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TV Review - Bates Motel Season 2 Episode 2

Norman Bates
Steve Taylor-Bryant reporting live from the world’s worst Motel as the Bates family drift slowly into insanity...

I realise reading back last week’s review that it wasn’t so much a recap as a 'Yay!! It's back' article. I make no apologies for that, Bates Motel is a top show and I am so glad it has returned to Universal Channel here in the United Kingdom. After the epic Season one finale and the relaunch last week with Season two opener would the continuation be any good? Let's watch 'Shadow of a Doubt' and see.

After Gil's murder the face of the drug business in the town is going to be changing. After killing Gil, Bradley is hiding out in the Bates’ cellar, with Norman getting her hair dye and bus tickets as she prepares to flee. Dylan and Remo meet Gil's replacement as the head of the cartel, Zayn, who believes that Gil was killed by a rival dealer, a thought shared by Sheriff Romero with the strange man at Miss Watson's grave side who, it turns out, is her father Nick.

Trying for some family normality, and to keep Norman close to her, Norma convinces him to audition for a musical at the local community theatre. This ends badly with a huge row outside the venue and Norma having to sing alone, an emotional version of 'Maybe This Time'.

Romero charges a drug dealer for the murder of Miss Watson, taking the pressure of a worried Norma and the glare away from Norman. Bradley stills runs, being dropped off at the coach by Dylan, leaving Norman a beautiful letter of thanks for his support.

Norma's brother arrives at the Motel looking for his sister, a story that won’t end well after we found out about the incestuous abuse of Norma last season.

Well the tension that began in the season premiere hasn’t lifted and this was yet again another solid week. It will be interesting to see Norman's reactions in the next few episodes, with Bradley now gone and his honest rant at Norma about the claustrophobic relationship between them. The argument though gave a real insight into 'Mother'. Norma isn’t just trying to control Norman, she is very scared of him and what she knows he is capable of becoming. This has been the highlight of Bates Motel for me every episode. Vera Farmiga has lent a voice to the Mother we only see as a shadowy figure in Psycho. This show isn’t all about Norman, although as the descent into madness occurs it will certainly face up to that storyline, this is the Norma Bates show. Move over Anthony Perkins, Vera's in the building!

9/10

Find  Steve Taylor-Bryant on Twitter @OpinionGeeks.

Image from A&E

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