexter
- ↑ Season 7
- ↑ Season 5, while Quinn was still pursuing Dexter
- ↑ 'Episode 410: Lost Boys