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Bates Motel Review: 3.2: Goodnight, Mother

This week’s episode of Bates Motel was a big episode. Alex Romero agreed to marry Norma Bates so that she could use his insurance. In the episode’s climax, they got Norman Bates to sign a paper so that he would be checked into a mental health facility.

This episode came a long way in pushing Norma to admitting how overwhelmed she is with Norman. Her desperate phone call showed a lot of vulnerability. But, we still saw glimpses of how stubborn she is in moments like when she refused to admit to Alex that she’s scared to be alone with Norman.

We also saw Norman at his scariest as he terrorized Norma through the house and proposed that they both need to die. Of course, we still understand Norman’s own motivations and it’s incredible how well the show has kept that balance in play even as Norman’s death toll increases. The scene where Norman accuses Norma of committing all of his murders is an incredibly compelling moment for both characters.

The scenes between Dylan Massett and Emma Decody in this episode were much lighter than the rest of it, but of course they have the weight of an impending sense of doom simply because they’re characters on this show. It’s interesting to see Dylan worry that he’s not good enough for Emma and how relieved he is when she says that she does want him to return to her. The sweetness of the relationship and the hope they provide each other nicely provides stakes as we wonder how badly things will end for them.

On a similar note, the relationship between Norma and Alex is interesting. While we understand the practical purpose of their marriage, there seems to be more there for both of them as they talk about. Building up this bond will definitely make whatever fate is in store for Alex have a greater impact.

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