'Bates Motel' S3E4: Unbreakable

★ ★ ★ ★


Distrust has become a major theme this season as each character has formed their own agenda and are working against one another. Along with that, Norman and Norma’s once way-too-close-for-comfort relationship has become distant and bitter.

Norma seems to be entirely unable to trust Norman at this point. Not only does she suspect of him of murder every time a dead girl turns up, but she’s also noticed his irrational behavior and attempts to make her jealous. Norma went to Dylan, of all people, to talk about the flash drive with. For Dylan, this a big deal. He’s been the subject of Norma’s hatred and has now become the sole person she trusts to protect her.

Norman’s become quite terrifying. The more unstable he gets, the more likely the people around him seem to be in danger. From lashing out at Norma to attempting to make her jealous, it’s obvious how insecure Norman feels now that Norma is afraid of him. Heck, Norman isn’t even able to trust himself anymore because of how everyone has been treating him. It’s sad watching him walk out to Annika’s crime scene and ask his mother "Did I do it?"

Norman’s insecurity causes him to do several things throughout the episode. He asks his mother if she likes him and, while this seems like an innocent question, you can’t help but wonder if he’s gauging Norma. Then on Norman’s picnic with Emma, he stops them from having sex fearing that he may hurt her. Of course, Emma thinks that this is about her and her illness, but Norman was actually concerned about blacking out. Norman also began eavesdropping on conversations, fearing that they were about him.

Bates Motel S3E4

It’s that moment when Norman actually follows Dylan back to the farm that you see just how insecure he actually is about the entire situation. When Dylan tells him that he and Norma were discussing Norman’s mental health, Norman spirals. Hearing that confirmed everything for him. As well as this, Norman discovers that Dylan’s been hiding Caleb there and, despite Dylan’s pleas, goes back home to sabotage that new relationship between Dylan and Norma. It’ll be interesting to see how Norma takes this information. Knowing her, it could go either way. But Norman’s certainly focused on regaining what he has lost with her at all costs.

Norma’s odd coffee-date-therapy-session was certainly intriguing. The psychologist was able to pick up on her inability to open up, mainly since she can’t tell him about Norman, and brought it up in discussion. Norma, of course, sees opening up as weak but, then again, all she does is demonstrate her emotions to the world in quite violent outbursts.

It’s interesting to see Norma unable trust Sheriff Romero anymore. Ever since she saw him at the Arcanum Club, she no longer sees him as a savior in the case that Norman truly goes psycho, but as another threat. I mean, a little bit ago she was giving him an awkwardly long hug. Maybe that will turn around when she finds out about Dylan hiding Caleb.

I’m looking forward to what’s on that flash drive and what Norma will end up doing with the information on there.

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