Bates Motel Season 2 Episode 1 – TV Review
Now that Bates Motel is back, it really feels like things are back to normal.
Now all I need is Revenge, and I’ll be happy.
I could take or leave Once Upon a Time at this point, though. I’ve had enough of stagnation.
TL;DR Norman is a psycho; Norma’s business is threatened by the new bypass; Bradley has gone crazy in pursuit of the truth about her father’s death; Dylan contributes nothing.
Oh yeah, I’m name upgrading Vera to Norma. Expect typos to confuse you.
So thank god Bates Motel is back. We pick up briefly following Norman’s stabby rip stab stab of Teacher (who is also getting a name upgrade. To Miss Watson). He acts like he doesn’t remember killing her, but his troubled flashbacks tell us that it’s not entirely true. Bradley also tries to kill herself because her dad banged someone other than her mum. Drama queen. We then move onto 4 months later. Norman is totally emo about Miss Watson’s death, which everyone finds troubling. He is perked up a bit when Bradley is released from her mental hospital treatment, but she’s got more important things on her mind: ivestigating her dad’s death. And revenge. She corners an old colleague of her dad’s, but he is unwilling to co-operate. Dylan catches wind of what’s going on, and tells her (by info from his partner) that her dad was banging the old colleague’s girlfriend. Who was Miss Watson. This is enough to convince Bradley that he’s the murderer, so she fucking blows his goddamn head off. Meanwhile, Norma is enjoying a booming business at the motel. But the go-ahead for the new bypass threatens that. A minor meltdown at a city council meeting doesn’t help her case. Norman also tells her that Miss Watson tried to seduce him (apparently Bradley’s dad and his coworker weren’t enough man for her. She needed some scrawny, teen rape, too), but denies killing her.
His body count needs to be more impressive. Pick up your game. Dylan, Bradley, Sheriff Romero, Shelby, and bloody Norma have killed 1 person each. You need to have more than just your dad on your list. Get a move on.
As for the episode, really the only flaw is Dylan’s sidelining. I believe that Bates Motel has always struggled to find a defined role for him. He’s a floater.
And you know what you do with floaters? You pile a crapload of toilet paper on top and flush that shit. Literally.
Why I hate this episode:
Emma also gets massively snubbed. Not that I personally have much of a problem with that (Bradley and Norman is true OTP 5eva), but I imagine the 3 people out there who actually like her might be pissed off. So here’s some sympathy indignation for you.
Bradley’s descent into lunacy is hard to swallow. I know she was pretty cut up about her dad being a dawg, but it was more on the “this sucks-ish” level. Not the “I’m gonna drink while driving, almost plow into a truck, then throw myself off a bridge” level.
And what a brat. “Oh, my dad has an extramarital affair. Better kill myself. Oh, that didn’t work? Better kill the guy who maybe might have killed him.” Settle the fuck down, bitch. Stop stealing Norman’s psycho thunder.
Miss Watson was a ho. A paedophile ho. Who does she think she is? Ezra Fitz?
Dylan hasn’t moved out, like he so seriously threatened. Weak.
Although she had no interest in replying to any of Norman’s letters while she was in treatment, Bradley apparently tried several times to email Dylan. Sexily. He respects Norman too much to go anywhere near Bradley romantically. No. This love triangle is happening whether you want it or not.
Oh, and Norman encounters and photographs a random guy who’s at Miss Watson’s grave. Jesus, how many dudes did she have on the go?
But it’s not all bad:
The highlight of the episode is doubtlessly Bradley’s cold-blooded murder of her dad’s old colleague. I legit said “Shit” out loud when it happened. It’s effectively abrupt. It looks like she’s only going to pull out the gun to being threatening him, but she pulls the trigger straight away. It’s splashtacular.
To top it off, she breaks into Norman’s house and asks him whether his commitment to “be there for her” was serious. See? They’re both killers. It’s meant to be (until Dylan worms his way in).
Norman brings the psycho by obviously doing things to cover his tracks regarding Miss Watson. After photographing the mystery mourner, he brings the picture to Sheriff Romero. While he’s there, he takes the opportunity to lie and say that he had once been to her house to work on the story she was trying to get published for him. He does it to excuse any of his fingerprints etc being found. If they are. He’s not very subtle about it, either. And knowing how on the ball Romero is, I’m not sure it worked.
Romero also seems to recognise the mystery mourner, and dismisses Norman’s concerns. Ooh.
After Romero tells Norma about Norman’s visit, Norman confronts him about it. Norman reveals (having previously denied it) that he went to Miss Watson’s on the night she died, and that she tried to seduce him. He claims that he doesn’t remember killing her, and instead says that the reason he’s so obsessed with her death is that he feels guilty for not staying, which he believes might have prevented whoever did kill her from doing it. I don’t believe you, baby. But nice try.
Norma spends a decent part of the episode trying to get Norman out of his death obsession funk (he is also deeply engrossed in taxidermy). This includes taking him for a driving “lesson,” where she encourages him to speed and break a solid dividing line in order to overtake someone. She is the pinnacle of parenting.
Her own subplot takes her on a delightful rant at the council meeting. The dickish council guy leading the meeting treats her like a bug, so she hits back with the best line of the episode. On the microphone, of course: “You’re a dick.” I told you he was dickish.
She also continues on to bring up the fact the town is run by the drug trade. Dickie ain’t got an answer for that.
Norman bawls at the memorial for Miss Watson. Norma and Dylan are more embarrassed than comforting. I lol’d.
Norman kept Miss Watson’s pearls (alla Keith’s belt).
The “B” necklace Bradley found in her dad’s office stands for “Blair,” which is Miss Watson’s first name. Loose thread tied.
Oh, and I just can’t get enough Vera Farmiga. Not that it’s news to anyone.