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Bates Motel “Trust Me” 

Photo Credit:A&E
Photo Credit: Joseph Lederer/A&E

First, a big congratulations to Bates Motel for the early announcement of a season two!  I’ve been writing for A&E’s The Glades for the past couple of years, and I’ve never seen a renewal announcement this early.  The cast and all of the writers of Bates Motel should be very proud.

Last week’s episode ended with Norman (Freddie Highmore) finding a girl in Deputy Shelby’s (Mike Vogel) basement.  In tonight’s episode, that episode is replayed at the beginning, but this time with Norman’s brother, Dylan (Max Thierot), following close behind.  Dylan doesn’t actually go into the house, but he does see Norman enter and come out.  This scene is very important for the character development of Dylan because it illustrates that Dylan does, in fact, care about Norman very much.  After Deputy Shelby returns home prematurely, Dylan knocks on the front door, pretending to be someone looking for a gas station.  This buys Norman enough time to escape the Shelby house before being discovered.  When Dylan first entered the picture at the beginning of the season, he seemed to show a great deal of disdain towards not just Norma (Vera Farmiga) but also Norman.  Now, it appears that judgment may have been premature.

In this epeisode, we also get a good deal of airtime between Norman and Bradley (Nicola Paltz) especially since Emma (Olivia Cooke) is sick with the flu and may be away from school for at least a week.  In my review last week, I raised the question about whether Bradley Martin (or at least Norman’s relationship with Bradley Martin) was even real. After this week’s episode, I’m becoming even more sure that that’s the case, and as this storyline unfolds, we delve even further into Norman’s unstable psyche.  If Emma weren’t sick, I’m sure Norman and Emma would investigate the girl in Shelby’s basement together.  But, with Emma unavailable, Norman’s imagination reaches out to Bradley.  It begins pretty innocent with Norman consoling Bradley for the last of her father.  But, then, it goes further with Norman slipping into Bradley’s house in the middle of the night.

After seeing Bradley’s house, I’m sure all of the viewers are questioning how in the hell could Norman and Bradley realistically be together.  Bradley is living in a $500,000+ upscale house in the suburbs, and Norman is living in a creepy, old house on the outskirts of home.  They run in different social circles and appear to be like night and day.  But, Norman wants what Norman wants, including the intimate scene with Bradley at the end of the episode.  This scene was like something straight from a Hallmark romance novel, which leads me to even more disbelief that the relationship between the two teens was real.

If Norman and Bradley’s relationship aren’t real, one thing that appears to be very real is law enforcement getting closer to figuring out what happened to Keith Summers.  With Summers’ hand found in a fishing net covered with carpet fibers, the Sheriff is confident they will find the killer sooner.  And, both Norma and Norman make his job much easier with their stupid, amateurish actions.  Norma is worried about the carpet fibers and so, right after leaving the Sheriff’s station, she drives straight to the dumpster where she left the old carpet. Second, Norman opens up to Dylan about everything that happened, which now leaves yet a 3rd party who must keep the secret of what happened that night.  Can Norman really trust Dylan?

The episode ends with the Sheriff showing up very quickly at the Bates Motel to arrest Norma.  The big question remains of what evidence made their case?  Did they simply follow Norma to the dumpster?  Either way, this storyline is evolving into one that is very interesting, and now, with Norma possibly being away from home due to her legal issues, I wonder where the Norman and Dylan relationship will go.  Hmmmm….

All in all, I thought this was a very good episode and actually, a very good series thus fall.  The only scripted series on A&E that I can compare it to is The Glades, and of the two shows, The Bates Motel in my opinion is the better-written.  The storylines on The Glades can at times feel contrived and fake, but everything so far in this series is very natural and definitely very engaging.  I very much look forward for the remainder of season one, and then, after that, season two.

The Bates Motel airs on Monday nights at 10 p.m. EST on A &E.

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