Shelby’s body has been removed from Norma’s bed and she’s given the police the name Jake Abernathy when asked about who could have been responsible. She tells Romero about the mysterious man asking her of her association with Shelby, which doesn’t faze him, and orders Norman and Dylan to take her mattress to be burnt. Dylan thinks it’s a stupid idea and a waste of money, but before he can have a fight with Norma about it, she smells the trimmers smoking pot outside their rooms. During her confrontation with them, where she puts the joint out on the ground, she mentions that she doesn’t have control anywhere else but on her property; her experiences in White Pine Bay have been, let’s say, less than satisfactory and in her mind, she hasn’t had the chance to do anything to better her fortunes.
As a result, Norma gets on a big kick about moving somewhere, anywhere that’s not where she currently resides. She leaves Emma in charge of the motel, with orders to bust up any pot smoking, to go see her real estate agent Matt over his failure to inform her of the bypass. Norma demands her money back and for an open house to occur that weekend, though her one stipulation is that it not be listed, seeing as how she still has to run a business.
Back at the motel, Norma is cleaning one of the rooms occupied by the trimmers when she sees a black car like Jake’s slowly driving by. With her nerves already shot, she gets online and looks up the safest cities in America, already plotting for her move with Norman. Meanwhile, Emma catches a trimmer smoking pot at the motel and makes him stop, although he checks her out as she walks back to the office.
That evening, Sheriff Romero comes to the motel over Norma calling the station. Earlier, she received a bouquet of flowers, whose unsigned card said “See you soon”. Norma thinks that it’s Jake’s doing, but she has no other evidence to back up her claim – no license plate numbers, no witnesses, no physical evidence from his room, as she just cleaned it. Annoyed at once again having to deal with Mrs. Bates, Romero leaves.
Norma comes to the living room where Norman is and gauges the idea of moving to Hawaii together. Her plan is to sell the motel and buy a place in the mountains of one of the top ten safest cities in the country. Their life can be peaceful, quiet, and as off the radar as you can get, a blessing after all the drama they’ve been through. He, however, doesn’t take to the idea whatsoever, calling his mother crazy and suggesting that things will be the same anywhere they go. Before they can get into it, they have to take care of Emma, who consumed a pot cupcake, a present from Gunner, the guy who checked her out.
After making up with Norman, Norma goes to see Matt about the open house. There won’t be one because, according to him, there’s no value in the property. At most, she’d be able to get about half of what she paid for it, which infuriates her enough to where she attacks the man with her purse before storming out. Once in her car, she’s surprised by Jake, who was waiting in the backseat with a gun. Deputy Shelby owes him $150,000 for the last batch of girls and as no one has the money, it’s notw on her shoulders. She’s to meet him at Seacliff Pier the following night at midnight with the entirety of the debt, or else he’ll come to the motel and kill Norman and Dylan before turning the gun on her.
Dream a Little Dream
Norman awakens after having a dream where he drowns Bradley, clad in a blue prom dress, in his bath tub. That day at school, he runs into Miss Watson, who tells him of his straight A’s that quarter and how blown away she was over a short story he wrote. She has a friend with a small publishing business and she could get the story published, as long as it was edited a little and Norma agreed to it.
That evening, he arrives home with Juno’s freshly stuffed body and the good news of his grades, two things that he hopes will keep Norma from moving him away from White Pine Bay. He tells her that he likes the school he’s in before going to his room and looking up what his dream about Bradley could mean. It’s then that Dylan walks in and sees what Norman’s researching, pressing him on the identity of the subject of the dream. Norman reluctantly confesses and shrugs off a question from his half-brother about having thoughts of hurting people.
Norman has a very tense editing session with Miss Watson where she tells him he has a very old soul and a way of seeing the world beyond his years – his story is of a man who’s on fire inside and struck a chord with the teacher. He, however, tells her that his mother wouldn’t approve of it being published. Miss Watson tries to identify with Norman, informing him that she was very much like him as a teenager, and pleads with him to let his talent be recognized. Would Norma even have to know about the publishing?
Bradley runs into Dylan in town and asks him to take her into her father’s office in Gil’s building. She wants to get the stuff that he left, which he agrees to, but she won’t be able to go in the office with him. Gil is still upset at Jerry losing $100,000 worth of product and mentions to Dylan that he thought of killing Jerry’s family as payment for the factory incident. Dylan then meets Bradley at a diner to inform her that he’d be willing to go in alone and that it might be better for her safety if she stayed behind. She tells him about her home situation since her father’s death, that her mother had panicked after he died and thrown out every one of his possessions. It’s like he never lived there and she wanted to go to his office to simply be surrounded by his things, feel connected to him one more time.
Dylan agrees to take her to the office and they make it inside, only for gun shots to ring out. It’s an unhappy Remo, upset at the position he’s put in. He knows how much Gil hated Jerry Martin, but he can’t exactly go running to him to rat on Dylan, so he gives them 10 minutes to get in and get out. While looking for a gold pocket watch of her father’s, Bradley finds a bundle of letters signed by someone referred to a “B”. They’re all very lovingly addressed to her father, causing her to run out of the building from being overwhelmed. Dylan reminds her that no matter what her dad did, he’s still her dad and she loved him. The two hug and then leave for home.
Additional thoughts and observations:
-I’m amused at how over Norma Romero is. His apathy to her well-being strengthens me.
-The trimmer that Norma has the first argument with is named Ra’uf. Really. There’s a spelling without the apostrophe that means “compassionate” in Arabic, though.
-Norma’s “chill your own ass” was a very mom-like punctuation to that kind of argument, especially given how flustered she got.
-During Norman’s dream, the first second or two I thought that Bradley was Norma. Intentional? Foreshadowing?
-The tension coming from Miss Watson during every interaction with Norman was something. It felt like she was going to lean in and kiss him during the editing session and their final conversation.
-On a similar note, Norma literally climbing into bed with Norman and cuddling with him before going to sleep – how about that?
-Next week on Bates Motel: The official synopsis is “Norman takes Emma to a dance.”, but really, a whole bunch of craziness is going down. See you then.