Bates Motel Season 3

Bates Motel: The Deal (S3 ep 5)

That troublesome flash drive continues to cause grief as Norma is run off the road by one of Bob Paris’ goons. He politely suggests to her that she contacts Paris to give it back.

The hospital calls Dylan after Norma’s admitted to A&E, and he rushes over to pick her up. Norman claims to have already told Norma about Caleb’s continued presence in White Pine Bay, but her confusion when Dylan apologises to her makes it clear she knows nothing about it. The cracks are showing again, and Norma tearfully tells Dylan that she found Norman in the kitchen suffering one of his blackouts.

Romero’s back quizzing Paris about the two dead escorts. Paris warns him to drop it, insisting that he put his efforts into finding that flash drive “for the good of the town.” He admits that he brought in Marcus Young to stand against Romero in the election for sheriff. He’s a man who likes to have his friends around him, his yes-men, people willing to do as their told. And Romero’s just a bit too troublesome.

Psychology tutor, James Finnigan, takes Norma out for lunch. She agrees to become his patient, and, inspired by his openness, asks him outright if he’s attracted to her. He admits it, but claims he can remain professional. I think we can all guess where this will be heading, but Norma has a track record for finding trouble with the men she brings to bed. I have to wonder if James has a secret, or a connection, that won’t work out well for her.

Caleb takes out his frustrations on a tree, with an axe, and Chick, their less-than-friendly marijuana-growing neighbour turns up, shotgun in hand. They have a smoke, a chat, and Chick asks Caleb to be his new driver.

Norman’s becoming increasingly confused between reality and his blackout-induced hallucinations. It transpires that the Norma he told about Caleb, was actually the one that comes to him during the blackouts. His behaviour’s getting more and more bizarre, and we see him digging through Norma’s wardrobe. He pulls out the dress he claims she was wearing, breathes in the scent of it, and hides it in his room. His grip on reality is seriously slipping.

Gunner, Dylan’s seemingly dim-witted underling, finds and hacks into the flash drive. It’s full of financial documents, showing investments for millions of dollars, implicating several of White Pine Bay’s rich and powerful inhabitants. Dylan tells Norma that this is too big for them to handle alone. He urges her to tell Romero. She does, but she’s not ready to hand anything over.

Instead, she convinces Romero to take her to see Paris. She approaches the meeting like any other: with a ruthless, business-like attitude, edged with enough feminine vulnerability that lets people underestimate her a little. This is a woman willing to hide dead bodies, to cover up murders, and poker face is one of her many talents. She strikes a deal with Paris, asking for a dedicated and signposted sliproad from the new bypass to her motel. Oh yeah, and a swimming pool with a jacuzzi. The look between her and Romero reveals that she threw that one in by herself. And she’ll keep hold of the flash drive as insurance to ensure her safety.

The episode ends with Dylan, supported by Norman, telling Norma about Caleb. For real this time. She goes upstairs, packs a suitcase, along with her handgun, and drives off, leaving Norman screaming her name.