Quinn Banford ’15/ Emertainment Monthly Staff
Welcome back to the Bates Motel. On its fourth appearance, the show gets steamy and controversial. Relationships grow, antagonists develop their antagonism, and Norma is confronted by the law. This is an episode that rolls along and keeps the pacing of the show quick and intriguing. Here’s an episode that you’ll enjoy for its delicious and buttery popcorn value.
Last episode ended with Norman creeping through blond cop, Officer Zach’s house. This time, Dylan sees Norman in his sleepy stupor as he breaks into the Zach’s house. Why doesn’t he stop him? I don’t really know. Anyway, the perspective shifts back to where we left Norman; he is in the basement when Zach comes back home. There is an Asian girl tied up and begging Norman to help her, but Zach’s arrival scares him off. Norman escapes in the nick of time, thankfully, and only later does Dylan confront him about the incident.
Norman is having texting woes, unsure of Bradley’s intent when she texts him late at night. Dylan lets him in on the news: Bradley digs him. He texts her and then she texts him back saying her house is empty (by the way, Bradley’s dad is dead and she is in mourning [apparently with Ray Bans]. Her mom is on tons of painkillers, so her moral compass is as broken as this stupid high school love drama), so if you aren’t aware, that means Bradley wants that D. Norman shows up in a matter of seconds and they start making out. Cue sex scene. I think the cinematographer really liked the “romantic sex under bed sheets” kind of scene, so he copy and paste-d whatever stock footage remained from Dawson’s Creek and threw it into this episode of Bates Motel. Like I said in the last recap/review, if you want to enjoy this show, stay away from the kitschy high school love drama. It isn’t even built up the right way, and it bothers me that I have been writing so much about my dislike for it. You’d think that I actually find it to be good. No sir-ee, Bob.
Norman and Dylan’s relationship grows more personal, a huge step for their brotherly love. Dylan basically saves Norman from getting caught when Norman is breaking into the house, pretending that his motorcycle was out of gas, and in effect this buys Norman time to escape the dreaded basement. Later, the two connect during an emotional scene in which Norman reveals to Dylan the intimate details of Norma’s murder episode. With this, Dylan becomes closer to Norman. Norma sees this happening, gets jealous, throws a temper tantrum, and now Dylan is in the doghouse. And I’m gonna go ahead and say that we have yet to see the very worst of her (despite the occasional murderous rage), so we’ll have to keep our eye on this tense mother-son battle.
The only problem is that Norma is getting into huge trouble in this episode. Her affair with Officer Zach intensifies. Dylan catches the pair walking out of one of the motel rooms in the late afternoon. That can only mean one of two things. Either the two were participating in a thing I like to call “checkers” or they were doing something I like to call sex. Guilty with the latter. One night after Norma and the Officer Zach do the nasty, Norma sneaks down to the basement to see whether Norman was telling the truth about the locked up Asian woman. Officer Zach sneaks into frame Jason style, makes me spill jellybeans and water all over myself, and uses his sly and evil words to coax her away from the scene. Thanks to Norma for not giving anything away, Norman will now lead a happy and successful life. Right?
So this cop doesn’t get any better and Norma doesn’t help that either. She sets up a little play date between Norman and Zach in order for them to bond a little more. Officer Zach does the typical “I’m not trying to steal your mom away, I love her and want you to want me to be a part of your family” and “by the way, I know everything about your breaking and entering, so don’t think you’re winning, Norman.” So you’re thinking, “Norman is caught in the middle of just another one of these shitty happenings in this miniscule town, golly gee.” Well, you’re exactly right. Norma goes above and beyond ruining her child’s high school experience. Thank you Norma, you’ve made everything just swell for the family. Oh and the other police officers found a severed hand from the body she’d massacred and dumped into a lake in episode one. Unfortunately for her the hand has Bates Motel carpeting inside the fingernails. She freaks out, and by the end of the episode, she’s being trailed away to a jail cell. Hey, it can’t be too bad. We all thought Martha Stewart was the golden star, but she got carted off to some kind of prison too. Norma’s…well…yeah, Norma’s a bit different.
What should we expect for next episode? Emma was omitted from this hour long fiesta and we’ll most likely/definitely see a high school drama showdown between her and Bradley. Cat fight? I doubt it. Though, Dylan and Norma are at each other’s throats, a built up rage continuing to conglomerate in the household. If Norma gets out on bail because of her love affair with Officer Zach, Dylan might be in some domestic trouble. Kicked out? Murdered? Who knows with this family. As for Norman, we should just expect him to keep losing his mind. Maybe he’ll actually do something illegal. Maybe he and Dylan will fight the corruption in town? Maybe he’ll become prom king. At this rate, the show is still dipping between high school “coming of age” and small town “crazy shit”. Keep your eyes on this next episode because so far Bates Motel has done much better on improving upon its semi-lackluster start. Catch the next one on Monday at 10pm, A&E.