Wednesday, April 26, 2017

A Goodbye to Bates Motel



Bates Motel has closed up shop with a killer Season Five that focused on the strongest element of the series: Norman and his mother. This season brought with it the greatest shadow of Hitchcock as the series intersected with the classic movie. They dared to tackle Hitchcock's infamous shower scene with Marion Crane and recreated an almost shot-for-shot remake, yet framed it around a somewhat different story. And it worked! Then we moved past the end of the classic movie to find a fitting and surprisingly emotional end to the Bates Motel.

Across the board, performances from Freddie Highmore as the deranged Norman and Vera Farmiga bolstered the series. After the shocking end of season four, Norma spent most of this season dead in a freezer(!) and yet Vera Farmiga gave the most delightful and offbeat performance as Norman's Norma, as he envisioned her in his mind. Her character had been so emotionally grim and desperate over the previous seasons so it was a relief to see such a carefree and funny Norma. Thank you for unravelling Norman and allowing this unexpected and surprising turn.

Season Five is easily the best, most nuanced, and ultimately tragic season of the entire run and cemented this as a must-watch. It was clever and inspired, and though I never fully appreciated it, I will miss Bates Motel.

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