Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Things I liked about "Bates Motel" Season 3

  • Norma's mugging of the camera - extended reaction times/frozen expressions (usually after one of Norman's revelations/confessions).
  • Norman's facial expressions are getting creepier (Highmore is metamorphosing into Tony Perkins episode by episode).
  • It ALWAYS rains in White Pine Bay - adds to its gothic charm 
  • The nutty/evil hippy/psycho (Dylan's dad's neighbour in Episode 2)
  • It's much better (and funnier) than Season 2 (e.g. the wifi password at the motel is MOTHER)
  • The moody Bernard Herrmann-inspired musical score (particularly effective during Norman's interview with the sheriff in Episode 3).
  • Emma in her VW/ganja-mobile to the strains of The Specials' "A Message to you, Rudy".
  • Norman in another creepy bathroom scene (towards the end of Episode 3).
  • The family dynamics are deeper in this season (e.g. Norman's resentment/jealousy of Dylan in Episode 4).
  • The script writers have beefed up Olivia Cooke's character, Emma. She  is sexier and gutsier in Season 3. It's funny that both Cooke and Highmore are English.
  • Episode 5 was the strongest ep since early in Season 1. Norman sniffing mom's dress, Norma's rant about White Pine Bay about 2/3 into the episode. More please.
  • Norman being mom making French toast for Dylan in Episode 6 (the best eps so far seem to be written by series co-creator, Kerry Ehrin)
  • A tender scene with Dylan and Emma: "Sorry I got phlegm on the floor."
  • Episode 7: Norman's chat with the psychologist in the basement. Probably not a great idea to conclude the session by strangling the therapist.
  • The way Norman (Freddie Highmore) breathes heavier as he gets more unhinged.
  • The view from Dylan's shack, across the water to mist-shrouded mountains - reminiscent of New Zealand's "Top of the Lake".
  • The season finale was disappointing except for the inspired final few minutes: Bradley's murder, "Mother, what have you done!", the slowly submerging car (a nod to "Psycho" where Norman pushes Marion Crane's car into the swamp).

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