Norman lapses further into his psychosis, Dylan pays a visit to White Pine Bay, and Alex Romero (finally) returns. It’s a very busy week at the ‘Bates Motel’.
As the episode gets underway, Norman stands over the dead corpse of Sam Loomis in the motel bathroom. Norma tells him that they have a lot of work to do, so he needs to snap out of his contemplations about what he’s done and where his life has gone. The two of them put the body in the trunk of Sam’s car and drive off to the lake where they’ve dumped other victims. When they arrive, they see a bunch of flashing police lights and watch a body being pulled out of the lake. Realizing that they can’t ditch Sam’s corpse there, they carry it deep into the woods and throw it down the shaft of an open well. As I mentioned in a past episode, I still have no idea how Norman can move these bodies on his own, since it’s really just him actually doing the lifting.
After getting rid of Sam’s car at a chop shop that Chick (who doesn’t appear this week) recommended to him, Norman walks all the way back to the motel and finds Sheriff Greene waiting for him. Greene tells Norman that they just fished Jim Blackwell out of the lake, and indicates that they found other bodies there too. (She doesn’t specify which ones. Perhaps they haven’t been identified yet?) Greene is still quite suspicious of Norman and asks him about some tire tracks in the motel parking lot where it looks like someone shot out of there in a hurry. While the correct answer would have been, “Oh, I never noticed until you just pointed it out,” Norman concocts a story about someone coming to the motel for a little afternoon delight the day before and then taking off.
Alex wakes up in bed at Maggie’s house and immediately starts searching for his gun. Maggie brings breakfast to him. When Alex asks her for the gun, she claims she hasn’t seen one and that he must have lost it before he got there. Later in the episode, Alex searches other parts of her house and Maggie admits that she took it from him. She demands to know what’s going on with him, and suspects that he has a theory about who really killed Norma Bates.
Norma sees Norman bringing a wheelchair downstairs in the house and asks what’s going on. He tells her that the police are already suspicious of him and that he needs to clear the house of any evidence. Norma asks what he’s going to do with her (i.e his mother’s dead body in the basement). Norman wheels the corpse deep into the woods and places it in a shallow grave with a blanket over top of it. He tells his dead mother than he’ll be back for her soon.
Dylan arrives in White Pine Bay and drives to the motel. He pulls in just as Norman does as well, and the two brothers walk up to the house together. Inside, Dylan sees the bad shape that the house is in and tells Norman that he shouldn’t be living alone. After Dylan leaves, Norma tells Norman that Dylan needs to go. She suggests that he make a nice dinner for him and then find a way to get him out of the house, and out of town.
In this week’s biggest reveal, Dylan goes to a local pharmacy to see if he can refill Norman’s prescription for anti-psychotic drugs. The pharmacist says she can’t, but gives him a few pills that he can use in the interim until he can find Norman a doctor to prescribe them. When Dylan brings up Dr. Edwards, the pharmacist claims that he’s been missing for a year. This, of course, is only a curiosity to Dylan, but it’s a huge piece of information to viewers. We saw Norman talking with Dr. Edwards a few episodes back. This means that he was just another figment of Norman’s psychosis, and it’s the first indication (I believe) that Norman sees other imaginary people than just Norma.
Dylan runs into Madeleine when he returns to the Bates house for an evening dinner with Norman. They introduce each other. She tells Dylan about her missing husband, and Dylan tells Madeleine about Norman’s mental issues. He says that Norman shouldn’t have visitors right now and talks her into turning around and going home.
As they sit down for their meal together, Dylan asks his younger brother what he knows about Sam Loomis, which makes Norman very upset. Dylan tries to get Norman to take one of the pills he brought back from the pharmacy, but as he goes to get some water, Norman turns into Norma. He/she smashes a glass against the side of Dylan’s head and then lunges after him with a knife. Norman fights with his mother to stop her from killing Dylan, and is eventually able to get the weapon away from her. (From Dylan’s point of view, he just sees Norman flipping out by himself on top of the kitchen table.) Norman then calmly walks over to the phone and calls 911. An operator answers, and Norman tells her his name and confesses to killing Sam Loomis.
This show continues to defy our expectations about how the story will progress. Last week, the show-runners shocked us by switching both the identity and sex of the shower victim. This week, I’m sure I’m not the only one who thought – particularly with only a few episodes left – that Norman would kill his younger brother. Logically, it’s really the only reason to have Dylan in this season at all, as his storyline on this series seems to have otherwise been wrapped up. Instead, we get Norman seemingly turning himself in. Could the end game here actually be a Norman that gets help for his issues? I find it hard to believe that ‘Bates Motel’ will end happily, but at this point, I wouldn’t put it past the creators.