Bates Motel, Season 2 – “The Escape Artist”

bates motel escape artist - dylan

Sex, sex, and more sex. That’s what “The Escape Artist” was about, sort of. But was it a boring episode or one that stacked the deck for things yet to come on Bates Motel? The safer bet is the latter. At the season’s midpoint, with most other narratives resolved, it was necessary to take a step back and properly set things up for the second half of the season. That means less action and more character and plot development, and for the most part Norma and Norman took a backseat in this episode.

Let’s break this down by the key players in “The Escape Artist.”


bates motel escape artist - emma and drug boy

Thank god Emma finally got some screen time, even if one of those moments was an awkward, lingering lean over Norman when she could have asked him to pass her whatever item she needed. I was seriously beginning to think that the showrunners were going to have her simply fade away. With a new love interest for her you’d think things are looking up for the girl, but unfortunately this blossoming young girl could be headed for the Bates Motel compost. Actually, she’ll probably be drowned.

Here’s one theory, because her new boyfriend is a drug dealer she could uncover something about the town’s drug world with her Nancy Drew skills. However, that’s an unlikely scenario. What’s much more likely to happen is Emma will be caught having sex in her boyfriend’s motel room either by Norm or Norma.

Norma adores Emma and would like nothing more than to see her and Norman together, especially after Emma asked her for some motherly advice about losing her virginity. So, if Norma catches Emma and drug boy in the act, Norma will be very upset, which will upset Norman. If Norman catches them, Norman will be very upset. Either way, Norman being upset is not a good thing. As we’ve seen in the past, with Bradley and Miss Watts, sex has been a trigger for Norman’s blackouts, combine that with some good ol’ fashioned jealousy, and we’ll have a raging Norman on our hands.

Then again, maybe just having Sheriff Romero staying at the motel could be enough to get Emma caught in a crossfire.


bates motel escape artist - romero and zane

Last week Zane gave the order to burn Romero’s house to a crisp. This week, Romero beat Zane to a pulp and took up residence at the infamous motel. This new proximity to the Bates family could be hazardous for both parties… well, mostly for the Bates. Think back to all the dead bodies last season or even to last week with Dylan passed out, covered in puke, hanging out the window of his truck.

What happens if Norman has one of his blackout episodes and does something crazy, maybe like killing Emma, with Romero near by? Or if Dylan comes home with some drug-related heat on him? Or something happens with Nick Ford as he’s visiting Norma?

Then again, what if some kind of romance develops between Romero and Norma?

Nick Ford and Norma

bates motel escape artist - norma and nick

Yes, the mysterious Nick Ford who owns a yacht named “Amnesia II.” He seems to find Norma to be an interesting business ally. In his eyes, she’s able to do things publicly and/or politically that he’s not able to do. Of course, he has his own best interests at heart, which I’m sure will piss off Norma in the future. For now, however, the first order of business for the two is to stop the bypass from being built. It’s unclear why Ford, the head of one of the drug factions in White Pine Bay, wants to stop the bypass. Could be that he just sees an opportunity with Norma and is simply manipulating her. One thing is certain, it will be interesting to see how Ford reacts when he finds out Norma’s son Dylan is working for his competition.


bates motel escape artist - dylan 1

Dylan seems to be on the wrong side of everything this season, which is his place since the show has always presented him as the black sheep. Still reeling from finding out that his uncle Caleb is his dad, Dylan seems amenable to meeting with Zane to “talk shop,” but when a drive-by attempt on Zane misses, deathwish Dylan steps up to face the car head-on as it tries to make a second pass. As a result, Dylan ends up in the hospital and gets to meet Zane’s sister, who happens to be his boss. Unwittingly, Dylan has raised his profile within her organization. No doubt that this little twist of fate will develop into a very interesting storyline.


As predicted, Cody is at odds with Norma. From “go” Cody, who has issues with parents and authority, squared off with Norman’s mother. For whatever reason, Cody, another hottie, finds Norman attractive enough to have sex with him. I’m sorry, but Freddie Highmore has about as much sexual charisma as a door. Plus, with all the mommy issues that Norman has, he should have the sexuality of an imp. Any hints at romance with Norman is the most unbelievable thing about this show.

bates motel escape artist - norman and cody

But, Norman needs to rebel against his mother, and there’s no better way to achieve that than to have a girl who’s passionate about everything, a little wise to the world, and charismatic occupying Norman’s every thought. It was a little humorous when Norma warned Norman about Cody, but essentially described a younger version of herself.

What did you think of “The Escape Artist”? What directions do you think the many storylines will go?

Rock Hard \m/

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