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Thread: Bates Motel

  1. #131
    Signed, Sealed, Delivered prhoshay's Avatar
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    Re: Bates Motel

    Not scary. Suspenseful. I do remember you being spooked by the idea that it would be scary.

    It gave me a little fright, but if you will remember, I was about 7 when I saw it. I still wouldn't have called it scary.
    Last edited by prhoshay; 03-10-2014 at 09:16 AM.
    "...each affects the other, and the other affects the next, and the world is full of stories, but the stories are all one." - Mitch Albom, one helluva writer

    When you throw a rock into a pack of dogs, you know which one you hit by the one that yelps!

  2. #132
    FORT Fogey redsox girl's Avatar
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    Re: Bates Motel

    The writers have done a fantastic job creating Norma Bates and Ms.Farmagia has done a superb job in her interpretation of the woman who is the key to Norman Bates pathology. Norma is one of the most unsettling characters on television right now. If not downright disturbing. If she were written as obviously insane it would be a one note performance. But, she instead is more subtle and complex-we know she's sick, her relationship with her son unnatural as it teeters between a husband/wife relationship and one of unyielding obsession. Yet, like any sociopath, she is able to retain a mask of normalcy to the outside world, though it's clear she's unable to stay within the boundaries of lady like and responsible behavior she tries to project toward the community. In the season two premiere Farmagia is particularly effective in performing this duality in her nature when she goes before the city council to speak with them about the new bypass. At first, I feel supportive of her, I even applaud her bravery in refusing to back down when the board treats her dismissively. What anger she has is contained, controlled and articulated with controlled bravado. But, she let's it slip at the end, when she calls the councilman an unprintable name. To me that entire scene captures Norma's personality-the need to control everything, her feeling that she is unable to attain her goals because of men, her need to appear respectable, intelligent, strong and dignified. But all of that careens out of her control when she spits out her crass venom at the Councilman. It mimics her relationship with Norman. One moment she is in control, the next she is screaming at him because of some perceived slight in the way he treats her. She can't control him all the time and whenever he makes an attempt to strike out on his own, to be a normal teenager interested in girls, she becomes rageful, as if he is cheating on her, clearly banging into his head that sex and girls, girls other than his own mother, are disgusting. Whatever moments of tenderness she shows him are tainted with manipulation or with subtle insinuations that Normans choices should make him feel morally broken because his actions, while normal, are insulting to her. She is the jealous girlfriend and while incest is not shown it is in fact suggested by the way she undresses in front of Norman, the way she flirts with him in her slip and bra, while asking him what she should wear on a date. Whatever discomfort he shows is quickly and repeatedly called ludicrous by his mother in that she tells him "oh Norman, I'm just your mother for Heavens sake." though we only view this particular scene once in the first season it is clear this type of interaction has happened before and after. I can understand the eventual unraveling of Norman's mind.
    I find the character of Norman incredibly sympathetic and likeable, veering between normal to psychotic breaks that will only worsen over time. It is a credit again, to the writers and the acting of Highmore, that I as a viewer, sympathize with someone I know will grow up to be a serial killer driven by a love/hate obsession with his mother. I find myself thinking "there must be some way to stop the inevitable fate that awaits Norman, there must be someone who can step in and save him." To care about a characters fate, a fate we already are aware of, is quite an achievement,
    The addition of older brother Dylan could have been disastrous and meandering. But again, the writers and the actor, Mr. Therox, pull off a difficult story plot and character interpretation. Dylan is the holder of the cards when it comes to the depravity of his mother-but. he doesn't know exactly how far her depravity goes. He certainly realizes the danger in the relationship between Norman and his mother as he probably experienced that same suffocating relationship with Norma at some point. But his will is stronger than Norman's and he was able to get away. For which Norma has yet to forgive him for. We know Dylan is involved in a criminal enterprise which includes the possibility and willingness to murder people. Yet, he isn't a thug in the traditional sense. In some ways, in unexpected ways, he is portrayed as a sort of moral compass in the way he reminds Norma he knows her behavior over the years has been not only criminal, but morally twisted in the way she has `mothered' both her children. And she despises him for it. She despises him for trying to take, her love, Norman, away from her, if not turning him against her in order to save him.
    Norman initially hates Dylan. Because Dylan openly criticizes "Mother" the woman who has indoctrinated Norman into believing she is infallible, normal, loving. The woman who is perfect for him. It is Dylan whose presence and conversations with Norman,begin to bolster Normans belief that there is something terribly unhealthy about "Mothers" attachment to him. Dylan encourages Norman to hang out with his peers, to go out and have fun like a normal kid, because normal teenaged boys don't spend their free time almost exclusively in the company of their mothers. And normal mothers do not admonish their teenage sons for going out on dates, the way Norma does. Though Norman remains unnaturally protective of his mother/wife he also realizes he is suffocating. It is an awakening knowledge brought about by the strong presence of Dylan. So, he tests the limits of his freedom, by sneaking out, by kissing girls, by having sex. When caught, Norma isn't disgusted because she is a mother angered by her son's deceit, she is disgusted because her son is showing affection and romantic attachment toward another female. In her jealousy she degrades him, rages about the immorality of his behavior, further confusing Norman. Angering him while at the same time filling him with the sense he has betrayed his mother's love, which leads to a further breakdown of his teenaged psyche.
    The one girl he is close to throughout season one is only accepted by Norma because Norma knows, after bluntly asking the girl about her life expectancy, that the girl will not necessarily live long or remain healthy. Thus, the threat Norma initially feels is neutralized and she is then able to exhibit a rehearsed kindness toward her, nothing sincere, but so well mimicked the girl is none the wiser.
    Norman's blackouts are becoming more frequent, blackouts and memory loss being symptoms of psychotic breaks. As the pressure builds, these breaks become more frequent, their timing closer together, which fits the story thus far. Or perhaps there is post traumatic syndrome Norman contends with. Loss of memory, fragmented memories of events are real, a hallmark of this diagnosis, as being exposed to one traumatic event at a specific time or a series of horrible experiences over a period of time, causes the mind to protect itself by blanking out the most horrifying parts of the experiences, so the person cannot remember in chronological detail, what happened-there are snippets here and there, but those are outnumbered by frustrating memory blocks, gaps in which the person has no idea what occurred. Haunted and tormented. That is what we are beginning to see in Norman. Rather than simply a sociopath indifferent to his actions. Or driven to it by one particular thing. teenaged Norman is terrified during his lucid moments. That shows him to be morally aware, terrified he is possibly killing people. There is empathy for possible victims and deep remorse mingled with his fears he might be a killer. It makes him sympathetic rather than abhorrent.
    I think the writers for the most part are doing an amazing job in constructing the life of a young Norman Bates, having only The adult version of Norman, a rather vague construct at that, to go on. They know , we know the adult Norman hated his mother, yet morphed into her while murdering any woman the Norman/Norma persona viewed as a threat or as sexually dirty/enticing. That this show is attempting to unravel the whys and the how's in such a complicated way has me hooked.
    Punkin, Ellen, waywyrd and 2 others like this.
    " I have a simple outlook-leave every person I meet with a smile on their face."-Donny

  3. #133
    FORT Fogey Debb70's Avatar
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    Re: Bates Motel

    I think it's interesting you describe Norma as a sociopath. What makes you think that?

  4. #134
    FORT Fogey Punkin's Avatar
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    Re: Bates Motel

    Excellent parsing of the complexities of these well written characters, RS Girl!

    You've led me to think more deeply about their personalities and motivations. Good job. Thanks! I, too, love this show.
    Ellen, redsox girl and momrek06 like this.

  5. #135
    FORT Fogey tinderbox's Avatar
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    Re: Bates Motel

    I simply love Dylan. He's trying to be a true brother to Norman and a bond is forming between these two. Can't wait to find out exactly what happens in their relationship down the road. My guess is it won't be good when you take into consideration how adult Norman turns out.
    Punkin, redsox girl and momrek06 like this.

  6. #136
    Signed, Sealed, Delivered prhoshay's Avatar
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    Re: Bates Motel

    OK, I got a headache.
    "...each affects the other, and the other affects the next, and the world is full of stories, but the stories are all one." - Mitch Albom, one helluva writer

    When you throw a rock into a pack of dogs, you know which one you hit by the one that yelps!

  7. #137
    FORT Fogey redsox girl's Avatar
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    Re: Bates Motel

    Quote Originally Posted by prhoshay View Post
    OK, I got a headache.
    from the show or my post?
    Punkin likes this.
    " I have a simple outlook-leave every person I meet with a smile on their face."-Donny

  8. #138
    Signed, Sealed, Delivered prhoshay's Avatar
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    Re: Bates Motel

    You are determined to try to make me overthink this thing!
    "...each affects the other, and the other affects the next, and the world is full of stories, but the stories are all one." - Mitch Albom, one helluva writer

    When you throw a rock into a pack of dogs, you know which one you hit by the one that yelps!

  9. #139
    FORT Fogey momrek06's Avatar
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    Re: Bates Motel

    I just love everything about NORMA.

    I have no clue how to analyze her or label her BUT whatever it is she has SHE SURE DOES IT SO WELL!!!!
    KAREN

  10. #140
    Signed, Sealed, Delivered prhoshay's Avatar
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    Re: Bates Motel

    She really can make me laugh.....and that woman has a voice!
    "...each affects the other, and the other affects the next, and the world is full of stories, but the stories are all one." - Mitch Albom, one helluva writer

    When you throw a rock into a pack of dogs, you know which one you hit by the one that yelps!

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