TV Review – Bates Motel Season 2 Episode 4

Bates Motel

Ahead of tonight’s episode 5 Steve Taylor-Bryant recaps last week’s enthralling chapter “Check Out”…

After recovering from what must be the hangover of all hangovers, Dylan confronts Caleb about the incestuous rape of his mother and his own parentage and, whilst being his father seemed to surprise Caleb, the sexual activity involving brother and sister was not denied but all is not as black and white as was made out by Norma. The turmoil that Norma is going through is harmful to Norman and he confides in Cody that an abusive uncle is back in town. Cody comes up with a violent plan to get him to leave town, but at the last moment Norman bottles it and asks Cody to take him home.

As he is due to enter the Bates family home he can hear Norma breaking down to Dylan and the upset clicks something in Norman’s mind so he returns to face Caleb in one of the most remarkable and important scene of the show so far – Psycho 101 and the full embodiment of Mother. Yes, it finally happened, Norman became Norma screaming at Caleb “raping me, your younger sister” and describing how Caleb would come into “MY” room, chilled me to the bone, before the writers thwarted my excitement and, rightly, stopped the Psycho right there with Caleb easily putting Norman down and giving him a good kicking before leaving.

Elsewhere in White Pine Emma finally talks to her drunken beau and admits that she is a virgin and due to her illness wants her first time, which could also be her last, to be more special than a drunken romp. Sheriff Romero goes tough-guy, confronting Zane in front of his little posse just to find out they burn his house down, apparently drug dealers don’t like being threatened, and Christine and her brother George are getting very insistent about spending time with Norma, although we don’t really know why yet.

The writing staff on Bates Motel need applauding. Although I was disappointed to not see Norman kill Caleb whilst thinking he is mother, they were right to stop it there. A slow progression into the Psycho we all know is coming someday is better than shooting themselves in the foot, doing it now, and getting the show cancelled. Whilst most of season 1 and all of season 2 so far has been the Vera Farmiga show, tonight we saw quite why Freddie Highmore was cast as Norman Bates. An excellent performance that affected me the way Anthony Perkins did.

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Image from A & E

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